Christmas Break Binge

black-mirror-season-3-poster.pngHello everyone, this is your sometimes guest host Tony here with the first of hopefully many guest blogs. I wanted to take this opportunity to recommend a show you should be watching but probably are not…yet. What better time than now, when most other shows are off for the winter break and you probably have some free time off of work or school.

Black Mirror is a show that I have been watching for a few years now. It has 3 seasons available on Netflix totaling 13 episodes. I caught wind of it about 2 years ago before their Christmas special release which was set to feature Jon Hamm(Mad Men). It was created for Channel 4 in England originally and didn’t feature many actors known stateside until this episode. However it continued to get great reviews and struck a deal with Netflix for a 3rd and 4th season. The 3rd season just became available on Netflix about 2 months ago and has been the best yet in my opinion. This season featured actors more well known to American audiences such as Alice Eve, Kelly Macdonald(Brave, Boardwalk Empire) and Bryce Dallas Howard(The Help, Jurassic World) in a SAG Award nominated role.

The reason I love this show and find it bingeworthy is because each episode is truly standalone. Each episode has different actors/characters, and different settings. Many of the episodes even fall under different genres such as war, relationships, politics, even video games and reality TV. The common theme between them all is technology and social commentary. I read a couple great quotes about the show from creator Charlie Brooker, he said the show is inspired by “How we live now, and where we might be in 10 minutes if we are clumsy.” Meaning technology runs so much in our life and we may let it get too controlling if we aren’t careful, which I wholeheartedly agree with. He said “If technology is a drug, which it feels like, what are the side effects? The area between delight and discomfort is the black mirror.” He goes on to define his meaning of Black Mirror as “What we find in the palm of every hand, on every wall, on every desk. The cold shiny screens of smartphones, TVs, and computer monitors.” Deep stuff, but I get what he’s saying…even without being high.

I really can’t say enough about how special I think this show is. It is like a modern day Twilight Zone. Somewhat terrifying, brilliant, sometimes painful to watch yet thought provoking. They all feel like they could be fleshed out to a full length film. They already have great concepts that make you think, as well as great performances and clever writing. If you have time please give this show a shot, you won’t regret it. I suppose you should start with season 1, my favorite episode is The Entire History of You which Robert Downey Jr. plans to produce as a full length feature. If you don’t love it right away, please stick with it. Season 2’s standout episode is Be Right Back with Haley Atwell(Agent Carter) and Domhnall Gleason(Star Wars:The Force Awakens) or White Christmas with Jon Hamm. Season 3 is the pinnacle and has 4 episodes that are exceptional. Nosedive(co written by Rashida Jones and Michael Schur of The Office and Parks and Rec), Playtest, San Junipero and Hated in the Nation. Every episode made me consider my own use of technology and social media. Also to think about the future and where society is headed. Happy binging, Happy Holidays, and please comment or email to let me know what you think. I hope to be back on the show soon, otherwise look for more guest blogs from me soon. Thanks for reading!

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