Black Mirror

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obsessivelymoody
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Black Mirror

Post by obsessivelymoody » Thu Jan 04, 2018 3:55 am

Considering the new season just came out, and there's definitely a lot more hype for the show and in previous years, I think the show could do with having it's own thread. I was actually surprised to see that it didn't have one yet!

Anyway, how are people liking the new season? And what are everyone's favourite episodes?

In regards to season 4, I found that "USS Callister" was such a phenomenal and stand-out episode. It left me wanting—well okay needing—a whole series just for that world, which isn't how Black Mirror usually makes me feel.



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Re: Black Mirror

Post by DatCog » Thu Jan 04, 2018 8:51 am

I love Black Mirror!! I've been trying to ration the episodes this time, rather than binging all in one go, and have only seen 1-4 so far. USS Callister was incredible, the production quality was so high and I would definitely be interested in a spin-off series. I also really enjoyed Hang The DJ. It was filmed at a beautiful landscape garden in Surrey that I used to visit a lot with my family when we lived in London so it was really lovely to see it again. Link for anyone interested: http://www.painshill.co.uk
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Re: Black Mirror

Post by citizen_erased » Thu Jan 04, 2018 2:33 pm

I used to really like Black Mirror, but then there was one episode in s3 that really, really messed me up (Playtest), and now I'm very hesitant to keep watching. I didn't watch all of s3 in the end, just Nosedive, Playtest and San Junipero. Skipped right past everything else.

So far of s4 I've only seen USS Callister, which I did really love. I'd also be up for a spin-off series of that. But then I am a star trek nerd so, y'know :lol:

Some spoilery things below.
IMO Nanette is the best star trek captain so far, I love her.

I'm also really curious what real!nanette is up to now, and if she's ever going to figure out what's happened. I do feel like they left that bit of the story open-ended even though the rest is rounded off very nicely.

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Re: Black Mirror

Post by sonicgreen » Thu Jan 04, 2018 5:32 pm

Ah Black Mirror. I don't have time to write a super detailed post but I've also rationed the episodes so I've seen all but the last one. I really loved the episode Crocodile??
No one is talking about it but it was such an interesting downward spiral, as predictable as it was. I love murder mysteries so it probably stems from that. The scenery was gorgeous but the cold/harsh aesthetic of the whole episode just furthered the theme. The song they kept playing during the "memory recalls" was "Anyone Who Knows What Love Is" I only associate it with Black Mirror? When was it used before in the show??
USS Callister was really good. I was super skeptical as I'm not a huge Star Trek fan, but it was an admirably simple plot. Considering how mind-fucking some episodes can be, it was nice to have a good start-to-finish pure action plot. I also really liked Metalhead, big Walking Dead Game vibes. (the plot twist was semi-predictable but still made me cry)
My all time fave is still Hated in the Nation- again, I like murder/mysteries.
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Re: Black Mirror

Post by 000dia000 » Thu Jan 04, 2018 8:58 pm

I'm a big fan of Black Mirror :tu: I enjoyed this season, even though it wasn't the best, every episode is still a good flick imo
USS Calister was fucking hilarious. I was not expecting to be laughing as much as I was. I love dark comedy. I think I stan Jimmi Simpson now. I loved Crocodile and Hang the DJ and don't have much to add to either of them.

I felt that Ark Angel, for me personally, was the weakest episode. There were too many red herrings in the plot, the girl becoming desensitized and creepy and the grandfather being "2000 years old" in the episode teaser basically threw off the actual plot. I wouldn't mind, only that I felt it wasted time and I was beginning to grow suspicious of the daughter so I couldn't exactly sympathize with her, or the mother at the end, or understand either of them in any way when I was already confused with what to think. I think the concept of helicopter parenting with amazing, I was very uncomfortable and could relate lol

My personal favorite episode was Metalhead. I know that people are pretty divisive on it, and some go as far as to call it the worst episode ever. I'm going, to be honest, and admit that the teddy bear reveals made my mother and I basically go FUCK OFF at the TV, but leaving that out, I thought that the rest of the episode was pretty solid. I think every other episode was too reliant on using "memory" and uploading consciousness, so I think as an episode, using an alternative exploration of technology for once this season was necessary. Second, I was fucking terrified for all of it. I'm a fan of Terminator movies and read "Robopacylpse" that also features the dog-things in the book, but actually seeing it realized was hard to watch. I think the ending with the woman having flashing pieces of metal stuck into her face actually made me sick the most and then seeing all the "dogs" swarming in :(

I think the most fucked up thing was Black Museum's "Mommy needs a hug" though, that has to be my worst nightmare. I'm just glad that she took the Monkey with her, thank God, that made my day.
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Re: Black Mirror

Post by sonicgreen » Thu Jan 04, 2018 10:28 pm

000dia000 wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 8:58 pm
My personal favorite episode was Metalhead. I know that people are pretty divisive on it, and some go as far as to call it the worst episode ever. I'm going, to be honest, and admit that the teddy bear reveals made my mother and I basically go FUCK OFF at the TV, but leaving that out, I thought that the rest of the episode was pretty solid. I think every other episode was too reliant on using "memory" and uploading consciousness, so I think as an episode, using an alternative exploration of technology for once this season was necessary. Second, I was fucking terrified for all of it. I'm a fan of Terminator movies and read "Robopacylpse" that also features the dog-things in the book, but actually seeing it realized was hard to watch. I think the ending with the woman having flashing pieces of metal stuck into her face actually made me sick the most and then seeing all the "dogs" swarming in :(
Just going to quote your Metalhead spoilers and post my own below!
Metalhead was sooooo good. It was a bit repetitive with the "run then be caught" cycle, but I was such a sucker for it and had me on the edge of my seat. The teddy bear twist was really good, as the episode was drawing to a close i was sat there thinking, "ok now give me the shocking end that leaves you sICK bc it was all ironically not worth it." and the moment she referred to the goal as finding a "replacement" for someone, my heart sank because I knew it was for a child… Very strong episode! And the black and white aspect!! Ah!! Such a bold style decision that paid off.
In a very tragic way, the "dogs" swarming in left me a little relieved, like her choice to die was the only way for sure…
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Re: Black Mirror

Post by 000dia000 » Thu Jan 04, 2018 11:09 pm

sonicgreen wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 10:28 pm
000dia000 wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 8:58 pm
My personal favorite episode was Metalhead. I know that people are pretty divisive on it, and some go as far as to call it the worst episode ever. I'm going, to be honest, and admit that the teddy bear reveals made my mother and I basically go FUCK OFF at the TV, but leaving that out, I thought that the rest of the episode was pretty solid. I think every other episode was too reliant on using "memory" and uploading consciousness, so I think as an episode, using an alternative exploration of technology for once this season was necessary. Second, I was fucking terrified for all of it. I'm a fan of Terminator movies and read "Robopacylpse" that also features the dog-things in the book, but actually seeing it realized was hard to watch. I think the ending with the woman having flashing pieces of metal stuck into her face actually made me sick the most and then seeing all the "dogs" swarming in :(
Just going to quote your Metalhead spoilers and post my own below!
Metalhead was sooooo good. It was a bit repetitive with the "run then be caught" cycle, but I was such a sucker for it and had me on the edge of my seat. The teddy bear twist was really good, as the episode was drawing to a close i was sat there thinking, "ok now give me the shocking end that leaves you sICK bc it was all ironically not worth it." and the moment she referred to the goal as finding a "replacement" for someone, my heart sank because I knew it was for a child… Very strong episode! And the black and white aspect!! Ah!! Such a bold style decision that paid off.
In a very tragic way, the "dogs" swarming in left me a little relieved, like her choice to die was the only way for sure…
I basically rambled on for a bit, if you're interested in reading.
I think that the decision to go for black and white actually paid off, considering that the "dog" cgi would probably look weirder and clunkier if it was in colour, but in black and white it would hide any of its irregularities that would make it seem ridiculous or crude. Making it look more like a distinct hunk of metal on the prowl was bloody terrifying. I think the black and white thing also really added tot he effect of the paint thrown onto its head. That blew me away when I watched it, it was visually stunning.

I think the ending was most bleak, in that I felt that if she had walked away from the machine at that point, I wonder if it is possible she could have survived? It was unable to see and was only able to follow the sound, that gave her the benefit of being able to distract it and using the time to run away. I think it was her killing it that caused it to automatically shoot bits of metal everywhere that essentially worked as a tracker and alerted the robot to her. I think she realized this at the end when she was looking in the mirror at her face and was considering digging the pieces out, but then deciding not to.
She understands and accepts her fate, and wondering now if it was possible she could have escaped made it worse.
If she didn't deal the final kill on the machine, maybe the ending wouldn't have felt so pointless.

While I do think that the teddy bear thing was poignant, it still kind of annoyed me how three people died for something so meaningless. Unless they were getting other supplies while there (like the car) then the ending is just annoying, personally.

I think the sort of "chase" aspect of this, makes sense when considering that this is the world that they live in, but also rather leaves me with so many questions about the circumstances of this world and why the robots are attacking them. I was reading comments on Reddit, and some people speculate that this could be a carry on from the S3 episode "Men Against Fire" where they are no longer using brainwashed soldiers to kill people, but instead use these robots. That, or it's just plain "robots turn against their creators" kind of story. They are deliberately leaving it ambiguous, I'm not sure whether I like that or not. I guess the main idea they wanted to focus on, was creating the "chase" concept in horror movies but using a machine as the creature instead.
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Re: Black Mirror

Post by Lain » Sat Jan 06, 2018 3:53 am

citizen_erased wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 2:33 pm
I used to really like Black Mirror, but then there was one episode in s3 that really, really messed me up (Playtest), and now I'm very hesitant to keep watching. I didn't watch all of s3 in the end, just Nosedive, Playtest and San Junipero. Skipped right past everything else.
San Junipero, Playtest, and Nosedive were actually my favourite episodes from season 3 (in that order)! Do you mind me asking what messed you up re: Playtest? That one stayed with me for a while.

So far I've only seen the first episode of s4, but I'll be watching more tonight after I catch up on the X-Files episode I missed (please keep me in your thoughts - I so badly want to love it).
citizen_erased wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 2:33 pm
Some spoilery things below.
IMO Nanette is the best star trek captain so far, I love her.

I'm also really curious what real!nanette is up to now, and if she's ever going to figure out what's happened. I do feel like they left that bit of the story open-ended even though the rest is rounded off very nicely.
Yes, same. I kept checking the playback bar to see how much of the episode was left thinking surely they'll cut back to nanette irl before they end it, surely! and was so disappointed when they left it where they did, but speculating afterwards was fun and I'm hoping to find some amazing fanfiction because that episode alone deserves its own fandom (please point me in right direction if any of you find some).
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Re: Black Mirror

Post by kavat » Sun Jan 07, 2018 12:34 pm

Metalhead discussion:
I really liked that it was in black and white. At first I thought it would be a twist where something of significance would be in color (like in Schindler's List or Frantz) but I liked that they didn't use that trope. As you said it hides the CGI a bit, it also makes the bloody scenes a bit more tolerable and I also think it's mirrors how the dogs see the world only in contrast. Bold but great choice!

The teddy bear reveal at the end had me shouting "oh come oooon" at the screen. I already knew she was doing all of this for a kid/family, but that made it negate the whole thing. It made me think she was stupid for going on that mission in the first place and sacrificing her friends in the process. Taking that risk for a teddy bear is just a bad choice, imo. I understand wanting to do anything for your child but considering how many dogs there seemed to be in the area that was just stupid.
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Re: Black Mirror

Post by citizen_erased » Sun Jan 07, 2018 8:49 pm

Lain wrote:
Sat Jan 06, 2018 3:53 am
citizen_erased wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 2:33 pm
I used to really like Black Mirror, but then there was one episode in s3 that really, really messed me up (Playtest), and now I'm very hesitant to keep watching. I didn't watch all of s3 in the end, just Nosedive, Playtest and San Junipero. Skipped right past everything else.
San Junipero, Playtest, and Nosedive were actually my favourite episodes from season 3 (in that order)! Do you mind me asking what messed you up re: Playtest? That one stayed with me for a while.

So far I've only seen the first episode of s4, but I'll be watching more tonight after I catch up on the X-Files episode I missed (please keep me in your thoughts - I so badly want to love it).
citizen_erased wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 2:33 pm
Some spoilery things below.
IMO Nanette is the best star trek captain so far, I love her.

I'm also really curious what real!nanette is up to now, and if she's ever going to figure out what's happened. I do feel like they left that bit of the story open-ended even though the rest is rounded off very nicely.
Yes, same. I kept checking the playback bar to see how much of the episode was left thinking surely they'll cut back to nanette irl before they end it, surely! and was so disappointed when they left it where they did, but speculating afterwards was fun and I'm hoping to find some amazing fanfiction because that episode alone deserves its own fandom (please point me in right direction if any of you find some).
re playtest:
the story was super interesting, but the layering of 'realities' and never knowing when you're actually back in reality and when you're still in the game? that terrified me to no end. It's definitely a personal thing, I've always been really scared of the idea of not knowing what's real and what's not (when I was a teen I read up on the actual matrix theories and ho boy, was that a ride for my mental health)
re uss callister:
I don't have any fanfiction whatsoever for you and I don't really tend to consciously seek out fanfiction nowadays, but should you ever find a crossover of uss callister with star trek tos please let me know, I'd LOVE to see nanette and spock interact. And if I see anything for you around on the web I'll let you know :thumb:

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Re: Black Mirror

Post by whatdoiknow » Sun Jan 07, 2018 11:46 pm

sonicgreen wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 5:32 pm
Ah Black Mirror. I don't have time to write a super detailed post but I've also rationed the episodes so I've seen all but the last one. I really loved the episode Crocodile??
No one is talking about it but it was such an interesting downward spiral, as predictable as it was. I love murder mysteries so it probably stems from that. The scenery was gorgeous but the cold/harsh aesthetic of the whole episode just furthered the theme. The song they kept playing during the "memory recalls" was "Anyone Who Knows What Love Is" I only associate it with Black Mirror? When was it used before in the show??
I also really liked Crocodile. I like murder mysteries too, and this was kind of one in reverse. Like, usually you find out about the crime first, and then the clues lead to who did it. Even if they have a good motive/reasoning, you still hate the murderer because you found out about the murder first and therefore automatically hate whoever did it. This time, we were on the ride with the murderer, and you could follow the decline along the way. As horrific as the murders were (especially the last few), you could see the humanity in the killer along the way. This obviously doesn't excuse what she did, but it's a different perspective than most murder mysteries would give.
USS Callister was really good. I was super skeptical as I'm not a huge Star Trek fan, but it was an admirably simple plot. Considering how mind-fucking some episodes can be, it was nice to have a good start-to-finish pure action plot. I also really liked Metalhead, big Walking Dead Game vibes. (the plot twist was semi-predictable but still made me cry)
I was also super skeptical about USS Callister! I've never watched Star Trek, Star Wars, any of those type of movies/tv shows, so I was expecting USS Callister to be my least fav of the season and didn't go into it with any expectations. I ended up loving the direction they took the episode and it was one of my favs of the season.

The rest of the episodes: I wasn't really a fan of Metalhead, which seems to be a pretty common thought. It was decent, but one of the weakest of the whole series I thought. I think Arkangel might have been the second weakest of the season, but I still enjoyed it. Really liked Hang the DJ and Black Museum.
My all time fave is still Hated in the Nation- again, I like murder/mysteries.
That is one of my all-time faves as well! The first season I watched was the 3rd season, and I think 3 episodes from the season still hold as my 3 fav of the series: Men Against Fire, Shut Up and Dance, and Hated in the Nation.
citizen-erased: Since you mentioned you only watched Nosedive, Playtest and San Junipero from season 3, I'd strongly suggest you watch the other 3 episodes. I really think they are some of the best in Black Mirror history (but that's obviously just personal opinion); they are quite harrowing in contrast to Nosedive or San Junipero so if you really don't like that type of thing then maybe stay away, but they are incredible episodes.

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Re: Black Mirror

Post by sonicgreen » Mon Jan 08, 2018 1:37 am

I've loved reading this thread, everyone's reviews/opinions are so interesting to read. I finally had time to watch "Black Museum" and… maybe I just don't get it? It frustrated me, but can't pinpoint why.
I liked the idea of a museum where in some reality or another, all these episodes coexisted, and someone built a tourist trap of memorabilia. The plot had a compilation of stories with the narrator/museum curator, and it felt a bit like the set up of a Twilight Zone/Alfred Hitchcock show. But it started to feel like all the leftover story ideas jumbled about and loosely threaded together. I think I understood that the ending and all was designed to make you hate the narrator (which I did) but the revealing of Nish's true identity/mission didn't really work for me.
Also that gore from the story about the pain-resistant doctor- I'm not squeamish but I had to look away. :shock: The ending wasn't as powerful as I think it was intended to be…? Thoughts?
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Re: Black Mirror

Post by alittledizzy » Mon Jan 08, 2018 3:52 am

I've avoided this thread because I still haven't watched Metalhead (I tried; have attempted and turned it off twice) or Black Museum (which I am going to watch, I've just been delaying it out of some strange fear that I'll be disappointed by it, because I want to be able to say I loved at least half the episodes and so far I cannot say that.

Callister makes up for it all though. Oh my god I loved that episode SO MUCH.

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