Netflix reveals Black Mirror Season 3 premiere at New York Comic Con

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Oct 8, 2016, 10:19 PM EDT (Updated)

Netflix premiered a never-before-seen episode of Black Mirror at New York Comic-Con on Saturday. The full third season won't be available for streaming until Oct. 21, but attendees were treated to an early glimpse at the British sci-fi anthology series. 


A small crowd watched the nearly 60-minute episode titled “Playtest,” starring Wyatt Russell (22 Jump Street, Everybody Wants Some) as Cooper, an American who stops in London to cap off a ‘round-the-world backpacking trip. After befriending a British journalist named Sonja (Hannah John-Kamen, who also appeared in the Black Mirror episode “Fifteen Million Merits”), Cooper discovers his ATM card has been compromised. With no funds to pay for the trip home, Sonja suggests he signs on to playtest a new video game developed by a secretive tech company — and sell an illicit photo of the new tech to the press. 

Following other believably near-future episodes of Black Mirror, the tech turns out to be an augmented reality device (described as the next step up from VR) that's implanted at the base of the skull. Cooper gets to play a CGI version of whack-a-mole before being offered a look at a new game that learns and adapts to his deepest fears — “The most personal survival horror game in history.” 

Black Mirror has consistently crafted mind-bending stories, and this episode (directed by 10 Cloverfield Lane's Dan Trachtenberg) is no exception. Cooper confronts an escalating series of horror movie tropes ranging from haunted houses to giant spiders. At first the gimmicks are easy for Cooper to laugh off, but eventually he faces true madness and the extent to which his action — or inaction — dooms the people he loves. 

Or is it all part of the game? 

If you've read this far you can probably handle one final spoiler: It wouldn't be Black Mirror without more than one twist ending. 

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