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Black Mirror creator asked ChatGPT to write episode for the series and it came out 's***'

Ben Thompson

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Black Mirror creator asked ChatGPT to write episode for the series and it came out 's***'

Featured Image Credit: PA Images / Alamy Stock Photo Netflix

With all the talk of artificial intelligence putting people out of work, one may wonder if the writers of their favourite TV shows will be the next to be made redundant.

But if you're a fan of Black Mirror, you need not fret.

Creator Charlie Brooker is apparently less than impressed with how ChatGPT measured when it came to writing an episode of his dystopian series.

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Fans of the Netflix anthology series have just over a week until the new season drops, returning for the first time in four years.

New episodes include the story of a woman whose life unexpectedly becomes the subject of a prestige TV drama and a mysterious episode set in the 1960s starring Aaron Paul.

Fans were left disappointed to only be getting five episodes after such a long wait between seasons - though they could have gotten a sixth episode written by AI... if ChatGPT had done a better job of penning it.

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Charlie Brooker said that he wasn't impressed with ChatGPT's attempt at writing a Black Mirror episode. Credit: Channel 4
Charlie Brooker said that he wasn't impressed with ChatGPT's attempt at writing a Black Mirror episode. Credit: Channel 4

Brooker told Empire: "I’ve toyed around with ChatGPT a bit.

"The first thing I did was type 'generate Black Mirror episode' and it comes up with something that, at first glance, reads plausibly, but on second glance, is s**t.

"Because all it’s done is look up all the synopses of Black Mirror episodes, and sort of mush them together.

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"Then if you dig a bit more deeply you go, 'Oh, there’s not actually any real original thought here.'

"It’s [1970s impressionist] Mike Yarwood — there’s a topical reference."

It is pretty meta in a way that the guy who made a show mirroring our dystopian reality would make use of one aspect of said dystopian reality.

Brooker admits that the AI bot has taught him a valuable lesson about writing: "I was aware that I had written lots of episodes where someone goes 'Oh, I was inside a computer the whole time!'

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"So I thought, 'I’m just going to chuck out any sense of what I think a Black Mirror episode is.'

"There’s no point in having an anthology show if you can’t break your own rules. Just a sort of nice, cold glass of water in the face."

Charlie Brooker admitted that ChatGPT's version of Black Mirror was s**t. Credit: ITV
Charlie Brooker admitted that ChatGPT's version of Black Mirror was s**t. Credit: ITV

Black Mirror is returning for its sixth season, with new episode 'Beyond The Sea' already been teased.

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According to Brooker, the episode is 'sort of dystopian past, present and future'.

"I had the plot idea first and then, at one point, I thought, “What if I set this in the late ’60s? That’d be, like, disruptive and cool!'

"And then when you actually come to write it, you realise, 'Oh, hang on, if this is a different time and everyone in it is from that time, that actually informs how the characters are thinking and behaving.'

"But I don’t think there was a deliberate rejection of nostalgia, so much as it was just a fun thing to do."

Black Mirror is set to return to Netflix on June 15.

Topics: Film & TV, Artificial Intelligence, Black Mirror, Netflix, Film and TV

Ben Thompson
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