One Quick Note About Bandersnatch

Before Bandersnatch drifts away from the public consciousness, I wanted to add one quick thought in addition to the video I already posted about it.

Bandersnatch is a choose-your-own adventure episode of Netflix’s “Black Mirror.” As you watch, you’re prompted with a series of decisions to steer the direction of the main character and the episode, leading to a ton of different branching paths with different endings.

I watched with a few friends, one of whom was worried it was going to be a scary episode. I assured her that it would be fine, because we would likely have the option of choosing less scary things as the episode progressed.

As it turns out, that was partially true about certain elements of the show. For example (minor spoiler), there’s a scene in the episode where the show asks you, “Do you wish there was more action in this episode?”

I just want to say that I LOVE this concept. Just for context, think about your viewing behaviors. Perhaps there are times when you sit down to watch a television show or movie, and you think about the things you’re in the mood for. Comedy, action, drama, romance, horror, etc. You then pick the show/movie based on your current mood.

But what if you could pick the genre on an ongoing basis as you watch? Kind of like tapas, but for TV. Maybe you start off watching a comedy, but you find yourself wishing for more romance, so you click the “romance” option, and the show adjusts accordingly. Same with other genres and preferences.

I’m not at all suggesting that every show or movie should do this, especially given the amount of footage they would need to film. I like when storytellers have a tale to tell, and they execute it well. But I think there’s something interesting to explore with this Bandersnatch experiment in terms of genre adjustments instead of just specific character choices.

What do you think? Would you watch something like this? What did you think of Bandersnatch?


3 Responses to “One Quick Note About Bandersnatch”

  1. Charles Dionne says:

    I said the same thing after I watched the episode! I can totally see in a few years being able to pick a type of movie and the actors that you want and Netflix (just as a possible example) would just put together a movie for you. “I’m in the mood for an action thriller with Denzel Washington and Amy Adams” and just have it put together for you.

    As for Bandersnatch, I really like the “choose-you-own-adventure” idea but I thought the story line was predictable and without the choices, it would have been a very mediocre Black Mirror episode. Some endings were definitely much better than others.

  2. Sandrs says:

    I have not seen Bandersnatch, only saw your video and I agree that the possibilities are exciting. I like choose your own adventure type books and games so I think I would enjoy this kind of films, too.
    On the other hand I do really appreciate someone creating a complete story for me to experience, maybe even one I would not think I‘d like or would not choose as an option in a „create-your-one-film“-setting.
    this reminds me of goodreads recommendations, which are a great thing to discover books I might like, but sometimes I feel trapped in my own previous tastes in such a system and have to go find something completely different. I don’t think I can express this very well, I guess the thing is, I’m not sure I would be very good at being my own movie director if this were to become the standard way of watching films.

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