Black Mirror season six may have been worth waiting for, but we had to wait a long time for it. There was a four-year gap between season five and season six. But we’ve got good news for you because season seven won’t keep you waiting much longer: it’s going into production before the end of this year.

That’s according to industry bible Variety, which says that while the show hasn’t been cast yet, production is scheduled for late 2024 with Charlie Brooker, Annabel Jones and Jessica Rhoades back on board as executive producers. There’s no news as of yet regarding how many episodes there will be, let alone what they’ll be about.

What took Black Mirror so long to come back?

As the cliché goes, it’s complicated. As Variety explains, the rights for the show are somewhat tangled. When Brooker and Jones left their existing production company to set up a new one, the rights to Black Mirror didn’t move with them. And those are the rights that get licensed to Netflix so it can stream the show. Presumably things are more straightforward for season seven or it wouldn’t be going into production so soon after season six ended, which only aired this summer on the best streaming service.

Season six was a definite return to form for the best Netflix show with six star-studded episodes featuring A-listers including Salma Hayek, Aaron Paul and Annie Murphy. It was a longer run than the previous season, which only had three episodes. Collectively season six scored 78% on Rotten Tomatoes, up from 66% for season five but still down from the ratings of the first four seasons, which scored 98%, 87%, 86% and 85%.

Part of the reason for the lower scores is because it’s very hard to make a dystopian near-future show when the present day continues to get more dystopian. It’s become a cliché that the news sounds like a Black Mirror episode but just this month we’ve seen the allegedly pig-penetrating former Prime Minister David Cameron return to mainstream UK politics, a chainsaw-wielding anime fan with a 70s footballer haircut become president of Argentina and Elon Musk being, well, Elon Musk. How on earth do you satirise that?

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