Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Black Mirror: Bandersnatch Features Secret Scenes That Viewers May Never Access

Black Mirror: Bandersnatch is even more complex than it seems. 

The interactive event film that feels much like the game the lead character creates has spellbound Netflix viewers from the moment it launch on the platform on December 28. A standalone installment in the Black Mirror anthology that dropped in a surprise reveal ahead of the series' official fifth seasonBandersnatch places the audience in control of the story, presenting them with various narrative options — choices they must make — that result in several story paths and, ultimately, various endings, too. 

Those who got sucked into the Bandersnatch madness may have discovered through multiple plays that there are about five clear conclusions to the story, but Black Mirror creator Charlie Brooker says there are even more. And according to Bandersnatch director David Slade, who also helmed the "Metalhead" episode of Black Mirror season 4, the story contains multiple secret scenes leading up to these endings that viewers may never be able to access, simply because they're nearly impossible to get to. 

"I don't know how many endings there actually are — I think I've forgotten," Brooker shared with The Hollywood Reporter, revealing that the film includes more than the five "definitive" endings viewers (and his producing partner Annabel Jones) have suggested there are. Bandersnatch producer Russell McLean feels there are between 10 and 12 possible outcomes, with some "less definitive" than others. 

Slade then explained that Bandersnatch contains hard-to-reach "golden eggs" that watchers might never unlock, as the trails that lead to them are too narrow. There's one scene that not even the Bandersnatch team can get ahold of — and they're the ones who created it! 

"There are scenes that some people just will never see and we had to make sure that we were OK with that," Slade shared. "We actually shot a scene that we can't access."

Netflix holds strong in saying that Bandersnatch does contain five "main" endings, but because roughly five hours of footage was captured for the film, there are a ton more options that can be discovered. Unfortunately, some of these files are trapped behind locked-shut doors that may remain closed forever. 

So, would the team ever consider releasing a linear cut of Bandersnatch that includes additional footage and an ending that can be universally experienced? Sorry to burst the bubbles of anyone hoping that would happen, but it's highly unlikely, as it would suggest there is a "right" ending to Bandersnatch when there really isn't one. As Slade explained, there is no correct way to experience Bandersnatch: "It ends once you're finished. There is no specific way. I'll just tell you my favorite scenes. Charlie will just tell you the most logical way to go through it. It won't be the best. Or the way. There is no way."

Jones added that "various endings won't be opened up" to viewers who "haven't made certain decisions," which further connects to the ideas of free will and morality that Bandersnatch explores through its central character, Stefan Butler, played by 2017 breakout star Fionn Whitehead

"It's all thematically cohesive in that sense. All of the 'endings' hopefully all build to one world in which Stefan has fallen into, and all of them make sense and are possible alternative parallel universes for him," said Jones. "What we didn't want to do is create something so arbitrary with multiple endings that feel meaningless, because I don't feel like there's a truth if there are so many endings that are all disjointed. There's no correct route, but all endings should feel that they belong to the whole world and that you are experiencing one young man's mental breakdown, grasp on reality, or parallel reality path."

As tempting as it is to comb through Bandersnatch, obsessing over each option that may open up a new path and uncover something no one has experienced before, the film does actually arrive at a stopping point that feels quite natural. "Eventually, there is a point that you will arrive at just credits. But that means you've seen almost everything," said Brooker. 

Even if you do end up spending the first few days of 2019 stopping and starting Bandersnatch over and over again trying to defy the odds and see the super-rare footage, the film's team at least hopes it is a rewarding experience. Like Jones said, "Regardless of whatever route you take, it should feel that there has been a richness of emotion and experience that you would have enjoyed."