Recently, Charlie Brooker, the creator of the Netflix hit, Black Mirror, revealed that the title’s meaning relates to when the device you are watching the show on, turns off, and you are left staring at your reflection in a… you guessed it, black mirror. While this is a fitting title, I feel that it definitely delves deeper into the human psyche, becoming far more than such a literal definition.
When watching an episode, the viewer is challenged by the content. Usually there is some sort of plot twist to try and figure out, a difficult ending to the character’s story, and an inner demon that they must face. This is the first step to the deeper meaning of the Black Mirror. The characters must face the dark side of their own humanity as it intertwines with the newest technology, and the importance of that tech as it is determined by their fellow man. This can invoke an emotional and psychological response from the viewer that most are not quite prepared for.
For me, the meaning goes one step further. By challenging viewers to put themselves in the character’s place, the show turns the emphasis back on them. How would you, as that main character, deal with this situation? Would you do the same thing? Would you have the same emotional reaction? While many of us couldn’t truthfully answer these questions, forcing yourself to be honest, is the first step in revealing the truth, that you have a dark side, aka. your reflection in the Black Mirror.