Black Mirror has returned for another series, and while I respect pretty much everything Charlie Brooker has ever done, I was a little skeptical about whether three more episodes could keep up the perfect feeling of unease that was created by the first series. Thankfully tonight proved me wrong.
Be Right Back follows Martha, a woman who loses her boyfriend Ash in a car crash. While she struggles to help with her sudden loss, a friend signs her up for a new software program that can pull all the public information Ash has posted online and create an online avatar for her to speak to in order to gain some closure. At first Martha is skeptical, but as she starts to communicate she finds herself more attached, and finds herself quickly moving up to the next stages of the program.
Be Right Back is a very striking look at sudden loss, and really makes us ask the question of whether we would take advantage of the same program if the technology were available. As Martha progresses through the different stages, the whole endeavour is portrayed as a romantic, sentimental journey, and it is left to us as the audience to really think about how unsettling the whole thing really is. This is what Black Mirror does so well, leaving us with a lot to think about and how plausible these situations really are.
So yes, the essence of Black Mirror is firmly in place, but Be Right Back also succeeds in its direction and casting. Some of the shots are beautifully done, and while the majority of screen time goes to Hayley Atwell as Martha and Domhnall Gleeson as Ash, they really carry the whole thing nicely, shifting through all the stages that their relationship goes through with a couple of great performances. I'm pleased to say that my skepticisms about this new series have so far been unfounded, and with Charlie Brooker writing all three episodes this time, I have nothing but high hopes for the rest.
My rating: 5/5