Silicon Valley: Facial Recognition
April 24, 2018 3:58 PM - Season 5, Episode 5 - Subscribe

Richard's confidence takes a hit; Gilfoyle worries about an artificial-intelligence partner.

IMDB has been a bit slow to put the synopses up.
posted by rhizome (9 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I wanted to like this episode, but I just can't.

Gavin having an existential crisis was great (I just wish it had gone on a little longer) and watching his scheming sycophants was entertaining (as usual) and Richard talking to the students was great.

I hate to see Jared develop even more insecurities and anxieties. It was nice to see him in the spotlight and doing well, before crashing, but that isn't what really bugged me the most.

In this climate where toxic male behaviour has been exposed in the tech industry again and again and again, it seems like a ripe topic for this show to address. Difficult and delicate but ripe. So how does it do so? Not by addressing what happens to actual living and breathing women, no. Instead, it decides to defend a robot from a creepy greasy guy.

I know I'm not really the intended audience for this show (despite having been a very vocal fan about it since day one) not being a guy and all, but that felt like a real slap in the face. If this is the way it's going to address this subject, I wish they had just skipped it entirely.
posted by sardonyx at 7:05 PM on April 24, 2018 [3 favorites]

Because the best part of the show for me is Jared's backstory, the best part of this episode was Richard finding the switchblade in Jared's desk drawer.
posted by gaspode at 8:35 PM on April 24, 2018 [7 favorites]

Gilfoyle's reaction to FishLips Jared was great: "Fuck you!...Fuck you!"
posted by Pendragon at 1:49 AM on April 25, 2018 [1 favorite]

These social-issue-adjacent storylines (AI harassment, Christian discrimination) have really been dragging this season down.

And Gilfoyle should have been revealed as a long-time Roko’s basilisk believer.
“This is Phase Seven in my plan to convince the AI that I worshipped it from the start. I’ve been working this particular angle since 2007.”
“Wait. Roko didn’t post about the basilisk until 2010.”
“Oh, right. That’s when... he... did that.”
posted by Etrigan at 3:34 AM on April 25, 2018 [3 favorites]

Which I just realized may have happened because I was so tuned out of this episode that I answered a phone call in the middle and didn’t bother hitting Pause.
posted by Etrigan at 4:01 AM on April 25, 2018

posted by hijinx at 5:44 AM on April 25, 2018

I just kept yelling "uncanny valley!" at the TV during the robot scenes. That shit is creepy.

Agree with everything above. I also felt like the plot was pretty thin—Richard so quickly making the jump from DDOS to sabotage seemed rather unlikely.
posted by radioamy at 9:08 PM on April 25, 2018

I mainly watch now because of Jared. Zach Woods is the real MVP of this show. I also like Martin Starr.
posted by Pendragon at 2:00 AM on April 26, 2018 [2 favorites]

Oh god I’m such a weirdo I thought this episode was the best!
posted by iamkimiam at 11:41 AM on September 6, 2021

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