S3 episode 7
Warning: Recap Contains Spoilers
In this episode, the Dark Army’s victories continue to mount while Mr. Robot (and by extension Elliot), Tyrell, Trenton, Mobley, Dom -- even Phillip Price -- lose big. A lot happens so let’s get to it.
New Adventures in Babysitting
We already knew from the very (and we mean very) end of season_2.0 that the Dark Army had located Trenton and Mobley in Phoenix when Leon appeared, but not when that occurred in the timeline. Now we learn that the timing is that same fateful September Monday. Mobley’s roommate lies dead on the floor, his throat slashed open, while Trenton and Mobley shake with fear on either side of a knife-wielding Leon. Leon reassures them that he’s only there to “babysit,” not kill them. Dumping the body in the trunk of what’s likely a stolen Cadillac, Leon drives his two charges into the desert to dig a grave. Mobley whispers that this must be happening because of the e-mail Trenton sent to the FBI, but she says she never sent it. However, she did set it up to automatically be sent to someone she trusts if she never makes it back to her computer. Even after their attempt to escape fails spectacularly, Leon claims to know nothing about the Dark Army’s plans for them beyond the “immediate future.”
‘Do the math’
Back in NYC immediately after the attacks, Elliot rushes over to Krista’s apartment. Just as he’s about to confess his part in the day’s horrific events, Mr. Robot takes over. In his frustration with how Elliot “ignored his responsibilities,” Mr. Robot blurts out the truth about him being the architect of Five/Nine. However, he and Elliot are not “the real string pullers,” who swiped his ideas to serve their own financial agenda. At first, she dismisses his claim as delusional until he spells out “the math” for her. After he leaves, she calls her lawyer to ask him if she should report Elliot. He reminds her that she’s bound by doctor-patient privilege and that she can’t turn him in unless he stated he’s going to do something in the future.
With a new (fake) fsociety video threatening yet another major attack in the next 24 hours, Dom and Santiago hash it out with Tyrell’s lawyer. The lawyer’s position is that the FBI has no hard evidence of his client being anything other than a pawn, but at least he’s one who could lead them to the actual terrorists -- in exchange for protection and immunity. After the meeting, Dom and Santiago are at odds once again. Dom believes they’re being played by the Dark Army and should haul in the whole fsociety crew but Santiago thinks they have nothing to lose by making the deal. Guess who wins that showdown?
Be Kind, Rewind
Over at Angela’s, she flips through the wall-to-wall breaking news broadcasts on TV, numb with shock. Darlene, who had come over to confront her just before the attacks occurred, says she’s going to grab her stuff and come right back. When Darlene returns, Angela replays the collapse of one of the buildings over and over. Even if there are more casualties or explosions, she explains, everything will be fine. See? When she rewinds the video of the collapse to the beginning, all the people come back.
At the FBI office, Agent Stanchek reports to Santiago that Wellick ID’d the two suspects, (aka Trenton and Mobley), which was corroborated by Sasan Nouri, their “fsociety video perp” (aka the fall guy hired by Frank Cody for whiterose). Now they can release a BOLO. When Santiago saunters into interrogation room, he turns off the video camera that has been recording Tyrell’s questioning. He proceeds to crush Tyrell with the news that his wife is dead, shot at close range by a spurned lover, and his son is in foster care. If Tyrell is thinking of telling anyone about Santiago or veering from the plan, Santiago promises certain death for Tyrell and an unthinkably awful future for his son.
Mr. Robot tracks down Irving at Irving’s Auto Square to register his WTF about the Dark Army going rogue. But before Mr. Robot gets too far, a masked Dark Army operative comes up behind him and knocks him out. When he comes to, Irving has driven him into the city to show him a fancy party taking place on a rooftop, the partygoers undeterred by the day’s tragedy. Irving explains that Elliot and Mr. Robot’s mistake was in thinking that their plan was a revolution, when in fact it was bankrolled by people like those at the party and allowed to happen for a greater purpose. Nothing can stop these “shindigs” -- or the larger plan.
‘False Flag Operation’
Still stuck at Mar-A-Lago after the attacks, Price confronts Zhang in the ballroom. Even with China finally having signed the Ecoin accord, Price says that now nothing will save his company. Zhang disagrees -- Ecoin will help E Corp survive. But as Price begins to realize he himself was never going to survive the latest turn of events, he demands to know why. He always understood that the Five/Nine hack was a temporary global crisis to help Price pressure the administration to allow China to annex the Congo, but then everything went according to plan. Zhang explains that he’s punishing Price for not doing the one job he gave him when he installed him as CEO: protect the plant, which meant controlling Angela and her lawsuit. But the real reason why Zhang needed to destroy so much: to teach Price a lesson because Zhang had to ask him twice. Ouch.
No Act is More Honorable
Leon returns Trenton and Mobley back to Mobley’s house and into the hands of whiterose’s assistant. The English lessons having clearly paid off, the assistant asks the duo to follow him into the garage and sit down at newly installed workstations. The computers have been set up to look like Trenton and Mobley have been plotting to hack air traffic control at major airports to crash planes. They beg for mercy, but to no avail. Though they have no future use to the Dark Army, their self-sacrifice and everything in the room will now serve an important purpose in telling a “story.” The masked operatives move forward with guns….
RIP Fredrick y Tanya
As Dom, her partner, Santiago, and others in the FBI office watch on monitors from afar, the FBI SWAT team moves in to the house in Phoenix, sweeping every room until finally entering the garage. But the Dark Army remains one step ahead of the FBI: the only people now left in the garage are Trenton and Mobley, on the floor bleeding from what is meant to look like self-inflicted gunshot wounds to their heads. As the SWAT team’s cameras pan around, we see that the garage has been dressed with an Iranian flag alongside an fsociety one, a video camera and an fsociety mask. Santiago tells Dom even though they didn’t get the suspects alive, at least the FBI prevented another attack. Stunned, Dom goes into her war room and crosses out Trenton and Mobley on her whiteboard. She scribbles out a name on a piece of paper and places it above Tyrell’s position at the top of the matrix: whiterose. “You’re actually going to get away with this,” she says, her voice full of defeat and disbelief.