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Black Mirror Review

By Connor Schultz
On December 5, 2016

Photo by: Ashley Alonzo

The show you have to watch on your “Black Mirror” ...

Technology is good and the future will be a much better place.

This idea is instilled in people from the moment toddlers are old enough to turn on a television. The idea that every problem in the world can be whisked away by the push of a button or the latest and greatest smartphone app.

“Black Mirror,” with the latest season’s episodes released in October on Netflix, flips that narrative on its head. The show started in 2011 with three episodes, and after a critically acclaimed second season, it was granted 12 additional episodes although the final six do not have an airing date yet.

Each episode is unique, with different characters and plots set in varying locations. Each episode has a similar theme: Do not take technology and the worst in human behavior for granted.

Charlie Brooker, the show’s creator, sat down to do an interview with The Guardian before “Black Mirror” premiered and asked, “If technology is a drug, what are the side effects?”

Those side effects have not been found yet, but the big “what if” question of technology as a drug deserves greater scrutiny here at home.

According to a 2015 Time article, the average person looks at their smart phone 46 times in a day, which means every day people check their phones 8 billion times. For young people between the ages 18-24, the average is 74 phone checks.

8 billion checks a day makes this behavior hard to break. How do people break a behavior if young people perform the task 500 times each week?

The answers are less clear. That is what makes “Black Mirror” so captivating. It is the possibility of the unknown, it is the alarming realization that people will never solve all of their problems looking through a screen, no matter how many times they refresh their feeds.

Below is a list of my top-three episodes, with a brief description of each:

1. Fifteen Million Merits (S1, E2): In a dystopic future, a man wakes up in his mirror-filled room to pedal on his bike day-in and day-out, when he hears something real; the voice of an angel singing in a bathroom stall. The two make it to a singing competition show, where the judges have something much different in store for the woman. At the very end of the show, the man has achieved everything the society can offer him, yet the nothingness he feels inside is still there.

2. The Waldo Moment (S2, E3): A third-rate comedian voices a popular cartoon bear named Waldo. As part of its own show, the cartoon bear begins to taunt a politician and tells people to, “Vote for Waldo.” The disgust for both candidates allows the digital bear to finish runner-up in the contest, creating a monster the world cannot contain when forces far more powerful than the bear begin to use it for their gain.

The Entire History of You (S1, E3): Everyone has access to every memory they have seen, heard and did, dating back to when the implant was put in. A couple go through a break-up, yet the factors that lead to the end result are what causes such fascination.

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