Univeristy of Tehran
With the advent of the ‘golden age of TV series’ and the entrance of acclaimed film directors such as David Lynch and Woody Allen into the TV series industry, the study of this medium has gained special interest among academic circles. Today, TV series such as Terminator: The Sara Conner Chronicles (2008-2009) or Westworld (2016-present) are read as complex cultural texts reflective of deep-seated collective anxieties rather than mere escapist entertainment and their philosophical merits are the subject of academic papers. The present article also aims to read a popular TV series from a critical perspective and disclose its subtextual cultural anxieties. The present study centres on ‘Nosedive’, the first episode of the third season of Charlie Brooker’s much acclaimed Black Mirror (2011-present). By drawing on Baudrillard’s postmodern theory and by reference to the cultural theory of Slavoj Žižek, I aim to expose the American character of the hyperreal condition displayed in this episode and disclose its sub-textual critique of the extremes of ‘PC’ culture.
Keywords: Hyperreality; Political Correctness; the Good/Evil; sanitized society; Black Mirror; Baudrillard