Black Mirror fans were devastated when the series was taken off Channel 4 and moved over to subscription service Netflix for season 3, and you'll still need a subscription for the upcoming fifth season. But it is possible to stream Black Mirror for free.
We explain what to expect from Black Mirror season 5, when to expect it, and how to watch the show so far.
When is Black Mirror back on?
Netflix hasn't announced a release date for Black Mirror season 5 yet, but we can probably expect it some time in late 2018. Season 3 dropped in October 2016, with season 4 just over a year later in December 2017, so for now we reckon December 2018 is a fairly safe bet.
There's no word on how may episodes to expect, but since both of the previous seasons were six episodes long, that's probably a good bet.
Watch the season 5 trailer
We don't have any proper footage from the show's fifth season yet - it's not even clear if it's begun production yet - but we do have a brief teaser for the show released by Netflix, confirming the return. Featuring glimpses at some of the show's best episodes, it ends with a promise to 'Be Right Back' - which fans will recognise as the name of a season 2 episode.
The future will be brighter than ever. pic.twitter.com/slVeg3VPd7— Black Mirror (@blackmirror) March 5, 2018
What is Black Mirror?
One of the sleeper hits of recent times, Black Mirror is making a sensational return. Charlie Brooker, the man behind cult classics such as Nathan Barley, debuted Black Mirror on Channel 4 back in 2011 to rave reviews.
Its depiction of life in a universe slightly ahead and slightly parallel to our own was stark – technology took a centre stage as morality, violence, sex and human interaction blurred to tell ambiguous tales of dystopia. So far, so bleak.
After Mad Men’s Jon Hamm featured in the 2014 Christmas special, Black Mirror made the jump to Netflix for its third season, and got bigger with stars like Bryce Dallas Howard (Jurassic World, The Help) at the helm to ramp up global interest in the fatal flaws of the human condition. Technology, and our reliance on and addiction to it, often takes centre stage.
One of the most intriguing rumours about the upcoming season is that it will feature a very novel twist: an interactive episode. Much like the old choose-your-own-adventure books (or a lot of modern videogames), the format would see viewers get to decide what happens at certain key points in the story with different things happening as a result.
Netflix has already tested the tech on a handful of kids animations, and is planning to use it on a bigger scale in an upcoming Minecraft TV show, but Bloomberg reports that the company now has plans to expand it to more adult dramas - starting with Black Mirror before moving onto others, apparently including two videogame adaptations - that upcoming Witcher show, anyone?
How to watch Black Mirror free online
Black Mirror is exclusive to Netflix, and is released as an entire season rather than a staggered release. That means you'll be able to binge-watch the show, so long as you can stomach it.
Netflix offers a free one-month trial, which means that if you get the timing right you can watch the entirety of Black Mirror so far for free if you're new to Netflix.
Otherwise, Netflix costs from just £5.99/$7.99 per month, and currently offers not only the seasons it produced but also the first two seasons, originally aired on Channel 4.