For years, Black Mirror fans have argued over whether the episodes of the show take place in the same universe. Creator/showrunner Charlie Brooker contended they did not, that they were all completely separate stories. But in a new Black Mirror Season 4 featurette, Brooker appears to have changed his mind.
If you’ve seen the Season 4 episode “Black Museum,” you know that episode features a museum chock-full of references to other episodes, mostly from the new season. Indeed, Brooker confirms this is the first time a Black Mirror shared universe has been explicitly addressed, so I suppose there’s your answer—all of Black Mirror does take place in one universe, but the episodes are still standalones.
This is cool, but it also doesn’t change the dynamic of the series. Brooker hasn’t (yet) crossed characters over from one episode to another, so for now it’s just kind of a tangential connection between the standalone anthology stories. Moreover, Brooker has already been hinting at a shared universe for a while now with cleverly placed Easter Eggs—the pizza delivery company from “Crocodile” shows up in another episode, tech from one episode is used in another, and so on and so forth.
So yeah, technically it appears a Black Mirror shared universe does exist, but the show will still continue to churn out compelling, shocking, and emotionally affecting standalone episodes for the time being. Netflix produced both Season 3 and Season 4 and while they haven’t officially ordered Black Mirror Season 5 just yet, given the show’s popularity and evergreen nature, one imagines it’s just a matter of time. There’s even been chatter about a spinoff series based on the “USS Callister” episode.
Watch the Black Mirror Season 4 featurette for yourself below, and sound off in the comments with your personal ranking of this season’s episodes. The entire show is currently streaming on Netflix.