Black Mirror, created by Charlie Brooker, is a British television series in the science fiction anthology genre. An anthology series presents a different story and a different set of characters in each episode. The series takes ”worst case scenario” to a whole new level, showing what could happen when new technologies have unanticipated consequences, generally dark and satirical. Each episode is considered to be standalone, with each being set in an alternate version of the present or near future. Seemingly one has nothing to do with the next.
Brooker says the show is loosely inspired by older anthology shows such as The Twilight Zone. In addition, Black Mirror was also developed in order to demonstrate subject matter related to society’s dependency on technology. Brooker created these stories about alternate realities where we could be living in the not-so-distant future if we’re not careful.
The First and Most Common Fan Theory
It wasn’t long before fan theories about Black Mirror began to emerge. Now that Season Four has aired, it may seem that some have even been proven. At least, that’s what is being said about the first, and most agreed upon fan theory, which is that all of the episodes take place within the same universe. The last episode of Season Four, called ”Black Museum”, seems to prove this that this fan theory was correct all along.
Prior to this specific show, the reason this had become a fan theory was due to the Easter Eggs that were interspersed throughout the series. Easter Eggs, in this since, are little unexpected details that point to other episodes, included as hints that the shows are somehow connected, the most common fan theory being that all the episodes take place in the same universe. The final episode of the fourth season has seemingly proven this fan theory to be true. In addition, creator and writer Charlie Brooker also confirmed this to be true as well.
San Junipero: Not So Happy Ending
Fan theorists have pointed out that the ending of the episode ”San Junipero” was uncharacteristically happy. They point out that due to the unhappy turnout on other episodes, perhaps Kelly didn’t choose to ”move” permanently to San Junipero, and instead, she is just part of the program in order to make Yorkie happy. It’s true that the other episodes have not so happy endings, so does this fan theory hold any truth? Brooker denies such an allegation, saying he just wanted to gift these two characters with a happy ending. So, it’s actually a good thing that this fan theory has been proven to be false. After all, now we know there’s at least a heaven-type place in this messed up universe.
These last three fan theories are fairly new. The first is that all the episodes are computer simulations instead of actual scenarios with real people involved. Even though this could be a possibility, most doubt this is true due to the various Easter Eggs placed throughout the series. These tidbits point to other characters, dates, or events, giving it more of a real world feel. Are they computer simulations? Maybe a futuristic computer is running simulations based on specific data to ascertain the outcome, but it’s definitely not one of the more popular fan theories. Brooker has yet to comment as to the validity of this fan theory.
Riverdale is in the universe of Black Mirror
This new fan theory suggests that Riverdale may be a part of the same universe as Black Mirror after its nod to the science fiction anthology. It seems that over the last year, Riverdale has treated its fans to an abundance of not only cleverly placed Easter Eggs, but also pop culture references as well. In Riverdale’s episode ”Anatomy of a Murder, when Kevin Keller’s boyfriend bids him farewell, he boards a bus with a final destination of San Junipero, which is a completely fictional town within Black Mirror.
Another fan theory involving Riverdale is that it’s a artificial simulation created by someone in Black Mirror’s universe who was a big fan of Archie’s. Neither of these theories have been addressed by Brooker, either.
Ross from Friends predicted San Junipero
What? Already this one seems a bit far-fetched, as Ross and his Friends were literally decades apart. In season six, ”In the One Where Pheobe Runs” episode, Ross, describing the plot of a book, explains by saying that by the year 2030, computers will be able to carry out the same functions as a human brain. He further theorizes that you could download thoughts and memories, living forever as a machine. Brooker says that although some of the episodes may be inspired by Friends episodes, the idea of one’s consciousness being uploaded into a computer did not come from Ross.
There are plenty of fan theories swirling around, as well as new ones being born with each and every episode. In order to figure out which are possible and which are not, you definitely need to keep track all the episodes of Black Mirror, where ”worst case scenario” is most definitely bound to happen!