Opinion on “Bandersnatch”, the episode of “Black Mirror” of which you are the hero

The series of anticipation worries Charlie Brooker in Black Mirror: Bandersnatch of Charlie Brooker offers its audience a special episode whose interactivity is as much the form as the background. A curiosity as malignant as it is cynical, but whose concept is difficult to imagine.

It’s not completely a video game of life, but not just a series episode either. The nature of “Bandersnatch“movie, the long-awaited episode of Netflix’s “Black Mirror” series. It is a little bit between the two: an immersive and interactive experience that you, the viewer, are also the hero. A small revolution in the audiovisual world.

Genre: Science Fiction & Fantasy
Network: Netflix
Director: David Slade
Writer: Charlie Brooker
Stars: Fionn Whitehead, Craig Parkinson, Alice Lowe
Premiere Date: Dec 26, 2018

The most impatient were already on their screens at dawn. This morning of December 28, to be the first to watch this new episode of the Netflix series to success. It must be said that the producers of “Black Mirror” had put the package side teasing. Notably with a trailer that is both enticing and enigmatic.

On paper, a fairly simple scenario: we are in the 1980s, a young programmer wants to code a video game. That will revolutionize this emerging industry through interactive narration. The player will have to determine the trajectory that the story takes in the course of his decisions. Yes, but that’s not all …

Abolishing interactivity

In recent weeks, rumors were going well on this episode. “Black Mirror” would book a surprise to his fans. And on the catalog of Netflix, the indicated duration of the episode exceeded the 5h! What arouse suspicion around an interactive episode that was known in the ambitions of producers.

Bingo! A few seconds after the start of the episode, the doubt is lifte. While the young Stefan Butler (the hero) is at the breakfast table with his father. Netflix displays a strip at the bottom of the screen to demand a choice of the viewer. By way of introduction, this first alternative is not really crucial for the future …

But little by little, the decisions to be taken multiply and influence more and more the continuation of the scenario, until determining the final outcome. Worse, if your choices take you each time on different paths, some scenarios make you land in a dead end. As in a video game, you are then thrown back into the middle of the narrative timeline to make better choices.

A maze of possibilities

The episode then passes from an exhilarating experience of omnipotence on the narrative evolution to a wandering in a labyrinth of parallel realities. The references to the tale of Alice in Wonderland are barely hidden here. “Bandersnatch” is originally a monster directly from the imagination of Lewis Caroll.

A rabbit cuddly toy will have a decisive importance in the resolution of the plot. And the mirrors make it possible to pass from one reality to another, in reference to the continuation of “Alice in Wonderland“, “On the other side of the mirror “.

This new feature has arrived this Friday on Netflix and promises to make us live an experience never experienced before: it is an interactive movie with more than 5 hours of content!

In total, each “story of which you are the hero” will last about 1 hour and a half.

Since this is a feature film on the sidelines of the Black Mirror series, we know right away that this is a story mixing anxiety and technology.

We are immerse in the world of a programmer who decides to adapt a fantasy novel in video games. Reality and fiction will be intertwine.

Good thing to know before watching Black Mirror: Bandersnatch: be alert throughout the film because the decisions of the viewer must be taken in 10 seconds, otherwise the story will continue randomly.

Be careful not to get lost in the white rabbit burrow

Bandersnatch” could well take you several hours if this is the case. At Culturebox, we ended up taking notes to see more clearly in this narrative puzzle. Still, this great first in the world of the series for adults is a frank success. The experience is both immersive and haunting.

It radically transforms the relationship between the viewer and the content he views, as a logical extension of the “Black Mirror” vein, a series that constantly questions the relationship between human beings and new technologies.

Black Mirror is a series of theories – fiction born by Charlie Brooker, one of the emotional relationships and strength. After our two parts, ours

And the keyword from three, Netflix’s Official Black Mirror. However, nothing different, nothing different, that’s the difference, the most important.

In short, Netflix offers us a nice Christmas present (and we forgive them this slight delay) which will still be content for the moment. Contrary to what the most optimistic fans envision, “Bandersnatch” is a unique and independent work and not the first episode of the highly anticipat season 5 of “Black Mirror“.

Rachel Cooke
The whole thing was tedious: confusing, repetitive, dilatory… It’s the TV equivalent of being stuck in heavy traffic.

Tim Brinkhof
Writer Charlie Brooker’s take on the medium stands out from the bunch. Not only is it unlike anything you’ve ever seen in this medium, it also makes you think in ways that only a show as dark and existential as Black Mirror can.

David Sims
It’s fiendish stuff, but an undeniably clever new entry in the boundlessly reflective Black Mirror canon: the episode that never ends.

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