words & mix: Ansley Lee
Jason Baxter put together such a fun, upbeat mix for GLOW for Soundtracks before me so I figured it's only fair that I followed it up with the saddest possible mix I could carefully curate. Sorry guys, can’t help the way I am. Last November, I was out with friends when it came up that I was the only one who hadn’t seen the new season of Black Mirror. Not just the new season, but any episodes of Netflix’s take on the Twilight Zone in the “not so distant future”. “Oh you’d love it Ansley it’s so weird and dark and cool you’d love it!”
Glad that’s what comes to mind when people are suggesting media for me.
Each episode of Black Mirror is a stand alone story, some with ties to others but for the most part you can jump right in. So, in one weekend, I watched all three seasons (thirteen episodes) with minimal breaks.
No part of me is pretending like that was a good idea. Black Mirror is really hard to stomach sometimes. Not to mention, the following Wednesday night I cried in public with plenty of other Seattle residents at Neumos as Donald J Trump won the presidential election. These days, I really do think his entire presidency could be its own episode at this point.
But enough about that.
At its core, the episode “Be Right Back” explores how we create and maintain intimate relationships in a tech heavy society. I’m always simultaneously lonely and worried everyone I care about will leave me eventually. Which is true, right? We’re all going to die at some point, it’s just a matter of when. We have our blood and bones selves and our digital selves - the latter of which has a much longer shelf life. How do we reconcile the two? What do we leave behind and how do we find intimacy through pixels?
I’m scared of people. I say that a lot, I’ve realized. There’s so much power in intimacy, platonic and otherwise. We can’t control what happens when we care about someone. How much it hurts when they’re gone and how desperately we’ll seek any way to hold on to that feeling.
Enough about my feelings, here’s a Soundtrack for “Be Right Back”. I did really try to go moment for moment so the episode may warrant a rewatch.
Be careful with each other out there.