The Emmys recently concluded and plenty of shows cleaned up nicely. What is somewhat surprising, however, is the Black Mirror: Bandersnatch Emmy win. This interactive television program from Netflix snagged the award for Outstanding Television Movie — and, depending on your definition, could be considered the first time a video game has won an Emmy award.
What is Black Mirror: Bandersnatch?
Black Mirror: Bandersnatch is an interactive movie hosted on Netflix. This special movie is set in the Black Mirror universe, a series that’s somewhat similar to The Twilight Zone which explores the evils of technology in various fantastical fashions.
A spinoff, standalone television movie called Black Mirror: Bandersnatch went a bit meta, in a sense. This is an interactive movie, meaning that the viewer can make decisions which determine the outcome of the story. The narrative focuses on a young game designer who is (rather appropriately) making his own choose-your-own-adventure game. According to Polygon, there are five possible endings, but more than a trillion different permutations in how you could experience the story. You can read more about Bandersnatch in our review which gave it a 6.5 out of 10.
Notably, this isn’t the first time that Netflix has made an interactive movie or show on their platform; Minecraft: Story Mode (the show, not the game) was all set to premiere in early November 2018. While it was unfortunately delayed, it later released on the streaming platform. They have also released several other kid focused interactive shows.
The Bandersnatch Emmy Win
The Black Mirror: Bandersnatch Emmy win may come as a bit of a surprise to some. Here were the nominees for the category of Outstanding Television Movie according to CBS:
- Black Mirror: Bandersnatch
- Deadwood: The Movie
- King Lear
- My Dinner with Herve
Interestingly, this could be considered the first time that a video game has won an Emmy. The definitions of what a video game is can vary, but a common definition is that it requires an element of interactivity and a failure state. Black Mirror: Bandersnatch has both going by this admittedly loose definition of a video game.
This nod from the Primetime Emmys may encourage Netflix to further experiment with interactive entertainment in the future. If you haven’t yet had the chance to check out Black Mirror: Bandersnatch, you can watch it on Netflix right now.
What do you think of the Black Mirror: Bandersnatch Emmy win? Do you think this counts as a video game winning an Emmy? Let us know in the comments below!