Black Mirror on Netflix: How I Feel

Black Mirror on Netflix: How I Feel

Technology is the future and to be honest this TV show is showing its viewers what can happen
Adrian
Adrian
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When was the last time that you sat and watched a show that had a new story line with new people every single episode? Throughout the episodes, you are introduced to a new story, and new people every episode. The only thing that they have in common is the unanticipated consequences of new technology. The creator, Charlie Brooker noted that "each episode has a different cast, a different setting, even a different reality. But they're all about the way we live now – and the way we might be living in 10 minutes' time if we're clumsy." Its critical acclaim is spreading worldwide as more people tune into the wonderful worlds of Black Mirror.

Personally, I have to say that this show has caught my attention and I have been completely and utterly distracted by this crazy and mind boggling show. It makes me uneasy about my future and all of technology yet I can’t stop watching it.

Charlie Booker comments on the inspiration for the dark title, stating that, “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 entire show is based around our modern technology and how it can take over our world if it is abused. For example, the second episode of season one, “Fifteen Million Merits,” where the people of this ‘modern era’ have to cycle to gain financial ‘merits.’ These merits are used to avoid interruptions throughout everyday activities. Even though this feels like a very modernistic era, you also get a feel that this is in our future. One of the main downsides of this society, is that overweight people are second-class citizens and are treated inhumanely, while they are abused and humiliated in game shows, or while cleaning up after the ‘first-class citizens’. The main character of this episode is a quiet man Bing, who has accumulated over 15 million merits during his time in the program. To get out of the slave-like lifestyle they can choose to go to an X-Factor-like show where they can showcase their talents. Bing makes a friend, Abi who he thinks should go and perform her singing ability. When the judges humiliate her, by saying she is great but they do not need anymore great singers, she is told that if she wants to she can escape the cycling-slave-like life and perform on a sex-inspired show. When Bing gets wind of Abi’s performance on her new show he becomes outraged [and tries to break the cell he is in, the only thing he manages to get from this is a shard of glass] by the judges and works to get to the stage himself and “perform.” When he works himself back up to the 15 million merits, he goes to the stage to “dance,” but at the end of his outrageously poor dance, he pulls out the shard of glass and holds it to his neck and rants about the abuse of the program and how the system is unfair and heartless. With all of his rage, and anger about the system you come to the end to find out that he has taken part in his own show that is live for all the other people and becomes a part of the system that he hates.

As a member of the 21st century, I see many new advancements in technology every single day, but after this episode I saw what it can all turn into. This episode showed a take on the abuse of the virtual reality world where everything is set by the use of screens. It is surreal to see that we are very close to this new “modern society,” but at the same time you feel for the people and wish they could have the simple things in life that we take advantage of everyday like a plant, real life, and emotions or feelings. TV.com made a review where they believe that this episode is, “Brimming with gorgeous visuals, a moving score, and a fully realized future that might not be too far off, there's never a moment where '15 Million Merits' is anything less than gripping, scary, and thought-provoking. It may make you want to hang yourself, it may make you want to throw your computer out of the window, it may make you want to quit your job, it may make you ponder the meaning of life, but its goal is simply to make you aware of such things so that we may avoid such an awful future. '15 Million Merits' wants you to look in the mirror and do something about it.”

Honestly this is only one of twelve episodes of a new modern society that could soon take over, and it is terrifying. I don’t want to live in a world where everything is determined by a screen or better yet living like there is a dictator but there is no government seen. The people in this show are often left alone to their own devices, both emotionally and physically. I do not want that for myself in the future, but at the same time this show has me thinking about my future and what my children will experience after me. Technology is the future and to be honest this TV show, is showing its viewers what can happen. Honestly, if you have the time and desire to watch a show that will make you think, please stop and watch my new favorite thing to binge on Netflix, Black Mirror.

Cover Image Credit: PaintingPractice

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3 Reasons Why Step Dads Are Super Dads

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I often hear a lot of people complaining about their step-parents and wondering why they think that they have any authority over them. Although I know that everyone has different situations, I will be the first to admit that I am beyond blessed to have a step dad. Yep, I said it. My life wouldn't be the same that it is not without him in it. Let me tell you why I think step dads are the greatest things since sliced bread.

1. They will do anything for you, literally.

My stepdad has done any and every thing for me. From when I was little until now. He was and still is my go-to. If I was hungry, he would get me food. If something was broken, he would fix it. If I wanted something, he would normally always find a way to get it. He didn't spoil me (just sometimes), but he would make sure that I was always taken care of.

SEE ALSO: The Thank You That Step-Parents Deserve

2. Life lessons.

Yup, the tough one. My stepdad has taught me things that I would have never figured out on my own. He has stood beside me through every mistake. He has been there to pick me up when I am down. My stepdad is like the book of knowledge: crazy hormonal teenage edition. Boy problems? He would probably make me feel better. He just always seemed to know what to say. I think that the most important lesson that I have learned from my stepdad is: to never give up. My stepdad has been through three cycles of leukemia. He is now in remission, yay!! But, I never heard him complain. I never heard him worry and I never saw him feeling sorry for himself. Through you, I found strength.

3. He loved me as his own.

The big one, the one that may seem impossible to some step parents. My stepdad is not actually my stepdad, but rather my dad. I will never have enough words to explain how grateful I am for this man, which is why I am attempting to write this right now. It takes a special kind of human to love another as if they are their own. There had never been times where I didn't think that my dad wouldn't be there for me. It was like I always knew he would be. He introduces me as his daughter, and he is my dad. I wouldn't have it any other way. You were able to show me what family is.

So, dad... thanks. Thanks for being you. Thanks for being awesome. Thanks for being strong. Thanks for loving me. Thanks for loving my mom. Thanks for giving me a wonderful little sister. Thanks for being someone that I can count on. Thanks for being my dad.

I love you!

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From One Nerd To Another

My contemplation of the complexities between different forms of art.

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Aside from reading Guy Harrison's guide to eliminating scientific ignorance called, "At Least Know This: Essential Science to Enhance Your Life" and, "The Breakthrough: Immunotherapy and the Race to Cure Cancer" by Charles Graeber, an informative and emotional historical account explaining the potential use of our own immune systems to cure cancer, I read articles and worked on my own writing in order to keep learning while enjoying my winter break back in December. I also took a trip to the Guggenheim Museum.


I wish I was artistic. Generally, I walk through museums in awe of what artists can do. The colors and dainty details simultaneously inspire me and remind me of what little talent I posses holding a paintbrush. Walking through the Guggenheim was no exception. Most of the pieces are done by Hilma af Klint, a 20th-century Swedish artist expressing her beliefs and curiosity about the universe through her abstract painting. I was mostly at the exhibit to appease my mom (a K - 8th-grade art teacher), but as we continued to look at each piece and read their descriptions, I slowly began to appreciate them and their underlying meanings.


I like writing that integrates symbols, double meanings, and metaphors into its message because I think that the best works of art are the ones that have to be sought after. If the writer simply tells you exactly what they were thinking and how their words should be interpreted, there's no room for imagination. An unpopular opinion in high school was that reading "The Scarlet Letter" by Nathaniel Hawthorne was fun. Well, I thought it was. At the beginning of the book, there's a scene where Hawthorne describes a wild rosebush that sits just outside of the community prison. As you read, you are free to decide whether it's an image of morality, the last taste of freedom and natural beauty for criminals walking toward their doom, or a symbol of the relationship between the Puritans with their prison-like expectations and Hester, the main character, who blossoms into herself throughout the novel. Whichever one you think it is doesn't matter, the point is that the rosebush can symbolize whatever you want it to. It's the same with paintings - they can be interpreted however you want them to be.


As we walked through the building, its spiral design leading us further and further upwards, we were able to catch glimpses of af Klint's life through the strokes of her brush. My favorite of her collections was one titled, "Evolution." As a science nerd myself, the idea that the story of our existence was being incorporated into art intrigued me. One piece represented the eras of geological time through her use of spirals and snails colored abstractly. She clued you into the story she was telling by using different colors and tones to represent different periods. It felt like reading "The Scarlet Letter" and my biology textbook at the same time. Maybe that sounds like the worst thing ever, but to me it was heaven. Art isn't just art and science isn't just science. Aspects of different studies coexist and join together to form something amazing that will speak to even the most untalented patron walking through the museum halls.

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