Before it premiered, many fans wondered how Mr. Robot Season 2 could possibly top the series' amazing first season, which was widely regarded as one of the best of 2015.
Now that the season has included with the shocking, incredible Mr. Robot Season 2 Finale, one thing is very clear: while the show didn't consistently match the highs of the first season, there was plenty to love about it. Occasionally, there were even moments and performances that were even better than Mr. Robot Season 1.
Angela was brought in on Whiterose's plan, Elliot was shot by a returned-from-the-"dead" Tyrell Wellick, and Darlene wound up squarely in the hands of the FBI after Cisco's tragic death.
We're taking a look back at the best and the worst (and the strangest) of the past 12 installments of Mr. Robot. Check out our report card, and let us know your thoughts!
Best Cameo Appearance
Alf is really the only possible option for this category, but that gloriously strange and random appearance of everybody's favorite creepy '80s sitcom puppet deserves a shout-out of its very own.
Best New Character
Leon wins this one by a landslide. His conversations with Elliot about Seinfeld (and the deeper, more philosophical questions that arose from his binge-watch of the '90s classic) were brilliantly surreal and added a great touch to the weaker, earlier episodes when Elliot was separated from the main action while in jail. Leon's epic takedown of the white supremacist gang that attacked Elliot was nothing short of epic. We also don't know where Leon's motivations lie – what's he doing approaching Mobley and Trenton while they're in hiding?! – that's what makes him such an interesting figure and the only new one that I NEED to see next season.
Worst New Character (and Worst Subplot)
This is absolutely nothing against Craig Robinson, who was great in the role. I did not care for the Ray-Elliot subplot, which ate up too much time in the earlier half of the season for my liking. It felt like a lesser version of what the show did in Season 1 with Fernando Vera (except Vera was a better, more insidious villain, and that plot was far more personal and engaging). Yes, it was useful for Elliot's character growth but not SO useful that it warranted taking up all the screentime that it did. At times, this plot even felt meandering and unfocused.
Most Frustrating Character
Of the three new characters, I didn't know what to make of Dom, though Grace Gummer was great in the role. Occasionally, she was awesome and badass – she is, indisputably, a great FBI agent. Other times, she felt like a weakly-characterized plot device – virtually indestructible, she walked away from not one but TWO shoot-outs with nary a scratch on her. What is she, the Terminator? We also had far too many scenes establishing her same personality traits (loneliness and an inability to connect) over and over again. I was glad to see the finale explain how she always seemed to know to push Angela, Darlene, and the others. It's not because she has some weird detecting sixth sense -- the FBI was onto all of them from the start.
"Bon soir, Elliot." Tyrell technically returned (and was confirmed as alive) pretty early in the season when he called Elliot in prison, but, the show being what it is, we didn't know for sure whether he was truly alive or some sort of Elliot hallucination. Tyrell's super casual return, sliding into the cab to meet with Elliot, and the ensuing confrontation that left Elliot shot and bleeding out, was pure awesome.
The reveal that Tyrell was alive – only confirmed for sure once Elliot got shot by him – was spectacular. Creator Sam Esmail dove into the Tyrell-is-an-Elliot-alter theories head-on, before shooting them down (pun intended) in one fell swoop.
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