Last night, Mr. Robot wrapped up its second season with "eps2.9_pyth0n-pt2.p7z," an episode that answered as many questions as it brought up. In a season full of twists, the long con that Sam Esmail wrote was even deeper than we initially realized, and new discoveries blossomed right until the very end. With season 3 officially coming in 2017, now is as good a time as any to ask one question: who the hell is really winning on Mr. Robot?

[Ed Note: After this point, all that awaits is spoiler city. If you've not caught up on Mr. Robot and decide to continue reading, be aware that certain plot points will be spoiled for you.]

Winning is an odd device in Mr. Robot. In the grand scheme of things, the 1% always has the upper hand, but on Mr. Robot, especially in this second season, control is an even bigger key. Whomever has control of the playing field ultimately comes out on top, and while this season's "big twist" found Elliot calmly in control of how we perceived the first half of the season, his particular situation found him losing grips on said control (and his sanity/reality), to the point where he ended up with a bullet in his gut.

With one phone call, though, it seemed that he'd a) be OK (or at least be alive) and b) brought in an entirely new factor to what the Dark Army has been doing. Season 3 is a bit of a ways away, but for now, let's dive into some of the key players in Mr. Robot and figure out who's truly on top.

Tyrell Wellick

Tyrell Wellick, 'Mr. Robot'
Image via Michael Parmelee/USA Network

Well, Tyrell's alive. It was touch and go there for a bit, and right up until the very end, Elliot was trying to piece together if Tyrell was actually dead (as Mr. Robot told him). Sitting in a dingy control room that the Dark Army set up, Elliot thought he had the situation under control...then Tyrell pulled out a gat and stopped Elliot from deleting malware that'd effectively caused a huge explosion at the facility that E Corp was housing all of the paper records that'd help them get back on their feet. The thing is, Tyrell's been nothing more than a pawn. To Joanna (his wife), to Elliott (in a way), to the Dark Army, and to the person on the other end of the phone after he shot Elliot...

Is Tyrell winning? The FBI seems to think so, but he's answering to a number of people (Elliot/Mr. Robot, the Dark Army), so it's doubtful.

Angela Moss

Angela Moss, 'Mr. Robot'
Image via USA Network

...which was Angela Moss. Angela's been in an interesting situation throughout season 2. She was rising the corporate ladder at E Corp, and spent a good part of the season finding ways to stick it to the people who were responsible for killing her mother and Elliot's father. After uncovering some documents that could have sank E Corp, she ended up in the hands of the Dark Army, with Whiterose herself telling Angela that she should've already been dead. Angela had a change of heart in the first part of the finale, siding with Whiterose and severing ties with the lawyer who was working her case against E Corp, but given that Tyrell ended up calling her after he shot Elliot (who he admitted to loving), it looks like she's either a very necessary cog in the machine, or she's still just doing the Dark Army's bidding.

Is Angela winning? She could have something up her sleeve, but it looks like she's under the Dark Army's control as of right now.

Elliot Alderson

Elliot Alderson, 'Mr. Robot'
Image via Michael Parmelee/USA Network

This is a tough one. After that obvious twist proved the Reddit theory that Elliot was in some kind of institution for the first half of the season, Elliot looked like he was sitting high on the throne. Even if he wasn't fully aware of it, he orchestrated a lot of what was going on, from the initial fsociety rumblings to the 5/9 hack to Stage Two, a.k.a. using malware and a batch of batteries to create a bomb that would level an E Corp facility and erase personal data records for good.

The thing is, Elliot was never truly in control. He had his moments, from getting prison warden Ray popped for his Silk Road-esque Tor website to writing code that would enable the Dark Army to effectively own E Corp (and tap into the FBI's communications). But we all know who was really running the show when it came to Elliot...

Is Elliot winning? Hard to tell. He's the mastermind of a lot of the show's nefarious activities, but he's lost so much control that it's hard to know what he's got going on.

Mr. Robot

Mr. Robot, 'Mr. Robot'
Image via Michael Parmelee/USA Network

...and his name is Mr. Robot, the manifestation of Elliot's deceased father that has acted as a split personality for Elliot's more nefarious dealings. We got to catch a glimpse of how Mr. Robot operates when Elliot is unaware, with multiple indications of how Mr. Robot seemed to be further splitting himself from Elliot to make sure his plans came to fruition. Mr. Robot's the one who told Tyrell that he had to stop anyone who tried to halt the execution of the malware, and we know he's been behind the majority of the hacking that Elliot's been involved in.

Sadly, Mr. Robot is only seen by Elliot (and us) because he's a figment of Elliot's imagination that's dealing out hard justice via keystrokes. So, technically, Elliot is in more control than we realize, but he doesn't even know the extent. Without Elliot, Mr. Robot can't exist. But the opposite seems to be equally true.

Is Mr. Robot winning? Without Elliot, there's no Mr. Robot...although with Elliot, Mr. Robot seems to be in control. He's a cog in a much bigger machine, either way.

Phillip Price

Phillip Price, 'Mr. Robot'
Image via Peter Kramer/USA Network

As the cold-hearted CEO of E Corp, Price has stopped at nothing to continue to keep the 1% (and above all, himself) richer. While the 5/9 hack dealt a huge blow to how E Corp operated with credit, the hack actually helped Price speed up a process that made it so E Corp could introduce their own form of currency in Bitcoin. With E Corp handling the bulk of credit purchases across America, this would give them an even bigger hand in world affairs. Did you see the way Price stood up to China's Minister Zhang? He's giving no fucks right now, because he KNOWS that he holds all the cards, and assuming his plan for credit domination works, he'll be all-powerful.

Is Phillip winning? Just off of his status, Phillip's got most of the juice. He's also volatile, which could spell trouble, especially if he continues to piss off the Dark Army.


Whiterose, 'Mr. Robot'
Image via USA Network

Whiterose is a wild card. We know that Whiterose is not only a major figure in the sinister Dark Army of hackers, but is also Minister Zhang, the Chinese Minister of State Security. He's in bed with Phillip Price as Minister Zhang, helping commit all kinds of terrible acts (including the Washington Township incident that resulted in the deaths of Angela's mom and Elliot and Darlene's dad), but their relationship hit a snag after the 5/9 hack when Price revealed that he would be using a monetary bailout from China to return to his all-powerful status.

Whiterose/Zhang is walking a fine line, and while Whiterose has tons of power (and the entire Dark Army at her fingertips), there's one person who's onto her...

Is Whiterose winning? Whiterose has a lot of power still waiting to be unlocked. Something tells us that Whiterose hasn't revealed all of her cards yet, and that could spell trouble.

Detective Dom DiPierro

Dom DiPierro, 'Mr. Robot'
Image via Michael Parmelee/USA Network

...yup, Dom DiPierro. The FBI agent without a life has devoted her time trying to unravel not only what happened during season 1 of Mr. Robot, but how all of the pieces to fsociety fit into a larger puzzle. DiPierro has been right about practically everything regarding the hack, and while she can't prove everything, she's super close, even if the FBI has their hands tied on how to properly deal with this investigation. That fact can be her downfall when it comes to truly nailing everything; the FBI is too tied up with their politics to attack fsociety, the Dark Army, and all of the other figures out there to really make a dent in these organizations. DiPierro sees it, but there will always be someone with more influence and clout above her, stifling her progress.

Is Dom winning? Dom will never be in full control, but she's definitely got most of the story pieced together. Will the FBI continue to hold her back is the real question.

Darlene Alderson

Darlene, 'Mr. Robot'
Image via Michael Parmelee/USA Network

While Elliot was doing a quick bid, Darlene was running the fsociety show, for good or ill. She's proved to be more ruthless than her brother Elliot, but she's getting deeper and deeper in over her head. As she's realized, Darlene is no Elliot. DiPierro might not know everything Darlene's done, but she has a good idea of how involved Darlene is, and if she gains Darlene's trust, one has to imagine that Darlene could be a vital link in shutting everything 5/9-related down.

Is Darlene winning? No, and if she turns state's evidence, she might be as good as dead in the long run.

Joanna Wellick

Joanna Wellick, 'Mr. Robot'
Image via Michael Parmelee/USA Network

Joanna's in an interesting position. She's definitely in control of the fuckboy that appears to be ready to finger Scott Knowles in the murder of Knowles' wife (although everyone knows Joanna's husband Tyrell did it). Joanna also has a certain control over Tyrell; based on their relationship, and what we've learned about her manipulative ways, one could say that Joanna is the motivation behind Tyrell's disastrous path. The thing is, Joanna's ultimately only as powerful as her bank account. Once she's unable to hire henchmen to help her find where her husband's been, she's weapon-less. If she is ever able to get into Tyrell's ear, it'll be interesting to see how she can insert herself into the long game. If not, it's hard to believe that her story will end well.

Is Joanna winning? She's certainly trying to win her own game, but it's doubtful that she'll own the entire game.


Leon, 'Mr. Robot'
Image via USA Network

Did you miss the finale's post-credits scene? For those unaware, Leon (played brilliantly by Joey Bada$$), was sent by the Dark Army to essentially be Elliot's protector while Elliot was locked down. He had a brilliant scene where he ginsued tf out of a bunch of white power racists who were trying to have their way with Elliot. We'd not seen much of him since that reveal, but last night, it looks like Leon's out, and has superior tracking abilities. He found where fsociety members Trenton and Mobley were hiding, and the last image of this season was Leon eerily asking them if they have the time. Does this mean he eventually murked them? Trenton said she had some information that could put things back the way they were, whatever that means. The Dark Army has proven to be VERY uninterested with loose ends, and Trenton and Mobley certainly know too much to not be brought in—or brought down.

Is Leon winning? Leon's a soldier, through and through, but it'll be interesting how his character develops moving on. Highly doubtful that he'll maintain any control.

So, are we any closer to finding out who's actually in control? Doubtful. As of right now, Phillip Price is in the lead for "most in control," but Whiterose is one come-up away from truly being queen of this horrible game. Elliot's not even seen as king fish by the FBI, but he'll forever be in the underdog position to turn everything around, given that he can get his head screwed on straight enough to work his magic. Anyone else coming for the throne has too much baggage or red tape to truly be effective, and shouldn't be considered as top prospects.

Or maybe Trenton's discovery is documents for a DeLorean, and her plan to "put things back the way they were" means going back in time to stop fsociety from forming. Maybe Leon knows Doc Brown. Did I just write season 3 of Mr. Robot