‘Mr. Robot’ Recap ‘eps3.5kill-process.inc’: The Art of Misdirection

In the ‘Mr. Robot’ recap, Elliot tries to stop Phase 2 from happening but he fails to see the larger plan at work from Whiterose and the Dark Army…

By Damon Martin — Editor/Lead Writer

Elliot Alderson has been lost in many different versions of his own reality through three seasons on ‘Mr. Robot’.

During season one, Elliot was helping to enact a hack that would bring down Evil Corp that was secretly orchestrated by a mastermind called Mr. Robot. Little did Elliot know that he was the one concocting the plan but it was his own personality that was split into two separate parts.

In season two, Elliot created a second reality to help him survives the horrors of prison while doing his best to keep Mr. Robot locked away through a mix of concentration and a whole lot of drugs.

By the time we get to season 3, Elliot is completely fractured from his other half because now he’s operating as two completely separate entities whenever Mr. Robot comes out to play. Where as in season one, Elliot was speaking and working alongside Mr. Robot much like the narrator did with Tyler Durden throughout ‘Fight Club’, now the only way they co-exist is to live in distinct realities away from each other.

It’s like a waking nightmare for Elliot because now he never remembers what Mr. Robot did while he was in control and vice versa. So all season long while Elliot has been doing his best to stop the Dark Army from enacting Phase 2 — a plan to blow up an Evil Corp building in New York with all the physical records to back up what was lost in the Five-Nine hack — his counterpart as Mr. Robot has been putting the pieces in place to ensure the structure crumbles and falls.

As it turns out, both Elliot and Mr. Robot were operating under the guise of a reality that was never theirs to begin with because Whiterose — the mastermind behind the Dark Army — has been playing them both since the beginning. While Elliot was fighting to stop Phase 2 and Mr. Robot was doing everything to ensure it happened, Whiterose was the puppet master behind the scenes putting all the pieces in place and by the time she pulled the trigger, no one saw it coming.

So even as Elliot and Mr. Robot finally teamed up again in the latest episode of ‘Mr. Robot’ with the intent of facing what is right in front of them, reality decided to change again.

With that said, let’s recap the latest episode of Mr. Robot titled ‘eps3.5kill-process.inc’

What Did You Do?

The episode begins with a flashback to a ‘party’ from some point in the early 1990’s when Edward Alderson was still alive and his family was living next door to the Moss’s. On this particular occasion, the party was a funeral of sorts as friends and family gathered to say a final goodbye to Emily Moss, who was dying of leukemia and had no hopes of surviving. While everyone else was trying to put on a brave face and eating red velvet cakes with the words ‘see you in another life’ inscribed in the icing, Angela Moss was lost in her own little world watching the ‘Back to the Future’ cartoons, far away from everyone’s ‘celebration’.

Edward sits down next to Angela — it seems Elliot decided to skip out on this party — and he tells her that no matter how much this might hurt, she needs to put on a brave face and be there for her mother. Her mother is scared, too, but Angela can be there for her, to watch over her and give her that push she needs to know that everything is going to be OK . Edward tells Angela this knowing that inside she’s falling apart, but her mother needs her to be that steadying force even if she’s forced to fake it.

Before leaving, Edward then asks Angela to do the same for Elliott one day should he ever need it. See, Edward already knows that he’s dying and will soon shuffle off this mortal coil just like Emily so he’s preparing his family for the worst and he’s making sure his son will have someone watching over him long after he’s gone.

Cut to the final moments from last week’s brilliant episode as Elliot has discovered that his best friend Angela — the supposed angel on his shoulder — has been secretly working as a soldier for the Dark Army for months while also conspiring with his alter ego as Mr. Robot.

Elliot can’t believe what he’s seeing but Angela seems justified in everything that she’s doing. She even tells Elliot that no one will die in that building in New York because it’s all been handled — even her mother and his father will be fine. That line was a bit confusing but I’m assuming it means Angela is referencing the vengeance that will be paid for her mother and his father after Evil Corp is left in ruins.

Elliot tries to reason with her but Angela has turned cold and suggests that he leaves the building because he’s not supposed to be there anyways.

Elliot rushes out and immediately calls his sister Darlene and informs her of Tyrell Wellick’s location at the Red Wheelbarrow BBQ joint and tells her to send the FBI there right now to apprehend him. Elliot already knows that his sister betrayed him to the FBI but now he needs their resources because he can’t be in two places at once.

Meanwhile, Elliot calls in a bomb threat to the Evil Corp building that’s expected to blow so he can hopefully save the people inside until he can arrive and disarm the mechanism that will turn it all to ashes. Little does he know that the real battle will be against himself when Mr. Robot does everything in his power to stop him.

Dancing with Myself

As Elliot arrives at the Evil Corp building all of the employees are being allowed back inside. Elliot realizes that he called in a bomb threat but there are no explosives being used in this attack — instead the Dark Army plans to overload the hydrogen reserves used for cooling and then spark it into a massive explosion.

Elliot figures out the best way to stop the attack is to get inside and dismantle the programming from within. Unfortunately at every step of the way, Mr. Robot intervenes and stops him.

Elliot begins typing away on his computer and then he wakes up 15 minutes later in a cab headed in the opposite direction. When Elliot returns, he goes into a computer lab because his laptop is missing and when he blacks out for five minutes, he wakes up and all of the machines have been destroyed.

Each time Elliot moves one step forward, Mr. Robot takes control and moves two steps back. Finally, Elliot decides to go down to the basement where the hydrogen reserves will be and he will personally flood the exhaust to ensure no explosion will happen. Unfortunately along the way, Mr. Robot takes over for flashes of time, slamming his body into walls and ramming his head into pipes — whatever it takes to stop Elliot from reaching his destination.

As for Agent Dom DiPierro, she’s sold on the information fed to her through Darlene from her brother but when she takes the location where Tyrell Wellick is hiding out, her superior officer at the FBI prefers surveillance over storming the gates. See Special Agent in Charge Santiago is actually working for the Dark Army as we learned a few weeks back and he’s going to do everything possible to protect Wellick and the plans to execute Phase 2.

Dom goes away slightly defeated while Santiago warns Whiterose that Wellick’s location has been blown.

Simultaneously, Whiterose is enjoying a glass of champagne alongside her “friend” and Evil Corp CEO Phillip Price, who helped orchestrate the United Nation vote that just allowed China to annex the Congo. Remember that was what Whiterose wanted in exchange for helping Evil Corp take over as the primary currency around the world.

While Whiterose and Price lament over their buffoon of a host — the event is being held at Mar-A-Lago and the owner is none other than Donald Trump — it’s clear that these two don’t have much to talk about when it’s not concerning work. Price leaves but little does he know that his day is just getting started while Whiterose tells her people to move ahead with the plan as scheduled, seeming unconcerned with the FBI bearing down on Wellick.

Back at the Red Wheelbarrow BBQ join, Wellick is in a panic believing that he should have been reunited with his family already and they should be boarding a flight to the Ukraine relatively soon. Irving has to break the news to him that he’s not going anywhere he wants to go because plans have changed.

He hands Wellick an envelope with instructions and then tells him to burn it when he’s finished. Irving turns to leave while Wellick looks like he just got gut punched from this news. When Wellick opens the letter, he reads what’s inside and as instructed he sets it all on fire. At the same time, Wellick attacks a handcuff to one part of the bed post and then stares down at the garbage can with the growing fire inside while he takes several swigs of vodka.

As much as Dom’s boss wanted her stay at the office and wait on surveillance to catch Wellick at that location, she’s not the kind to just sit around and wait. She decides to have some lunch alongside her partner at — you guessed it — the Red Wheelbarrow BBQ restaurant.

Inside, Dom peaks around looking for anywhere that Wellick could hide but it’s not until she goes into the kitchen that she sees a hidden room nowhere on the building’s schematics and smoke is pouring out from under the door. Dom busts inside, walks downstairs and finds the smoldering garbage can, an empty handcuff on the bed but no sign of Tyrell Wellick.

The Art of Misdirection

As Elliot continues his fruitless effort to bust into the door that will give him access to the hydrogen system to stop this explosion, he stops fighting against Mr. Robot and decides to talk to him instead. They begin sharing messages on the computer through a word processor program where Mr. Robot warns him to stop this lunacy and get out before they both get killed.

Elliot then tells Mr. Robot that his plan is going to fail even if this building explodes because he’s been shuffling the paper copies of the records all over the country to ensure they all wouldn’t land in this one place. Remember several weeks back, Elliot’s entire purpose for getting the job at Evil Corp was to move those records out of the New York building and scatter them across the country so there’s no way the Dark Army could make one surgical strike to destroy it all.

Finally, Elliot wakes up and he’s inside the room — Mr. Robot has relented.

Elliot flushes the hydrogen systems and the day has been saved. The New York building will no longer go up in flames.

Meanwhile, a defeated and deflated Dom DiPierro gets dressed down by her boss for going against orders and trying to take down Tyrell Wellick by herself but ultimately he’s still impressed that she got this far on her own and now they at least have a lead on where he’s been recently. Of course, Santiago is still working against Dom and the rest of the FBI, but he puts on a brave face before calling his mother and telling her to stay indoors for the rest of the day.

As Dom goes back to the office, she hears a ruckus behind her and a moment later she spots Tyrell Wellick running through the crowd. Police catch up to him, handcuff him and begin to celebrate capturing the most wanted man in America.

That’s when Dom arrives and she hears Wellick screaming about an attack and how they need to stop it. Now it would be easy to assume that Wellick read whatever instructions were laid out for him, he decided to rebel and tell the FBI about this attack rather than sitting around and waiting for the Dark Army to kill him. I have a different theory, however, because Wellick has always been the guy willing to worship someone if it gives him a sense of purpose. Elliot was that deity at one point but now Wellick looks at the Dark Army as the almighty god in his world.

So perhaps that note was a way for Wellick to make it appear that he was kidnapped and held prisoner down in that basement — he somehow got loose of the handcuff that he was being held by and he started a fire to orchestrate an escape. Now he’s been arrested by the FBI but that may have been Whiterose’s plan all along. Now Wellick has been captured but perhaps he’s supposed to be the man on the inside once the cops figure out that he was being held against his will rather than working with the Dark Army.

As for Darlene, she goes to pay Angela a visit and chew her out for betraying Elliot by working with Mr. Robot. Darlene knows that Angela has been conspiring with the Dark Army now and perhaps even worse is that she’s been using Elliot’s split personality disorder against him to complete their agenda.

While Darlene tries her best to reach whatever was left of that brave little girl who saw her mother die right before her very eyes, Angela Moss as she once knew her is gone. This Angela is driven by vengeance and a sense of retribution for all those people responsible for taking away her mother and Elliot’s father.

That’s when they both get an alert on their phones and they are standing in stunned silence at what they witness. Darlene is shocked but is it possible that Angela looks pleased?

At the same time, Elliot finally emerges from the bowels of the Evil Corp building and he’s actually smiling with a sense of accomplishment on his face. It wasn’t easy but Elliot not only stopped the attack on the New York building but he reconciled with his other half so perhaps they won’t be working against each other quite as much now.

That’s when Elliot sees people all over the streets are staring at their phones with tears streaming down their eyes. Finally, Elliot spots a TV in a window and as he pushes through the crowd, he sees what everyone else has been crying about.

71 different Evil Corp buildings were just destroyed — by either explosion or fire — and thousands are dead. When Elliot was shuffling all those papers around to buildings across the United States, he wasn’t stopping the Dark Army from destroying the records.

He was just giving them more targets to hit.

71 Evil Corp buildings were leveled simultaneously across the nation. Something tells me those are the 71 locations where Elliot had shifted the paper records that could restore the information lost during the Five-Nine hack. As Elliot was struggling to maintain his own reality while fighting for control of his life with another side of himself, he never saw the real enemy coming.

Whiterose set this up from the very beginning — she wanted Elliot to move those records to Evil Corp facilities all over the country because now she’s been able to destroy them all. The buildings, the records and the Evil Corp employees paid to protect them. They’re all dead and now Whiterose has her satisfaction.

‘Mr. Robot’ returns with a brand new episode next Wednesday night at 10pm ET on the USA Network

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