Black Mirror: Striking Vipers

Black Mirror: Striking Vipers ★★★½

Black Mirror really needed an injection of new ideas in this new 'series'.

Even though I thought it was a failed experiment, I can see why Charlie Brooker created Bandersnatch, yet ultimately it fell back into many of the same elements that had become overfamiliar throughout Black Mirror.

Striking Vipers seems unapologetic in dealing with a couple of familiar points, which is at least an acknowledgement on Brooker's part of where he is with his creation now. Which I'm actually fine with as long as he is doing something interesting around these repeated elements.

He just about does that here, but I don't think he pushes the boat out quite enough. While he ultimately stops short of making this his Moonlight, he dips quite heavily into his own San Junipero, my favourite Black Mirror to date. If you're going to copy something, copy the best, I suppose.

There's a bit of tail chasing here as regards that but it takes an interesting approach to accepting the fluidity of sexuality and also virtual sex. He even seems set, for a short while, to maybe even look at polyamory. Sadly he chooses not to manoeuvre down that particular avenue, but there's just about enough here for it to stand on its own two feet.

The casting, as ever, is immaculate. Anthony Mackie and Yahya Abdul-Maheen are two actors I always enjoy seeing, although the star of the show was Pom Klementieff. A genuine pleasure to finally see her in something I actually wanted to see, it's been too long since Ingrid Goes West.

I really hate one-on-one beat 'em ups though. Always much preferred Final Fight and Golden Axe.