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YMMV / Black Mirror: San Junipero

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Black Mirror YMMV
Series Three
NosedivePlaytestShut Up and DanceSan JuniperoMen Against FireHated in the Nation

  • Alternate Character Interpretation: Is San Junipero really a paradise, or is it a Crapsaccharine World that will feel boring, shallow, empty, and unsatisfying if not maddening long before eternity is up?
  • Awesome Music:
    • "Heaven Is a Place on Earth" by Belinda Carlisle is used in the ending, putting a neat bow on the most optimistic episode of the show so far.
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    • Charlie Brooker himself created a Spotify playlist for the 41 songs used throughout the episode.
    • Then there's the score by Clint Mansell (already well known to fans of Darren Aronofsky as the composer of his films), which received considerable praise — enough to be issued digitally and on vinyl, a first for any Black Mirror episode.
  • Esoteric Happy Ending:
    • Although often cited as the one Black Mirror episode with an undeniably happy ending (prior to Hang the DJ and Black Museum), none of Kelly's criticisms of San Junipero - namely, that it's a shallow facsimile of existence rather than the real deal - are ever properly rebutted, and San Junipero itself could cease to exist at any moment if its hosting company ever decided to pull the plug.
    • Our heroines are both dead by the end of it, one of them from assisted suicide; euthanasia is a very controversial topic in many societies and the implication that it's a good thing and the key to our heroines finding love and happiness can easily leave a bad taste for some people (especially people who were drawn in by the premise of it being a super-cheerful lesbian romance).
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    • The assumption they're the actual people versus copies like cookies is debatable.
  • Friendly Fandoms: Very quickly the episode got one with The 100, thanks to its subversion of the Bury Your Gays trope. "Heaven Is a Place on Earth" was already being used as the title for quite a few Clarke/Lexa fics in the few days after the episode's release.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: With the release of Black Museum, knowing how the technology in San Junipero came about makes the episode a little darker (since the same company, TCKR, that runs San Junipero used to employ the Big Bad of Black Museum, all the horrific trials he put people through being progressive steps to San Junipero). It's like Brooker planned for the painful pay-off and thought it would be even better to let everyone be happy for a year first.
  • Heartwarming Moments: The episode itself is this for the entire series. After story after story about mankind using technology to its detriment, we get a love story where technology is used to effectively live forever.
  • Hype Backlash:
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    • Often regarded as the best Black Mirror episode, naturally there are a couple of people who find it overrated or aren’t impressed, especially since it isn’t as dark or complex as the rest of the show. See Tastes Like Diabetes. Others enjoy the episode itself but are disappointed that it's effectively been hailed as the "best" the series has to offer in favor of other, equally-memorable episodes mainly for defecting from the unique conceit that drew many such fans to the series in the first place (refusing to give the audience a happy, comfortable ending).
    • Still others had problems with the episode's premise and the fact that its "happy" ending relies on the physical deaths of its protagonists, but this is much more of a minority view.
  • Spiritual Antithesis: San Junipero got a Spiritual Antithesis in the episode "Real Life" of Philip K. Dick's Electric Dreams, it's almost like an heartbreaking inversion of San Junipero. In it, a lesbian policewoman in a happy relationship gets trapped in a virtual world where she is a straight male widower grieving for his dead wife, all because her subconscious thinks she does not deserve to be happy.
    • "San Junipero" serves as the spiritual antithesis of The Twilight Zone episode "A Nice Place To Visit", where an afterlife where you can party all day and night for eternity and instantly have anything you want magically materialize was portrayed as a horrifying fate.
  • Tastes Like Diabetes: Some found the episode to be a bit saccharine compared to the darker nature of the rest of the series.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks!: It's too happy, we don't know if we should be wallowing in despair over the euthanasia storyline, the second love storyline, the "upload to the cloud" storyline and the character has literally been locked in unable to do anything for 40+ years storyline because it's damn happy! That's just mean!
  • Wheelchair Woobie: Yorkie has been one for over 40 years with the reveal that after being rejected by her family for coming out as a lesbian, she got into a car accident that put her into a coma.
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