Black Mirror: Bandersnatch as Techno-Gnostic Parable

Bandersnatch is the new ‘choose your own adventure’ episode of Black Mirror. Like the old Choose Your Own Adventure series of books on which the concept is based, the programme presents the viewer with numerous opportunities to make a choice about what the character should do in a particular situation. Dependent on these choices, a number of different outcomes are possible. Bandersnatch was made possible by Netflix’s development of its Branch Manager software, a tool that allows for branching narratives that can loop round and lead to different endings. From Variety magazine: “Bandersnatch comes with five possible endings. Viewers who choose the quickest path, and decide against any do-overs, can make it through the film in around 40 minutes. The average viewing time is around 90 minutes. Altogether, there are over a trillion unique permutations of the story.”[1]

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