Several years ago, USA launched a series in “Suits” that proved to be a game-changer for a network known for breezy summer fare. While it has its moments of humor, it is also keen to tell a more serious, complex story than most of what the network is known for.
Tonight, that evolution continued with “Mr. Robot,” a hacker drama that may be creatively the best pilot that the network has produced quite possibly in its history. It is intense, edgy, and it actually exposes you to the true list of reasons that you should be paranoid about cyber-security. Contrary to some other reviews out there, we actually are fond of the title and how it references in its own way the sense of unease and insecurity that many out there should feel about their information being out there for all to see.
Above all else, the premiere is a star-making turn for Rami Malek, who plays a young vigilante hacker of sorts named Elliot who works for a firm by day, and then by night tries to do his own brand of good, helping those who need him regardless of the consequences. However, this is no superhero tale where his actions go without consequences. Whether it be from Mr. Robot, a mysterious man fronting a collective played by Christian Slater, to government employees, all eyes are on him virtually from start to finish.
What transpires throughout the hour (which is actually no hour for a change) is incredibly compelling as we witness this socially-awkward man’s journey towards what he believes to be justice, while at the same time struggling to make any genuine connection. We are not entirely sure that we have seen another show quite like it, and it stays so far away from some typical hacker cliches.
This is a show that would merit additional viewers, mostly because everything from the isolation to the cinematography plays well, and helps to craft this into some sort of complete experience that is different from anything that we have seen to date. One other great thing about the show? It already has a second season, so there is no real need to worry immediately about its future.
While we went into the premiere somewhat ambiguous as to what this show would be, this may be the best pilot we have seen for a TV series as a whole in 2015. Well done, USA, for snatching up this one. Grade: A-.
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