If you have actually not watched the Mr. Robot tv series on USA Network, prevent what you’re doing. Go uncover it, clock it and come back. Otherwise, severe spoilers ahead.

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Season 1 – episode 8 (eps1.7_wh1ter0se.m4v)

Is Mr. Robot about time travel? that’s what we’re experimenting as we proceed our episode-by-episode analysis of the series.

The arts of Misdirection and the big Reveal

Two of my favourite magicians space Penn & Teller. What I find so refreshing around their strategy to magic is the they put misdirection at facility stage and also invite united state to look straight at the deception in former of us. Season 1 illustration 8 of Mr. Robot shows up to be around misdirection. This to be the many talked-about illustration of the premiere season, and also it had actually the two greatest reveals. A large reveal have the right to be exciting and jaw-dropping ~ above its own merit, but a big reveal episode is additionally a an excellent place to hide significant story ideas right in plain sight. When you’re city hall a magician waving a magic wand and pointing it whereby they desire you come look, you’ll most likely miss those happening at the other end of the stage that potentially provides away the trick.


Allow me to point you come the misdirection.

While this illustration is remembered for its two huge reveals, the conversation in between Elliott and also the elusive Whiterose includes some of the many compelling proof in the collection that time take trip or time manipulation may be in ~ the centerpiece of the story.

Let’s jump In…

In the setup to the meeting with Elliot and Whiterose, we see the prestige of time. At the 16-minute mark in Season 1 illustration 8, Ollie stops by Elliott’s workdesk at Allsafe v a ridge of corrupted difficult drives. He speak Elliot the disks should be dropped off at Blank’s disk Recovery. Ollie says, “Your meeting is in ~ 2 o’clock. You can not be late.”


This set in movement a sequence of time-bound and also time-critical work that have to be completed by their respective deadlines. The very first of these jobs is Elliot’s transport of the disks. What at an initial appears to be an inexplicable yet mundane errand turns out to it is in a clandestine meeting through the notorious and also rarely-seen Whiterose.

Upon Elliot’s arrival, he is guided right into a darkened back room where a silent, sandwich-eating recurring character identified in the series credits only as laboratory Worker sit in a form of cubed containment area awaiting Elliot’s appearance. As Elliot approaches, the understands what this closed-in room is, informing us with voice-over that it’s, “A Faraday cage. A room particularly designed to avoid electromagnetic interference. No radio, no signal, no WiFi, nothing come hack.” while a Faraday cage may have actually reasonably to be employed to protect the sensitive nature of the conversation Whiterose will have with Elliot, the an interesting thematic allusion to time travel. It bring to psychic the enigmatic—some would certainly say frustrating—series, Lost, and the late-in-series development of the time-traveling physicist, Daniel Faraday. Maybe the Faraday cage referral is just a nod, a subtle suggestion, or probably more.

Once Elliot has been secured within the Faraday cage, Whiterose makes her appearance. A beep from she watch beginning the next time-critical task. “This meeting has started,” says Whiterose. “I regulate my time really carefully, Mr. Alderson. Each beep suggests one minute of mine time that has passed. I have actually allotted girlfriend no much more than 3 minutes.”

Three minute is an amazing time interval. Why 3 minutes? could it it is in a symbolic depiction of the three dimensions the time? Past, present and future?

There’s another really interesting time facet contained in this scene, and also a potentially important clue buried in the action. Once Whiterose announces to Elliot that their meeting has started, it synchronizes with a beep from she watch. Whiterose specifically says that every beep indicates “one minute of mine time” that has actually passed. Interestingly enough, if you start a stopwatch at the precise moment that the very first watch beep, the next beep adheres to at 45 seconds—not one minute. If you measure up the following “one minute” duration from the critical to the following beep, it also clocks in at 45 seconds—not one minute. Why would certainly one minute of standard time equal just 45 seconds of Whiterose time? The final “60-second” segment times the end at 1-minute and also 20 seconds. The watch that Whiterose is making use of to monitor time intervals certainly has some curious fluctuations.

During their conversation, we gain what I think is a heat of really telling dialogue. Whiterose says to Elliot, “Every hacker has her fixation. You hack people, i hack time.

Consider the implications of that statement. Us don’t yet know what Whiterose way in recommendation to hacking time, however we’ve been given plenty the insights into how Elliot hacks people. At the start of episode 8, at the 5-minute 30-second mark, Elliot is back at the office the his therapist, Krista. She’s one of the world he much more recently hacked. Effectively, v his hack, Elliot changed the trajectory—the timeline—of Krista’s life. Through computer system hacking, Elliot forced the breakup the Krista’s connection with a male who had actually been deceiving her. If, as Whiterose suggested, Elliot hacking people, how exactly does Whiterose hack time? walk Whiterose an in similar way change trajectories and also timelines? Elliot offers a computer system to attain his hacks of people. What does Whiterose use to achieve her hacks, and what’s the outcome? to be the vault “one-minute” matches “45-second” time discrepancy a item of proof to assistance the contention that Whiterose might already be hacking time?

As the meeting with Whiterose nears its conclusion, Elliot is offered a time-critical task with a completion deadline the 50 hours and 23 minutes. Before Whiterose slips away, Elliot asks, “Why room you working v us?” She disregards Elliot’s question. As much as this point, every time Elliot has spoken, Whiterose has responded with either a jabbing retort or one admonishment the his indigenous or actions. Elliot’s final question is met only with a silent departure of the Faraday cage—allowing the question to hang in the air.

Cue up the next distraction…

Elliot bursts out of the disk shop and also onto the liven street. We hear his interior dialogue. “Damn. She infected me through her time paranoia,” he claims as that races down the crowded sidewalks of brand-new York. Elliot then appears to slow-moving down time and also he quiets the sound and also movement roughly him, for this reason he deserve to think and also plan indigenous a place of calm.

In voice-over, Elliot claims to us, “Sometimes it’s hard to listen to an explanation, also when it’s from myself. Specifically when it’s indigenous myself. It would certainly be therefore much simpler to just pay attention as soon as I required to. Come just—”

At this exact moment—in the middle of his sentence—Elliot time jumps ago to his desk at Allsafe. He then completes his sentence with, “arrive at the conclusion. Is the what you do?” This inquiry is command at us (the viewers.) Is the asking us what direction we’re feather in appropriate now?

It’s an interesting question to ask the viewer simply at this point, since we’re about to gain the two best reveals the the season.

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The Reveals…

We learn that Darlene (who we’ve to be led to think is just an additional fSociety hacker) is in fact, Elliot’s sister.We discover that Mr. Robot is a hallucination of his father who died when Elliot to be a young boy.

These two reveals were shocking! The fact that Mr. Robot to be a manifestation the Elliot’s psychological illness? That, friend may have seen coming. But Darlene gift Elliott’s sister? that was a gobsmacker!

What provides me think this was all a distraction? In the foreground, in ~ the allude of Sam Esmail’s magic wand is Elliot’s mental illness and the finish dissociative state he’s been living in. In the background, Sam chose to offer us the Darlene disclose first, climate while we were off balance, the throws few of Elliot’s rapid-fire self-talk at us. Reacting to the discovery that Darlene is his sister, Elliot says in voice-over, “How can I simply forget her like that? A whole person. A relationship. Is this amnesia? What else am I not remembering?”

Elliot has actually forgotten his sister—a whole person—much prefer Marty McFly, in Back to the Future, see his brother vanishing in the family members photo he carried about with him. The critical time we saw Elliot stop a picture (Season 1 – episode 2) it to be of Elliot together a child, pictured just with his mother. To be I getting to here?


What is it that preceded the knock on the door?

After viewing the digital proof that Mr. Robot is his dad, Elliot it s okay up indigenous his computer, goes to the shelf where he’s preserved the picture of himself and also his mom, choose up the Polaroid, and…