4. Beyond the Sea
“Beyond the Sea” had a truly fascinating concept. What if astronauts could simultaneously be at home while on their long, multi-year trips into space? Josh Hartnett and Aaron Paul play two men who exist in two places at once by sharing their consciousness with a mechanical replica of themselves that remains on Earth at all times.
With a simple mechanism, they can sleep in one place and wake up in the other until tragedy strikes. This episode had an excellent concept that could have made it an amazing episode of Black Mirror. But it was way too long and poorly paced, which is a real shame because it takes us to some truly dark places, and the ending was one of the best parts, a total misdirect.
3. Loch Henry
Black Mirror tackles the true crime phenomenon in this bleak episode. “Loch Henry” is a decent entry in a lackluster season, but anyone who regularly watches thrillers or horror films will guess the twists coming early on.
I appreciated the criticism of true crime, especially since Netflix themselves have been plenty guilty of this—see all the controversy surrounding Ryan Murphy’s recent Jeffrey Dahmer series—but “Loch Henry” ended up falling a little flat. I didn’t feel like it took its concept far enough, and again, there were pacing issues here. Also, one character’s end felt rather anticlimactic.