That Mr. Robot and Elliot are the same per­son ought to ring some alarm bells, and it ini­tial­ly filled me with wor­ry. A show can’t set up a twist that’s some­body else’s twist! Would this reveal ruin every­thing that had come before? Is this show stu­pid?! This isn’t just influ­ence, this is high­way rob­bery. Who is Mr. Robot, asks the ad cam­paign? The answer is Tyler Dur­den. But, where this could be a huge, dev­as­tat­ing prob­lem, I think there’s a way to imag­ine that this par­tic­u­lar debt and Esmail’s man­age­ment of it are what make Mr. Robot gen­uine­ly great. There’s no anx­i­ety to this influ­ence; just preter­nat­u­ral chill. Thrill, even. The show lux­u­ri­ates in its stolen goods, pays for hot dogs with marked bills, leaves a trail of cryp­tic clues for the rook­ie detec­tive. Like the best seri­al killers, Mr. Robot wants to get caught.