Netflix is reportedly going to produce an interactive episode in the upcoming fifth season of its popular series Black Mirror so viewers can choose their own adventure and decide for themselves how the story will pan out.
According to Bloomberg, show creator Charlie Brooker is currently working on developing the episode which will be the first in a line of brand new live-action interactive programming the streaming service plans to provide its subscribers. If the venture proves successful, Netflix will likely attract even more subscribers to its service with the allure of being able to decide how your favorite television series will end.
In late 2017, Brooker told The Hollywood Reporter he had toyed with the concept of making one episode in the second season an interactive video game, but ultimately scrapped the idea.
"We could keep [one episode] on an infinite loop," he told THR at the time. "You could do that on Netflix — make one a Groundhog Day that literally never stops. And disable the 'back' button for viewers."
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It certainly seems fitting for Black Mirror to join in the charge on interactive viewing. The Emmy award-winning science-fiction series is perhaps best known for utilizing theoretical technology to cast a critical lens on modern society and where we could potentially be heading with our growing technological demands. Some of the episodes are certainly more complex than we might be used to with our regular television programming, and the interactive episode will likely be no different, Bloomberg reports.
This wouldn't be the first time Netflix has utilized interactive technology for its programming, but it will be the first time it will have been used for an adult show. In 2017, the short children's film Puss in Book: Trapped in an Epic Tale let the audience pick between branching narratives to help guide the boot-clad feline on his magical storybook adventure.
This particular interactive video gave viewers two choices and about 10 to 15 seconds to decide which one they would pick, using their TV remote, game controller, or simply by pressing on their touchscreen device. If no decision was made, Netflix simply chose for the viewers and continued on with the story.
Netflix hasn't announced a release date for Black Mirror's fifth season just yet and the series is still currently in production. Including an interactive episode would likely lengthen production time with the addition of multiple scripts and extra shots.
The streaming service is also reportedly in talks to bring a version of Minecraft: Story Mode to its viewers which will function much like the regular video game but as a five-episode interactive narrative series.
Black Mirror executive producer recently told THR that the series upcoming episodes will mark a change from the previous seasons, with Brooker explaining, "We try to do things that are markedly different from what we've done before, so hopefully, we've got that."
While we don't know what the interactive episode in the show's fifth season will be like, or just what decisions we'll have to make, judging from the show's history, this special episode will likely force the viewers to make some pretty difficult decisions. But that's just all part of the fun of Black Mirror.
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