The Black Mirror season 5 trailer plays things a little too safe

Black Mirror will return to Netflix for a fifth season this summer, the streaming service has announced by way of a new trailer. All three episodes of the abbreviated new season will arrive on June 5, 2019, and if you’re a dedicated Black Mirror fan, the new footage will look very familiar — maybe too familiar.

While Netflix didn’t release any episode titles or summaries, the trailer seems to be made up of a trio distinct plotlines. In one, a young woman falls prey to a cute and seemingly well-meaning digital assistant that appears to have darker intentions. In another, a family man finds himself tempted to cheat on his wife after browsing a dating app. Finally, a third story depicts a man with a gun who looks like he’s been driven mad by constant digital surveillance.

Like recent Black Mirror installments, the new season of Charlie Brooker’s dystopian sci-fi anthology series stars a number of A-list celebrities, including Miley Cyrus and Avengers star Anthony Mackie, who’s positioned to be a major player in the next phase of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Djib Mo’s “Lonely Feelings” plays over the trailer, riffing on Black Mirror‘s main theme, i.e., how technology isolates people instead of bringing them together. Near the end of the trailer, buzzwords like “technology,” “the future,” “connection,” and “sex” flash across the screen.

In other words, Black Mirror season 5 looks like more of the same, and the trailer works hard to drive that point home. That’s not a complaint, exactly. Black Mirror has never been subtle, and its twisty, satirical take on modern life is still unlike anything else on TV. At the same time, it’s hard to shake the feeling that Black Mirror‘s best episodes have already covered some of this material.

Take video games, for example. In season four, the episode “U.S.S. Callister” combined a Star Trek send-up with a hard-hitting look at how ethics become warped in virtual reality. Black Mirror: Bandersnatch, which arrived between seasons, is both a satire about the video game industry and a choose-your-own-adventure-style video game itself. In that vein, the season5 trailer concludes with an extended Street Fighter parody. It’s starting to feel a little repetitive.

Ultimately, more Black Mirror is still a treat for sci-fi fans, and the brief season (which was likely shortened due to Bandersnatch‘s demanding production schedule) could surprise us. After all, unexpected twists are what Black Mirror does best. Black Mirror made its name by taking big risks, and it’d be a shame to see one of the most innovative and influential sci-fi series of the past few years start to play it safe.

Movies & TV

Skip the flowers and sunshine this spring and watch the best shows on Hulu

It's often overwhelming to navigate Hulu's robust library of TV shows. To help, we put together a list of the best shows on Hulu, whether you're into frenetic cartoons, intelligent dramas, or anything in between.
Movies & TV

The best shows on Netflix right now (May 2019)

Looking for a new show to binge? Lucky for you, we've curated a list of the best shows on Netflix, whether you're a fan of outlandish anime, dramatic period pieces, or shows that leave you questioning what lies beyond.
Movies & TV

Sit down and watch some of the best stand-up comedy on Netflix

Feeling a little funny? There are hundreds of hilarious comedy specials out there, and you can't be expected to comb through them all. Lucky for you, we've compiled a list of the best stand-up specials on Netflix.
Movies & TV

Prime-time TV: Here are the best shows on Amazon Prime right now

There's more to Amazon Prime than free two-day shipping, including access to a number of phenomenal shows at no extra cost. To make the sifting easier, here are our favorite shows currently streaming on Amazon Prime.
Movies & TV

Ditch the torrents! How to legally watch Game of Thrones online

Game of Thrones is about to end, but unless you're a cable subscriber, finding a way to watch isn't always easy. Check out our guide on how to watch online, whether you prefer using HBO, Hulu, or Amazon.
Movies & TV

Relive the horror and the glory of the 10 best Game of Thrones episodes

Some episodes are worth watching twice, especially when you're talking about a show as exciting, tense, and complicated as Game of Thrones. Here are our 10 favorite episodes of HBO's epic fantasy series.
Movies & TV

That Game of Thrones re-do petition is more embarrassing than any coffee cup

The Game of Thrones fan petition to remake the show's final season isn't just silly. It's a misunderstanding of the relationship between shows and their audience, among many, many other things.
Movies & TV

Snuggle up with the best romance films currently streaming on Netflix

Looking for a story about love and lust? We've rounded up the most romantic films currently on Netflix, whether you're looking for a story about young love or a man who falls in love with artificial intelligence.
Movies & TV

Twilight's Robert Pattinson is the leading contender to play The Batman

Warner Bros. Pictures is giving DC Comics' Dark Knight another solo adventure on the big screen (his first since the conclusion of the Dark Knight trilogy). Here's everything we know about the studio's upcoming film The Batman.
Movies & TV

ESPN Plus is a great sports companion. Here's everything you need to know

ESPN's streaming service, ESPN Plus, arrived in 2018, but it isn't a replacement for your ESPN cable channels and it differs from other streaming apps in a few key ways. We answer all of your questions in this guide.
Movies & TV

Tired of Netflix? Here's where to find free movies online, legally

We've spent countless hours digging around the web to find the best sites for streaming free movies online. Not only are all of these sites completely free to use, they're also completely legal and trustworthy.

Vampire Batman? Another Matrix movie? Rick and Morty season 4

On this week's show, we'll talk about Robert Pattinson's potential casting as the new Batman in the upcoming solo film. We'll also discuss Rick and Morty news, talk of a fourth Matrix film, the Game of Thrones finale, and more.
Movies & TV

The His Dark Materials trailer arrives to fill HBO’s Game of Thrones void

Game of Thrones might be over, but HBO is staying in the epic fantasy business. His Dark Materials will adapt Philip Pullman's young adult series for TV, and its new trailer is full of danger, magic, and polar bears.
Movies & TV

These are the best movies on Hulu right now (May 2019)

From dramas to blockbusters, Hulu offers some great films to its subscribers. Check out the best movies on Hulu, whether you're into charming adventure tales or gruesome horror stories.