The Trailblazer

Black Mirror Season Four Review

Alexandra Truszkowska

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Season four of the hit Netflix breakout Drama/Sci-Fi thriller show Black Mirror was officially released December 29th and with only six episodes, the latest episodes show the darkest dystopian futures that are hard to stomach. Yet, fans and critics alike are leaving raving reviews.

 

Inspired by The Twilight Zone, each individual episode of Black Mirror deals with a different technological controversy ranging from a controlling parental devices to track their children to a futuristic Tinder-style of dating. Season four includes episodes USS Callister, Arkangel, Crocodile, Hang The DJ, Metalhead, and Black Museum.

 

It seems like Black Mirror is a criticism of technology as each episode revolves around it, but what seasoned watchers see is that it’s a criticism of humanity’s relationship with and the abuse of technology. Each episode is dramatic because it comes from human hubris and error.

 

Arguably the best episode this season was Arkangel, directed by Jodi Foster featuring actors Brenna Harding and Owen Teague, in which a tracking device with parental controls and abilities to see what their children see, track their location, and monitor stress – all which promotes aggressive helicopter parenting.

 

During a traumatic flashback, daughter Sara gets lost at the park and mother Marie decides to have the “Arkangel” chip implanted. Now, as a teenager, Sara and her friends, especially the mysterious and troublesome Trick, are becoming sexually active and doing drugs. Marie, who turned the system off years ago, turned it back on and has a rude awakening when she violates her daughter’s privacy.

 

Junior Erica Noe says, “I told my mom about it and she wanted to get it. It made me super uncomfortable because my parents can’t trust me, but I do see the good point in it.”

 

Another fan favorite was Hang the DJ, in which a “guide” also known as a modern day Tinder but with more control, matches two people and sets a time limit for their relationship which ranges from 12 hours to multiple years. Eventually, the guide picks a final person, who you have to spend the rest of life with.

 

The two main characters meet briefly and even though they’re only together for a short amount of time, their attraction is obvious and they try to beat the system to be together.

 

Junior Julia Feder says, “I liked it because it made you rethink how dating is today, and how you can choose people on meaningless things. The episode portrayed a more scary version of what it actually it.”

 

Even though the show is trying to create a more aware society, this season might be pushing it too far. Feder says, “These episodes are trying to mess with your mind more than other seasons and it’s not as good – it’s more of a drama than its been in the past.”

 

If there’s ever 45 minutes to spare, grab some popcorn and put away the phone to watch an episode. Be prepared for a mental breakdown and cut out some time to reevaluate yourself, after all, the name Black Mirror came from reflection of an unlit computer screen after it’s shutdown while you’re in front of it, just like after an episode ends.

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