Black Mirror Reflection: Road Rage

Road Rage
By Mollie Bradford

It is the year 2085, and driving oneself is overrated.  The only mode of transportation is by the use of self-driving cars.  The cars are government-owned and operated through the use of a phone app and identification cards, or “ICs.”

These ICs are driver’s licenses and credit cards in one, with citizens’ everyday schedules, money, and personal information ingrained in them.  Citizens simply connect the app to their ICs, and the app reserves cars for every event of the day.

The app monitors traffic flow and distance between the locations so that the car arrives automatically with enough time to arrive to the location.  When the car arrives, the client swipes the IC against a pad, to prove identification. The car knows where to go and how to get there already, so the client simply sits and watches a movie on what used to be the front windshield.

Until the age of 16, parents must order cars for their children, but children are permitted to ride alone, as long as the parents order and swipe.

The characters in this episode are two married, prominent politicians, Joel and Erin Mallaw, and their children, Jessica and Robert.  The children are aged 12 and 9, respectively.  The family lives right outside of Washington, D.C.

Scenes flip back and forth between the family using the self-driving cars separately—so each member, including the children, can leave when fits their schedule best—and a covert terrorist group.

The terrorists are hacking into the cars to orchestrate a mass attack on all of USA.  They slowly start building uncertainty about the cars by hacking into a few throughout the country and causing accidents to kill the passengers.  One such victim is Jessica Mallaw on the way to band practice.  Joel and Erin begin to catch one, but no one believes them, calling it grief-stricken paranoia.

Terrorists notice how close the Mallaws are and kill Robert too. The Mallaws begin fighting even harder. The terrorist group hacks into every car in USA, forces them to drive to various locations to blow them up.  Thankfully, the Mallaws were not in cars and found the terrorist base and stopped them before they succeeded.

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