‘Black Mirror’ delves even deeper into our dark relationship with technology in Season 6


By Alex Dong

The wait is finally over. Season 6 of Black Mirror was unveiled on Netflix early Thursday morning, over four years since the last season was released in 2019. The latest installment includes five brand-new episodes, starring the likes of Aaron Paul, Annie Murphy, Anjana Vasan, and Josh Hartnett. The not-so-fine print: expect an unpredictable season.

Written and created by Charlie Brooker, the Emmy-winning dystopian anthology series is centered around our relationship with technology, captured through a science fiction lens. Since its premiere in 2011, the show has become a sensation for its dark themes, plot twists, and unsettling social commentary. As Brooker wrote in The Guardian, Black Mirror explores the space “between delight and discomfort,” the title itself an homage to “the cold, shiny screen of a TV, a monitor, a smartphone.”

Over the past five seasons, each episode has presented a distinct narrative and set of characters, with the occasional Easter egg hinting at previous storylines. “I’ve always felt that Black Mirror should feature stories that are entirely distinct from one another, and keep surprising people—and myself—or else what’s the point?” Brooker recently told Tudum. 

In Season 6, be prepared for even greater surprises. Unlike previous installments, many of the episodes are set in the past rather than the future. With this new release, Brooker is hoping to push the boundaries of what viewers may expect from the show after five seasons, while remaining true to its roots.

Now for a peek at the lineup.

    In the first episode, “Joan is Awful,” an average woman discovers that her life has been adapted into a TV show on “Streamberry,” a thinly veiled Netflix replica that creates a meta-experience for the viewer.

    In “Loch Henry,” a young couple travels to a quaint Scottish town to film a nature documentary, only to stumble upon a much more terrifying story.

    The third episode, “Beyond the Sea,” takes place in an alternative 1969, recounting the plight of two astronauts faced with unimaginable tragedy.

    In “Mazey Day,” a rising star is hounded by paparazzi while dealing with the aftermath of a hit-and-run.

    The last episode, “Demon 79,” is a supernatural horror story set in 1979, following a meek sales assistant who is forced to commit terrible deeds. 

Critics have been largely receptive to the changes seen in Season 6. Observer’s Laura Babiak wrote, “The concern of several of the season’s best episodes isn’t scary tech gone wild, but how we’ve allowed ourselves to be consumed and dehumanized by that which we choose to amuse ourselves with. It marks a meta shift for the series in how it addresses its viewer, and it’s a change for the better. “

NPR’s David Bianculli commented, “This year’s shows can begin with a comic tone but end darkly—or start off as one genre, and lurch unexpectedly into another. And without fail, they’re fun to watch, almost impossible to predict, and equally impossible to forget afterward.”


See the official Season 6 trailer here, then dive right into the full season, which is ready for streaming on Netflix as of Thursday.

Fast Company