I feel sorry for Mr Robot. On almost every measure I should be fawning over this Amazon exclusive television series… but I’m not.
Viewed in isolation, the show is amazing. Rami Malek and Christian Slater are the tip of the iceberg of the stupidly talented cast on display.
Rami is especially impressive. The fact that I found his extremely socially awkward and mentally scared character, Elliot Alderson, engaging on any level shows the high standard of acting he reaches. Christian Slater also does enough to sell what is a very complicated, abstract and important character in Mr Robot.
The show’s subject matter is also timely. Admittedly I know nothing about hacking culture, but I should probably read up on it considering how much of my life I live through my electronic devises. Mr Robot does a great job of making the counterculture ethos of the hacking community relatable.
The problem with Mr Robot is that it wears its political heart on its sleeve. Although the show does a great job of making the people who believe the anti-capitalist ethos relatable- the overzealous way the show pushes its political agenda can be jarring in comparison to the quality and deft other matters are dealt with on the show.
Another problem with Mr Robot isn’t one of its making. It’s just that it’s a great show in a world of fantastic shows. The standard of television in this post-Sopranos and post-The Wire world we live in is extraordinary.
I live in a world where Mr Robot is fighting it out with shows like: Louie, Game of Thrones, Better Call Saul, Orange is the New Black, Daredevil, Orphan Black, Transparent and House of Cards. I haven’t even mentioned the shows fighting it out for best show on air, The Good Wife, Archer and The Americans.
To emphasise the point future, I’m not even sure Mr Robot is the best show about computer nerds – that accolade may fall on the desktop of Silicon Valley.
Let me be clear, Mr Robot is a great show, we are truly spoilt as consumers. But we live in a time where… well, time is short. There are some television shows today that are creating groundbreaking, genre defining content and I am not sure that Mr Robot is the best of them.