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Author Topic: Black Mirror Season 4  (Read 3952 times)

Tiplodocus

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Re: Black Mirror Season 4
« Reply #15 on: 03 January, 2018, 06:17:22 pm »
ARKANGEL also falls flat for me despite being pretty well executed Again, it just seemed the only place the tale had to go. Maybe I shouldn't be expecting clever twists in these.

And Again, too long. They could have cut the first 15 minutes quite easily.
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Pete Wells

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Re: Black Mirror Season 4
« Reply #16 on: 04 January, 2018, 07:54:42 pm »
I’ve just binge watched these over the last two days. I enjoyed them all! My favourite, by some margin, was Crocodile. It reminded me of ‘Shut up and dance with me’ with the unfortunate lead character being forced to make progressively bad choices. Very grim indeed.

I really enjoyed USS Callister too. I can’t help thinking that most of us would do exactly the same as Robert if we could! (I remember Mrs Pete watching the first episode of Westworld with me and asking, in all seriousness, why anyone would want to go there? Is she kidding me!?!)

Arkangel was a great premise but went on a little long I thought, as was Hang the DJ (though the payoff in that one was wonderful.)

I very much enjoyed Metalhead as a bit of a romp, albeit a very stylish and tense one. I thought Maxine Peake carried the episode brilliantly.

The Black Museum was a great ending, totally giving an anthology horror vibe, much like our very own ‘Tales from the Black Museum.’

Telly’s great at the moment isn’t it?

Andy B

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Re: Black Mirror Season 4
« Reply #17 on: 05 January, 2018, 05:11:56 am »
Not sure about ‘USS Callister’...

What I’ve really liked about Black Mirror so far is the feeling that - maybe at a stretch - this could actually happen. That’s almost its defining characteristic, making an episode like ‘Nosedive’ genuinely unsettling. But creating a digital copy of somebody which has that person’s memories and personality, from their DNA, is straight-up bad-science fiction. You could get away with it in Dr Who (in fact, they have: but still a bit silly) but in Black Mirror it just didn’t feel right. Like a robot Buffy.

Enjoyable enough, but I preferred the one where they duplicated Riker in a transporter accident...

Eamonn Clarke

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Re: Black Mirror Season 4
« Reply #18 on: 06 January, 2018, 03:03:22 pm »
The DNA replicator was an odd mistake in a show that has done lots of consciousness transfers or copies just with the old electrode earbud thingy on the temple. But it did drive the plot point of having to get the samples back.

Overall series 4 has been splendid, packed full of interesting ideas, fabulous filming, and great performances. I really enjoyed the black and white survival horror of Metalhead; and the grisly, EC comics anthology style of the Black Museum.

For listeners of my other podcast we’ll be covering the first two Channel 4 series on British Invaders next month.

Steve Green

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Re: Black Mirror Season 4
« Reply #19 on: 06 January, 2018, 03:18:04 pm »
I wouldn't exactly call it a mistake as such, just a necessary plot device.

Possibly a more believable thing would have been the personalities being extracted from the staff members who release what they think is personality data for NPCs in the game, but are unaware how much is taken.

It still leaves the problem of a physical thing to be obtained by the person in the real world - sure it could just be data on his server, but unlikely that a tech nerd like that wouldn't have a backup of the personalities.

GrudgeJohnDeed

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Re: Black Mirror Season 4
« Reply #20 on: 08 January, 2018, 12:44:40 pm »
I definitely think the DNA --> memories thing wasn't Charlie's finest hour, Black Mirror is usually really good at keeping it believable, that's why they're so unsettling. To me at least. Maybe if they'd introduced and explained the concept upfront? 'Remember Assassin's Creed? Well Ubisoft - RIP - were fucking right!'.

manwithnoname

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Re: Black Mirror Season 4
« Reply #21 on: 12 January, 2018, 11:28:29 am »
I've watched most of the series now, apart from Arkangel, because it looked boring.

They're quite variable in quality, but I'm not sure how they compare to the previous lower-budget series before the Netflix cash and "Hollywood Talent" rolled in, because I haven't watched much of Series 1-3.

I think one of the reasons I have given previous seasons a swerve is that it does seem to be the sort of thing that not-very-clever people on Twitter seem to think is the epitome of very clever science-fiction television.

With a very salient and serious message about society THAT REALLY MAKES YOU THINK DOESNT IT?

And therein lies the biggest issue. It seems to appeal to people who aren't naturally inclined to thinking, and so therefore require being *forced* to think.

And what makes that more palatable is the (genuinely clever) way Brooker does that.

Every single episode takes something obviously recognisable from childhood, so in his case 70s and 80s culture, casting actors you recognise from somewhere, and then a slightly futuristic tech device that shows how society is not always being improved or helped by technological advances, AND IT REALLY MAKES YOU THINK DOESNT IT?

So there'll be, I dunno, what looks like a children's drama like Grange Hill, and we are watching a pastiche of that, but at the end of every episode of Not Really Grange Hill, the viewers are allowed to interact with the stroryline and make the characters do something awful, but actually these digital actors have feelings and stuff!

Should we be allowed to manipulate these not-quite-human avatars? Wow, deep. And then the Not Really Grange Hill digital avatars turn the tables on the viewers using reverse polarity or some bollocks, and we learn to feel their pain, or despair or whatever, and a gleaming, yet dreadful, BLACK MIRROR is held up to show us how awful we are, and how vacuous, cruel and mean society is, especially politicians and white men.


IT REALLY MAKES YOU THINK DOESNT IT?

Mattofthespurs

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Re: Black Mirror Season 4
« Reply #22 on: 12 January, 2018, 04:15:16 pm »
It's just TV.
I watch it, enjoy it, forget it pretty much.

Rarely makes me think.

Does that make me shallow? I'm not sure. But I certainly don't learn my life lessons from the television.

JayzusB.Christ

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Re: Black Mirror Season 4
« Reply #23 on: 15 January, 2018, 11:34:58 am »

Does that make me shallow? I'm not sure. But I certainly don't learn my life lessons from the television.

I've learned a few from TV, to be honest - that Shut Up and Dance episode definitely made me think long and hard about the nature of privacy in the internet age, and the recent one about the mother implanting nanny software in her daughter's head raised to some serious and difficult questions too. 

Loved this season of Black Mirror (if not quite as much as the last two) - the twist at the end of the dating one was utterly beautiful, and the robodog one was truly terrifying.  Yeah, the DNA thing was a bit silly in a series that is usually disturbingly true-to-life, but it was still a great episode.  Wasn't crazy about the last one; the eccentric guide in a museum of stories seems a bit too old-fashioned and derivative for such a tech-savvy and zetgeisty show (though I do enjoy the Megazine's Black Museum).

In any case, I can't wait for the next series - it's like having the very best Future Shocks stretched out and put on the telly.
“Men will never be free until the last king is strangled with the entrails of the last priest”

JOE SOAP

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Re: Black Mirror Season 4
« Reply #24 on: 21 January, 2018, 02:29:06 am »
But creating a digital copy of somebody which has that person’s memories and personality, from their DNA, is straight-up bad-science fiction. You could get away with it in Dr Who (in fact, they have: but still a bit silly) but in Black Mirror it just didn’t feel right.

That’s the thing about Black Mirror, it’s really more of a horror show than science fiction. It’s central premise of people and technology can result in bad things - emphasis on bad - is the one note it constantly hits but it’s very well made so the leaps it takes don’t really matter that much as long as it moves the story and the characters along to the next thrill, tense moment or revelation.
« Last Edit: 21 January, 2018, 02:34:12 am by JOE SOAP »

Tiplodocus

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Re: Black Mirror Season 4
« Reply #25 on: 21 January, 2018, 11:00:15 am »
Just caught up with CROCODILE. Really didn't like it. It looks like Charlie watched Fargo the night before writing it. The technology aspect only exists to make the final twist work - again the story could work without it.

Only takeaway I thought was good was questioning whether the opening instigating incident actually played out as represented on screen. Her subsequent actions and the investigator talking repeatedly about subjective nature of memory would suggest not.
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Tiplodocus

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Re: Black Mirror Season 4
« Reply #26 on: 21 January, 2018, 11:24:17 am »
Oh yeah... every protagonist was female. I think. Makes a nice change.
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Dudley

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Re: Black Mirror Season 4
« Reply #27 on: 21 January, 2018, 12:15:59 pm »
Best: Hang the DJ. Very well handled twist that I didn't see coming.
Favourite: USS Callister. Just good fun throughout.
Least favourite: Arkangel. Good premise, unbelievable characters.

Tiplodocus

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Re: Black Mirror Season 4
« Reply #28 on: 21 January, 2018, 12:32:25 pm »
Is it easier to write a twist that leads to an unhappy ending than it is to write one for a happy ending? I certainly think so.
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manwithnoname

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Re: Black Mirror Season 4
« Reply #29 on: 21 January, 2018, 12:57:50 pm »
Oh yeah... every protagonist was female. I think. Makes a nice change.

Did that make you enjoy it more?