Black Mirror fans came together to determine the best season – and the answer is not much of a surprise. It has long been argued that the show has ebbed and flowed over the years, and the most successful seasons were at the beginning of the series. However, there seems to be one major outlier. Ever wondered which season of Charlie Brooker’s anthology series was the most beloved? Well, Decider has got you covered, with just a little bit of help from Reddit.
Recently, a Reddit user united the Black Mirror community to ask a crucial question, and perhaps start a debate. “Let’s have a heated debate about which Season of Black Mirror was the best,” they wrote. “It was Season 3. Fight me.”
Unfortunately, a fight did not occur and the general consensus stated that Season 3 was the best season with an overwhelming 18 votes, at the time of reporting.
The popular season featured a number of highly-rated episodes, including fan-favorites “Nosedive”, “Shut Up and Dance”, and “San Junipero”, along with “Playtest”, “Men Against Fire”, and “Hated in the Nation”.
Two of these episodes were featured on Reddit’s recent ranking of scariest Black Mirror episodes and four of them are on Decider’s list of the 12 best Black Mirror episodes of all time. Frankly, what’s more interesting is the unsuspected runner-up — and the season that received zero votes.
The latest season, Season 6, ranked #2 on the list with a mere two votes. The installment tied with Season 4; however, one of Season 4’s votes came from a user who couldn’t decide between Season 3 and Season 4, which – if you ask me – cheapens the vote. The new season had a few sneaky, headline-breaking episodes, including “Joan Is Awful,” a starry take on the power of Netflix and artificial intelligence, as well as “Loch Henry,” which offered the biggest twist the series has ever seen.
Then, there’s the issue with Season 5, which received zero votes on the Reddit thread. While not short on star power — the season featured Anthony Mackie, Miley Cyrus, and Andrew Scott — many found that the episodes were underwhelming, underdeveloped, and lacked tonal consistency. The season failed to make it onto our two aforementioned lists, and all three episodes were previously deemed “not scary” by the same Reddit community.
With this said, how do we rank all the seasons of Black Mirror? Buckle in and continue reading for our ultimate ranking of the show’s seasons.
Black Mirror Season 5
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Best Episode: “Smithereens” (Season 5, Episode 2)
As mentioned above, Season 5 is a sore spot for many Black Mirror fans. Too many of the episodes failed to deliver the same emotional depth as the previous season. “Smithereens” was a standout, however, and certainly warrants the occasional re-watch.
Black Mirror Season 2
Best Episode: “White Bear” (Season 2, Episode 2)
The second season of Black Mirror isn’t bad, it’s just not as good as the rest. “White Bear” is a memorable watch and made the top of our ranking of the Top 12 episodes for its strong messaging on technology and its top-notch horror aspects. “Be Right Back” is also a beloved episode and emphasizes Brooker’s ability to write an utterly wrenching story.
Black Mirror Season 1
Best Episode: “Fifteen Million Merits” (Season 1, Episode 2)
Take me back to the start! The first season of Black Mirror was a triumphant achievement and paved the way for the greatness that succeeded it. “Fifteen Million Merits” and “The Entire History of You” effortlessly set the tone for what to expect from this anthology series when it comes to quality and impact.
Black Mirror Season 4
Best Episode: “Hang the DJ” (Season 4, Episode 4)
As expected given its high ranking on our list, Season 4 has several bangers. “Hang the DJ” is an underrated gem that has aged perfectly over the last few years and fully encapsulates the current online dating sphere. For me, a major signifier of a solid Black Mirror episode is its timelessness, and this episode passed the test. Season 4, you might not be #1, but you will always be famous.
Black Mirror Season 6
Best Episode: “Joan Is Awful” (Season 6, Episode 1)
Ho, ho, ho! Season 6, I’m your biggest fan. As stated above, Season 6 was a surprise contender on the Reddit list, and it can be argued that it has faired well due to the comparison to its predecessor, which is the epic fail of Season 5. Well, I’m here to say that the latest season delivered back-to-back hits with the first two episodes “Joan Is Awful” and “Loch Henry” nearly tying for best episode, and the next, “Beyond the Sea” remaining a valuable watch. That said, Season 6’s greatest accomplishment was making people excited for Black Mirror again.
Black Mirror Season 3
Best Episode: “San Junipero” (Season 3, Episode 4)
Reddit decided that Black Mirror Season 3 is the best season, and Decider agrees! Echoing the same statements echoed in the opening paragraphs, the season features many highly-rated episodes that span a variety of genres. The six episodes are innovative, affecting, and will definitely keep you on your toes.
Black Mirror is currently streaming on Netflix.