Discussion Questions: Dystopian Comparisons


Fifteen Million Merits presents the second episode contained in the first series of the British science fiction, Black Mirrors. It was written by Charles Brooker and Kanak Huq. It offers a satiric entertainment show, and the peoples’ thirst for distraction presented in a sarcastic version of the future reality (Greg 124). In the movie, people live in an enormous space, which is enclosed, and one that has a video screen covering nearly all surface offering personalized entertainment. Bingham ‘’Bing’’ Madsen a character in it has inherited 15 million merits from his dead brother.

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The Circles, on the other hand, is an American thriller where a woman lands in her dream job at a dominant tech company by the name the Circles. She is very happy for that but shortly realizes that it has an agenda that will affect the lives of all humanity. In the movie, Emma Watson is the main character who goes through a lot of challenges trying to save the humanity (Straughan).  Finally, Brave New World is a novel that was published in 1992 by Aldous Huxley (Huxley). Aldous educates the people that economic chaos and unemployment will, in future, bring them radical reactions in the form of a methodical global systematic realm that develops its citizens in the workshop on a eugenic foundation, without the need for human intercourse.

Emma in The Circles and Bingham ‘’Bing’’ Madsen in Fifteen Million Merits are similar in character to Barnard in Brave New World. Barnard Marx is the main character in Brave New World and is depicted as a very clever and cautious person who takes time to think before taking any step. Just like him, Emma, after getting her dream job, is happy after realizing what the company intends to do. She is very cautious and is illustrated as a brave person determined to save the community. In the movie, she is depicted as a strong person, who is ready to go to whatever extent, to ensure that no one is harmed. Finally, Bingham ‘’Bing’’ Madsen, after his brother died and he inherited 15 million merits, becomes somewhat proud that he skips advertisements at will. Using these illustrations, it is evident that there are numerous similarities in the characters.

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  1. Huxley, Aldous. Brave new world. Ernst Klett Sprachen, 2008.
  2. Singh, Greg. “Recognition and the image of mastery as themes in Black Mirror (Channel 4, 2011–present): an eco-Jungian approach to ‘always-on’ culture.” International Journal of Jungian Studies 6.2 (2014): 120-132.
  3. Straughan, See. “Heforshe: Emma Watson’s Empty Promise That When Women’s Problems Are Solved, Men Will Be Free Too”. Thejournal.Ie, 2017.
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