Black Mirror Reflection: Interlock

By Megan Manuel

Interlock is the name of a new company undergoing trials for a revolutionary new technology. The invention by the company is a helmet-shaped device that can be worn between two people, and a skill set can be transferred from one person to another.

For example, if someone is really good at chess, all they have to do is think about their chess ability, that part of their brain becomes stimulated, and the talent is transferred to the recipient wearing the matching headpiece. The new technology requires that the donor of a talent or knowledge set wear the headpiece while the recipient is also wearing it.

Steven is friends with Mark who works at Interlock. During a night of drinking, Mark tells Steven the secret of Interlock’s new technology and how the trials are showing incredible results. There was a surgeon who wore the device and a non-college educated 19-year-old wore the receptor and was able to perform a surgery on a mock-patient, and he had all the knowledge he needed regarding the medical procedure and the anesthesia, etc.

Steven is desperate to win the heart of Angela, who is a beautiful ballerina for the New York Metropolitan Ballet Company. They both live in New York. Steven works on Wall Street (and makes a lot of money) and he is a bit of a party animal, while Angela is very rigid and serious about her career.

To win her over, he has created a lie that he is a talented pianist, because he knows how much she loves music. Vlad, a Russian concert pianist, is scheduled to perform at a recital hall, and Steven sees an ad for the recital, but knows nothing about Vlad’s background.

Steven goes to the recital and watches how amazing he is, and then offers him $5,000 to wear the Interlock headpiece while Steven plays the piano. Vlad agrees, and they pick a date and time.

Steven sends an online invite to a piano recital that he will be giving to many of his friends and also to Sarah, his love interest. Many of his friends comment things like “I didn’t know you played piano!”

The night of the recital, Sarah shows up, and there are dozens of Steven’s friends and colleagues there. Mark ensures that both the men wear the headpieces, which are discreet enough for Steven to wear while he plays.

He plays beautifully because of Vlad’s talent that he sends through the headpiece. However, the headpieces must stay on for five hours to allow a cool down period, so when Stephen goes out with an impressed Sarah afterwards, he is still connected to Vlad.

It turns out, Vlad is a murderous psychopath. When they are walking alone after a nice dinner, Stephen goes into a fit of rage and kills Sarah – because Vlad is connected to him and sending his violent tendencies to Steven.

It turns out, Vlad had a history of violence and criminal activity back in Russia, and he was living under-the-radar in the United States. This episode shows that while such a technology could be incredible, it could also have terrible implications.

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