BY MARIA MESSIANO
Mr. Robot may be a fictitious thriller drama about underground hackers, but Portia Doubleday and Carly Chaikin–the two leading actresses in the series–have developed some new perceptions and views on the impacts of hacking.
At New York Comic Con last week, the cast of Mr. Robot sat down with PopWrapped to discuss their premiere season and tease suspicions about what will happen for F Society in season two. Doubleday, who plays Angela Moss on the show, shared her reaction to the success of the series.
“I think we knew what we had when we got it,” Doubleday said. “When I read the pilot, I knew it was special and I went in to audition for both parts, Darlene & Angela. I find that the characters are so developed and so different. I think at the beginning we were really pumped and then once we were in it…I don’t think you can ever prepare for the way people receive it, but it’s been so exciting.”
Carly Chaikin, who plays Darlene, said that she also knew from the beginning that the show was special. “It’s really rewarding to have people think that it’s as special as we do.”
Mr. Robot explores the processes and motives of web-hacking and even life-hacking, but do Doubleday and Chaikin think that hacking is acceptable?
“I think there’s so many variations and levels about hacking,” Chaikin explained. “Are you hacking a President or are you hacking a game to get more levels? So, I think depending on what it is, my answer would vary, but I can understand why people do it. I think that there’s a difference between malicious hacking and anonymous stuff ot kind of expose that they think the world should now, but I think that when that kind of power can get into the wrong hands, it can be a very dangerous and terrifying thing.”
“I just think it’s very fascinating,” Doubleday added. “When we were first doing the show, the Sony hack hadn’t happened yet, and that just goes to show how powerful it is. It’s the next wave; it’s a weapon…I think in the next ten years it’s going to be a very big issue. Essentially, you are able to…hack their lives and then eventually you are able to control and manipulate them through it. I think that as technology progresses, it’s going to get worse, and that’s what was kind of astounding as we were filming it. After watching all of these things, these major hacks happen, it just felt like the show was on to something that was pretty timely… and scary.”
With a new in-depth awareness of web hacking, thanks to their roles in the series, Chaikin and Doubleday both shared how their own lives have been impacted.
“I get very paranoid just about having my computer open in general when I’m not on it,” Chaikin said. “I don’t want to say this because then someone’s going to be like ‘oh, I’m going to hack you,’ and I don’t necessarily think that someone’s going to hack me per se, but just knowing what people are capable of… Knowing all of that stuff about getting into your camera on your computer or the audio or stuff like that, it’s made me very hyper-aware of the possibilities.”
Her character is able to hack into major networks and industries, and Chaikin admits that it’s had an affect on her. “I’ve become so… even walking into here or anywhere. I was walking into Disneyland and I was thinking about all of the things that you could hack in there. If I was Darlene… I could hack all these rides and make them stop. You can do absolutely anything as a hacker, so I think I’m more paranoid about the possibilities that can happen more so then something actually happening to me. Now someone’s going to hack my life!”
While the hackers may now be after Chaikin to prove her wrong, Doubleday says that she has already been hacked since being cast on the show. “I was hacked probably like, five times. The day that the show was picked up I was hacked… long story short, I was supposed to be on a flight. Now I’m afraid the people are going to be like ‘Yes! We got her!’” She went on to explain how she missed her flight because of a serious email hack.
Perhaps the new episodes of Mr. Robot should teach the cast more about blocking hackers and getting revenge? The highly-anticipated second season will air in summer 2016 on USA Network.