Black Mirror

Discuss TV shows old and new.
Message
Author
User avatar
Persona
Joined: Wed Mar 07, 2018 1:16 pm

Re: Black Mirror

#76 Post by Persona » Mon Dec 31, 2018 2:12 pm

Some clarifications on my previous post. The "permutations" thing can be misleading as I think it has been broken down that there are 250 different footage sequences--though I don't know if this accounts for the path-sensitive "back to Bandersnatch" montages, which might be algorithmic. If there are really millions of permutations, it would only relate to play-throughs where you constantly re-loop through the different decisions.

That said, I was still impressed by what they were able to pull off with this thing given that it is, in some ways, a bit of a prototype. While it does get very repetitive (inevitably, given how it is constructed) and its limitations quickly become apparent, I was still impressed by the relative smoothness and pace of the experience and there were legitimately several moments where I was kind of blown away by the subtle differences between certain paths and then the way the experience recognizes its own variations. And while it's a pretty short path, I have to continue to reiterate that I did like the core narrative that ends up at "O Superman"--kind of wish that had been one of the longest paths as opposed to one of the shortest.

The Pearl ending follows through more on the different story threads and the meta nature of the whole thing, so I thought that was the second most satisfying ending out of a bunch of endings that are sort of intentionally unsatisfying and meant to loop you back through this sort of Sisyphean maze that Brooker set up to taunt you--but, partly as a a result of its own extremely meta nature, the Pearl ending lacks in any sort of emotional resonance. Through just a few key aesthetic choices that "O Superman" ending manages to make something moving and bittersweet out of a pretty brief and minimal plot and an ending that could have been really bleak. It feels like the one time that Brooker allows some sort of "out," and there is a kind of beautiful peace about it. Again, if "O Superman" had been set up at the end of one of the longer story paths (if you can look at it that way--it could take you a long time to get to "O Superman" depending on what choices you make), it might have done a lot for my final estimation of this as a narrative experience.

EDIT:

This article breaks down the whole "O Superman" narrative and really gets the beauty of it, especially in the context of the other narratives within Bandersnatch:

https://io9.gizmodo.com/the-hidden-beau ... 1831369911

User avatar
colinr0380
Joined: Mon Nov 08, 2004 4:30 pm
Location: Chapel-en-le-Frith, Derbyshire, UK

Re: Black Mirror

#77 Post by colinr0380 » Thu Jan 10, 2019 4:34 am

Bandersnatch does sound interesting, though I will probably never see it since I do not have Netflix. It does sound as if it is a bit of a response to recent video game branching narratives probably exemplified at the moment by Until Dawn.


User avatar
Boosmahn
Joined: Mon Sep 04, 2017 10:08 pm

Re: Black Mirror

#79 Post by Boosmahn » Fri Jan 11, 2019 10:03 pm

You have got to be kidding me.

User avatar
domino harvey
Dot Com Dom
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 2:42 pm

Re: Black Mirror

#80 Post by domino harvey » Fri Jan 11, 2019 10:06 pm

I thought this didn't sound good for Netflix, though:
Netflix had pursued a license to use the name in films and interactive cartoons in 2016, it continues, but “extensive negotiations” between the publisher and the streaming service were ultimately unsuccessful.

User avatar
Boosmahn
Joined: Mon Sep 04, 2017 10:08 pm

Re: Black Mirror

#81 Post by Boosmahn » Sun Jan 13, 2019 4:32 pm

True, it doesn't... I just don't want the rest of season five to be delayed.

(And while I'm posting, I might as throw my vote into the mix that the "O Superman" ending is the best by far. It's beautiful.)

User avatar
tenia
Ask Me About My Bassoon
Joined: Wed Apr 29, 2009 11:13 am

Re: Black Mirror

#82 Post by tenia » Sun Jan 13, 2019 6:59 pm

I'm actually quite surprised by this issue. While they used the (most likely) copyrighted trademark "Choose Your Own Adventures" by refering to it in the episode, you can't really copyright a storytelling style, so this is mere name-dropping. I read the lawsuit and it's, as expected, technically quite light since, again, Chooseco doesn't have any patent or copyright on an interactive storytelling style, and the majority of it revolves around this name-dropping used in an interactive episode.

However, IBM managed to get a patent granted for "Selecting divergent storylines using branching techniques" back in 2003, though it's not the same kind of selection system (so Bandersnatch wouldn't be infringing that).

User avatar
Persona
Joined: Wed Mar 07, 2018 1:16 pm

Re: Black Mirror

#83 Post by Persona » Wed Jun 05, 2019 10:44 pm

Reviews of Season 5 are pretty rough.

https://www.indiewire.com/2019/06/miley ... 202147521/

The trailers have been pretty underwhelming so I can't say I'm surprised.

User avatar
tenia
Ask Me About My Bassoon
Joined: Wed Apr 29, 2009 11:13 am

Re: Black Mirror

#84 Post by tenia » Thu Jun 06, 2019 2:01 am

This seems extremely focused on the Cyrus episode.

User avatar
Finch
Joined: Mon Jul 07, 2008 5:09 pm
Location: Edinburgh, UK

Re: Black Mirror

#85 Post by Finch » Thu Jun 06, 2019 2:05 am

Slant liked the new season FWIW. The indiewire article makes it sound like season five is a failure because their own critic didn't like one episode.

User avatar
Persona
Joined: Wed Mar 07, 2018 1:16 pm

Re: Black Mirror

#86 Post by Persona » Thu Jun 06, 2019 8:34 am

Finch wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 2:05 am
Slant liked the new season FWIW. The indiewire article makes it sound like season five is a failure because their own critic didn't like one episode.
That's true, the title of the article is a little misleading. Though maybe not given that one episode comprises a whole third of the season.

Vulture called Season 5 "exquisitely dumb."

I look forward to a chance to watch it!

User avatar
Lost Highway
Joined: Thu Aug 29, 2013 7:41 am
Location: Berlin, Germany

Re: Black Mirror

#87 Post by Lost Highway » Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:23 am

It can’t be worse than the new Twilight Zone. Can’t believe I hung in there for eight episodes.

User avatar
Finch
Joined: Mon Jul 07, 2008 5:09 pm
Location: Edinburgh, UK

Re: Black Mirror

#88 Post by Finch » Thu Jun 06, 2019 12:58 pm

Yeah, the new TZ got compared pretty unfavourably to Black Mirror in a lot of reviews.

That Vulture line, ouch.

Are these feature-length episodes? I'm somewhat surprised they call three episodes a season. Is it shorter because of Bendersnatch?

Glowingwabbit
Joined: Wed May 01, 2013 1:27 pm

Re: Black Mirror

#89 Post by Glowingwabbit » Thu Jun 06, 2019 2:38 pm

Finch wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 12:58 pm
Are these feature-length episodes? I'm somewhat surprised they call three episodes a season. Is it shorter because of Bendersnatch?
I think they are just an hour each. The first two series of Black Mirror only consisted of 3 eps each (it's also not that unusual for a British show)

[Edit: Bandersnatch was probably the reason for less eps]

User avatar
Finch
Joined: Mon Jul 07, 2008 5:09 pm
Location: Edinburgh, UK

Re: Black Mirror

#90 Post by Finch » Thu Jun 06, 2019 6:23 pm

Thanks for confirming, glowingwabbit, but my impression was that it became an American show, more or less, after Netflix picked it up (was Season Three?), and they had more episodes afterwards? Mind, I only watched a handful of episodes so I'm not as well-versed in Black Mirror as others.

Glowingwabbit
Joined: Wed May 01, 2013 1:27 pm

Re: Black Mirror

#91 Post by Glowingwabbit » Thu Jun 06, 2019 8:04 pm

Finch wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 6:23 pm
Thanks for confirming, glowingwabbit, but my impression was that it became an American show, more or less, after Netflix picked it up (was Season Three?), and they had more episodes afterwards? Mind, I only watched a handful of episodes so I'm not as well-versed in Black Mirror as others.
Netflix purchased distribution rights, but I''m pretty sure it's still a British company that actually produces it so it still follows the way British "seasons" are formatted. I'm just speculating but I assume Bandersnatch took up a lot of resources (i.e. time/money), so they decided to revert back to the 3 episode series format for Series 5. I'm sure they will go back to 6 episodes for future series.

Also apologies, Netflix does refer to them as seasons instead of series, but I think that is just their default as I've seen one-off mini-series show as Season 1.

Post Reply