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AIBU to think that the new series of Black Mirror somewhat trivialises so-called "child porn"? SPOILERS.

(33 Posts)
RoundandAroundSheGoes Mon 24-Oct-16 14:20:38

Not sure if anyone's seen this, but there's an episode where people are blackmailed into committing crimes by hackers. The young boy is shown as vulnerable/a character to sympathise with throughout. You are basically left thinking he's been done wrong, and that being filmed wanking isn't a particularly bad crime.

Then you discover he's looked at child abuse and masturbated over it.

AIBU to think that this was in bad taste?

bumsexatthebingo Mon 24-Oct-16 14:25:53

I don't think it trivialises it. It's just a twist at the end that the character you have been sympathising with throughout is not what you thought. The last 30 seconds of the show completely changes how you view key things that happened earlier. He is arrested and his family disgusted with him. I don't think it makes light of the crime or anything??

Fortybingowings Mon 24-Oct-16 14:30:01

I hate Black Mirror. I watched one episode where the PM was blackmailed into having sex with a pig. It made me feel sick and I complained to OFFCOM. Never watched it since. Over-rated sensationalist crap

RoundandAroundSheGoes Mon 24-Oct-16 14:32:37

He is arrested and his family disgusted with him. I don't think it makes light of the crime or anything??

I think I just struggled with him being portrayed as a sympathetic character, and having to watch him cry and feel sorry for himself, when he'd knowingly masturbated to child abuse.

RoundandAroundSheGoes Mon 24-Oct-16 14:33:08

Also paedophiles often use the rhetoric "it was only once, it's ruined my life" etc when the victims are the ones that actually suffer.

RoundandAroundSheGoes Mon 24-Oct-16 14:33:14

Also paedophiles often use the rhetoric "it was only once, it's ruined my life" etc when the victims are the ones that actually suffer.

BowieFan Mon 24-Oct-16 14:35:45

Yes, YABU. The whole point of Black Mirror is to subvert your expectations. It's like Tales of the Unexpected or The Twilight Zone - we think we know the story but then the last section completely subverts and changes your point of view.

I've seen the episode and I think you've got it completely wrong. The him viewing abusive images is there to make us question our instincts - should we still see him as a victim or did he deserve what he got? That's the whole point of the episode. It's not trivialising anything.

Gowgirl Mon 24-Oct-16 14:36:02

Bugger I have not seen that one yet!
Black mirror has always been about seeing human nature through a dark glass, the black mirror is your screen so to speak, so its unlikely to trivalise pornography and more likely to be about how the screen controls your life and the way people view you. But I will watch tonight with this thread in mind...

bumsexatthebingo Mon 24-Oct-16 14:38:07

Well I think that was the idea. You were supposed to think he was the victim being filmed and blackmailed though it never actually said what he was viewing. I thought it was incredibly cleverly done but very dark which they always are.

BowieFan Mon 24-Oct-16 14:38:11

Fortybingowings

Why? Are you not able to understand fiction? The whole point of that episode was that we are so distracted by the latest sensationalist story that things often slip by unnoticed. If people had been doing their jobs, they'd have found the Princess when she was released early and the PM wouldn't have had to do what he did. The point was that everybody was so focused on seeing the PM fucking a pig that they lost sight of why he was going to have to do that.

Can't believe you complained to Ofcom just because you didn't understand something.

Trifleorbust Mon 24-Oct-16 14:40:35

I didn't get it even when it happened - I thought there had been some sort of clever trickery and everyone thought he had been looking at child porn when he hadn't confused

ButtermilkNebula Mon 24-Oct-16 14:40:48

I won't be watching the new episodes as like pp I was disgusted by the one depicting PM being cooerced into sex with a pig. This really upset me at the time as the PM character was essentially sexually abused/raped as a hilarous and witty punchline. Delightful!

OneManBucket Mon 24-Oct-16 14:44:38

It wasn't supposed to be funny was it? I think it was showing up people who would think that sort of thing is funny and not realise he was being sexually abused and judging a society that would be all too gleeful at the prospect of a prime minister having sex with a pig and actually tuned in to watch. A decent person wouldn't turn on their tv...that was the point.

ButtermilkNebula Mon 24-Oct-16 14:45:23

BowieFan I understand fiction and I understand perfectly what the pig episode was trying to convey, which was actually a clever point that needed making. Don't agree with the means though. Forcing a man to fuck a pig is such a crass and heavy handed way to make the point and very insenstive to survivors of rape and sexual abuse imo.

bumsexatthebingo Mon 24-Oct-16 14:46:08

The actor didn't actually fuck the pig.

RoundandAroundSheGoes Mon 24-Oct-16 14:46:34

I dunno, I felt like the idea of the episode was to make a point about privacy invasion and the media ruining peoples' lives. I don't put the use of a prostitute on the same level of child abuse and think it was a lazy way to shock people that used CA as a kind of gimmick. I might have just been looking at it wrong, but it seemed strange and not really inkeeping with the Black Mirror I love.

ButtermilkNebula Mon 24-Oct-16 14:51:16

OneManBucket that is a good point. Maybe you are right there. Perhaps it would have gone down better with me if they hadn't actually shown the pig fucking scene. Doesn't viewing that for titilation make us no better than the fictional population? Maybe watching that is what tipped it over the line for me.

Also I do think I remember Charlie Brooker commenting that he thought the pig fucking was a funny idea and built the episode around that concept. I do still think it is meant to be a "joke" about how far politicians will degrade themselves to please the public.

BowieFan Mon 24-Oct-16 14:51:28

ButtermilkNebula

But the point was well made. It had to be extreme to get the point across. We've become so desensitised to things that there are people who would genuinely tune in to watch the PM fuck a pig just for fun - you saw that when they showed the whole pub watching. Nobody cared about the Princess in the end - that's why nobody noticed that she'd been released early or that the finger wasn't even hers.

Everybody watched that PM on TV because rightly or wrongly we associate screens with fiction. We have learned to disassociate from what we see on TV. That's exactly the point of the episode and the whole series. Yes, the PM was abused but people can't see that because they see it as TV and thus fiction automatically.

ButtermilkNebula Mon 24-Oct-16 14:52:17

Thanks bumsex for clarifying that very helpful contribution confused

myownprivateidaho Mon 24-Oct-16 14:52:43

I'm a bit torn about Black Mirror. It is very well done and a lot better than a lot of stuff, but it does seem to be the same thing every time, deriving it's "punch" from a twist that invokes something really upsetting and implies the viewer is somehow complicit in it. I get that Charlie Brooker is trying to say that audiences' demand for a narrative about certain crimes almost create the conditions for their perpetration. And I think that that is a subtle and interesting point. However, it almost seems that Black Mirror does exactly the same thing by invoking these issues as a device to work on the viewer's emotions.

Mrsemcgregor Mon 24-Oct-16 14:55:36

It was one of my least favourite but I think the point it was trying to make was that the people who had done bad yet not child abuse bad (i.e., cheated on wife, racist email etc) had to play part in the ultimate punishment of the two child abusers. They had to fight to the death. The others got off with having their indescretions exposed.

The child abusers paid the biggest price.

The fact we were lead to feel bad for the kid was highlighting the fact that you can never tell who these people are, they could be the sweet young man next door.

bumsexatthebingo Mon 24-Oct-16 14:57:31

The paedophiles got the harshest sentence though. One of them was killed while the other was beaten half to death and led off by the police. The racist woman presumably just lost her job and the adulterer his wife. So we are left wondering at the end whether the hackers (who had been the bad guys all the way through) had actually just given people what they deserved.

BowieFan Mon 24-Oct-16 14:59:28

myownprivateidaho

But it's exactly like The Twilight Zone in that regard. The whole point of the Twilight Zone was always things like "if we don't stop what we're doing, this is what happens."

To me, it felt like the episode in question was saying that a paedophile can be anyone. We don't want to see a young nice looking bloke who is a paedophile but they do exist. It subverts your expectations because, compared to the other people in the episode, for 90% of the running time we think the lad has done nothing wrong except have a wank. It's only at the end that we realise what he's done and we're forced to question was he a victim himself or did he deserve what he got.

RoundandAroundSheGoes Mon 24-Oct-16 15:02:25

The child abusers paid the biggest price.

The fact we were lead to feel bad for the kid was highlighting the fact that you can never tell who these people are, they could be the sweet young man next door.

Ah thanks, that makes a lot of sense. I didn't consider that. Very informative points.

RoundandAroundSheGoes Mon 24-Oct-16 15:03:10

It's only at the end that we realise what he's done and we're forced to question was he a victim himself or did he deserve what he got.

True. I think I just got distracted by the actual crime and felt outraged, rather than picking it apart.

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