As we enter the last weeks of the Presidential Election, it’s becoming more and more obvious, on a daily basis, that we live in a world that isn’t real. Our reality, you see, is controlled by a variety of sources – mainly social conditioning; our parents, teachers, peers, history books, the media and our own egos all create stories to tell us who we are, where we fit and to not rock the boat. Or, as Darlene might say…
Okay, so be warned, this post is not short, is gonna get a little sciencey, a little philosophippie, and maybe a little Dr Strange, but there are lots of lovely pictures and we’ll make sure there’s extra dick jokes next week…
We live in a world where an ex-reality TV star with zero experience in politics, (even Sarah Palin was mayor and governor) and narcissist child-tyrant, who boasted about how he now owned New York’s tallest skyscraper in the days after 9/11, could be about to become Commander in Chief. Yet no-one stands up and says:
“What the fuck is going on, doesn’t anyone else think this is All. A. Bit. Just. Fucking. Weird?”
When you start to think about it, like actually reeaaally think about it, you begin to start seeing through the veil of confusion created by the constant barrage of distracting media and our own thoughts (60,000 thoughts a day) and begin to understand just how surreal it all is.
I’m not going to get political, it’s not for me to say whether a bright orange Oompah Loompa who seeks revenge on everyone who’s ever insulted him should have his tiny hands on the nuclear button, I’m just using the election as an example.
Let’s try another angle: What day is it? What month is it? What year is it? What country do you live in? Who won World War Two? How many dollars do you get to the Euro? Can you name an American Revolution patriot?
Do you realise that none of the answers you just gave are real?
Time, countries, borders, dollars, the economy… They’re all man-made constructs. As Napoleon said “History is a set of lies agreed upon.”
I mean, try telling a Brit that America won the war for them and you’ll get short shrift! Patriots of The American Revolution were seen as terrorists by the English, and most of our heroes are terrorists too – Luke Skywalker is nothing but a terrorist when seen from The Empire’s perspective.
So, do earth-dwelling humans need days, months and years; a time-telling system? Yes. Do we need countries and borders? We never used to. Can a person really own a piece of the earth? Getthefuckouttahere!
All this thinking got me thinking… and you know what happens then!
Why are there so many references to questioning reality in Mr Robot?
From “Hello Friend” – Elliot’s opening speech to us, his imaginary friend to Mr Robot’s Times Square diatribe, to eight episodes (not) in jail to being shot because he believed Tyrell was not real… Sam Esmail has created a show which asks us to question what’s real and what’s not real and only now have we started to dig in the right place, with the right eyes… (not that you should dig with your eyes. Paws are for digging, not eyes.)
Donald Trump’s friends, The Hindus started digging into reality thousands of years ago, and came to the conclusion that reality is an illusion.
They called it Maya.
But the Hindus were speaking metaphorically, right? Well here’s the thing. Maybe they were, maybe they weren’t. When you don’t have electron microscopes, high energy particle telescopes and space probes, when you don’t even possess the words to describe wormholes, parallel dimensions, and multiverses (hell, when you don’t even know how lightning works!) you HAVE to use metaphor. They tried to explain how the universe works with the tools they had – stories. The only problem with that is, well… when you’re talking about gods, people think you’re telling fairy stories. Which they were, but at the same time, they weren’t!
But what if they were trying to tell us that this is not the only dimension?
So that’s a lot of preamble, but how does it fit with Mr Robot?
I better cut to the chase! In Beijing, Minister Zhang asked Dom DiPierro “Have you ever wondered how the world would look if the 5/9 Hack had never happened?” before continuing… “In fact, some believe there are alternate realities playing out that very scenario, with other lives we’re leading, and other people that we’ve become. The contemplation moves me very deeply.”
In that weird, dream-like, Twin Peaks room she also asked Angela (as Whiterose) “I’ve always found doors fascinating inventions. They hold the entry to unlimited imagination. Before you open any door, a world filled with possibilities sits right behind it, and it isn’t until you open it… they are realized. Such potential they bring to our minds, and yet, a lock stopped you from all of that. How… lazy.”
Before straight-up asking “Do you ever think that if you imagined or believed in something it could simply come true, by will?”
So, it seems to me that Whiterose knows there are different realities; perhaps the many worlds theory and she alone has the power to step between those realities.
Even if the multiverse theory is true (it is!) manifesting realities sounds a bit too hippie but imagine if you could just step into a reality; Say you wanna be a writer or entrepreneur… forget trying, training and discipline. Just step into another existence BE A WRITER OR ENTREPRENEUR!
It’s not just a philosophical debate – but a highly possible happenstance – like attracting like is a scientific certainty – so maybe if you visualize what you want, the universe makes it real. You put good vibrations out there, the universe gives them back. Or, as Cypress Hill said around about the time Nelson Mandela died in prison, “What go around come around, kid”.
So you’re saying Mr Robot is about alternate dimensions?
Yes! Remember when Darlene and Cisco were getting back together? You’ll more likely remember their diner restroom sex. See; you remember now!
Well Cisco referred to the NSA’s new surveillance operation as “Operation Berenstein” and someone’s even been kind enough to put a clip on The You Tube for us:
Not long after this mention of Operation Berenstein, and it has become Operation Berenstain, with an ‘A’.
This is a more than just a nod to a The Berenstain Bears children’s books that you remember, it could be a huge clue to where Mr Robot is headed.
Many people remember the title being spelt “Berenstein Bears” so many people, in fact believe that the books and cartoons were spelt “Berenstain” that it’s led to a parallel universe theory whereby there are (at least) two parallel universes and we “have all undergone a π/2 phase change in all 4 dimensions so that we moved to the stAin hexadectant, while our counterparts moved to our hexadectant (stEin). They are standing around expressing their confusion about the “Berenstein Bears” and how they all remember “Berenstain Bears” on the covers growing up.” You can read more about it here.
So, remember Trump’s blimp above New York? No, of course not, there was no Trump Blimp, I made it up. That picture is from the Fox TV show Fringe, where in an alternate timeline meant the Two Towers never fell.
Nor, as I mentioned earlier, did Nelson Mandela die in jail. You were probably not caught out by either, but many are – this glitch in the Matrix is also known as The Mandela Effect. So many people swear they remember Nelson Mandela dying in jail that the only plausible, sensible explanation must be that those people have crossed into our reality from another plane of existence.
Of course, both of those theories are FUCKING NONSENSE but, the question remains why did Sam Esmail purposefully place both variant spellings in his show, Mr Rabbit?
Well, a show about false memories ain’t nearly as interesting as one about parallel dimensions, so it’s my belief that Elliot is stuck in an alternate dimension and is trying to get back to another his own, original reality, where much of what we’ve seen never happened, like the 5/9 hack,the Washington Township chemical leak and maybe his father’s death.
Mr Robot is a glitch so it’s no wonder poor Elliot has lost his mind, stuck in the wrong reality. Whiterose can open the door to other dimensions and Trenton has the key.
So there we have it. Season Three will string us along for a while, before unleashing a Fringe-sized parallel universe upon a poor unsuspecting public of Mr Robot fans.
The end, you can go now… Or is it?
While I’ve been thinking about all this, I went too far down my own rabbit hole which got me thinking about thinking…
Why are there so many stories about seeing the reality beyond this one?
It’s not just the neo-noir cyberpunk of Mr Robot, Neuromancer, Tron, Blade Runner, Dark City, The Matrix and The Thirteenth Floor. Nor is it the more non-cyber sci-fi of Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Total Recall, THX1138, Moon and Oblivion.
Not only the dystopian, simulated realities of 1984, The Island and Brazil.
Yup, as the perfect place for parables, metaphor and cautionary tales, sci-fi is the genre that questions reality the most, but simulated realities can also be seen in our more “real” world in The Truman Show, Vanilla Sky, The Village and The Game. It even lends itself to the horror genre in movies like Cabin in the Woods.
Entire series – from Fringe to the 1960’s bonkers yet brilliant The Prisoner to HBO’s Westworld and the boring-as-fuck The Man in the High Castle have been built around this very premise.
Plus, of course the numerous single episodes of Star Trek, Doctor Who, The X-Files, The Outer Limits and The Twilight Zone have all gone there.
But are alternate realities metaphor or science?
Could it be as simple as alternate realities make for good storytelling fodder? Or could it be that there are people…
WHO KNOW SOMETHING REALLY FUCKING IMPORTANT ABOUT THE NATURE OF REALITY AND WANT TO US TO KNOW IT, TOO?
Fo shizzle! And these people have names – they are the storytellers, the priests, the artists, the shamen and the point of all these stories is to help wake us up to the fact that there is something more out there.
I know I’m not about to change your mind, but who might it take to convince you? This guy?
No? What about this guy?
How about this guy?
One last chance…
Still unconvinced? Okay. I’ll leave you to just…
See you next week!