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Black Mirror Season 4 Episode 1 Recap – USS Callister

BY Arabelle

Published 10 months ago

Black Mirror Season 4 Episode 1 Recap - USS Callister

Captain Daly asks for a report. His team explains everything to him when their spaceship takes damage. Captain Daly stands his ground. He orders Helmsman Packer to go into the asteroid gas cluster. Packer thinks it‘s a suicide, but Captain Daly thinks they can use the gas cluster to increase their ship‘s power. Packer takes the ship in. After a few seconds, they turn around and fire. They destroy Valdack’s ship. Everyone praises their captain for the successful attack.

Robert Daly gets down the elevator on the 13th floor. He tries to enter the facility, but it won’t let him in because he forgot to renew his system. Elena helps him to get in. He sees people plugged into Infinity, an immersive game from Callister Inc. Daly sees Nate in the corridor and calls him Helmsman Packer. Nate gets confused, so Daly takes it back immediately. He sees Nate about to make coffee, so he asks Nate if he can also make him one. Nate gets hesitant, but he just says yes. Robert stares at Shania who doesn‘t even greet him as she comes across. He makes his way to his office. Robert is the Chief Technical Officer of Callister Inc. He sits on his chair. Then someone knocks on his door.

The girl enters his office. He tells her his office is not the ladies’ bathroom. The girl introduces herself as Nanette Cole. Nanette tells Robert she will work in Callister Inc. that day. She just passed by his office to pass her admiration to him for designing the Infinity game. She tells him that Infinity‘s code is beautiful. Nanette looks around Robert’s office. James Walton enters and orders him to get the Infinity ready before Christmas. Robert has no choice but to follow him. James sees Nanette, so he introduces himself. He offers her a tour around the company.

Robert talks to Kabir. He asks him if he has the latest ETA on the update patch, but as Kabir tells him about the patch, Robert loses focus because he is staring at Nanette getting toured by James. Robert comes home. He gets a drink and attaches a chip to his temple. He runs Infinity, and as it goes live, he gets into the system to become Captain Daly where he becomes the sole authority of everyone. Captain Daly enters their spaceship and asks everyone if they have already found Valdack’s location. He chokes Walton when he says no. He orders everyone to find Valdack no matter what. Robert goes back to reality.

The next day, Robert watches Nanette talking to Walton. Kabir enters Daly’s office and tells him about the ETA. Nanette knocks on his door and asks him if he wants some coffee because she will make some for herself. Shania approaches Nanette and talks to her. She asks her how she‘s settling in. Nanette tells her everyone in the company is friendly, unlike her last job. She also says the two bosses are kind. Shania gets confused when Nanette says two bosses. The other one is Robert Daly. She tells Shania that Robert is the whole reason she works in Callister Inc. Shania asks if she has a thing for Robert. They don’t know that Robert is eavesdropping on their conversation. Nanette tells Shania it‘s purely professional, and she only likes his codes. Before Shania goes, she tells Nanette not to be too nice to him because he can be starey.

Everyone is going home. As the last one leaves, Robert takes the cap of Nanette‘s coffee from her trash bin home. She takes a sample of her saliva and adds it to his system — 16 hours before successful assimilation. The next day, James frustratingly enters Robert’s office to tell him that the ETA on Christmas Eve is not okay. James leaves. Robert just stares at Nanette as her assimilation into the system completes.

Nanette wakes up confused. She roams around the spaceship. Nanette enters the room where everyone is staying. James offers her a drink, but she just asks them if she‘s dreaming. Shania tells her she‘s not. She asks Nanette‘s name. Nanette tells Shania they have met already, but Shania just says maybe. Nanette is confused. She wants to know what’s going on. Kabir tells her she‘s onboard Robert Daly‘s USS Callister ship. Nanette sees Nate Packer, Kabir Dudani, and Elena Tulaska. Elena tells her that her blue skin is sort of racist. Nanette almost faints, but Shania catches her and lets her sit. James and Nate ask her how they look outside and what year it is. She gets even more confused because she just saw Nate before entering the spaceship. Shania tells her they are inside the modded version of Infinity to look like Robert‘s favorite TV show.

Nanette reasons Infinity is an online multiplayer game, but Kabir cuts her and tells her that the Infinity version they are in is Robert‘s development build, sealed offline for his own control. Nanette asks how they will leave. Shania tells her there’s no way they can leave because they are not real, just a copy of who they are in the real world. Nanette stands that she is her. Kabir tells her Robert created a digital version of themselves from their DNA. He brings them in for what they did to him in the office. Nanette still convinces herself that all she sees is just a dream. Nate tries to stop her when she tries to run out of the room, but she shoves him off and leaves the room. She finds a way to get out until Robert teleports her back to the room. Captain Daly orders Nanette to take her post, but Nanette refuses to follow his order. Captain Daly tells her an order is an order, so she must follow everything according to his will. Daly uses his power to force Nanette to follow him until she agrees.

Captain Daly orders Lieutenant Cole to find Valdack’s hideout. She tells him Valdack is on a Class Five planet. Daly tells Kabir to transport them — James, Shania, Nate, Nanette, and him — into the planet. They find themselves in a deserted area. Captain Daly tracks the crystal and tells everyone to follow him. Nanette calls Nate and tells him to attack Captain Daly because he has a gun. But Nate tells her she should call themselves by their fleet names because Robert wants to. He adds that Robert is technically invincible in the game. Valdack shows up with his monster — Arachnajax. The monster approaches, almost attacking Captain Daly‘s team when his phone beeps — pizza delivery. Robert pauses the game. Everyone just goes with the flow. Valdack and the monster also work at Callister Inc. James asks Gillian how she is. Shania and Nate tell Nanette that Captain Daly turned her into a monster when she disobeyed orders. Shania adds that Captain Daly turns them into monsters for everyone who steps out of the line. Robert returns as Captain Daly and shoots Valdack. They all go back to the spaceship to celebrate. Daly kisses Shania and Elena. But when he tries to kiss Nanette, she slaps him.

Daly exits the game. Nanette tells everyone there is no way she will kiss Daly. Shania says at least there is no tongue involved, so she‘ll get used to it. She adds that it can‘t get beyond kissing. James strips in front of her to see that he has no genitals. James tells her there are no genitals in Space Fleet. Nanette tells everyone she won‘t just take it all, so she asks everyone to help her take down Robert. James tells her they have tried many times, but they all failed. He adds that Robert is an asshole god in the game.

Nanette disagrees and says Daly is smart, but he is not a god. He is a coder and infallible. Nanette thinks of an idea. She tries to open the code, and she succeeds. They need to invite a friend that could help them. Nanette sends herself an invite, but it‘s under the name of Robert Daly. The Nanette in the real world has just arrived at work when she receives the invite. She gets confused, so when she sees Robert Daly, she asks him about the Infinity invite she received. Robert tells her he didn’t send any. Nanette says she got an Infinity invite saying people are trapped inside the game. Robert knows what is happening, so he plugs in earlier than usual.

Nanette celebrates because she thinks that Nanette in the real world received her invitation. She thought they could get out, but Captain Daly is already at the door. Everyone is quiet and anxious. Captain Daly is fuming mad. Nanette tells him it‘s all her. She‘s the one who sent the invite, and no one is involved in what she did. Nanette tells Daly that he is sick, so he needs help. Captain Daly is ready to punish Nanette when Shania goes in front of her to plead. She begs him to let Nanette go because she is new and will behave. They all thought Robert agreed, but he turned Shania into a monster. Nanette gets scared. Captain Daly tells Packer to find a planet they can throw Shania to.

Nanette is crying alone when she sees something — the update patch. She tells everyone the plan; everyone agrees except for Walton. Walton tells them it‘s because of his son, Tommy. When the real James brought him to work, Daly made a copy of Tommy out of the lollipop he left on a table. Inside the game, Daly threw Tommy into space while his father, James, watched. James says that even if it‘s just a copy of his son, he knows Daly can do it repeatedly as long as he has Tommy‘s DNA from the lollipop. It goes the same for the others. Nanette assures James they can get the lollipop, but he has to believe her.

Robert plugs in. He‘s happy to see Nanette already in her position. Nanette tells him there‘s a distress signal in Skillane IV. Captain Daly is about to call the team to go, but Nanette suggests for only the both of them to go. Captain Daly agrees. Nanette tries to seduce Daly until he gives in. As soon as Captain Daly drops the omnicorder, Kabir teleports it back to the ship. They plug it in and access Nanette‘s PhotoCloud account. They blackmail the real Nanette to follow their instructions. Nanette arrives at Daly’s unit balcony and orders pizza. Kabir transports the omnicorder back, so Daly can pause the game once the pizza arrives. The omnicorder rings, so he pauses the game. Nanette tells Kabir to transport her back to the ship. Their plan goes smoothly. Everyone inside the spaceship flies away from Captain Daly. When Robert returns to his computer, he tries to resume the game, but it won’t let him. He gets his backup and resumes the game. He doesn‘t see Nanette, so he contacts the team.

Captain Daly realizes what‘s happening as soon as the computer gives him information. He starts chasing his team to punish them. Nanette tells Nate they should go through the asteroid belt to get to the wormhole faster, but after passing through it, the engine stops. James tries to fix the engine to restore power while talking with Robert to buy them some time. He fixes the engine, but it burns him to death. They successfully enter the wormhole. Everyone returns to their real look and body, including Shania. They are all back into the cloud. Daly is left alone in the Space Fleet, unable to exit the game. The firewall has detected the rogue code and initiates deletion while he‘s still plugged in. Nanette becomes the ship’s new captain.

Our Thoughts

Genius has gone bad — that is Robert Daly. He used his coding prowess to create an alternate world where he could just do whatever he wanted because he was in control. He used it to take revenge on his workmates, especially those mistreating him. Is this how technology should be used? Is it just to reason that just because you feel you are bullied, you can harness technology to take revenge? Whatever it is, what matters, in the end, is still what Captain Daly said literally with no strings attached: “Space Fleet never turns their back to those who need help.”

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