Episode 1: Creator
Prior to his demise, Sang had designated an enigmatic individual named ‘Regus Patoff’ (portrayed by Christoph Waltz) as ‘an advisor.’ In the absence of a distinct leader, the forward-thinking chief executive officer of CompWare – Sang (portrayed by Brian Yoon) is fatally shot in the head by one of the students on a tour of the game development company. The series commences with a startling disclosure.
They begin their search for Regus’ true identity, checking behind his intentions. Craig and Sang had previously mentioned his odd appointment and incredibly demeaning behavior, while Elaine helps save Iain’s job. Charles Micheal, played by Vaccaro, fires Iain – a senior employee – for his unpleasant smell, and each individual starts their first day in the position smelling strange. Meanwhile, Patoff feels an eerie presence through his strange disciplinary actions. Nat Wolff, played by Craig and Brittany O’Grady, played by Elaine (the company’s creative liaison), take offense at his arrival.
Regus’ intimidating presence begins here. However, Iain, who is terrified of losing his job, locks himself in his office. None of the employees at CompWare are aware of this. It is worth noting that Regus Patoff is a registered trademark in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, indicating that it is an acronym. During the incident, Patoff looks directly into the camera, seemingly aware of the power dynamics at play. At the same time, a package arrives at the office, where Sang previously performed a sexual act on Patoff. In the midst of this, they discover security footage from Sang’s office. Shortly after,
Episode 2: Mama
Regus chooses to seek revenge on him. Particularly because he continued working on a game alongside them for months without any enthusiasm, Craig becomes extremely angry at the sudden shift. He additionally resolves to close down an entire department as a result of their insufficient productivity. Regus commences enforcing his authority over the employees by requesting favors from them, even during nighttime.
Elaine informs Craig that he has re-entered the office and finds it odd. She thinks it would be an impulsive step for him to work late while playing a game. However, Elaine decides to send the footage to Craig’s mother, Mama Sang, after seeing it. Meanwhile, Elaine tries to enter their room and spell out her name using her fluent Korean speaking skills. Devastated by her son’s untimely death at the age of 20, Mama Sang is from Seoul and has traveled all the way to CompWare.
Amidst the clatter of the typewriter, we can only perceive his entrance into the records room, a space inaccessible to other staff members without a key. Patoff attempts to disrupt the truce between him and Elaine by fostering a favorable disposition towards himself in Craig. As Elaine is technically in charge of the department, she acknowledges Craig’s dedication to the office and provides him with feedback on his work. Overwhelmed by the mounting pressure, she opts to steer clear of her apartment and instead purchases a room in a luxurious hotel. Filled with suspicion that Regus may have caused her harm, she becomes anxious about the whereabouts of Mama Sang and contacts Patoff for information, already consumed by worry. However, he persistently avoids providing any response.
Episode 3: Friday
It’s a strange place that appears as Shut Wide Eyes Kubrick’s. Then Patoff takes him to a different place. Instead of letting him go, Regus asks more personal questions about Craig’s relationship with her, pitting her against him. He keeps trying to get out for an actual night out with Patti (Aimee Carrero). Despite Elaine’s warnings about the potential consequences, Craig has no choice but to follow it. After appreciating Craig’s work regime, Regus invites himself out with Craig.
Craig does not want to get caught in a case of abduction, which is why he keeps questioning Regus’s intent. Furthermore, he sees that Patoff has influence over the law enforcement department, which surprises him. Even when a cop stops their van, they are able to get away without any issues. Suddenly, two men drop a wrapped-up body in the back of their van, which scares Craig to death. Craig’s presence keeps Regus commanding and prevents him from getting drunk. Craig stumbles upon Milani’s face (Gena Heylock), which looks weirdly reconstructed there.
Regus finally calls the person who was abducted to be the cause of Sang’s death, tired of Craig’s bickering. Meanwhile, Elaine gets hold of the key department records while she is alone in the office and decides to find out extremely personal information of the compiled employees, conflicting with their right to privacy. When Craig stops the van, rescuing the person who happens to be Milani from the bar, he notices that she has amputated one of her legs.
The next day, Craig wakes up and finds that no employees inside CompWare have returned. She tells Craig to look for Frank Florez if he wants to know more about Regus, but she is afraid of running away before Regus.
Episode 4: Sang
Instead of a monetary fee as recompense, Regus requests sexual favors from him. However, for that to occur, he must perish. Nevertheless, he proposes his assistance as a consultant, leading to his employees perpetually adoring him. He steps into his office to caution him about the impending failure of his business due to insufficient funds, hence opting to wait until Sang becomes available. While Rosie (Sloane Avery) informs him of the necessity for an appointment, we catch a glimpse of the moment when Regus entered CompWare to sway Sang.
He was later found dead three months ago. Regus made the same deal with Sang as its CEO. However, this also meant a sudden spike in the number of amputations. In the past, Regus had helped a corporation in Moscow almost double their revenue in six months by providing artificial limbs. Craig persistently works to find traces of Regus’ shady history in the present.
In order to ensure the stability of both himself and his department’s employment, she goes back to Craig to notify him that they must accelerate the progress of the new game’s development. He informs her that they only possess enough funds to sustain their business for six weeks, which prompts Elaine to inquire about this choice. Regus terminates an employee who was on a leave of absence due to her mental health problems while Craig is occupied with this endeavor.
He decides to keep mum about their Friday night together. He tells Regus that it can be finished by month-end if all the resources are put into its development. Sang tells Regus about the cruise she impulsively purchased to help with her financial woes. Therefore, she can’t enter now. It seemed that Regus changed the keys the previous night. On the other hand, Elaine Florez tries to find any traces of Frank in the room records, but Craig cannot find any documents about him.
In order to gather additional information about his connection with Patoff, she advises Craig to arrange a face-to-face meeting with Frank. As he declined to disclose any further information during their conversation, she only discovers that Frank is the proprietor of a jewelry store after concluding the call. Elaine volunteers to contact Frank the following day and manages to obtain his number, covertly installing spyware on Regus’ phone without arousing suspicion.
During their dialogue, Craig mentions that Regus sent a demo link of his game to every employee, as Sang decides to use this ‘image’ of Sang’s previous humiliation to now motivate people to push themselves in order to demonstrate their commitment to Sang’s vision. Additionally, when they entered the office and found a nude sculpture, they also questioned the possible legal implications while Regus installed stalker-ware on his phone, which meant that he had devices to go through.
Episode 5: Sick
Despite the fact that she is on the verge of returning home, he notices Patti and escorts her to his office. However, her attempt is foiled by Elaine, who tries to redirect her towards the exit before Regus can approach her. Consequently, she arrives at his office with the intention of surprising him with a meal, completely unaware that Craig has called in sick. In order to indirectly embarrass Craig, he dramatically announces his absence to the employees. Nevertheless, Regus is displeased by this, as he had intended to meet Mr. Florez at his store, but Craig’s sick leave has disrupted his plans.
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To salvage his job, she reassigns him to a lower position temporarily and moves him out of his office. He is filled with fear that losing his job would hinder his prospects in the job market. Eventually, she discovers Iain utterly terrified by the cutthroat competition among the employees.
Meanwhile, Craig meets him in person and asks him about Regus, played by Carlos Juan Cantu (by Frank Florez). When Frank utters his name, Craig closes the shutters and shares his history with Regus, where he was given constant orders to create gold sculptures, reaching a point where he started running out of supplies. He kept working tirelessly, paying for his kids’ education because he held dear all the demands of tyrannical Regus, eventually losing it all.
Regus proves to be a devil in disguise, concealing their kind nature behind a deceptive facade that others find devilish. Patti, on the same day, discovers evidence that reveals Regus’s true identity when she finds an Uber receipt for a ride he took. However, she believes him at first but soon realizes that telling him the truth about his sickness could be life-threatening and embarrassing. Therefore, Craig keeps up the facade of being sick when he returns home. Eventually, Craig shoots Frank and his accomplices, who had been stealing his belongings, and as they leave the store, Craig makes animalistic guttural sounds to scare them off.
Episode 6: Glass
Regus, due to her skepticism towards Craig and Patti’s expertise, finds herself inexplicably drawn to the elderly gentleman. She even accompanies Craig to a confession booth during their weekend at Church. Later that night, Craig is awakened by the sound of a brick shattering his window. Her fascination with Regus and the growing emotional gap between her and Craig are evident in all of these events.
In order to enhance their efficiency, Regus instructs the staff to refrain from wearing shoes while carrying out their duties in the office. Meanwhile, Craig comes back to the workplace after recovering from a 3-day bout of flu only to discover that his game ‘Upskirt Jungle’ has been completed without any of his contributions and has been rebranded as ‘Mr. Sang’s Jungle Odyssey’. The following day at the office, Elaine presents Regus with the analytical report detailing the feedback received for the game.
Donning Regus’ footwear, he angrily exits, observing the programmers’ indifference towards it. Craig then goes back to the completed game to identify its flaws following a negative feedback from Elaine. Regus, from his cabin, monitors their interaction and eavesdrops on their argument. While they debate about it, she consistently supports Regus’ perspective, which irritates Craig when someone approaches Elaine to express their frustrations about it.
(Given the inverted structure of sentences)(because the desire for success increases exponentially) However, he actually praises it as a consistent loss makes gamers more competitive. She warns Regus about it as a potential danger. A majority of them became frustrated at stage 316, which infuriated them to the point where they resorted to self-inflicted harm in various ways. She returns to her work to observe the reactions of the players who attempted their game. From her feedback, he discovers information about Craig’s relationship problems with Patti. Meanwhile, Regus interrogates Elaine for deceiving him about Craig’s illness.
Craig willingly goes to his office and leaves Patti at Regus, while he is caught up in this emotional turmoil. When he cannot pass stage 316th, he hurts himself angrily just like other gamers, and Regus justifies this shtick while standing by the game.
Episode 7: Elephant
Patrice decides to call her ex, who believes that she will do pretty much anything for money. So, he persuades her to pursue it using her hunger for power and better position in the company. But when she meets him later to explain that it was just a joke, she asks him to execute her idea and suggests jokingly that they should release an actual elephant in the city to gain traction for their new game and promote it as a publicity stunt for the employees at Regus.
Regus says that if he were to say “he would fuck him,” it would make him further push her for power and lust. She uses her persuasion skills to accept the deal. She objects to his insinuation. Patrice makes him an offer of 10k, persuading her with a sexual favor. Later, when the elephant is in a position, she returns, asking for compensation for Patrice. She makes him feel insignificant in his life, prompting him to ask for a decrease to 20k. Regus says that the budget is only 20k, but Patrice agrees to do it for 30k.
‘The word processor’ operates on Patti, who encounters Regus in the archives room at the workplace. In the meantime, prior to, even more exasperated than previously, he discovers that Regus travels all the way to merely a mobile restroom after arriving there in the same state of fury, he heads to a location where Regus frequents daily. He declines to comply with Regus’ appeals and indulges in substance abuse at the workplace while she is striving for career advancement, Craig immerses himself in the sadness of Patti’s abrupt vanishing.
Episode 8: Hammer
Regus, in his growth initiative consultancy, enters a robotics firm to propose a deal to its CEO. Meanwhile, at CompWare, Patrice arrives and fears that he may face arrest for murder. Despite her concerns, she remains loyal to the bureaucracy and decides to reassure him. The following morning, Elaine discovers that the authorities’ attempt to return the elephant to the zoo resulted in its death. Although it may have seemed like a surreal dream, it is actually the unfortunate reality for the citizens of L.A. During his morning run, Craig unexpectedly comes across a scene of crushed cars. Shortly after, he finds himself face to face with an elephant.
Craig, the spyware issue that he was unaware of, is meanwhile trying to get rid of the issue by applying for a different job opening. He is consumed with anxieties and troubled by the fact that his actions of spying on the daily activities of his co-workers, without their knowledge, will destroy his chances of getting any other job. Meanwhile, he spent all the money that was supposed to be given to Patrice for this celebration on a party to enjoy the success of CompWare’s employees, causing Elaine and Regus to be concerned about these anxieties and legal troubles.
By that time, she has barely remained human enough to graciously accept his plea. However, Elaine suppresses her feelings of guilt and shame as Iain requests to reclaim his position. Instead, Regus employs his intimidating authority to compel him to vacate their property. She anticipates that Patrice will be apprehended for murder at that point, which would resolve their predicament. Therefore, she resolves to exploit Patrice’s avaricious tendencies and offer him a larger sum of money the following day. Elaine is taken aback by this unexpected revelation but is determined to maintain her status.
The Consultant (Season 1) Ending, Explained:
What happens to Patti? Does she manage to escape the records room?
Tracking it became more convenient for them after Patti had installed the game. They both ponder and decide to locate the phone. However, what reason would she have to send a text in a language she is unfamiliar with? That’s when he unexpectedly receives a Korean text from Patti. Nevertheless, he is unwilling to further jeopardize Patti’s trust and rejects her implication. Amidst the conflicting messages, she ultimately suggests driving him back and engaging in sexual activity. Meanwhile, Craig sits beside Elaine to provide her companionship. Regus enters the record room to meet with Patti.
Behind, Regus walks away leaving his bloody footprints. Meanwhile, Patti and Elaine have returned home to find that Regus has died. Craig, assuming that Regus has fallen down, gets up and starts breaking the glass floor with a hammer. In the same mental state, Craig has a panic attack, which provokes Regus, who is under the influence of Regus. While Elaine tries to save Patti from Regus’ spell, they both end up back in the office, which leads them to Sang Mama, who says she is grateful to the kind and generous Regus for providing them with shelter and English language lessons. They try to reach a place to find Sang Mama using Patti’s phone.
The future that Regus desires, perhaps he does. The game concludes with the triumph of the youngster who killed Sang. Meanwhile, during the mishap, Regus’ elbow, which was severed, is transformed into a magnificent sculpture by Craig. All of these occurrences seem to have a distressing impact on Craig’s mental state. This transformation brings her immense joy. She commends Regus for his dedication and how he has improved and uplifted them. Regarding Patrice’s wrongdoing, the authorities approach her. Additionally, she is given the key to the records room in her new position. She has been promoted to become their new CEO. Elaine returns to CompWare to investigate the shattered glass that had previously been repaired. Shortly after this horrifying incident.
We will consider the real question: CEO-hungry Clout or Regus-hungry Results? Upon pondering it, leaves us with a series. In this story, we will consider a villain who saves them from a financial calamity. Instead, Elaine Sang takes Regus and praises visionary, managing to make employees mirror their work ethic. He also left a scarring impact on those like Craig, who may never recover from what transpired in their lives. On one side, he is praised for how he improved, but through this mixed reaction, we notice the different kinds of influence Regus left on people.
The Consultant (Season 1) Themes Analysed:
Corporate Culture & Clout-hungry CEOs
The Consultant presents a black mirror that reflects the existing facets and corporate culture, making it highly competitive. It also brings up the lack of privacy as a subject, which is an indicator of some of its ruthless practices. Besides, it keeps motivating its employees by pushing the limits and emphasizing increased output, fueled by their hunger for power.
While doing that, his lack of expertise in a unpredictable condition can jeopardize the lives of those who rely on him. Based on his outward appearance, he appeared to be harmless. The series portrays a forward-thinking CEO with minimal knowledge in managing a company, as depicted by Sang’s character. To establish a perception of being revered like a deity, it also criticizes power-hungry CEOs who will go to great extents.
The Great American Dream
What better symbolizes the elusive ‘Great American Dream’ than this? People continue to strive in the race, hoping to eventually reach the light at the end of the tunnel. Thus, the rat race continues and the struggle remains constant. Additionally, he encourages a game in which achieving success is uncommon. Regus amusingly prompts employees to pursue a higher position without mentioning the concept of merit, adding to the humorous moments in this dark comedy. Furthermore,
The Consultant (Season 1) Review:
An arresting psychological thriller elevated by Christoph Waltz’s menacing presence
I can already find detailed analysis before I point out the only factors that did not make this show intriguing. The most obvious answer is Christoph’s formidable presence, yet another knock-out performance in a negative shade. It is particularly commendable that he is up on the screen every time and since he manages to evoke terror, apart from his earlier Oscar-winning villain-stints in two Tarantino flicks.
The horror workplace tale Severance presents a exceptionally well, showcasing the gradual breakdown of its characters and excelling in its command over psychological layers. The direction keeps you hooked to its plot, making you question our judgment only at the end. Whoever is against Regus, the root of the problem, is what makes you root for them. The slick corporate thriller excels due to its inventive presentation, but there is nothing new or commentary about it.