It’s here. After several reports and leaks, Netflix has confirmed the release date for Black Mirror: Bandersnatch in a trailer — it’s out Friday, December 28 worldwide. The trailer also confirms much of what had been leaked, with Fionn Whitehead (Dunkirk) starring in the lead as a video game programmer named Stefan who is developing a video game called Bandersnatch based on a fictional book of the same name. Will Poulter (We’re the Millers), Asim Chaudhry (People Just Do Nothing), Craig Parkinson (Line of Duty), and Alice Lowe (Prevenge) are also seen in the Black Mirror: Bandersnatch trailer.
The official synopsis for Black Mirror: Bandersnatch, released with the trailer, reads: “In 1984, a young programmer begins to question reality as he adapts a sprawling fantasy novel into a video game and soon faces a mind-mangling challenge. Welcome back.” That confirms that Bandersnatch is a reference to the abandoned video game being developed in the UK in the 1980s, though it doesn’t seem to be anything more than that.
Partially set to the tune of Frankie Goes to Hollywood’s 1984 hit “Relax”, the Bandersnatch trailer introduces Stefan (Whitehead) who confesses to his therapist (Lowe) that he’s having weird dreams. Later, Stefan is seemingly at a video game studio where Chaudhry’s character tells him that they are “going to be a hit factory, like Motown, but for computer games”.
In the background, you can see a poster for “Metl Hedd” featuring the robot dog, which is a dead giveaway reference to Black Mirror season 4’s “Metalhead” episode. Interestingly, David Slate — who helmed “Metalhead” — is reportedly the director for Bandersnatch, according to a leak.
Stefan explains to Chaudhry and Poulter’s characters what his game is about, and there are hints of him beginning to question his reality, as the synopsis says, with his therapist asking him if he’s been hearing voices. “No voices, but there’s something,” Stefan replies. That seemingly ties into the life of the book’s author Stefan is inspired by — Jerome F. Davies — who apparently went mad and cut off his wife’s head.
“Your fate has been dictated. You’re not in control,” a character says via pre-recorded TV footage at the end of the Bandersnatch trailer, as Stefan turns off the TV. Netflix is calling Bandersnatch a Black Mirror “event” instead of an episode, or a film as rumours have been claiming. There’s still no confirmation on whether this is the interactive thing Bloomberg reported on in October, but we don’t have to wait too long to find out now.
Black Mirror: Bandersnatch is out Friday, December 28 on Netflix.