Black Mirror is indeed going through a sort of changes in their narratives. The story is now deeper and more varied compared to previous episodes in terms of the Black Mirror vibe. For the first time, this episode features a man who works for the military. With this as the setting, let’s see what Black Mirror can achieve with such a common setting that have been seen in many other narratives.
The basic premise is the world is separated into normal humans and roaches. Roaches are creatures that resemble humans but is afflicted with sickness. Everyone hates them and the military delights in killing them. Stripe, a newcomer, joins a Roach Hunting Corp and begins his new job encountering something that the Roaches created which disrupted his MASS implants, which is an advanced military technology. From then on, things start to change and he realises that all he see maybe something else entirely.
This is yet another episode that explores how the technology dehumanises ourself in order to accomplish something sinister. It’s quite amazing that such thing is shown subtly and being overly obvious from the beginning till the end. The story is quite a surprise, but sadly it has been done before in other films or short films. Although it does not contain original material, the acting and production value is fairly high and CGI is almost restrained to the minimum except in some necessary scenes.
Pacing wise it’s great and I love how the setting and situation is explained immediately as the episode begins. Also, the colour is kept mute and cold all the way except for some crucial moments which momentarily contrasted with the characters’ own morals and humanity. Everything is subdued, yet they are not truly repressed. This is the episode that will reflect the human warfare in the next few decades.