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Mrs. Davis: What Is The 10-42 Error? How Police Codes Could Be A Hint

This article contains spoilers for "Mrs. Davis" Season 1

There's a moment on "Mrs. Davis" Episode 2 that exposes the algorithm's weakness, which arises during a conversation about Simone's (Betty Gilpin) mother. Basically, the supercomputer starts blurting out a "10-42" error code, suggesting that it isn't the perfect mechanism that most of the planet believes it is. 

In the next episode, Simone speaks to the titular algorithm through an old lady who goes by the name "Mum." The biggest takeaway from their conversation is that Simone's mother is on the same train as them, which takes the nun by surprise. That said, there's a brief moment during their chat that sees the algorithm temporarily malfunction and repeat the phrase "10-42" in between other random phrases once again. But what does it all mean?

The 10-42 code has a longstanding history in the world of law enforcement. It's primarily used by officers after they've completed their tours for the day; however, it's also used when an officer has been killed in the line of duty. As such, the code is synonymous with sadness and finality. With that in mind, let's try to decipher what the 10-42 code might mean in regard to Damon Lindelof and Tara Hernandez's bizarre genre-mashing series on Peacock.

Is Mrs. Davis malfunctioning?

"Mrs. Davis" doesn't shy away from the macabre subject matter, so it's safe to assume that the "10-42" is associated with something cryptic. During one of the aforementioned scenes, the algorithm also quotes Eddy Grant's hit song "Electric Avenue," saying, "Deep in my heart I am warrior." It's possible that the algorithm is a big fan of disco music, but the scene suggests that the computer is on the fritz.

Simone's ultimate goal is to end the existence of Mrs. Davis, so it's possible that the "10-42" error is a sign of things to come. The code is synonymous with death, after all. That said, the algorithm's confusing behavior coupled with the mention of that specific code could mean that it's already shutting down. The fact that the error crops up during conversations about Simone's mom also teases the possibility of her being a threat to the AI.

Mrs. Davis needs human allies to ensure that her systems are always running and stable, and Episode 3 suggests that she might not be functioning properly at all.