Please take us back to a time when a show set in a contemporary dystopia brought us a certain kind of glee, mainly in its heightened fantasy. Charlie Brooker’s shiver-inducing anthology Black Mirror had a lot going for it, from its revolving door of willing stars to its range of creatively macabre hypothetical universes, including the one where the audience got to ruin a kid’s life for literal hours. But the most reassuring aspect of the sci-fi thriller was, arguably, our ability to turn it off and resume our precariously free lives, reveling in the fantastical air of one of Netflix’s more consistent delights.
But during these times of uncertainty and legitimate fear thanks to the coronavirus, when the distance between real life and the show’s fictitious circumstances is just a little too short for comfort, tuning into fresh horrors might prove to be too difficult for many of us. Thankfully, Brooker agrees. In a recent interview with Radio Times, Brooker asserted that the current mood of the general public doesn’t lend itself to a well-received new season of Black Mirror. When asked about a potential follow-up to the three-episode fifth season, Brooker briefly talked around a potential, vaguely secret new project that is decidedly not a sixth go-round of the sci-fi favorite.
“I’ve been busy, doing things. I don’t know what I can say about what I’m doing and not doing,” Brooker responded. “At the moment, I don’t know what stomach there would be for stories about societies falling apart, so I’m not working away on one of those.” He was willing to share that he is using the time to flex his comedic muscle: “I’ve been writing scripts aimed at making myself laugh.”
We like to think that there is an “other side” of this joy-robbing pandemic that allows for more episodes of the series, and Brooker never claimed to be completely done with the anthology. The most recent season began streaming June 5 of last year following Bandersnatch, the Black Mirror film and Netflix’s first stab at interactive content. The new format created a path for the streaming platform to pursue more Choose-Your-Own-
Messed Up Misgivings Adventure specials, including the forthcoming Kimmy Schmidt: Kimmy Vs. The Reverend.