Black Mirror’s fourth season returned to Netflix at the tail-end of 2017, and came packed with six new episodes that explored the different facets of technology and the side effects that could come with them. The third episode, titled ‘Crocodile,’ is one of the most chilling Black Mirror episodes we’ve seen yet. The episode follows the story of Mia, who finds herself unable to escape her murky past, and this eventually leads her down a path of murderous rampage as she tries to salvage her perfect life.
Black Mirror ‘Crocodile’: Story and Ending Explained
The episode starts off with a short scene of Mia and her presumably then-boyfriend Rob partying it up in a club. By the time the party is done, it’s clear that they’re both high and inebriated and shouldn’t be driving home. Not watching the road, Rob hits a cyclist and kills him instantly. As the Rob and Mia get out of the car to inspect the damage, they see that the cyclist is clearly dead. Distraught, Mia whips out her phone with the intention of calling the police. Rob stops her, however, and says that they’re both drunk and high on cocaine, and while she might get away with a lighter sentence, he would be sent straight to jail because he was the driver. Reluctantly, Mia agrees to help Rob dump the body off a nearby cliff to hide the evidence.
Fifteen years later, we see that Mia has become a successful architect with a happy family. She and her husband seem rather well off, and they act as loving parents to their young son. Soon, Mia is called away to attend a conference in the city. After the meeting, she goes back to her hotel where a disheveled Rob comes up to visit her. They’re distant at first, but when Mia observes Rob’s shifty behavior, she says she hopes he’s not here to discuss the ‘incident.’ Rob says that he is and shows her a recent news article about the wife of the man they killed. As it turns out, she’s still waiting for him to come back after all these years. Rob is grief-stricken and he explains his intention to write her an anonymous letter about what happened but promises not to mention Mia.
However, Mia is unwilling to let anything threaten her life at this point and begs him not to do it. She brings up the point that she’s had to live with the guilt and shame for so many years, and now that she has a life and family she cares about, she can’t let Rob mess this up for her. Rob insists that he has to do it, and as he turns to leave the hotel room, Mia tries to stop him physically. The two of them fall to the ground, and as they struggle, Mia chokes him to death.
Right after Rob is killed, she looks outside her hotel window and witnesses a minor incident where a man is knocked to the ground by a pretty cool-looking futuristic automated pizza truck. Mia plays a pornographic movie in her hotel room (scrolling past a Wraith Babes special, for the 15MM fans out there), and hides the body under her bed before calling for room service. After that, she brings the body down to her car and proceeds to get rid of the evidence. The next morning, she pays for the movie and room service at the front desk, then returns home.
In the meantime, we’re introduced to a new character named Shazia. She’s a likable insurance agent who’s tasked with investigating the pizza truck incident and trying to get a clear read on what happened exactly. Using a device called the recaller, she’s able to attach a small chip to a person’s head and view their memories on a screen. Her interviews and recall sessions with the victim and a few other witnesses eventually lead her to Mia. When Shazia checks in with the hotel front desk to see if she can get Mia’s identity, the receptionist tells her he knows exactly what she was doing – watching an interesting movie.
Unwilling to give up on this lead, Shazia eventually manages to identify Mia by running an image from the recaller through a face recognition system. Shazia then explains to her husband that Mia might not want her poking around in her head because she was watching a porn movie at the time of the incident, but she decides to go pursue her anyway because she’d be able to get a better pay bonus if she wraps this case up in a timely manner.
When Shazia goes to visit Mia at her house, Mia’s husband and son are out preparing for a school recital. At first, Mia refuses to let Shazia into her house, but then Shazia states that submitting to the recall process if you’re a witness to an incident has been a legal requirement “since last year.” Mia then reluctantly lets her in. Shazia gives her a legal document to look through, but Mia simply skims it before going to make coffee to stall for time. She also retreats to the bathroom to try to psych herself into not thinking about the murder.
When Mia is hooked up to the recaller, everything goes smoothly at first and Shazia is able to deduce the speed of the pizza truck. However, things go awry when Mia is unable to keep her thoughts in check, and Shazia catches glimpses of Rob’s murder and the hit-and-run incident. In shock, Shazia tries to compose herself and shuts off the recaller. She says she’s got everything she needs and tries to leave the house quickly. Sensing that something is wrong, Mia follows her out of the house and tries to explain herself by saying that sometimes she gets crazy thoughts in her head, but they don’t mean anything.
Shazia gets in her car and tries to leave, but the engine is stalled. Mia grabs a nearby rock, smashes the car window and knocks Shazia out. When she awakes, she finds that she’s been bound and gagged. Mia tells her that she has no choice but to kill her now that her memories have been exposed. But before she does that, she hooks Shazia up to the recaller, and she sees that she had informed her husband of her whereabouts prior to their meeting. After that, Mia bashes Shazia’s head in with a wooden plank, then gets her address from her car. She then drives off to Shazia’s home with the intention of killing her husband.
At the house, she manages to kill her husband while he’s taking a bath. Just as Mia is about to leave the house, she sees a baby in a corner room and decides to kill him too to eliminate all witnesses. She then drives to her son’s recital. However, Mia failed to notice that there was a guinea pig in the child’s room, and it likely witnessed the whole incident. At the crime scene, we see the police attaching the recall device to the guinea pig.
At the end of the episode, as Mia claps for her son at the recital, we also see several policemen entering the school and securing the area. It’s implied that the police were able to piece together what happened from the guinea pig’s memory, and they’re there to arrest Mia.