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Thread: Black Mirror Discussion (Spoilers)

  1. #41
    Shiny and Eww Charde's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Revenant View Post
    My favourite episode is still the Christmas special. I loved the concept of The Block, and how the entire story could have been avoided if someone had just told the guy who the father was. He could have asked someone sooner, too, so he's not absolved of it. But it was a great metaphor for how a little communication can make a big difference, I thought.
    Yeah, as far as that episode goes -- pretty haunting, I felt like everything fit together nicely (all three stories), and they seemed like natural extensions of where technology is going / might go in the future. Blocking had become widespread in today's social media, so why not take it to the extreme and see what impact it might have? Politically, if it were possible to do such a thing, I can imagine some people actually wanting to implement that for certain undesirables; and it explored the huge negatives of policies that abandon communication for imposition of quarantine.

    It's the middle segment (the enslavement of dupe AI) that seems to show up in repeated episodes. I mean, the applications are endless, I suppose... the question is whether such entities would exist on their own or merely as extensions of the original template. I'm not sure how they couldn't be viewed as self-entities since at the point of replication they would then diverge as separate consciousnesses; probably my favorite Jack Chalker series (old time scifi writer) is "The Four Lords of the Diamond" where each book had a protagonist of a psychic clone from the same source imprinted on a different host body, and how each diverged based on the body it was stuck in + its ongoing experiences.

    I could see the initial sequence (Jon Hamm's coaching routine) as pretty plausible with a small advance in telecomm in terms of ease of use / software.

    I think the series does best when it is focusing on plausible and/or likely advances in tech that can create human problems. When it either breaks science (like the issue in USS Callister, about basically the limits of DNA-contained info) or becomes more fantasy-oriented, it loses some power.

    Like I said about Crocodile, it seemed more forensic in approach rather than technical implications.... I felt more like it was a study of the psychological breakdown of someone under stress, versus the stated theme of the series. It was well-done for what it was, but off-topic. That moment when she is considering the last occupant of the apartment and how to proceed, and the look on her face....

  2. #42
    Undead Member Revenant's Avatar
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    I did wonder if I'd rather incarceration to being blocked from everyone. Maybe it would be nice some days to click "block all" for some peace .
    The AI clones are a good way of asking the question "are AI's people and do they have rights?" We've asked before if clones have rights, but that's too easy. Does a cloned mind have rights and is it still being alive or just a record of a person being saved?

    Yeah, there's always been an element of using future technology as psychological tool for exploring human nature within the series. Think back to another of my favourites, the one where they had the ocular implants to replay memories. All about how over analysing your memories and replaying things in your head would drive people insane, trying to figure out what they meant at the review, at the dinner table. Even more unnerving was the replaying of earlier and more exciting parts of their sex lives while they were in bed having boring sex because neither of them was really "there".

    Or even the second episode parodying celebrity worship and The X-Factor, people seeing it as a way out of the working class and into the high-flung celebrity paradise that doesn't really exist because it's just made up by the tabloids.

    I've been getting that even more from this season. It seems more about using sci-fi as a means to explore human nature in the modern world, rather than how future technology could affect our lives.

    Spoiler: I saw episode 4 last night.

    And again, it was less about a future tech and more a look at what exactly people mean when talk about searching for "the one", and the lessons people learn as they "play the field" before settling down. I thought the system was teaching them a lesson, rather than testing them. As in, he first needed to see what it was like to have a relationship with someone who wasn't perfect in order to appreciate her more. She needed to experience those short flings to learn that rippling abs, perfect hair cuts and sex aren't everything. They needed to know what it was like to lose a "treasured relationship" to understand it's value.

    Although I started realising it was some sort of VR some way in when I really started questioning what the hell was going on in this world - no one has a job or anything. Maybe that everyone to this island to find their match, but that wouldn't make any sense as they could be stuck their for many years by the looks of it.

    A feel good episode, I suppose. True love overcoming adversity, you'll find your perfect match someday and all that. Trust in the system = don't lose hope just because this relationship didn't work out.
    I prefer the really depressing and unnerving episodes, myself. Everyone else says their favourite was San Junipero and I think they were going for that sort of thing with this one.
    Last edited by Revenant; 01-05-2018 at 02:28 PM.

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