Bandersnatch and Dragon’s Lair

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The opening to Netflix’s Bandersnatch is a bit weird and then a little creepy. At first you think it’s a fake commercial, and then you realize that it’s an interactive video. It’s extremely well executed, but I couldn’t help but think about Dragon Lair from the 80s.

It was a unique arcade game in that it used laserdisc technology to lead you through a path of animated snippets. It’s important to remember that in the 80s high-quality realtime rendering wasn’t at all made into a reality, so the images appeared unusually “high-def” for the time. The only problem was that the laserdisc took a while for it to transport you to the next scene in the adventure.

Moral of the story? What was old can always become new again. But is it good? Well, like all videogames I play I gave up before making it to the end. I guess I’m an old-fashioned “loves an ending” kind of person. —JM

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