Truth to be told, interactive contents where viewers able to choose the progress of the content that they are watching are not new to Netflix. The streaming service already has such contents since 2017 but all of them such as Puss in Book: Trapped in an Epic Tale and Minecraft: Store Mode were meant for children.
That has changed today as Netflix has unleashed Black Mirror: Bandersnatch which is the first ever interactive film that is made for the older audiences. It was an interesting choice by the company and frankly speaking, Black Mirror is certainly fit for the role as the science fiction series has quite a reputation among viewers due to its dark tone and proximity to technologies that seemed not far off from reality.
The Black Mirror: Bandersnatch is set in 1984 and revolves around a teenager named Stefan who is being tasked to adapt a choose-your-own-adventure book into a video game with a similar nature. In a way, the interactive movie seems like an ironic reflection of its own plot.
In other words, a freaking meta.
According to a report by Variety, the movie has more than 1 trillion unique permutations and five different endings. The report also pointed out that it takes at least 40 minutes to watch the movie if viewers choose the quickest path and without any do-overs while average viewing time is around 90 minutes.
Due to a new pre-cache technique that Netflix has deployed to make the experience possible, Black Mirror: Bandersnatch can only be viewed on devices that able to support Netflix interactive stories. Since Netflix didn’t produce a linear version of the movie, users that tried to watch it with such devices will be asked to look for another device instead.
Among such devices that not able to support the interactive feature is Google Chromecast and Apple TV as well as older smart TVs. Our own test also showed that it can’t be viewed through Netflix’s Windows 10 app but works fine on Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge web browsers for Windows PC.
To know whether you able to view Black Mirror: Bandersnatch on your device, just look out for the indicator icon as shown above when you log in to Netflix.
(More coverage: Variety)