Back when I was in college, I noticed a ton of people on the internet were hyping up a show called Black Mirror, an anthology series created by Charle Brooker for the United Kingdon’s Channel 4 that primarily centered around the world’s increased reliance on technology and the possible implications of that relationship in the future.
Fans of the show seemed to fall into two separate camps, as some people suggested watching the episodes in order (as most people would do by default) while others urged prospective viewers to skip the first installment. I decided to take the more traditional route, and by the end, I understood why the latter group felt the way they did, as it wasn’t hard to see why some people might not want to continue a series that kicks off with a literal bang by showing the Prime Minister having sex with a pig.
I was personally impressed that Brooker was bold enough to introduce the world to Black Mirror in the manner that he did and quickly devoured the rest of the series, which has featured a number of oddly prescient episodes over the course of the five seasons that have been made so far.
The show arguably predicted the election of Donald Trump in “The Waldo Movement,” gave us a glimpse at a future where the robots Singapore has used to enforce social distancing essentially take over the world in “Metalhead,” and explored the potential downsides of the implants Elon Musk has been developing in “Arkangel.”
Black Mirror’s approach to social criticism paints a fairly bleak picture and was a fairly interesting pivot for Brooker, as he had previously taken a more comedic approach when he created Screenwipe in 2006, which was sort of like Britain’s version of The Soup. He would spend the next decade ending the year with an “Annual Review” before taking a four-year hiatus that ended back in May when he went back to his roots with a special that revolved around the pandemic.
Now, Deadline reports he’s not done giving 2020 his signature treatment, as Brooker recently revealed he’s making a mockumentary about the most surreal year the vast majority of people on the planet have ever experienced. As of right now, details are fairly scarce, but we do know it will premiere on Netflix at some point, Hugh Grant has signed on to play the role of a “‘repellent’ historian with a wig,” and…well, that’s basically it.
Based on how absurd our current reality is, making a mockumentary about it seems like a tall task, but as the Borat sequel proved, it’s not impossible to pull off—and based on what Brooker has done in the past, I think he’ll be able to do exactly that.