Warning spoilers ahead…
Imagine this, Instead of wearing Google Glass people had optical implants that record everything in their lives. But what happens when their recordings become the base for obsession and jealousy? Also, imagine if your spouse passed away and you could still revive them back to life by buying an effigy of them, and its personality is made out of your spouse’s leftover digital presence. And, finally imagine if a big political figure is blackmailed by kidnappers to have sex with a pig on live TV broadcast in the name of saving the life of a royal. Now that’s what am taking about, in every story there is a technological twist that takes sci-fi to the next level of creepiness, and in Black Mirror it is just too strong. In short Black Mirror is a television collection of series that shows the dark side of life and technology.
“Black Mirror shows the dark side of technology”
I am not a fan of British productions, perhaps it is the accent that puts me off or may be am used to watching American movies. In fact, the last interesting British production I ever enjoyed was the 2004 popular series called Hustle, which featured a motley group of London con artists who pulled off a series of daring and intricate stings, now that was a worthwhile watch (feel free to recommend some other good British movies and series in the comment section below)
Created in 2011, Black Mirror is a British sci-fi miniseries by 43 year old ironist and English broadcaster Charlie Brooker. Each of its seven episodes stands alone and usually features a “racially balanced” character caught in the middle of a technologically impregnated society in a time just a little farther along than where we are now.
“An avalanche of absurd hyperboles of current trends”
In every Black Mirror episode, technology is used by people to excruciate each other and themselves in several ways. Before you watch this mini-series, set yourself for an avalanche of absurd hyperboles of current trends, as all episodes dwell on a fairly realistic internal logic. Seriously I am not kidding, for example, this show has an episode of a cartoon bear running for political office, creepy I know and that’s how weird Black Mirror can be. The show is an anthology of callous TV hosts, covetous husbands, vindictive audiences and narcissistic politicians.
“Technology is used to do many awful things in Black Mirror“
One thing I noticed, is that even though technology is used to do many awful things in Black Mirror, the lesson is never simply that technology is bad unless you read between the lines. What actually makes the show cool is that the tech on display is attracting, but mundane, as ordinary and ineluctable as smartphones and social media networks are today. The blackest episodes end with a semi-rebellion where the agonist realizes he or she is trapped, tries to escape, and only ends up more knotty.
Almost every episode of Black Mirror ends with a similar twist of events turning the bad into good or sometimes the reverse. If you have watched the best Twilight Zone episodes it could ring a bell, but in Black Mirror it’s less a moral reversal than trying to bring out the point. Assuming the spoilers are an encouragement for you to watch the mini-series you can rush and get yourself a copy and for those who can access Netflix its now showing. Thanks Gary for this mini series recommendation.