--- In FairfieldLife@yahoogroups.com, "salyavin808"  wrote:
> I would have missed the whole thing [Utopia] if it wasn't 
> for someone I know who saw a trailer and thought it worth
> a try. I gave up on Channel 4 ages ago because of their
> sudden love of freak shows and endless cooking programmes.
> Shall take their drama a bit more seriously now though.
> Talking of which, the same guy recommends a show called 
> "Black Mirror" also from Channel 4 and written by Charlie 
> Brooker, possibly the world's darkest and most sceptical 
> TV critic. Haven't seen it myself yet but it's supposed 
> to be a treat.

Thank your friend for me a second time. 

I just watched the first episode of "Black Mirror" (1 of
4 so far, 6 in total), and it is one of the most brilliant
pieces of scathingly cynical television I've ever seen
in my life. I didn't know anything about the series or
Charlie Brooker, but as the Wikipedia page on this series
explains, it's a darker, more mindfuckful version of 
"The Twilight Zone" or "Tales of the Unexpected," each
episode standalone, with no continuing plots or characters.

It supposedly won the Best TV movie/mini-series award at 
the 2012 International Emmys. Explaining the title, 
Brooker says, "If technology is a drug – and it does feel 
like a drug – then what, precisely, are the side-effects? 
This area – between delight and discomfort – is where 
Black Mirror, my new drama series, is set. The 'black 
mirror' of the title is the one you'll find on every wall, 
on every desk, in the palm of every hand: the cold, shiny 
screen of a TV, a monitor, a smartphone."

The episode I just watched explores just that. It's about
an enormous clusterfuck of cyberterrorism. Someone kidnaps
a British princess with the PR ratings of a Princess Di,
and threatens to kill her at 4 p.m. that day unless the
Prime Minister accedes to his demand. So far, just yer
normal "24" plot. It's the demand that turns things dark,
dark, darker than dark, but in a way that you can't help
but laugh uproariously about from time to time. The
kidnapper demands that the PM go on all terrestrial,
satellite, and cable networks live and...uh...fuck a pig.

I won't reveal any details, except to say that by the
time this ransom demand hits the Internet and the shit
hits the fan, the expected viewing audience for such an 
event would total over a billion people, each and every one
of them with their eyes glued to the black mirror. 

Suffice it to say I just can't wait to see the other 2
episodes from season 1, one of which, "The Entire History 
of You," has already been optioned by Robert Downey Jr. 
for an American remake. Season 2 (another 3 episodes)
has just started. 

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