WARNING: This review contains spoilers
Things are getting pretty serious in Mr. Robot as we start seeing the possible outcomes to Elliot’s choices. In ‘Brave Traveler’, Elliot takes a break from FSociety to due to being blackmailed into breaking Vera out of prison in exchange for Shayla’s life.
Surprisingly enough, Mr. Robot didn’t have much screen time in this episode but that’s not to say he didn’t have an important role. The only time he appears it is to warn Elliot that he should abandon the prison guys because there’s no way there is an outcome in which no one (Elliot, Darlene or Shayla) stays alive. And boy, was he right. In fact… did he know Shayla was already dead?
Elliot chose not to listen to him because he wanted to help others. However, is Elliot in a position to help others? He is clean now, but he is not used to all of these emotions and being under so much pressure. He misses being “numb”. Despite of that, Elliot keeps trying to do his best to have the winning hand in this game (this is what this episode was, after all). He visits Vera in prison and tells him that he hacked Isaac’s phone and that he now owns his whole world. A guarantee that they will be safe, otherwise he will delete all of his money. It turns out that Isaac actually wanted his brother dead, hence the scene in which he points a gun to Elliot’s head. Thankfully, Elliot is smart enough to get himself out of that situation. But that still doesn’t get him to win this game.
As all prisoners break free from prison (I wonder how Elliot feels about that), everything takes a turn. For starters, Vera is the one to order DJ to kill Isaac, who drops dead after being shot in the head. Then Elliot asks for Shayla and that’s when I feared for the worst. Rami Malek’s brilliant performance and the way that scene was shot was the confirmation: Shayla was dead.
On the other hand, Angela goes her own way and starts investigating the Terry Colby case by herself. Not with her ex-boyfriend, not with her father and certainly not with Elliot, who cannot handle anything else. The only lawyer who returns her call is a woman who worked for the victims’ families of the scandal. However, she says it’s no use and that it would take some sort of eye witness or someone who was there when it happened to reopen the case. She specifically talks about having someone on Facebook. This could be a lead to Angela asking Elliot to hack someone’s Facebook. However, when she goes to see him, he just tells her what she wants to hear: to trust herself and do what she feels is right. Angela is a grown up woman who can handle things on her own. But will Elliot regret pushing her away in the future?
Tyrell keeps sinking in his arrogance as the man who invited him to dinner confronts him on watching his wife pee. He then tells him to accept the truth: he’s never going to be CTO. The moment in which he offered him a very expensive watch to help him economically was a way for him to make a statement and position himself over Tyrell, who is visibly mad. Even though he started the show as being super badass (and he still is, he is just facing something greater than him), I feel like his wife is becoming more and more interesting every episode.
‘Brave Traveler’ felt different from the rest of the episodes and kind of similar to the Pilot in the sense that Elliot was doing side-hacking activities not related to FSociety. Mr. Robot had the role of making Elliot and the audience see that Elliot’s place is with FSociety. The show also tried to convey the message that sometimes, it doesn’t matter how good, well-intentioned or skilled you are, there is always going to be inconveniences and it is easy to lose the game. Elliot lost this one and he lost someone he truly cared about. Will he try to get revenge? Will he sink deeper into depression and go back to drugs? Or will he face Mr. Robot’s big “I told you so” and join FSociety once and for all?