“Black Mirror”: The Modern Twilight Zone Continues to Surprise Students

“Black Mirror” is one of Netflix’s most watched shows and has become increasingly popular amongst teens.

Considered a modern “Twilight Zone,” each episode consists of independent plotlines and characters. However, its message is much more serious.

Each episode is set in a technology dominated future that showcases the negative effects its rapid advancement can have.

The title originates from what a dark computer, cell phone or television screen looks like, a black mirror.

Senior Mariell Cerdeña is a big fan of the show.

She said, “‘Black Mirror’ is about the future and how the world uses and reacts to technology, and I find that interesting because it makes me think that could be us in a couple of years. There are some episodes of people using the technology wrong and the technology going bad which makes the episodes really dark, and I’m into dark stories.”

Senior Denali Bunker was drawn in by not only the unique plots, but the show’s commentary on current social issues.

She said, “I love ‘Black Mirror’ because aside from the intense crazy story that seems so outlandish and futuristic, it comments on issues like racism, technology advancement and it’s so inclusive.

There are so many different types of people represented in the show, and I think that’s incredibly important right now. It’s such a popular show, and I think it’s great that they’re not taking that platform for granted and making it mean more than entertainment.”

What creates such a sense of unease after each show is how plausible these futures are. Viewers can easily see these dystopian scenarios coming to life and in some ways they already have.

With virtual reality and augmented reality making drastic strides, it won’t be long before episodes such as “Nosedive” come to life.

The advancement in artificial intelligence might make “Be Right Back” the norm for when loved ones pass away.

Senior Dolan Drury said, “I like the ideas and concepts. I think they’re cool just really sad and morbid.”

From a society where your status is dependent on your social media ranking to a world where you can instantly replay any of your memories, none of these realities are far fetched or far away.

Bunker said, “I think the technological advancements are such a focal point of the show. They’re there for a reason to let us know that this kind of stuff isn’t far off. I think it might scare people, and that’s the intent.”

Senior Chris Kim finds the show very engaging.

He said, “I like ‘Black Mirror’ because it is interesting to see how various people’s motives determine the course of action in a hypothetical perception of the future portrayed by the creators.”

For teens growing up in the age of technology, it heightens the effect and intensity of the show.

Bunker said, “Some of them make me feel icky like I just watched something I shouldn’t be watching. Sometimes I feel anxious after an episode, but again I think that’s the purpose. But sometimes, after an episode like San Junipero, I’m left speechless because of how beautiful I thought it was. Not only are the stories crazy, the episodes are visually and cinematically stunning.”

Netflix adopting “Black Mirror” has increased its viewership since it was originally launched by the U.K. Channel 4 Broadcast.

Just within the last few months the show has ballooned on social media and acquired fans in America in addition to those in Europe.

Bunker said, “Not only is it a well acted, visually pleasing, crazy story kind of show, but it’s so popular that if you want to be able to talk about it with people you’ve got to watch it.”