USA’s Mr. Robot
Season 4, Episode 6: “406 Not Acceptable”
Directed by Sam Esmail
Written by Amelia Gray
* For a recap & review of the previous episode, “405 Method Not Allowed” – click here
* For a recap & review of the next episode, “407 Proxy Authentication Required” – click here
Vera has a Christmas tale for us, about a “bully” and a “little bitch.” The bully would constantly beat on and steal from the lil’ bitch. Then everything changed their relationship. The bitch loved baseball, and on one Christmas morning under the tree there was an “Easton Magnum aluminium baseball bat.” The lil’ bitch when out to play with his new bat. When he was approached by the bully he smashed him with it. There was blood everywhere. Because “lil‘ bitch saw the truth.” He saw the secret purpose behind things, such as the bat. A creepy way for Vera to explain to Krista she has a purpose, too. He’ll use her as the bat that’ll break Elliot.
The Virtual Realty hack worked, so Darlene has an eye on things. She and Elliot are preparing for the Deus Group’s meeting. She’s still got Angela on her mind. She doesn’t want to lose anybody else, least of all her brother— again. But she has other things to concern herself with right now, such as a woman pointing a gun in her face.
Elliot’s busy meeting with Leon. They haven’t seen each other in a while, but our hacker doesn’t have time for walking down memory lane. You can bet we’ll see Leon again at some point. Noteworthy is, in the background right as Elliot walks out of frame you can get a quick glimpse at a truck with a caricature of Trump as a pile of shit with flies swarming around it. Elsewhere, Mr. Robot’s continually trying to talk Elliot out of “crossing a line” that can’t be uncrossed. That line was crossed a long time ago, though.
Darlene is face-to-face with Dom again. Another meeting long overdue. Except it’s not a better one like Leon seeing Elliot again. This is Dark Army nastiness. Dom calls up eerie Janice to say she has Darlene captive, but that the brother’s in the wind and sister isn’t giving over any info. Not sure what the taxidermist is going to do. You can bet your ass it’s nothing nice. The Dark Army don’t care about Darlene. They want Elliot.
Elliot’s off worming his way deeper into Olivia’s life, getting into her apartment with cups of Christmas coffee. He starts off by mentioning her clients at the Cyprus National Bank. Suddenly she doesn’t want to hold hands anymore. She’s feeling an invasion of privacy. It gets more intense once he’s talking about the Deus Group and all the various horrors they’ve been behind. Olivia wants to know the truth, so Elliot says simply: “I hacked you.” He’s trying the honesty route now, asking her to make a call to her boss so he can swipe the guy’s credentials. She kicks him out of her apartment. What will he choose to do now? He mentions her “custody battle” and suggests things might go bad if she’s drug tested at work. That’s why he brought her the coffee. Devious shit, man. Particularly knowing the terror of addiction. On top of that, they had sex. Terribly rotten what he’s done. Shit goes horrible when Olivia cuts her wrists open in the bathroom.
Over the phone, Janice orders Dom to kill Darlene— she’s not useful to them. It’s easier for the Dark Army to be done with the sister. This leaves Dom in a horrifying place. She’ll either have to kill Darlene or her whole family dies. Could this actually be the end of the line for Darlene? Can Dom bring herself to actually kill her? Looks like it. She puts Darlene on her knees in the bathtub. Dom won’t listen to anything, even as Darlene pleads with her to let them take down the Dark Army. She doesn’t shoot, but she pistols whips her hard, knocking her unconscious.
“Maybe that dread is a good thing”
Vera keeps drilling Krista for something deeper than the basic therapist-patient relationship. He believes they had a “special relationship.” She says the hacker scared him after all the threatening things that occurred. Vera’s sure that Krista has feelings for the hacker. Probably not an easy thing to try psychological games with a woman whose entire profession revolves around psychology. All the same, Vera IS an intimidating, unpredictable dude. The rest of his bully story’s no less creepy. He believes him and Elliot are connected on “a spiritual plane.”
Eventually, Krista succumbs and tells Vera a little about Mr. Robot.
Elliot helps stop the bleeding from Olivia’s wrists. He tries apologising to her, though she’s not willing to believe any of the shit that comes out of his mouth. All he can think to do is give her the phone again. She asks about one of the massacres the Deus Group helped happen, which is how her mother died. Elliot insists, again: “I can stop them.” And it finally convinces Olivia to help him. She still thinks he’s a “monster” and worse than those in the Deus Group, because he doesn’t realise it.
When Darlene comes to in the bathtub she finds Dom still sitting there. The rogue FBI agent only wants the location of Elliot’s phone to track him. Darlene recounts their night together, which is just painful for Dom to remember. She doesn’t want to die with Dom believing she only used her as a means to an end. But time’s up, and the Dark Army will be here soon. Dom orders Darlene out of the tub and decides she’ll sacrifice herself: shoot her, run, and nothing will happen to her family. She wants to die, to be rid of all this burden. They get interrupted by Janice and a couple Dark Army operatives. Darlene buys time by wiping her phone, leaving her useful to them— for the moment.
Elliot soon gets a frantic call from Krista. She’s only drawing him in for Vera.
He’s quickly abducted into a trunk right off the sidewalk.
“I may work for monsters
but you are one.”
Yet another intense episode!
Great to see the differences between hero and villain in the post-modern era. That’s something wonderful about Mr. Robot. We’re not watching Elliot entirely as a hero, and he’s not wholly a villain either, even if some of the things he does— case and point, poor Olivia!— are absolutely heinous.
“407 Proxy Authentication Required” is next time.