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Charlie Brooker reveals why he made 'Black Mirror' and how the universe all connects

It's about more than just technology

Charlie Brooker reveals why he made 'Black Mirror' and how the universe all connects
16 January 2018

Contrary to popular belief, Charlie Brooker did not decide to create Black Mirror after suffering a particularly vivid nightmare in which he was chased through the streets for London by a giant mobile phone.

While the show is known for centring around technology - usually portraying it as having a negative effect on society - there is more to it than that, and Charlie Brooker has opened up about what inspired him to make the show in a new Netflix featurette.

In the video, which also includes producer Annabel Jones and director of Season 4’s ‘Arkangel’, Jodie Foster, the trio discuss everything from the format of the show, to how the ideas for the new episodes came about.

But perhaps most interestingly, Brooker also confirmed for the first time that the episodes do indeed exist in the same universe.

“People used to say to me, ‘Are these all set in one shared universe?’ and I’d say ‘Absolutely not.’”, he said, “and now for the first time I think one of our stories starts referring to things that happened in other episodes.”

Brooker also reveals that while technology is of course a core aspect of what makes the show stand out, one of the main reasons he wanted to make Black Mirror is because no one else was telling stories in quite the same way.

He said: “Black Mirror came about because at the time I felt one-off ideas-based stories weren’t really being told on television.

“The trend was for long, five-season story arcs about a troubled yet fascinating man. Many of which I was a huge fan of, but what I felt was lacking was those one-off shows you can catch late at night and go, ‘What the hell was that?’

“The show does reflect a kind of gnawing sense unease at the march of technology.”

Annabel Jones spoke about how this was a season of firsts for Black Mirror, with the show’s huge success and reputation allowing them to perhaps take a few more creative risks.

“This season has lots of firsts for Black Mirror, so you know, we’re doing our first black and white film, we’re doing our first American indie set in working class East Coast America, directed by Jodie Foster,” she said.

“It allows us to do lots of different genres, lots of different tones, and lots of different worlds.”

Brooker speaks about the show on a panel last year

And Jodie Foster added on the episodic format of the show: “I really believe in short story form, some things have a beginning, a middle, and an end, and I feel like that’s the voice that I’m happiest with.”

As of yet, there is not confirmation that Black Mirror will return for a fifth season, but Brooker and Jones are both keen on the idea, were it to arise.

Jones told The Hollywood Reporter earlier this month: “We love making the show. It’s an utter privilege to be able to curate six films. It’s the stuff of dreams. So we would love to do more and hopefully there will be a conversation with Netflix, but at the moment we’re just wanting everyone to hopefully enjoy Season 4.”

(Images: Netflix / Rex)