Saturday, February 4, 2017

Mr.Robot + Black Mirror + Inauguration = Tristesse X Hopelessness

Southern Poverty Law Center's Hate Map, screen capture 4February 2017
Back in January, I was stuck in a coach seat for 5 hours on a flight to Atlanta on a business trip.  My company decided it would save money by having all employees travel by coach globally, so instead of working and being productive on my company laptop on projects and presentations that I needed to get done, I watched Mr Robot, season 2, on the 4 x 6 inch screen on the back of the Delta Economy seat I had in row 35 of a 38 row 737 out of San Diego.  I'd not seen season 1 yet, but WOW, Rami Malek's & Christian Slater's performances and Sam Esmail's writing and directing is impressive, moving, engaging, amazing. Link here:

I made it through the first 4 episodes on my way East, before Inauguration day, and episodes 5-11.5 on the 6 hours in-seat on the way back West, the week after Inauguration day.  After working for 2.5 days at home, some kind of viral or bacterial infection set into my upper respiratory tract that made it impossible to work (talk, think, sit upright, answer email) last Thursday and Friday.  Stuck on the couch, I found that Amazon had Season 1, which I dove through in-between napping and resting on my sick days off.

The more news I listened to since returning home, or social media I visited online, the more national stupidity (mostly willful stupidity) I encountered, and I sunk deeper into a darkness that inspired me to look for "Mirror Black".  Well, I found a Funny-or-Die "Mirror Black" 2 minute spoof on Amazon that was amusing... but it was not Black Mirror on Netflix that I'd heard so much about: "The New Twilight Zone", riveting, enthralling, frightening... Well, Friday afternoon, night and all day Saturday (today) I spent watching Seasons 1, 2, and 3 of Black Mirror.  "Depressed" ... "disheartened" ... "keenly aware of threats"... "rather hopeless" ... this is the darkness that has descended over me.

With a white supremacist from fake news "Brietbart" named to Drumpf's national security council (links here, here, and here) pushing his fear & hatred agenda into POTUS's ear while violent domestic fringe groups cheer and "retweet" (Hate Map here, so you can see who is indoor backyard who really hates you)... my binge watching of such depressing material was fueled amply.  I will never look at another CD, DVD, USB port, social media post, "like", or online "comment" again in the same way that I had for the previous 1/4 century that the internet has existed and has been accessible to the masses.  "Dystopian" should not be applied to Mr Robot nor Black Mirror, since the future predicted in both series is far darker, depressing, and unsustainably self-destructive than "Dystopian" typically implies.

I think I am probably not going to post too much this year.  Backlash from the right wing fringe who have hijacked our democracy, including Federal scrutiny is something I don't want to have to deal with, and possibly something that I don't have the band-width to deal with, as I analyze all the Black Mirror and Mr Robot data I've recently assimilated.  I need to digest, ruminate, and consider the rapid degradation of rights in Umerika and to the whole planet has experienced in the last 2 weeks.... and perhaps we all won't be here in another 2 or 3 months with the patients running the asylum as they are.

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