'Mr. Robot' Season 2 Will Make Fans "Trip Balls," Says Star Stephanie Corneliussen
Last year, hordes of fans thought they were so smart when they figured out that the titular character in USA's Mr. Robot was (spoiler alert!) both Elliot's father and a figment of his addled imagination. But everyone was shocked when it turned out that "twist" was just a distraction from the even more jaw-dropping revelation that (even bigger spoiler alert!) Darlene was really Elliot's sister. It's hard to imagine that there could be any equally shocking twists in store for the show's second go-'round — but star Stephanie Corneliussen promises that Mr. Robot Season 2, premiering Wednesday, July 13, will blow our minds.
"Oh yeah, absolutely. I can't say too much, but there's a scene where I was like, 'Wait, what the hell is going on now? Wait; who, what, why, when?' Yeah, it's gonna be great," the actress, who plays ice queen Joanna Wellick, tells Bustle. "I really think fans are gonna love it this season. It's always hard to follow up," she admits, referencing the drama's hyper-successful first season, which earned rave reviews, pulled in record ratings for the network, and earned top honors from both the Golden Globes and the Critics Choice Awards. "But now that we're almost done with it, it feels so right. You're gonna trip balls, that's all I'm gonna say. You're gonna go nuts."
Corneliussen would know, since she and the rest of the cast are kept as in the dark as the rest of the audience when it comes to the show's biggest twists. "We have no clue what's going on," she says. "We were filming a couple of scenes from the last episode of the season, and I didn't even get the script, I just got my pages." That makes the experience as exciting for them as it is for us:
I remember we were sitting at a table read last year, and Carly [Chaikin, who plays Darlene] passed me a note over the table as we were approaching that page in the script where we find out that Darlene is Elliot's sister, and it just said, "Get the f*ck ready." We flipped the page and she goes, "I’m your sister," and everybody's jaw dropped. We were like, "What?? What the hell is going on?" I think all of us were a little worried after that point. For a second there I was thinking, "Oh god, am I just inside of Elliot's head, too? What's going on? How do you know if you're real? Somebody pinch me!"
(So is Joanna just inside of Elliot's head? "So far, from what I understand, Joanna is real," Corneliussen claims.)
For her part, Corneliussen says she isn't worried about the second season living up to the high bar set by the first; according to her, she knew Mr. Robot would be special from the very beginning, and nothing has happened to shake her faith in the show. "From the second I read the pilot, I knew I wanted to be a part of it. I thought it was the most amazing thing I had ever read in my life," the actress remembers.
"I actually had a huge argument with my agent, who I fired, because of that. They said, 'It's ridiculous that you're investing so much time and effort into this, you don't even know what it's going to be.' And I said, 'It's going to be the new Breaking Bad.' And they were like, 'You don't know that,' and I was like, 'Yeah I do.' And look what happened!"
But "there's definitely a bar," Corneliussen acknowledges. "We feel like we have some sort of responsibility to ourselves and to the fans to make it f*cking amazing. But we're dealing with [creator] Sam Esmail here, so we've already won the lottery. His mind is so freaky in the most beautiful sense of the word. Everyone is going to be in for such a surprise. There are things that are going to freaking blow your mind."
Bring it on.
Images: Peter Kramer/USA Network; Giphy