Black Mirror creators Charlie Brooker and Annabel Jones presents this satirical look at the previous year in Death to 2020. The year 2020 started with the threat of World War III and ended with an election, all with the cloud of a global pandemic hanging over it. A number of so-called experts breakdown the year that was, including interviews with journalist Dash Bracket (Samuel L. Jackson) of the New Yorkerly News, historian Tennyson Foss (Hugh Grant), non-official conservative spokesman Jeanetta Grace Susan (Lisa Kudrow), behavioral scientist Dr. Maggie Gravel (Leslie Jones), gig economy millennial Duke Goolies (Joe Keery), tech CEO Bark Multiverse (Kumail Nanjiani), Queen Elizabeth II (Tracey Ulman), self-described soccer mom Kathy Flowers (Cristin Milioti), and average citizen Gemma Nerrick (Diane Morgan).
Death to 2020 is a mockumentary written and co-produced by Charlie Brooker, done in a similar fashion to his Weekly Wipe series for BBC. Narrated by Laurence Fishburne, Death to 2020 takes a satirical look at the major events of the year, while an all-star cast playing various stereotypical figures giving their somewhat mocking commentary on events ranging from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the events surrounding the 2020 US election.
It has almost become a running gag over the years that the internet community would often consider the current year to be the “WORST YEAR EVER,” with many seemingly holding the hope that the coming of the new year would result in some sort of metaphorical reset button being pressed. That all said, it can be said that 2020 has been a worst year than most, particularly with much of the world being shut down by the COVID-19 pandemic.
However, you have to wonder if a mockumentary such as Death to 2020 is truly necessary? The film’s mocking tone does seem to make light of some very serious issues that are still ongoing. In addition, with the exception of perhaps Samuel L. Jackson and Hugh Grant, most of the stereotypical talking heads in the film are somewhat cringe-inducing and the whole thing comes off as a bad SNL sketch.
Overall, I have to admit that Death to 2020 is a mockumentary that is probably aimed towards people dumber than I am, who truly do trivialize the events that happened in the past year. However, this mockumentary will soon be completely irreverent, so is it even worth watching? Here’s to a better 2021.