'Mr. Robot' will take on encryption and privacy in upcoming season

  Photo: Rich Fury/Invision/AP

Photo: Rich Fury/Invision/AP

BY ARIEL BOGLE

Award-winning hacker drama Mr. Robot will return for its second season in the summer of 2016, and the new episodes promise to be ripped from the headlines.

In the show, a troubled hacker named Elliot (Rami Malek) is drawn into a conspiracy to bring down a large corporation thanks to the titular Mr. Robot (Christian Slater).

The USA series was praised by many for its prescient and thrilling take on cybersecurity, and the show's creator Sam Esmail suggested the new season will remain just as topical at a South by Southwest panel Sunday, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

The Apple versus the FBI battle over iPhone encryption is the technology story of 2016 so far, and Mr. Robot will give its own unique take, despite the fact that Esmail said he wrote the episodes before the legal fight was made public.

"I'm not trying to say I'm a fortune-teller," he said in a live stream from the event. "We were really going thematically into encryption and privacy, and this whole thing with Apple and Tim Cook happened.

"I think privacy is going to be a huge issue in the next 10 years or so ... It's going to be an interesting public discourse"

Esmail also revealed the extent to which the Arab Spring influenced his work. Esmail, who is Egyptian-American, had family members in Egypt who he said "were using technology to bring about this revolution."

"That, to me, was the third piece of Elliot ... anger channeled in a positive way," he said. "Anger that makes a difference in your society, and so that was quite critical in developing Elliot's character."

Either way, Season 2 is sure to satisfy even the most techno-dystopian viewer. As Esmailpreviously revealed at New York Comic Con in 2015, it's going to get "Really fucking dark."

http://mashable.com/2016/03/13/mr-robot-second-season/#Om7YWSMrDgqu