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Black Mirror - Spoilers after the first post

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I think I was sent back like ten times? To be honest, that got annoying really quickly?

But this might have been because I never chose to go the credits but try again :P

I still didn't go to the ending where you got five stars. 

For me, it was a bit too meta which didn't make it anymore very entertaining. 

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I love Brooker, but this was utter cack. A really boring show about a really boring bloke being told to do really boring things by people watching Netflix. Fuck off.

 

Edited by Spockydog

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Yeah the gimmick is much better than the story unfortunately. I realised quite quickly that I didn’t care which option I chose because I didn’t find the story interesting at all. Being sent back was a cool twist, but only the first time.

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20 hours ago, Spockydog said:

I love Brooker, but this was utter cack. A really boring show about a really boring bloke being told to do really boring things by people watching Netflix. Fuck off.

 

 

20 hours ago, Heartofice said:

Yeah the gimmick is much better than the story unfortunately. I realised quite quickly that I didn’t care which option I chose because I didn’t find the story interesting at all. Being sent back was a cool twist, but only the first time.

These were my feelings as well. The novelty wore off pretty quickly and both the characters and plot were as dull as dirt resulting in me losing interest very quickly. 

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I think it's more about the feelings that it engenders in the viewer than the actual story - which I agree wasn't particularly special. In a lot of ways the story is not about the videogame at all - the story is 'someone is controlling a character and that character becomes more and more aware of it' - and that someone is, well, you (kinda). 

What was interesting to me was the choices that I made or didn't make and how frustrating it was for me to make certain choices. When I got to the point where either Stefan or Colin were going to jump, I didn't make a choice at all. I refused to. (It picked Stefan, in case you were curious). It kind of pissed me off when I had two choices to make and both sucked. I really wanted to make sure Stefan understood he wasn't going crazy and that Netflix was controlling him. I hated the path that made him go into his delusions. 

I don't know that you can make a particularly compelling CYA that also has a particularly good story, unless you have insane resources to actually make very very different endings and plots. (Cartoons might work for this in a way that live-action does not). But I think it's more interesting how they chose to make the viewer complicit in Stefan's pain, and how the people who apparently made Stefan suffer the most and caused the most damage to the world got the 5 star rating. 

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4 hours ago, Kalbear said:

I think it's more about the feelings that it engenders in the viewer than the actual story - which I agree wasn't particularly special. In a lot of ways the story is not about the videogame at all - the story is 'someone is controlling a character and that character becomes more and more aware of it' - and that someone is, well, you (kinda). 

What was interesting to me was the choices that I made or didn't make and how frustrating it was for me to make certain choices. When I got to the point where either Stefan or Colin were going to jump, I didn't make a choice at all. I refused to. (It picked Stefan, in case you were curious). It kind of pissed me off when I had two choices to make and both sucked. I really wanted to make sure Stefan understood he wasn't going crazy and that Netflix was controlling him. I hated the path that made him go into his delusions. 

I don't know that you can make a particularly compelling CYA that also has a particularly good story, unless you have insane resources to actually make very very different endings and plots. (Cartoons might work for this in a way that live-action does not). But I think it's more interesting how they chose to make the viewer complicit in Stefan's pain, and how the people who apparently made Stefan suffer the most and caused the most damage to the world got the 5 star rating. 

I think you had a similar experience to my own and make the point well that it's how the show made you feel about making the choices. Stefan or colin was a bit of a "trolley paradox" for me and I also opted for "not actively choosing" and tended to do so when faced with two "evil" choices. I also felt bad when I picked "bite nails" thinking it would be less painful than "pull ear lobes" and then squirmed when I thought he bite tear his nails off.

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On 12/30/2018 at 7:01 AM, Tijgy said:

I think I was sent back like ten times? To be honest, that got annoying really quickly?

But this might have been because I never chose to go the credits but try again :P

I think the film's real free will test is to see how long you follow all of the replay options to find out what happens on an alternate decision path vs just..stopping and moving on with your life :lol:
 

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I think part of the idea was that this wasn't only a choose-your-own adventure but was using that as a commentary on the form, and in tirn using that form as a commentary on life. So, sometimes your choices are trivial. Sometimes they're between two equally unpleasant alternatives. Sometimes you're forced into paths you'd prefer not to take. Sometimes they have a huge cost. But you still have to choose, or life chooses for you.

The problem is, I think, that Bandersnatch is too many things all at once. It's a period piece. It's a CYA adventure. It's a story about creativity and obsession and insanity. It's a conspiracy story. It's a commentary about stories and choices and consequences. It's a musing about the nature of reality. It's sort-of a time travel story. It's a meta-story featuring the viewer and breaking the fourth wall. It's a lot of different things all at once.

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Yeah I think the idea and the gimmick are really interesting, and the meta story about the main character being controlled could have been cool,  but you just get the impression that the story was created to serve the idea of the CYO concept, rather than the other way round.

And everything else felt pretty grey to me. The setting , the characters and the look and feel, all left me feeling a bit unpleasant 

What also bothered me was Will Coulter’s turn as a programmer. It was 90% accurate as a tech nerd, but it was just off enough to be an obvious impersonation and felt inauthentic. It was a mix of Big Bang Theory and ‘IT guy’ from the British Office. It felt like an affectation and was off putting for me

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It’s hard to say what you thought of it without saying exactly which episode you watched. I just read about an ending that sounds really good...

Spoiler

...I think you have to choose the book instead of the photo frame, which gives you the option of attempting to get the rabbit back, then you have to enter TOY as the password, then you go with you mother to get the train. But you still have to catch the later train, and you’re given the choice to get in and die along with you mother or let her go.

I did get the five star review on I think the second loop? Can’t really remember how. Also it’s seriously impressive how they’ve edited together a ‘catch-up’ so you quickly race to the same branching option. How many of those must they have done? I counted at least five decisions that appeared in mine, that’s insane.

That ending above sounds good, but what about...

Spoiler

Choosing Netflix? That was an experiment I did shortly before turning it off, that ends with it being filmed for Netflix and breaking out into an elaborate fight scene.

I mean if that was my first loop and then I exited to credits, we’d be talking about vastly different episodes.

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I've seen most of the endings. Some of them are quite flippant, but there's definitely a couple of paths that feel more concrete and stimulating. In particular:

Spoiler

Yes, the TOY ending has a bittersweet quality to it, if you choose to go with your mother. And in general the paths that follow from going to Colin's apartment and dropping acid reminded me a bit of some of Alan Moore or Grant Morrison's work, in a good way. Definitely more enjoyable than going the "Netflix" route, which is amusing but very easy and lightweight as far as storytelling goes.

 

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Yeah, I looped through quite a few different options, but it rolled the credits automatically for me when I got the

Spoiler

TOY ending. That felt like a satisfying narrative conclusion - part of Stefan had died with his mother and he was never able to move on. His story was concluding by going back and dying with her that day.

 

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I'm a little bummed that this season will apparently only be these three episodes.  

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1 hour ago, Triskele said:

I'm a little bummed that this season will apparently only be these three episodes.  

The first two seasons were three episodes, and were a fair bit stronger I’d say. I’m glad it’s this length.

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I watched Striking Vipers. It was ok i guess, certainly not a top tier BM episode but it was watchable. Scant praise i know but it didnt wow me

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3 hours ago, HelenaExMachina said:

I watched Striking Vipers. It was ok i guess, certainly not a top tier BM episode but it was watchable. Scant praise i know but it didnt wow me

Unfortunately right before I watched it a coworker told me it was one of his favorite BM eps ever. So my expectations were a little high going in. I did like it, but didn’t think it was top notch either, compared to all the other episodes. Curious to see why he loved it so much. 

I’ll probably watch the other 2 tonight.

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Weakest season by far, imo. Moriarty gave a strong performance in Smithereens, but that’s about it. The Miley Cyrus episode might be the worst the show has done to date. Idk, it’s been a long time since I’ve seen the Waldo one. Pretty disappointing overall. 

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^^^^ Ugh. I accidentally saw a few reviews ripping the Miley episode too. I had my doubts beforehand when hearing she was a lead, and now I’m just dreading it. 

Smithereens was decent. It kinda dragged at times.

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I watched Striking Vipers last night. Eh. I enjoyed the premise a lot, but the final act fell flat for me. The mutual "solution" seemed much too simple and unrealistic for so complicated a dilemma.

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