Aaron Takahashi - Eps1.0_hellofriend.mov lyrics
ELLIOT (Voiceover): Hello friend. Hello friend? That's lame. Maybe I should give you a name? But that's a slippery slope. You're only in my head. We have to remember that. sh**. It's actually happened. I'm talking to an imaginary person.
Within the black of frame, silhouettes begin forming.
ELLIOT (V.O.): What I'm about to tell you is top-secret.
We pull out to reveal we're in an office looking out of a very tall Manhattan skyscraper. Shadowy figures sit and stand around a conference table, arguing.
ELLIOT (V.O.): A conspiracy bigger than all of us. There's a powerful group of people out there who are secretly running the world.
ELLIOT (V.O.): I'm talking about the guys that no one knows about. The guys that are invisible. The top 1% of the top 1%. The guys that play God without permission.
CUT TO BLACK.
ELLIOT (V.O.): And now I think they're following me.
INT. NYC SUBWAY (MOVING) - MORNING
We finally meet ELLIOT (late 20s). His hoodie throws a sliced shadow over his face.
He sneaks looks at a couple of mysterious MEN DRESSED IN BLACK, one on either side of the train. One reads the NY Post. The other looks straight ahead, suspiciously so.
ELLIOT (V.O.): This is about last night. I should have gone to Angela's birthday party. Instead I went to--
INT. RON'S COFFEE (FLASHBACK) - NIGHT
A large coffee shop with a fair amount of patrons. A cheesy sign that reads “Ron's Coffee” displays on the door. Elliot sits by himself, hoodie on, no coffee. His leg taps nervously.
Elliot intently watches as a mild-mannered Indian with a mustache walks into the shop. This is RON (40s-50s).
He orders a latte from the front and sits alone. He pulls out his iPad and sips his latte, enjoying the quiet evening to himself.
Elliot musters courage with a deep breath and walks over. He sits across from him without saying a word, his leg twitching.
RON stares at him.
ELLIOT: You're Ron.
He nervously gestures to the cheesy sign. Confused, Ron glares at him in response.
ELLIOT (nervous and robotic): But your real name is Rohit Mehta. You changed it to Ron when you bought your first Ron's Coffee shop six years ago. Now you got 17 of 'em with 8 more coming next quarter.
An awkward silence. Ron tilts his head, not sure if he should be flattered or concerned.
RON (thick Indian accent): May I help you with something?
ELLIOT: I like coming here 'cause your Wi-Fi was fast. I mean, you're one of the few spots that has a fiber connection with gigabit speed. It's good. So good, it scratched that part of my mind, part that doesn't allow good to exist without condition, so I started intercepting all the traffic on your network. That's when I noticed something strange. It's when I decided to hack you.
Another awkward silence. Ron leans forward.
ELLIOT: I know you run a website - called Plato's Boys.
Alarms suddenly go off in Ron's world.
RON: Pardon me?
ELLIOT: You're using Tor networking to keep the servers anonymous. You made it really hard for anyone to see it, but I saw it.
Even though Elliot came off a little amateurish at first, his confidence builds as he continues to talk.
ELLIOT: The onion routing protocol, it's not as anonymous as you think it is. Whoever's in control of the exit nodes is also in control of the traffic, which makes me...the one in control.
RON: I must ask you to kindly leave--
Elliot pulls out a thick folder of files and places it on the table.
ELLIOT: I own everything. All your emails. All your files. All your pics.
Ron flips through a few pages then slaps the folder close.
RON (angry): Get out of here right now, or I'll call the--
ELLIOT: Police? You want them to find out about the 100 terabytes of child p**nography you serve to your 400,000 users?
Ron is stunned silent. Ron looks down, cornered and speechless. Elliot looks genuinely sympathetic.
ELLIOT: Personally, man, I was hoping it was just gonna be some BDSM stuff. You realize how much simpler that would have been?
RON: I did not hurt anyone. I never did. That's my personal life.
All the blood in Phil's face as drained. Emotion begins to fill his face. Elliot looks at him, a mix of pity and guilt.
ELLIOT: I understand what it's like to be different. I'm very different too. I mean, I don't jerk off to little kids, but I don't know how to talk to people. My dad was the only one I could talk to. But he died.
At first, Ron is unsure on how to proceed. But sensing an opportunity, he takes a deep breath and nods sympathetically.
RON: I'm sorry to hear that. How did he pa**, may I ask?
ELLIOT: Leukemia. He definitely got it from radiation at the company he worked at, though I couldn't prove it. Now he's dead. Company's fine, though.
Ron can't help but start crying. Elliot genuinely feels for him.
ELLIOT: Oh hey. It's okay, Rohit. You don't have to worry anymore.
Ron looks up, confused.
RON (confused then angry): I don't understand. Are you blackmailing me? So that's what this is about money. That's all you care about, huh? No. If I pay you now, you'll want more and more. No matter how much I give. You will inform the police anyway. I won't pay you, sir. Remember, you also broke the law.
Elliot nods agreeingly. He looks out the windows, as if looking for something.
ELLIOT: Actually, you're right. Partly. See, I usually do this kind of thing from my computer, but this time I wanted to do it AFK. In person. Trying to work on my social anxiety. But there's always the threat of you fleeing after I call you out.
Elliot leans over and begins to zip up his bag, getting ready to stand.
ELLIOT: You'd tell your sys admin to take your servers down, wipe all the data.
Elliot stands, putting his oversized bookbag on.
ELLIOT: So I made sure to include the current time and and location on my anonymous tip.
Ron stands up with Elliot.
RON (desperate, nervous): Wait. Hold on. I'll give you the money. I'll pay you. How much do you want? I'll pay you.
Sirens can be heard. Lights swirl outside the windows.
ELLIOT: That's the part you were wrong about, Rohit. I don't give a sh** about money.
POLICE race into the shop as Elliot breezes past them, heading out, leaving the chaos to surround the destroyed Phil.
Violent jazz slowly BUILDS on the soundtrack.
INT. NYC SUBWAY (MOVING) - MORNING
Back to present day, Elliot snaps awake. He eyes the two MEN IN BLACK who still sneak looks at him.
ELLIOT (V.O.): Now I'm being followed. The higher ups don't like someone with my powers. In three short minutes, I destroyed a man's business, life, existence. I deleted him.
On the far end of the packed train, a dark-haired man YAWNS loudly. He looks like a disheveled Californian who's been forced to relocate. He wears cargo pants and what looks like a gas attendant shirt that reads: Computer Repair With A Smile. Below it, a logo reads MR. ROBOT (40s). He looks at Elliot with a stoner's smile as he brushes his scraggly beard. Elliot doesn't smile back. Across the crowd of people, the man shouts:
MR. ROBOT: Hey! Hey, you. Hey, kiddo. What's happening?
Elliot doesn't answer. Instead, he looks away, pretending he didn't hear him.
MR. ROBOT: Exciting time in the world right now. Exciting time.
Mr. Robot lies on his back, returning to his homeless slumber.
EXT. NYC STREETS - LATER
Elliot walks through the crowded streets of New York, carefully avoiding the touch of other humans. He carries a huge bookbag on his back.
INT. ALLSAFE OFFICES - LATER
He walks into the modest offices of AllSafe Cybersecurity, as announced by the boring, corporate logo.
ELLIOT (V.O.): But I'm only a vigilante hacker by night. By day, just a regular cyber security engineer, employee number ER28-0652.
INT. ALLSAFE OFFICES - GIDEON'S OFFICE - CONTINUOUS
The AllSafe boss, GIDEON GODDARD (40s), a bearded metros**ual with adult braces stands while ANGELA (20s), a blonde girl-nextdoor trapped in the prim and proper veneer of a private school upbringing, looks at him sternly. Gideon shouts through his gla** doors:
GIDEON: Elliot, in here!
Angela: ...All over the price. Yeah, I can totally, I can totally handle it.
Elliot nervously walks in, curiously looking at Angela who pretends he's not even there. Gideon pa**es a file to him.
GIDEON: They were hacked again. Last night.
ELLIOT (V.O.): That's my childhood friend Angela. She can be a bit high strung sometimes, but trust me she's one of the good ones.
Elliot looks over the notes.
ELLIOT: What am I looking at? Is this the log file? This was a RUDY attack.
Concerned, Gideon nods. Elliot shakes his head, impressed more than he usually is.
ELLIOT: This is awesome.
ANGELA: Gideon, will you please answer me?
GIDEON (to ELLIOT): Awesome? You think this is awesome? This is k**ing us, Elliot.
ANGELA: Gideon, I'm not leaving--
GIDEON: Angela! Let's just see how this meeting goes today. Their networks are getting attacked every week. Who knows if they'll still even be a client.
ELLIOT: They're coming in?
Gideon's look confirms it. He looks at Elliot's hoodie.
GIDEON: Hey, what did we say about the dress code?
Elliot sheds his hoodie, revealing an oversized, button-downed dress shirt underneath. He hates it.
GIDEON: All right, now, look over those logs. And be ready this afternoon in case they have any questions. Okay?
INT. ALLSAFE OFFICES - HALLWAYS
Elliot and Angela walk out. Elliot smells something on her.
ELLIOT: Start smoking again?
ANGELA (ignores his question): Did you not get my texts last night? I sent you exactly 13 of them.
ELLIOT: Yeah, I'm sorry. I couldn't make it.
ANGELA (looks at him): You promised me that you were gonna try this time.
Last night, Elliot nervously walks up to the entrance of a packed bar. Through the big windows outside he sees Angela, laughing, smiling, drinking with friends. Elliot's hand goes for the door, but his hand trembles--
ANGELA: Stop thinking about something else when I'm talking to you. I hate when you do that.
ELLIOT: Sorry, I was thinking about work.
ANGELA: Maybe that's why Gideon loves you so much. He thanks me all the time for bringing you in. But for some reason, I think you secretly hate it here.
ELLIOT (V.O.): She was right. I liked most of the people, but our business--a cyber security firm that protects corporations--I can't think of anything I hate more.
ELLIOT: No, I love it here.
Elliot and Angela both chuckle.
ANGELA: I'm sorry. I'm just in a bad mood. I'm late on my last two student loan payments, and I can't get Gideon to give me a raise.
A slick, good-looking white man named OLLIE (20s) walks up and kisses Angela.
OLLIE (to Angela): Hey.
ANGELA (to Ollie): Hi.
OLLIE (to Elliot): Yo, buddy. Missed you last night. Where were you?
ELLIOT: Gotta go, big meeting today.
Elliot doesn't wait for a response, he disappears into the maze of cubicles quickly.
OLLIE (to Angela): Did you find out what happened?
ANGELA: Yeah. He said he was working.
OLLIE (not buying it): Oh, come on. You gotta talk to him.
ANGELA (rolls her eyes): We're gonna be late for the staff meeting.
OLLIE: He can't stand me. And you know why. Angela, I can't have that kind of negativity in my life--
Angela glares at him. Ollie points.
OLLIE: That's exactly what I'm talking about.
EXT. NEW YORK STREETS - DAY
Elliot shiftlessly walks through the streets once again, big bookbag in tow. His eyes wander around in paranoia. He continues to eat his McDonald's fries from the bag.
INT. PSYCHOLOGIST'S OFFICE - DAY
He sits across from his psychologist, KRISTA (30s-40s), a slender African-American woman who tries too hard at youth with a short dress.
They're looking at each other in silence.
KRISTA: What are you thinking about?
KRISTA: Wanna know what I'm thinking about? The first time you came to me.
ELLIOT (V.O.): I didn't exactly come to Krista. I was forced here. But I do like her. Hacking her was simple. Her pa**word: Dylan 2791. Favorite artist and the year in which she was born, backwards. Though she's a psychologist, she's really bad at reading people. But I'm good at reading people. My secret: I look for the worst in them.
INSERT: Krista's Gmail and Facebook. We land on her eHarmony profile.
ELLIOT (V.O): I know she went through a divorce four years ago. I know she was devastated by it and has been dating losers on eHarmony ever since.
INSERT: A profile pic of a salt and pepper handsome gent. He's a nice fellow with a middle-aged face and a welcoming smile. His name is listed as Michael Hansen.
ELLIOT (V.O.): Her most recent foray Michael Hansen. I searched for him online, but nothing came up. No LinkedIn, no Facebook, nothing. Something about him bugs me, scratching that part of my mind again. But I'll hack him soon enough. I always do.
Back to the scene. Elliot eyes Krista.
KRISTA: I know you're not yelling like before, which is good. But I can tell you're still holding on to it. And we need to work on your anger issues, Elliot. You're angry at everyone, at society--
ELLIOT (V.O.): f** society.
KRISTA: I know you have a lot to be angry about, but keeping it to yourself and staying quiet like you're doing it's not going to help you. There's pain underneath. That's where our work needs to go.
Elliot says nothing. Krista leans forward.
KRISTA: What is it about society that disappoints you so much?
Elliot holds back as his eyes wander to the Apple insignia glowing off of Krista's laptop on her desk.
ELLIOT (V.O.): Oh, I don't know. Is it that we collectively thought Steve Jobs was a great man, even when we knew he made billions off the backs of children?
His eyes shift to the gla** framed Tour De France poster hanging on the wall featuring Lance Armstrong.
ELLIOT (V.O.): Or maybe it's that it feels like all our heroes are counterfeit, the world itself just one big hoax.
His eyes refocus on the reflection of the gla** frame, seeing that Krista's browser from her laptop is on Twitter.
ELLIOT (V.O.): Spamming each other with our running commentary of bullsh** masquerading as insight, our social media faking as intimacy.
Krista still eyes Elliot, waiting for him to respond. He returns his stare back at her, noticing the “I voted” sticker her on her blouse.
ELLIOT (V.O.): Or is it that we voted for this? Not with our rigged elections--
His eyes now notice the expensive accessories of Krista. Her earrings, watch, shoes, her Hunger Games book in her bag.
ELLIOT (V.O.): But with our things, our property, our money. I'm not saying anything new. We all know why we do this, not because Hunger Games books makes us happy--
Krista crosses her legs, still waiting on Elliot to respond. That's when Elliot spots a prescription bottle next to Krista's purse on her desk chair.
ELLIOT (V.O.): But because we wanna be sedated. Because it's painful not to pretend, because we're cowards. f** society.
KRISTA (echoing): Elliot. You're not saying anything, what's wrong?
He finally responds to Krista.
Krista collects herself, frustrated she's getting nowhere.
ELLIOT: Don't be frustrated.
KRISTA (confused): Why shouldn't I be?
ELLIOT: You're different than most. You at least try. You at least understand.
KRISTA (intrigued): Understand what?
ELLIOT: What it's like to feel alone. You understand the pain. You want to protect people from it. You want to protect me from it. I respect that about you.
KRISTA: Why do you think I know what it's like to feel alone?
ELLIOT (V.O.): sh**! From her emails!
ELLIOT: I don't know.
Krista lets it go.
KRISTA: Let's talk about last night. Did you go to Angela's birthday party?
FLASHBACK: Last night, we pick up where we left off. Elliot's hand trembles as he reaches for the door to the bar. He sweats as he closes his eyes and tries to force himself to go in, but can't. The door opens, three people file out. Elliot quickly moves out of the way, avoiding physical contact at all costs. He takes a breath and looks through the windows again. Angela is happy, surrounded by friends, enjoying her birthday. Ollie walks up to her. They kiss. This is enough for Elliot to wrap his head in his hoodie and walk away--
Back to the scene.
ELLIOT: Yeah. It was nice.
KRISTA: Did you try to talk to anyone?
ELLIOT: Sure. I got a girl's number.
KRISTA (impressed): You did?
ELLIOT (chuckles): She's cute. She likes the Hunger Games.
KRISTA (back to being suspicious): You're hiding again, Elliot. When you hide, your delusions come back. It's a slippery slope. Let's talk about the men in black you've been seeing. Are they still there?
ELLIOT: No, I told you they're gone. The meds you gave me are working.
INT. ALLSAFE OFFICES - CUBICLE - LATER
Elliot types away at his computer. He glances up and notices Ollie approaching.
OLLIE: Yo man. Do you wanna--
Elliot reluctantly takes off his headphones.
OLLIE: Uh, do you wanna do lunch today?
ELLIOT: Uh yeah, I got other plans--
OLLIE: Other plans. Right. That's what you said the last three times I asked you.
Ollie looks around.
OLLIE: Look, bud, you and Angela have been close for a long time, and that's even more reason why I want us to be on good terms. I - I just I feel like things have been awkward between us. Don't you?
ELLIOT: I'm okay with it being awkward between us.
OLLIE (awkwardly laughs): Um, yeah. I - I - I'm not okay with that.
OLLIE (more sympathetic tone): Um look, man, I love Angela, and I want us to to get along for her sake. I mean, that's what I'm that's what I'm here for. I just, I - I don't normally do stuff
As Ollie drones on again, Elliot's stream of consciousness interrupts:
ELLIOT (V.O.): Am I that crazy not to like this guy? Among some of his Facebook likes are--
INSERT: Ollie's Facebook profile and likes.
ELLIOT (V.O.): George W. Bush's Decision Points, Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen, and the music of Josh Groban. Must I really justify myself any further?
Back to scene.
ELLIOT (V.O.): His was the easiest to hack. Pa**word was 123456Seven.
INSERT: Ollie's Gmail account.
ELLIOT (V.O.): I witnessed his first "I love you" with Angela over Gchat.
INSERT: Profile pic of a trashy woman named Stella B.
ELLIOT (V.O.): Then I witnessed the first of many infidelities with Stella B.
Back to the scene. Ollie's still in the midst of his phony plea.
OLLIE: ...I've never done anything like this before.
ELLIOT (V.O.): I've thought about telling Angela, but she has sh**ty taste in men, and I'm not quite ready to see what comes after this just yet.
OLLIE: ...You like music. I like music. Maroon 5.
ELLIOT (V.O.): Plus I can manage Ollie easier than the others. For now, anyway.
OLLIE: And that's all I mean. I just want you to know that. I like you, bro, and I want you to like me too.
ELLIOT: I understand. I'll try harder.
OLLIE: That's cool, man. Hey, whenever you're ready, I'd love to just...chill--
He puts his arm on Elliot's shoulder-- but Elliot, not comfortable with the physical contact, shifts his shoulder away.
OLLIE: Oh, forgot about your no touching thing.
ELLIOT (V.O.): Truth is, I shouldn't hate Ollie; he's not that bad a guy. He's too dumb to be bad. In fact, when I think about the really bad people--
As if sensing it, Elliot peeks out of his cubicle. He sees a handful of business SUITS at the front. The SUITS head towards Gideon's office.
ELLIOT (V.O.): E Corp, the largest conglomerate in the world. They're so big, they're literally everywhere.
E Corp's logo, which looks like the Enron “E” logo, is shown on all the products inside of the office: desktops, smartphones, laptops.
ELLIOT (V.O.): A perfect monster of modern society. The E might as well stand for Evil.
An advertisement plays on a television and displays some of E Corp's ventures. Agriculture, electronics, medicine, construction.
ELLIOT (V.O.): In fact, after a thorough, intensive self-reprogramming, that's all my mind hears, sees, or reads when they pop up in my world.
INSERT: E Corp advertisement.
WOMAN: That's what we have to offer. Together, we can change the world with E Corp--
INSERT: Replace E Corp logo with Evil Corp logo
ELLIOT (V.O.): Krista would have a sh** fit if she knew I did that. But that's what they are...a conglomerate of evil. And now I have to help them.
Gideon and the team of SUITS walk up next to Elliot's cubicle.
GIDEON: There are six on-site engineers on your account. Plus a few off-site.
Elliot sneaks a peek at the head suit, Steve Ballmer with a full mane of hair.
ELLIOT (V.O.): There he is, Terry Colby, the CTO.
TERRY COLBY looks around with a doofus smile.
ELLIOT (V.O.): Even though he's the head technology guy at one of the biggest companies in the world, he owns a Blackberry.
Elliot's eyes shift to Terry's Blackberry on his belt. Terry looks at Elliot's desktop with confusion.
ELLIOT (V.O.): But also looks like he doesn't see a terminal very often. He's not a techie. He's a moron.
The suits, led by Gideon, keep on walking through the office.
ELLIOT (V.O.): An arrogant moron. The worst kind.
Elliot focuses on his terminal, but a person from the pack walks up to him. He's good-looking, sharply dressed and has a rock star smile. His name is TYRELL WELLICK (30s). He reaches his hand out to Elliot. Elliot painfully takes it.
TYRELL (thick Swedish accent): Oh, hi. Tyrell Wellick. I'm Senior Vice President, Technology.
ELLIOT: I'm...Elliot. Just a tech.
TYRELL: Don't be so humble. You know, I started out exactly where you are, and to be honest, you know, my heart is still there. [looking at his screen] So I see you're running Gnome. You know, I'm actually on KDE myself. I know this desktop environment is supposed to be better but you know what they say. Old habits they die hard.
ELLIOT (V.O.): An executive running Linux with--
TYRELL: Yeah, I know what you're thinking. I'm an executive. I mean why am I even running Linux? Again old habits. It's gonna be fun working with you. I should join the rest of the group. Bonsoir, Elliot.
He takes off with an earnest smile.
Elliot sits back down in his cubicle with a resigned sigh. He takes in his small three-walled cube universe amidst the thirty other identical cubes.
ELLIOT (V.O.): Sometimes I dream of saving the world.
His eyes look over at Lloyd who is busy paying a Verizon bill online.
ELLIOT(V.O.): Saving everyone from the invisible hand, one that brands us with an employee badge.
Elliot eyes his fellow employees sympathetically, all looking like enslaved serfs with their company badges hanging off them.
EXT. NYC STREETS - NIGHT
Elliot walks through the streets alone as GROUPS OF FRIENDS laugh while walking in and out of bars. Credit cards are swiped, dollar-tips are thrown, a homeless man begs for change.
ELLIOT (V.O.): The one that forces us to work for them. The one that controls us every day without us knowing it. But I can't stop it. I'm not that special.
INT. ELLIOT'S LOFT - NIGHT
Elliot enters his messy small loft.
ELLIOT (V.O.): I'm just anonymous. I'm just alone.
Elliot makes his way over to a fishbowl, swimming inside is a black fish named QWERTY.
ELLIOT (V.O.): If it weren't for Qwerty, I'd be completely empty.
ELLIOT (V.O.): I hate when I can't hold in my loneliness. This crying has been happening too often, every other week now. What do normal people do when they get this sad? They reach out to friends or family, I think.
INT. ELLIOT'S HOUSE (FLASHBACK) - DAY
A YOUNG ELLIOT (8) sits at the kitchen table. His MOTHER (30s), pretty but cold. Buttoned up, a short haircut, and expressionless face. She methodically smokes a cigarette. Young Elliot looks like he's been scolded. His mother grabs his arms and slams them down on the table.
ELLIOT (V.O.) : That's not an option.
INT. ELLIOT'S LOFT - KITCHEN - MOMENTS LATER
Elliot crushes up morphine pills. He puts the crushed powder on a small gla** table and cuts it with a credit card.
ELLIOT (V.O.): I do morphine.
INT. ELLIOT'S LOFT - MOMENTS LATER
Elliot snorts up a line of morphine. He lies back down on the floor as it takes effect. He sprawls out on his couch, staring at Qwerty as it takes effect.
ELLIOT (V.O.): The key to doing morphine without turning into a junkie is to limit yourself to 30 milligrams a day. Anything more just builds up your tolerance. I check every pill I get for purity. I have 8 milligram Suboxone for maintenance in case I go through withdrawals--
Elliot's eyes shift from Qwerty to an empty prescription bottle.
ELLIOT (V.O.): sh**! I'm out again.
He reaches out for it in disbelief.
SHAYLA (20s), a hipster girl, steps into the room. She slides an orange bottle full of pills.
ELLIOT: How much?
SHAYLA: On the house.
ELLIOT: No Shayla, not doing that. Okay? This is just a regular drug deal, like it always is.
Elliot offers her cash. Shayla resigns herself and takes it.
SHAYLA: So what are you you to tonight? 'Cause I tried to post something on your Facebook and couldn't find you.
ELLIOT: I'm not on Facebook.
SHAYLA: What? Why not?
ELLIOT: ‘Cause I hate Facebook.
SHAYLA (offended): That's crazy.
Elliot shoots her a look, “I guess I'm crazy.” Disappointed, Shayla playfully pulls out two white pills from her pocket.
SHAYLA: Well you want to do these together then? Pure Molly.
The last line piques Elliot's interest, though his look is already regretting the decision.
INT. ELLIOT'S LOFT - LATER
Elliot lies naked in his bed, smoking a joint, while a nude Shayla lies next to him, fast asleep. He wears a dumb look.
ELLIOT (V.O.): Don't ever make decisions when you're on morphine.
His cell beeps. He looks at it.
ELLIOT (V.O.): Instagram check-in for Krista at Pierre Loti. Okay, Michael Hansen. Time to find out who you really are.
EXT. PIERRE LOTI - NIGHT
Elliot, in a hoodie, walks by Pierre Loti across the street. He doesn't walk towards it, instead he stays put, lurking around the corner.
Elliot looks around the city block he's standing on. In the distance, a late night diner shows two MEN IN BLACK having coffee. Elliot hides in the shadows, watching them.
EXT. PIERRE LOTI - AWHILE LATER
Elliot's spies Michael from across the street as he watches him kiss Krista goodbye. They part ways.
Michael hails a cab. Elliot snaps a picture of the number on top of Michael's cab as it takes off. He quickly pulls out his cell phone and dials.
ELLIOT (into the phone): Uh, hi I just left my keys in one of your cabs. 56Y2. Sure.
Suddenly, the MR. ROBOT bum from the subway walks up to their table, begging for money. Elliot shoots a confused look-- but gets interrupted when the operator returns.
ELLIOT: 306 Hawthorne. Thank you. Thank you.
He hangs up and returns his gaze back to the two MEN IN BLACK. Mr. Robot is nowhere to be seen. He lets it go for now and returns to the task at hand.
EXT. 306 HAWTHORNE AVENUE - LATER
Elliot walks up and sees the cab, waiting by the curb. On the stoop in front of 306 Hawthorne, Michael begrudgingly walks his dog. It's as if Michael has completely dropped his cheery, nice guy act.
MICHAEL: Come on, a**hole, piss already! Come on!
He jerks the dog by his leash, causing him to YELP.
Elliot charges from across the street.
The cowed dog looks up sheepishly at Michael as it nervously paces around the small patch of gra**.
MICHAEL: Come on! Will you will you go? - Come on, go, go!
He yanks the dog into the air by the leash, when Elliot finally gets there--
MICHAEL: Go, will ya?
The dog yelps again.
Michael stops and turns. Elliot looks at the dog with sympathy, but then back at Michael.
ELLIOT: May I borrow your phone? Mine's dead. I need to call my mom.
Michael reluctantly nods and pulls out his cell. He slides it unlocked with his pa**code and hands it to him.
ELLIOT: Thank you.
Elliot takes it, immediately memorizing all the apps on his homescreen, specifically the E Corp app.
He dials his own number and calls. From within Elliot's back pocket, we see his phone light up and vibrate.
Elliot gets his own voicemail. He hangs up, quickly deletes his call log and looks back at Michael.
ELLIOT: No answer. Thanks anyway.
Michael takes his phone back with a shrug.
EXT. NYC SUBWAY - LATER
Elliot walks out of the subway station, smoking a joint. His phone immediately vibrates. He looks at it with a question, then answers.
ELLIOT: Angela, is everything okay?
INT. ALLSAFE OFFICES - CUBICLE
Angela stands apart from Lloyd, who is desperately trying to tackle a tech issue on his desktop.
ANGELA (into the phone, discreet): I need you to come to AllSafe.
ELLIOT: You're there? It's three in the morning.
ANGELA: They attacked Evil Corp servers again, but it's bad this time. It's a DDoS attack.
ELLIOT: Did you call Lloyd? He's on call.
ANGELA: Yeah, he's here.
ELLIOT: Is he talking to their tech department?
ANGELA: He's online with them, but so far nothing. I don't think that Lloyd can handle this. Look, Gideon just put me on this account. I can't screw up in my first week. I need you. Please.
Elliot looks back into the subway. He tosses his joint.
INT. ALLSAFE OFFICES - NIGHT
Elliot races in. Angela walks up to him, panicking.
ELLIOT: Calm down, it's only been an hour.
ANGELA: Yeah, well, an hour in Evil Corp time is like $13 million in revenue, approximately. Actually, I calculated that. That's exactly how much they lost.
ELLIOT: Don't worry, I got you.
They approach Lloyd who is sweating bullets in his cubicle.
ELLIOT: Lloyd, what's up?
No response, Lloyd is locked in on his terminal.
LLOYD: Elliot. This is bad. Worst DDoS attack I've ever seen.
ELLIOT: Did you reconfigure the DNS?
ELLIOT: Stop the services.
LLOYD: I already stopped the services, tries to reboot the servers but they're not coming back up. Dude, someone is straight up fingerblasting their entire network right now.
Elliot types furiously on his desktop, navigating Evil Corp's
Angela checks her phone.
ANGELA: They just started reporting on the outage.
ELLIOT (V.O.): sh**. This is worse than I thought. They're in the network.
Elliot types away as Gideon walks in. Even though he's angry, he keeps his cool. He sees Elliot, then faces Angela.
GIDEON: What's the status update? See here. I thought we set up security protocols - so that this doesn't happen. Where's the attack coming from?
ELLIOT: Everywhere, obviously. - The USA, Finland, Thailand, Kuwait--
GIDEON: Start restarting the services, load sharing, redirect the traffic--and call Prolexic for help.
ELLIOT: I don't think this is just a DDoS attack. I think they got a rootkit sitting inside the servers.
ANGELA: What's a rootkit?
LLOYD: It's like a crazy serial rapist with a very big dick.
ANGELA: Jesus, Lloyd!
LLOYD: Sorry. It's malicious code that completely takes over their system. It can delete system files and stop programs. Viruses, worms--
ANGELA: How do we stop it?
LLOYD: That's the thing. It's fundamentally invisible you can't stop it. All of their servers are timing out. None of them are coming back up.
Elliot moves to Lloyd's terminal to check something.
ELLIOT: That's because every time we restart the server the virus replicates itself during boot up and crashes the host.
LLOYD: How are we supposed to bring up the network if we can't restart the servers?
ELLIOT: We can't. Which is what they wanted. By defending ourselves, we ended up spreading the virus everywhere.
Everyone exchanges tense looks. Gideon tries to contain himself as he already knows what follows.
ELLIOT: Only thing we can do is we've gotta take the whole system offline, wipe the infected servers clean, then bring them back up.
[Lyrics from: https:/lyrics.az/aaron-takahashi/-/eps1-0-hellofriend-mov.html]
GIDEON: You're coming with me.
ELLIOT (whispers): Yeah.
GIDEON: Lloyd. Tell everybody to start taking everything offline.
LLOYD: Got it.
GIDEON (on the phone): Uh, the server farm in Dulles. We're gonna need the jet.
EXT. PRIVATE JET - NIGHT
Gideon and Elliot speed walk towards a slick black sedan already waiting for them.
INT. SERVER FARM - NIGHT
Elliot speed-walks into the loud WHIRRING of the large arrays of servers.
GIDEON: They're booting the network back up. Now, you're downloading the logs, right because--
ELLIOT: Stop. Tell him to stop.
ELLIOT: Don't start the boot sequence. You guys missed one. There's an infected server up and running.
Elliot moves to the server display and points out cs 30.
ELLIOT: What's the ETA before it hits this server? (Elliot)The backup server up and running?
A spectating TECH nervously stares at the display and then Elliot before shrugging.
Elliot returns to the console and starts to furiously type.
ELLIOT: The backup server up and running?
TECH: It's ready, but it's not configured for auto switch.
Elliot races towards the backup server, cs51. He finds it terminals in.
ELLIOT: We need to redirect the traffic, need to switch DNS.
The displays shows that the network is slowly coming back online, approaching the still-infected server, cs30.
GIDEON: This is impossible.
ELLIOT: You got this, you got this, you got this.
As Elliot continues to type, nearly all the servers but cs30 and cs51 have come back online. He manages to switch the DNS to cs51 at the last second.
ELLIOT: We still up?
Gideon holds his breath and watches as the network boots up the backup server and then the remaining ones before letting it all out.
GIDEON: We're okay.
Gideon squats down to Elliot with a huge grin on his face. He proudly squeezes Elliot's shoulder. Elliot shies away from the contact.
ELLIOT: I'm gonna take a look at the infected server, okay? Give me a minute.
GIDEON (put off): Yeah. Uh I'll meet you at the elevators.
The spectators disperse along with Gideon. Elliot continues to furiously type.
ELLIOT (V.O.): They must have left a mark or something. Every hacker loves attention. They don't just do DDoS attacks for no reason.
That's when Elliot stumbles upon a data file in the terminal that reads simply: fsociety00.
ELLIOT (V.O.): This is it. Fsociety. Is that supposed to be a joke? This was way too easy. They didn't hide it well at all.
He /dir's it and a flurry of files go flying by, the last one being README.TXT. He opens it. It reads simply: leavemehere.
ELLIOT (V.O.): This note is for me. They're telling me to leave it here. But why? Doesn't matter. Time to shut them down.
Elliot can't bring himself to delete the rootkit.
ELLIOT (V.O.): Why can't I delete it? I don't want to delete it. I want it to stay. What's wrong with me?
Elliot nervously looks around before he cancels the delete command.
ELLIOT (V.O.): I'll reconfigure the access to the root directory so only I can use it. And no one will know.
INT. PRIVATE JET (MOVING) - DAWN
Exhausted, Elliot and Gideon sit silently together. Though Elliot is used to the all-nighters, Gideon isn't. He has a gla** of wine as he sits back, deep in thought.
GIDEON: Did you know that I'm gay?
After an awkward pause, Gideon uncomfortably nods.
GIDEON: Consider this me coming out to you then, okay? It's hard because I don't like to talk about my s** life. But my partner, he gets very paranoid. He thinks I'm ashamed of-- he wants me to be more public about it. So. Anyway, I'm gay.
ELLIOT (awkward pause): Thanks.
Deep in thought again, Gideon takes a deep breath. Elliot notices the troubled look on his face.
ELLIOT: Hey, man, don't worry about it. Hackers have a short attention span. They'll get bored, hara** someone else--
GIDEON: Evil Corp is thinking about leaving us. And I don't know if I can blame them...
Gideon takes another sip of his wine and leans back in his chair. He shakes his head.
ELLIOT: They could have called their other security teams.
ELLIOT: They called you.
GIDEON: Well, somebody over there likes us, but Terry Colby, he's getting the pressure. And he calls the shots. Evil Corp is 80% of our business. If we lose them, it's gonna be it for us. It's gonna be it--for me.
They both sit in silence for a moment. Gideon looks over.
GIDEON: I feel like I can talk to you. I mean, more than the others, anyway.
They share a comfortable moment this time.
GIDEON: I'm sure, in a weird way, you'll be happy if we went under. Oh, come on. Come on. I know you hate wearing those stupid shirts.
ELLIOT: Gideon? I promise I'll find them.
INT. NYC SUBWAY (MOVING) - DAY
Elliot's drained face stares stoically out, trying to piece together the mystery of the recent hacks.
ELLIOT (V.O.): Evil Corp service should be back up soon enough. I'll take a look at the dat file. I'll ask my IRC contacts about fsociety when I get home. I've never seen their name on the boards though. They've gotta be new, but they're good--
Elliot's train of thought is interrupted when Mr. Robot sits across from him, donning the same gas attendant shirt.
MR. ROBOT: Rough night?
Shocked, Elliot's eyes grow large.
MR. ROBOT: I'm getting off here. I think you should come with me. But only if you didn't delete it. You deleted it, we got nothing to talk about.
Mr. Robot stands and waits by the doors. Elliot sits there, paralyzed, not knowing what to do at all.
ELLIOT: Are you talking to me?
Mr. Robot says nothing, but the empty car states the obvious. The subway finally screeches to a halt. Elliot reamins seated as it stops. Mr. Robot walks off the subway. Elliot sits there for a moment, wondering if he should follow him as the doors close. He does.
PLATFORM - CONTINUOUS
Mr. Robot sits on the other side of the station. Elliot slowly walks over and sits next to him.
ELLIOT: Who are you?
MR. ROBOT: We gotta wait for the Q.
ELLIOT: Then what?
MR. ROBOT: Then we're going to Brooklyn. Out by Coney Island.
ELLIOT: Why? What's there.
Mr. Robot is silent for a moment, taking a deep breath as he looks at Elliot.
MR. ROBOT: Obviously you're gonna ask a lot of questions. It's weird what you're doing right now, I get it. I-I can't tell you anything until we get there.
Mr. Robot pulls out a cigarette and lights it.
ELLIOT: Can't smoke in here.
Mr. Robot ignores him.
ELLIOT: You've been following me. Why? What do you want from me?
MR. ROBOT: My dad was a petty thief. Never could hold down a job. So, he just robbed, convenience stores, shops, small-time stuff. One time, he sat me down, he told me something I never forgot. He said, "Everyone steals. That's how it works. You think people out there are getting exactly what they deserve? No. They're getting paid over or under, but someone in the chain always gets bamboozled. I steal, son, but I don't get caught. That's my contract with society. Now if you can catch me stealing, I'll go to jail. But if you can't, then I've earned the money. " I respected that, man. I thought that sh** was cool as a little kid. A few years after that, they finally caught him. Sent him to jail. Dies five years later. My respect goes with him. I thought he was free doing what he did, but he wasn't. He was in prison. Just like you are now, Elliot. But I'm gonna break you out.
Elliot shoots him a quiet, puzzled look. Mr. Robot puts on a pair of sungla**es, smiles big and then stares ahead.
EXT. CONEY ISLAND - STREETS - DAY
An impoverished, ghetto block. Elliot cautiously follows Mr. Robot down the street. An old Ferris wheel can be seen slowly spinning in the distance.
They finally reach a rundown, closed up arcade. The sign reads: FUN SOCIETY ARCADE (but the U and N are missing/faded). Robot walks up to the back door, gesturing Elliot to follow him.
THE BACK - CONTINUOUS
Mr. Robot opens the backdoor. Blue, green, and gray Ethernet cables run from all sides of the door. The sound of KEYBOARD STROKES emanates from within. ROMERO (50s) - a long, gray-haired hippie with a fanny pack - opens the door. He looks over Elliot before going back inside. Mr. Robot walks in. Elliot follows.
INT. FSOCIETY ARCADE - CONTINUOUS
An arcade with very little working games left. Using fallen games as tables for computers, four hackers type away: MOBLEY (30s) - an obese man with shaggy hair. TRENTON (16) - a m**m girl hunched over at a terminal. DARLENE (20s) - an aggressive yet striking hipster who chain smokes. She wears a fur coat and blue Ray Bans.
ELLIOT: Why would you guys actually meet IRL?
None of them look up, all of them with earbuds plugged in as they type away. Silence fills the room. Mr. Robot gestures for Elliot to follow him around the corner, into the center of the arcade.
MR. ROBOT: You remember that hacker group O-Megz? They got outed by their own leader to the FBI, and six hackers went to prison for it? You know how they got 'em?
Mr. Robot walks over to the popcorn machine and starts eating straight out of it.
MR. ROBOT: They went on the dude's computer, tracked 'em all down through emails, VPN sessions, chat messages, texts. One guy, and the whole thing comes down. It's what's called--
ELLIOT: A central point of failure.
MR. ROBOT: Right. Because they refused to meet in person, they compromised each other every time they sent so much as a smiley face. The rule here is, it's done here, and only here. It ends when you walk out that door, and begins when you walk in. Our encryption is the real world.
ELLIOT: How do you talk to each other then?
Mr. Robot walks over to the kitchen sink and pours himself water from the tap.
MR. ROBOT: We don't. We come and go, work on the project when we can.
ELLIOT (discreet): How do you trust them?
MR. ROBOT: How do you trust them? - I give them an exercise. If they pa**, they join us. If they fail...
ELLIOT: The DDoS attack last night...you were testing me.
Mr. Robot takes off his jacket as he sits down and smiles yes. Elliot peers back to the hackers.
ELLIOT: You said there was a project.
MR. ROBOT (nods):That'll come later. I just wanted you to see the place.
Mr. Robot starts typing away. Elliot stands there, unsure of how to proceed.
MR. ROBOT: There's not much you can do without a CPU.
INT. NYC SUBWAY (MOVING) - MORNING
A visibly unnerved Elliot sits in silence.
ELLIOT (V.O.): I'm crazy. I have to be crazy because that didn't just happen, right? This is a delusion. Is this a delusion? sh**, I'm a schizo.
INT. NYC STREETS - DAY
Elliot doesn't walk the streets so carefully this time, as his mind swims in the mystery of what he just witnessed.
ELLIOT: Have I really lost it this time? No, no. Last night happened. It was real. Angela called me. I was at AllSafe. Evil Corp's servers were compromised. Those are facts, not delusions. I know. I know, I know I realize I'm saying all of this to an imaginary person, but I created you. I didn't create this.
EXT. ELLIOT'S APARTMENT BUILDING - STEPS - DAY
Elliot walks to his building and sees Angela sitting outside on the steps, waiting for him. She stands when she sees him.
ANGELA: Oh, thank God you're here. I was just about to go wait in the Starbucks. You live in a bad neighborhood. Do you know that?
ELLIOT: I do know that.
She shows him a BACK TO THE FUTURE II DVD.
ANGELA: Do you want to get high and watch your favorite movie? Oh, you saved our a**es last night. I thought Gideon was definitely gonna fire me. Where have you been? I thought you'd be sleeping.
ELLIOT: I--yeah, I fell asleep on the train.
ANGELA (skeptical): That sounds like such a lie, but, whatever. I don't want to get into that right now. So you want to do this? I miss Qwerty, I hope she still loves me.
INT. ELLIOT'S LOFT
Elliot unlocks the door and they walk into the apartment. They share an awkward moment as they see Shayla, naked, asleep on Elliot's bed.
ELLIOT (V.O.): sh**.
ELLIOT: She wasn't supposed to be here, okay? - Give me a minute and I'll get rid of her.
ANGELA: That's okay. Um...this is great. Elliot, I'm happy for you.
ELLIOT: No, it's not like that.
ANGELA: Well, maybe it should be, you know? It's good that you're dating.
Elliot reluctantly nods in defeat.
ANGELA: Well, I'll see you on Monday. We can do movie night next time. I promise, okay?
ANGELA: Have fun.
Elliot nods as she walks out the door. Frustrated, he opens the door and slams it shut to wake Shayla.
Shayla stirs awake as he walks towards the bed.
SHAYLA: Elliot? Oh, sh**. Is it Wednesday?
SHAYLA: I have to move my car.
ELLIOT: Shayla, leave. NOW.
INT. ELLIOT'S LOFT - DAY
INSERT: Google, 4chan, message boards, blogs, news sites, etc.
ELLIOT (V.O.): No mention of Mr. Robot anywhere. No mention of fsociety. Not on any of the hacker boards. Not on IRC, forums, blogs, no one's heard of them.
INSERT: Google maps on the fsociety arcade.
ELLIOT (V.O.): Property was owned by Fun Society Amusement, LLC for 13 years. Owner was shot a k**ed a year and a half ago. No owner since. And the ownership history before that is sparse to nonexistent. This guy is good. Very good. Doesn't matter. Their arcade network's IP is in the dat file. That'll be enough to turn them in.
Elliot prints out the incriminating pages and files them in a blue manila envelope. Elliot sits back down, looking at the Google Maps picture of the fsociety arcade. The temptation is too strong, he cracks.
ELLIOT (V.O.): What's your ask, Mr. Robot?
EXT. CONEY ISLAND STREETS - LATER
Elliot, carrying his bulky bookbag, walks through the slums of Coney Island, back to the fsociety arcade.
Outside, Darlene stands outside the back door and smokes. She has the thick fur coat on to protect her from the cold air.
Elliot enters through the metal gate and walks up to her. She doesn't say anything to him.
ELLIOT: Hey man, where's your boss?
Darlene shoots him an odd look.
DARLENE: Okay, cut the bullsh**. When are you going to give us access to the root directory?
DARLENE: Dude, come on. I wrote that rootkit. I still have to put Colby's IP in the .dat file.
Darlene shakes her head with disgust and flicks her cigarette.
She walks towards the back door, leaving Elliot perplexed. Mr. Robot enters from the street, holding a grocery bag full of goodies.
MR. ROBOT: Elliot! Good news. I scored the last bag of Twinkies from Gristedes. You want one?
ELLIOT: She just called me a dickhead.
MR. ROBOT (smiles): Yeah, that's Darlene.
Mr. Robot gestures towards the Ferris wheel.
MR. ROBOT: Hey, you like Ferris wheels?
EXT. CONEY ISLAND - FERRIS WHEEL - DAY
Elliot and Mr. Robot stand in a slow-moving, empty Ferris wheel car as it does its circular motion up. Mr. Robot looks down at the abandoned area with a grin, eating a twinkie.
MR. ROBOT: Ah, it's beautiful. Gets better the higher up you go, you know? Oh, I love it up here. You like it?
ELLIOT: I'm here to tell you I'm turning you in. I'm giving them all the information--
MR. ROBOT: Let me tell you why you're really here.
Confused, Elliot says nothing.
MR. ROBOT: You're here because you sense something wrong with the world. Something you can't explain. But you know it controls you and everyone you care about.
ELLIOT: What are you talking about?
MR. ROBOT: Money. Money hasn't been real since we got off the gold standard. It's become virtual. Software. The operating system of our world. And, Elliot, we are on the verge of taking down this virtual reality. Think about it. What if you could take down one conglomerate? A conglomerate so deeply entrenched in the world's economy, that too big to fail doesn't even come close to describing it.
ELLIOT: You want to create another financial meltdown like the one we just had, but way worse. Yeah, why would I want that? Everyone would lose their money.
MR. ROBOT: What if I told you that this conglomerate just so happens to own 70% of the global consumer credit industry? Huh? If we hit their data center just right, we could systematically format all the servers, including backup.
ELLIOT: That would erase all--
MR. ROBOT: All the debt we owe them. Every record of every credit card, loan, and mortgage would be wiped clean. It would be impossible to reinforce outdated paper records. It would all be gone. The single biggest incident of wealth redistribution in history.
Elliot realizes what he's talking about. To underline this, he sees an Evil Corp logo proudly displayed on top of a building in the horizon.
ELLIOT: Evil Corp. The conglomerate. That's why you picked me. Because I work at AllSafe.
Mr. Robot reaches into a pocket and pulls out a slip of paper with an IP address.
MR. ROBOT: Tomorrow, AllSafe is going to get a visit from the FBI and the U. S. Cyber Command. You are going to modify the dat file and put Colby's terminal IP address in there.
ELLIOT: Terry Colby? You're gonna frame him? No one's gonna believe that. I met him, he's a moron.
MR. ROBOT: So are the FBI. Even if they don't believe he did it, they'll believe he gave someone access to it.
ELLIOT: Yeah, he'll just go to jail. What good will that do?
MR. ROBOT: You don't take down a conglomerate by shooting them in the heart. That's the thing about conglomerates, they don't have hearts. You take them down limb by limb. And as they unravel, their illusion of control unravels.
Elliot takes a hard look at Mr. Robot, questioning his seemingly altruistic motives.
ELLIOT: Who are you?
Mr. Robot takes out a cigarette.
MR. ROBOT: That'll come later. Right now, you have a lot to think about. You have to change the dat file and put Colby's IP in there. You do that, you have set in motion the largest revolution the world will ever see.
Elliot's look of doubt is all but whittled away.
Neil Diamond's “If You Go Away” plays
”If you go away on this summer day”
INT. NYC SUBWAY STATION (MOVING) - NIGHT
Elliot can't contain the flurry of emotions as they flash across his face.
Sensing Elliot's excitement, a CHILD smiles at him. Touched, Elliot smiles back.
Elliot notices an E Corp advertisement on the subway wall about student debt. He stops and stares.
INT. ELLIOT'S LOFT - NIGHT
”And the moon stood still for the nightbird song”
Elliot skips around multiple pages on his computer. He's on Angela's Facebook page before looking over her bank statements and private E Corp student loans. She owes $197,455.64.
Elliot types away on his computer, we see text as he's skipping around. NY TIMES - Debt Slavery, The New American Dream. BBC - The global gap between rich and poor is at its highest level for 20 years and growing. HuffPost - Mortgage lenders now have more equity in U.S. homes than Americans.
Elliot looks over at Mr. Robot's slip of paper next to him. He opens a new command-line and begins typing up the report.
The final pages of the new diagnostic report prints out. He places the report and a CD in a blue manila envelope. He pauses as he places it next to the white envelope he prepared earlier.
INT. NYC STREETS - NEXT MORNING
”If you go away, as I know you must”
The MEN IN BLACK on the sidewalk sneak Elliot looks. Elliot's excitement from the night before starts a slow descent.
As Elliot walks to the subway, he stares at a poster for a blockbuster movie called VILLAINS, the tagline reads: Evil Always Wins.
INT. ALLSAFE OFFICES - CONFERENCE ROOM - LATER
”Like the empty look I see on your face”
Gideon, Elliot, Lloyd, Angela, AllSafe account executives, FBI, and Evil Corp execs cramp the conference table. He nervously glances around the room, tensing up as Terry Colby and Tyrell Wellick walk in. Disappointedly, he pulls out the white envelope
The song stops playing after “Till your next hello/If you go away...”
TERRY COLBY: So, what do we got?
GIDEON: So, if you'll take a look at the first page of your agenda--
Everyone flips over one page of their packet. Terry looks over at Elliot. Elliot nervously looks back.
TERRY COLBY: You're the one who stopped the hack. You know, the gals in analysis said this was a tough one. All things being equal, it should have shut us down for days. So you did good.
ELLIOT (uncomfortable): Okay.
GIDEON: We should start with our account executive, Angela.
ANGELA: Okay, we first noticed the breach at 2:07 A.M. Eastern Standard on Friday night--
TERRY COLBY: You mean, Saturday?
ANGELA: Sorry, yes, technically, Saturday morning.
TERRY COLBY (condescending): Yeah, okay, Angela, that's what we're here for. The technicals.
Noting the condescension, Angela hides her anger.
ANGELA: Anyway, he arrived at the office at 2:35 and I instruct--
TERRY COLBY: Okay, wait, wait, wait. So that's almost a half hour after the initial breach. Why didn't anyone pipe in from their laptops?
ANGELA: It's not protocol--
ELLIOT: It wouldn't have been secure if someone terminaled in on this. It was the smarter move to have someone come in - so they can log in on a secure line.
ANGELA (annoyed): Exactly. Then Lloyd was able to--
TERRY COLBY: Just--just actually, just one second.
Terry gestures to Tyrell. Tyrell leans in and Terry whispers something in his ear. Tyrell exchanges a glance with Gideon and they step outside the conference room. From the look on Gideon's face, it's not good. Angela looks like she's gonna flip out.
TERRY COLBY: You know, I, uh, I always loved this view.
After the brief exchange, Gideon returns to Angela's side, collects her papers, and walks her out of the conference room.
TERRY COLBY (to Elliot): Now that that's taken care of, let's pick it up where we left off.
ELLIOT: What happened to Angela? She knows more about what happened.
TERRY COLBY: She's not going to work out for us, not on this level. We need to stick to the more tech savvy here.
Elliot's eyes shift back and forth between the embarra**ed Angela who is walking down the hallway, the blue manila envelope still in his bag and Terry Colby's curious look. Elliot instantly gains courage. He swaps the white manila for the blue.
Tyrell notes the envelope exchange.
TERRY COLBY: Now, let's get to the heart of this thing because I can't sit here and look through a packet for the next 20 minutes. All right, just who did this? Is it that hard? Who did this?
ELLIOT: I found the configuration file of the rootkit with a pattern of IP addresses. Once you decrypt it, you'll know where the hack came from.
CUT TO BLACK
INT. ELLIOT'S LOFT - MORNING
Elliot hasn't slept and it shows. He checks his laptop and quickly searches around news blogs and hacker boards. His face falls. He checks his phone: 0 results.
ELLIOT (V.O.): 19 days. No news, no arrests, no revolution.
EXT. NYC STREETS - LATER
Elliots moves through the crowd, avoiding contact as usual.
INT. ALLSAFE OFFICES - DAY
Elliot looks over the cubicles at work, everything seems to be normal as ever.
ELLIOT (V.O.): No FBI, Colby, Evil Corp.
EXT. CONEY ISLAND - DAY
Elliot walks by the fsociety arcade, but it's abandoned. No wires, no hackers, no Mr. Robot.
ELLIOT (V.O.): No Mr. Robot. No fsociety.
Elliot walks back to his apartment building.
ELLIOT (V.O.): I need to take my mind off things.
INT. ELLIOT'S LOFT - DAY
INSERT: Krista's Facebook, Gmail, eHarmony profile, Michael's eHarmony profile.
MICHAEL (Off Screen): Hello?
ELLIOT: Hi, this is Sam from Bank of E security fraud department. Unfortunately I have to inform you that your account's been compromised.
MICHAEL (O.S.): What? What happened?
ELLIOT: First before I can answer any questions, I need to verify some information. Are you still at 306 Hawthorne Avenue?
MICHAEL (O.S.): Yes. Apartment 2C.
Elliot inputs keywords based on Michael's responses for his command line program to run pa**word checks with.
ELLIOT: And your security question, favorite baseball team?
MICHAEL (O.S.): Um, Yankees. I don't remember this being a security question--
ELLIOT: And lastly, your pet's name?
MICHAEL (O.S.): Um, Flipper. Who am I speaking to? Can I get your name and number--
Elliot disconnects and focuses on his command line program.
ELLIOT (V.O.): With those details plus a dictionary brute-force attack, it'll take my program maybe two minutes to crack his pa**word.
While he waits, Elliot goes on Facebook and looks up Angela. He scans through the pictures of her and Ollie. Christmas vacations, Halloween, beach parties, barbecues, etc.
ELLIOT (V.O.): What I wouldn't give to be normal. To live in that bubble, the reality of the naive.
He switches Facebook accounts to Krista, his therapist. More happy pictures.
ELLIOT (V.O.): That's how I justify this. To keep their optimism intact. To protect them.
His pa**word program BEEPS. He switches screens hurriedly and discovers the program didn't come up with a single match.
ELLIOT (V.O.): How? He's too old to have a complicated pa**word. It had to have been a combination of these things.
Elliot puts his head down and thinks.
ELLIOT (V.O.): I'm missing something, I'm missing something, I'm missing something. Michael Hansen isn't his real name.
He slouches as he rocks back and forth in his chair. He looks up, realizing what he missed.
ELLIOT (V.O.): Michael Hansen isn't his real name.
EXT. 306 HAWTHORNE AVENUE - NIGHT
Michael walks down his street pushing a baby in a stroller. His WIFE walks next to him. They exchange words before she heads into the corner convenience store and he walks towards their apartment building, still pushing the stroller. We now see he's also walking Flipper, his dog. Elliot sits on his stoop, in his hoodie, smoking a cigarette, waiting for him.
Elliot's silhouette takes Michael by surprise.
ELLIOT: Lenny Shannon? Michael Hansen? Which one are you playing tonight? You're going to stop seeing Krista.
The sound of her name immediately makes Michael's eyes grow wide. Elliot stands and faces him.
MICHAEL: What the fu--
ELLIOT: You're going to break up with her. You're never going to see her again.
MICHAEL (recognizing him): You're the guy that used my phone--
ELLIOT: You cheated on your current wife with seven different women. I got digital proof of all of it.
Stunned, Michael remains still. His wife stands in line at the checkout.
ELLIOT: Ashley Madison, online escorts, fake Facebook pages. I own it all. And if you don't stop seeing her, your wife will know everything along with the police.
MICHAEL: The police?
ELLIOT: Yeah, one of the escorts was 15.
Elliot shows Michael a picture of one of the escorts. Michael puts his head down with a wince.
ELLIOT (V.O.): That 15 part I made up, but he did have a proclivity for young escorts that helped the lie.
ELLIOT: But I'm not gonna do any of that as long as you break up with Krista. Tonight.
Michael looks up at him, now out of fear. His wife is putting away her wallet and is about to walk out.
ELLIOT: You're also gonna tell her the truth. That you're married, cheat on your wife, you hire hookers. That you never had any intention of being serious with her.
MICHAEL: Why? That would destroy her. She thinks that...we're in love.
ELLIOT (V.O.): Exactly. Krista needs to avoid dickheads like you in the future. Her radar needs fixing.
ELLIOT: I'll know if you skip any detail. So don't.
Michael nods quickly as his wife exits the store.
ELLIOT: And one more thing I'm gonna need something from you.
INT. ELLIOT'S LOFT - NIGHT
Elliot brings Michael's dog, Flipper, home. He gives Flipper some dog food. The dog chows down happily.
ELLIOT: Hmm. I like you, Flipper. You're cool.
ELLIOT (V.O.): I never want to be right about my hacks, but people always find a way to disappoint.
Elliot is on his computer burning a CD. The folder he's copying is called MICHAEL_HANSEN. Once the burn is complete, he pulls out a sharpie and labels it PINK FLOYD - WISH YOU WERE HERE.
ELLIOT (V.O.): Michael Hansen now gets filed away among the others. Forever buried in my digital cemetery.
He grabs a large CD Case from underneath his bed and flips it open. Several other CDs labeled everything from the BEATLES to ZEPPELIN are in there. He files the newly fake-labeled CD and sends the envelope back under his bed. He jumps back on his computer and with a single keystroke deletes the Michael Hansen folder.
INT. PSYCHOLOGIST'S OFFICE - DAY
Elliot sits in his usual chair. He looks at Krista, who looks disheveled and completely out of it.
ELLIOT (V.O.): The look of disillusionment. He told her. She cried all night. Now comes the sadness. I don't like seeing her sad.
ELLIOT: You okay?
KRISTA: Sorry. Sorry. Go on.
ELLIOT: I think Angela blames me for what happened at the Evil Corp meeting. What do I do? I need to talk to her.
KRISTA: I think you just answered your own question. Talk to her.
ELLIOT: She won't respond to any of my texts or emails.
KRISTA (pointed): Then go to her in person. Tell her you need to talk. Communication is key, Elliot. Real human interaction. That's what's important for you right now.
Elliot understands, he can't meet her eye contact.
INT. ALLSAFE OFFICES - DAY
Elliot quickly walks into the office. Angela sees him and begins to walk away. He tries to catch up.
ELLIOT: Hey. Do you..do you think we can talk?
ELLIOT: You won't talk to me. You haven't talked to me since the meeting.
ANGELA: I don't want to talk to you because I feel embarra**ed every time I think about what happened. Okay? It's fine. I'll get over it.
ELLIOT: It's been three weeks--
ANGELA: I have to get back to work--
ELLIOT: You're just going to ignore me?
ANGELA: You didn't have to stick up for me in there. I know that you were just trying to help, just don't do it again. Even if I'm losing. Let me lose, okay? Don't look confused. Just say it. Okay?
Elliot nods. She puts her head down, disappointed in herself. Though this is awkward for him, Elliot slowly hugs her.
A momentary hesitation as they eye each other. The moment quickly feels like it could be a kiss. But then Elliot and Angela realize eyes are looking at them. They slowly turn only to realize the entire office is looking at the television screens past the pair. Gideon steps in and umutes the television.
Terry Colby is arrested by FBI and taken into custody. A MSNBC banner reads:
BREAKING NEWS - TERRY COLBY ARRESTED - CTO of Evil Corp in custody after investigation into hacking scandal.
Elliot's eyes go wide.
EXT. NEW YORK STREETS - DAY
Elliot walks down the street, no longer in a zombified, shiftless state-- but with life and purpose.
ELLIOT (V.O.) (incredulous): It's happening. It's happening. It's happening. It's happening.
Elliot stops in Times Square and looks at the TV's around him announcing news of the disastrous Evil Corp scandal. Pure amazement and joy begin to fill his face as he takes in the sight.
ELLIOT (V.O.) (incredulous): It's happening. It's happening. It's happening. It's happening.
He stretches his arms out like he's just won the gold--
A MAN IN BLACK walks up to him. Elliot's smiles is long gone.
MAN IN BLACK: Sir, step inside the car.
Other MEN IN BLACK stand behind Elliot. Sweating immediately, Elliot even notices POLICE looking the other way.
MAN IN BLACK: Sir. Get inside the vehicle. Now.
Helpless, Elliot slowly climbs in. Their car, a black Escalade, peels out.
EXT. NYC STREETS - DAY
The first MAN IN BLACK opens the door for Elliot to exit the car. They close him on all sides as they march towards a gargantuan skyscraper.
INT. SKY RISE - ELEVATOR (MOVING) - DAY
A nervous wreck, Elliot stands in the high speed elevator as it quickly climbs several stories into the air.
The elevator DINGS when it reaches the top floor. The doors open and Elliot looks out into the hall, pale as if he's facing the gallows.
MAN IN BLACK: Go ahead.
Nervously, Elliot stares back at the MAN IN BLACK.
MAN IN BLACK: Sir, go on in.
Elliot looks down the hall again, it a**umes a dizzingly blurry form as we see silhouettes dance in the room at it's edge.
MAN IN BLACK: Sir, go on in.
INT. TOP FLOOR - CONTINUOUS
Elliot enters alone. He sees a number of MEN circle around a grand conference table. We only see their silhouettes, as they bicker and argue with one another.
Elliot's silhouette now joins them, dead center in the mess of black outlines.
Realizing that Elliot has shown up, their loud arguing hushes into an abrupt silence. The dark shadows now face Elliot, who remains catatonic.
What follows is the longest silence of Elliot's life as he and the dark faces exchange long, tense stares. No one speaks.
One blurred face leans forward, Tyrell Wellick. He's wearing a thin smile.
TYRELL: Bonsoir, Elliot.
ELLIOT (V.O.): Please tell me you're seeing this too...