Warning: minor spoilers for Mr. Robot ahead.
The second season of Mr. Robot has spent a lot of time building up the world around its protagonist Elliot. And last week, it revealed an interesting tidbit: the origin of hacker group fsociety’s trademark Anonymous-style mask, which comes from an obscure piece of made-up ‘80s schlock called The Careful Massacre of the Bourgeoisie. While we see only a couple of shots in the episode, the show’s creators actually filmed an entire 8-minute opening scene for the film — which, for the record, is about a masked man who murders upper-crust preppies with a sharpened croquet mallet.
For a throwaway Easter egg with no bearing on the main show, it’s a pretty good parody of ‘70s and ‘80s exploitation films, especially the ones that snuck in political messages — although granted, they were usually a little more subtle about it. It’s full of ridiculously unlikeable cardboard characters, overly dramatic camera shots, bad special effects, and exactly as much nudity and fake gore as you’d expect from the films it’s spoofing. If you’re all right with that, you can head over and see it on the Mr. Robot site.
If there are any hints at future Mr. Robot developments in Massacre, they’re buried too deep for me to find — except for the fact that it’s distributed by the sinister E Corp. But it’s left me with a deep hankering for weird genre films, and it may do the same to you. If you’d like to watch the bourgeoisie strike back with a huge dose of body horror, you can follow up with the legitimately well-made Society. If you want distractingly bad special effects in an otherwise gorgeous movie about decadent aristocrats, there’s giallo legend Mario Bava’s surreal Lisa and the Devil. Or, of course, you could pick just about any slasher film, starting with John Carpenter’s Halloween.
Disclosure: NBC Universal, owner of USA Network, is an investor in Vox Media, The Verge’s parent company. Additionally, we are an independent editorial partner in the Mr. Robot Digital After Show hosted by The Verge.