If you're one of those people who watches TV in order to let their brain shut off and relax, there's one show I'm gonna need to steer you away from, and here's why. Mr. Robot has so many hidden Easter eggs that it's the smartest and hardest-to-watch show on television. For example, there was a moment in Season 2 of Mr. Robot when Stephanie Corneliussen's character Joanna Wellick is in a room where the TV gets switched on, and, before the channel skips away, we see that Vanderpump Rules is on. It was a cute connection, as Corneliussen is actually friends in real life with Rules stars Katie Maloney and Kristen Doute. But most of the Easter eggs are much more tech-savvy than that one, and they're all planted by one man, as it turns out: staff writer Kor Adana.
He began his work on the series as show-creator Sam Esmail's assistant, where he was a persistent advocate for making the show interactive and filling the episodes with hidden gems just like the ones that might be secreted in lines of code. Art imitating life, if you will. As Adana shared with Vulture , "any number, QR code, bar code, host name, or IP address" that you see in a given episode should lead you someplace in real life, if you type it into your own browser or scan it from your TV.
I wanted to give the viewer as much control of this story as possible, and have them really feel like they are a part of this narrative. You can log on to these sites, and then recreate and relive some of the hacks you see on the show. You can solve problems, and find codes hidden in the source code, or you can take answers from different Easter eggs and put them together, which will lead you somewhere else. It might give you a little bit of a hint for what is to come in the story. And usually, it doesn’t stop at the first page. Even if it is an ad for something, or if it is a very simple page, there is something else on that page that will lead you somewhere else.
See, I read something like that, and it gets me a combination of nervous and excited. That isn't how I typically go into an episode of television. If you want to catch everything, you have to be on the edge of your seat and the top of your game,; Mr. Robot is decidedly not the kind of show you should watch after a long day at work or to put yourself to sleep. This isn't mindless content, guys. This is an intelligent, dense show that rewards you for obsessing over it. To give you an idea of how hard you'll have to obsess, Adana says there are one to two eggs planted per episode, so look alive.
Don't worry, though, you aren't going to all this work for no reason: Adana promises that all these eggs are connected, however tangentially, and that, if you catch them all, you'll be able to collect a prize at the end of Season 2. I do mean you have to get them all, though; Adana says that even collecting 90 percent of the eggs won't be enough to figure out the final prize. There is still at least one egg within "eps2.1_k3rnel-pan1c.ksd," that aired in July and hasn't been solved. And this is with the entire internet working on the problems together, trying to find a solution. These Easter eggs are no joke.
At the end of the day, while it is possible to be a casual Mr. Robot fan, if you really want to get the full experience, you're gonna have to fight against all your millennial instincts. Put down the phone, turn off the music in the other room, and give these episodes your full attention. Otherwise, you won't have a hope of cracking these Easter eggs.
Images: USA Network; Giphy