Black Mirror: Bandersnatch is loaded with references to the Black Mirror universe. In the latest adaptation, it takes place in England of July 1984, when a young programmer named Stefan Butler, played by Fionn Whitehead, dreams of adapting a massive “choose your own adventure” book called Bandersnatch. Written by infamously tragic writer Jerome F. Davies, Stefan hopes his video game version will be revolutionary.
Since the Black Mirror universe is so vast, there are oodles of connections between it and Bandersnatch. However, we only have room for 10, so here they are: 10 references in Bandersnatch that tie it to the Black Mirror universe.
*Warning: Spoiler alerts ahead*
10. Video Games
When Stefan arrives at the Tuckersoft studio, you see two not-very-subtle references to previous episodes “Metalhead” and “Nosedive.” Here, they are stylized into 8-bit games titled “Metl Hedd” and “Nohzdyve.” While the content of the game “Nohzdyve” isn’t really related to the episode, the small bit of gameplay footage we get to see of “Metl Hedd” does seem to directly correspond to the events of the episode with which it shares its title. There's no way the titles are a coincidence either, this was done on purpose.
9. Saint Juniper
During the film, depending on choices made, Stefan will sometimes visit his doctor, Dr. R. Haynes, at the Saint Juniper Medical Practice. Saint Juniper is the English version of San Junipero, with the episode of the same name. As well, it is the name of the hospital that the “Black Museum” curator worked at. And while we're speaking of the curator...
8. Dr. R. Haynes
The curator of the Black Museum, from the episode of the same title, is named Rolo Haynes. Is it possible that there is a family connection of employees who work at Saint Juniper institutes in the Black Mirror universe? This also raises the question of an early version of TCKR Systems being involved. TCKR Systems sounds an awful lot like Tuckersoft, doesn't it?
7. White Bear Glyph
The glyph that became an obsession for Bandersnatch author Jerome F. Davies is meant to replicate the structure of a flowchart and relates to choice, or the illusion thereof. Stefan becomes obsessed with it too, studying the crime scene photos in the documentary about Davies. It’s also seen as graffiti when Stefan is riding the bus early on in the film. It also references the masks worn in the episode “White Bear.” When Bandersnatch gets to the moment in which you can choose to tell Stefan about the glyph, it’s been stylized in a way that makes it look identical to the symbol from “White Bear.” Seeing this glyph pop up in various episodes kind of proves that this universe is intertwined.
6. BRB Software
In one particular ending to Bandersnatch, you’ll see a newspaper cover from the Sun that references four other Black Mirror episodes. The main story, of course, is about Stefan Butler chopping up the body of his father, but there are three snippets in the sidebar that refer to other events in the Black Mirror universe.
The first reads: “Futuristic ‘love machine’ is being developed by BRB software. The developers hope to connect people with their perfect match. For our lonely hearts go to Page 20.” This “love machine” sounds could be the dating app we see in the episode “Hang the DJ,” while the name of the software company seems to reference the episode “Be Right Back.”
5. Space Fleet
The second blurb on the Sun's cover is titled “Space Fleet.” The sidebar clipping reads, “The long-awaited third chapter of Space Fleet has been aired. The popular sci-fi TV show continues to win over viewers. Full Review on Page 12.” If you can remember, Space Fleet is the program that inspires Robert Daly (Jesse Plemons) from the episode “USS Callister.” Later, during a different Bandersnatch storyline that jumps ahead to the present day, a UKN TV report also teases about a Space Fleet reunion at the Emmy's.
4. Hot Shot
The final newspaper sidebar snippet goes all the way back to season one for its Easter egg. Its headline is “15 Million Talent Team” and it reads: “‘Hot Shot' talent show to start a new series in the beginning of 1985. If you think you have what it takes, see Page 10 for details.” Black Mirror fans will know that it’s no mere talent show: It’s a reference to a TV show in the episode “Fifteen Million Merits” that pits people against each other in a singing competition.
In the ending scene where Stefan is sent to prison, we see a time jump to the present day. In the background we see a TV tuned to UKN News with a news scroll at the bottom of the screen. The first headline reads “Granular to Unveil Prototype Pollinator Drone.” This pollinator drone will later become the ADIs (or Automated Drone Insects) seen in “Hated In The Nation.” As you can see from this scene, we have some eagle eyed fans on our hands.
In the same news scroll, we get an update on two previously mentioned politicians in Black Mirror’s version of the UK. The first is the headline “Former PM Michael Callow Wins Celebrity Bake-Off.” Last seen in “The National Anthem,” Callow was forced to perform indecent acts on live TV. As well, as see the line “Liam Monroe Enters Buckingham Palace.” Mr. Monroe is the conservative candidate who won the by-election in “The Waldo Moment.” As you can see, it seems that he’s been moving up in the political ladder while Callow continues to make hopefully less-embarrassing TV appearances. Time will tell, though.
1. Memory Recall
The final bit of news is yet another Black Mirror reference that reads “UK Police Test Groundbreaking Memory Recall Device.” This would later become the Recaller from the episode “Crocodile” that would allow police and insurance companies to access people’s memories in order to verify claims or gather evidence.