(Spoiler alert and Trigger Warnings)
I was about 17 years old when I first discovered Mr. Robot. There were a lot of things about the series that drew me into it. The refreshing storyline, the beautiful cinematography, complex characters, amazing writing, awesome soundtrack, it's nods to pop culture etc. But the one thing that drew me in the most was the main character Elliot Alderson aka the Mastermind.
Elliot was a cyber security engineer who was a vigilante hacker by night, who takes down criminals and abusers who hurt women and children, kinda like Lisbeth Salander from The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. The first scene where he takes down a coffee shop owner who runs a pedophile ring and tells him that he doesn't give a damn about money was when I fell in love with this character.
I further began to empathise with him even more when I saw him talk about how he can't handle his loneliness and saw him crying alone in his room while having a flashback to the abuse by his mother. There was something I felt familiar with how he felt. The dialogue that he said to his therapist Krista was that he wanted a way out of loneliness hit me even harder. It's because I have also dealt with loneliness and I had a hard time being social with others. I even dealt with a lot of self hatred and (binge eating) addiction like Elliot did in the past. It was even difficult for me to find any good thing about myself and I would constantly ask others to find it for me.
Back to the show, about Elliot, I felt a lot of love and empathy for this character. Usually in most shows, the fans would mostly find the protagonists unlikable and I admit, most of my past favourite main characters were extremely problematic. But Elliot was the first main character I actually fell in love with. This made me grateful that while Elliot was labelled an "anti hero" and yeah, some of his actions weren't perfect and something to follow, he wasn't like those toxic and dark male anti-heroes we usually see on TV. Eg. Walter White got into drug business to feed his ego and used his family as an excuse and Dexter Morgan was a serial killer who killed killers not for justice but to fulfil his bloodlust.
But Elliot was different from them, as his goals were genuine and all in all was a good, kind hearted, beautiful, selfless and sweet person who would put others before himself. Sometimes I wondered if Elliot was saving and protecting a lot of people, who was going to save him most importantly.
Whenever I would see him go so many dangerous and life threatening situations, I felt like I just wanted to protect him and save him from all this.
Most particularly in Season 4 episode when Elliot was forced to find out by his stalker that he was molested as a child by hist father, I begun to cry a a lot as I felt bad for what he went through. When the stalker tried to empathise with him and manipulated him, my blood boiled with anger because how could he exploit Elliot like that, but I was relieved when Krista killed him because he deserves to be taken care of by her and his sister Darlene.
Seeing Elliot endure so much pain and struggle throughout the series made me feel bad for him even more. While I did not go through the abuse he did and I have a really good father, it still made me feel so bad for him and it made me realise that not only women but even men go through all kinds of abuse their whole life and neither of them deserve to go through that. Which is why I felt hurt when I saw his childhood friend, Angela use his mental condition for her own advantage.
There were even times where I got worried that his character might get ruined like Daenerys Targaryen in Game of Thrones, especially after the whole peppermint mocha incident in one episode.
I found it remarkable that despite all the pain, heartbreak and struggles he endured, he was able to live through it and survive it all.
I was even joyful when he acknowledged in his speech to Whiterose that there were people out there who loved him for who he was and cared for him and how it healed him from all the pain he went through. I was so happy that he went from broken and cynical to optimistic and hopeful individual who loved almost everyone back.
I was a little dismayed when it was revealed that the Elliot we followed was just another alter of the real Elliot he took control from. But it took me time to realise that he was a good alter who wanted to make the world a better place for the Host personality to live in.
To this day, I still couldn't get over this character and it is all thanks to Sam Esmail who put in so much work into creating this wonderful character and bringing him into life.