Miley Cyrus' Black Mirror music video is the next best thing out of Netflix

The song features in an episode of Black Mirror, but it's a fire-emoji hit on its own.

Jennifer Bisset Former Senior Editor / Culture
Jennifer Bisset was a senior editor for CNET. She covered film and TV news and reviews. The movie that inspired her to want a career in film is Lost in Translation. She won Best New Journalist in 2019 at the Australian IT Journalism Awards.
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  • Best New Journalist 2019 Australian IT Journalism Awards
Jennifer Bisset
2 min read

The song is supposed to be a satire... so why does it sound so good?

Screenshot by CNET via Netflix

Have you heard? Miley Cyrus has a new song out, and it's not from May's EP She Is Coming. Called On a Roll, it's an adaptation of a Nine Inch Nails song and features in an episode of the latest season of Black Mirror. It's cheesy, Britney Spears-y and tailored to teenagers. And I'm unashamed to say I absolutely love it.

In the episode, Rachel, Jack and Ashley Too, you hear parts of the song throughout but never in full. That changed with the release of the music video on Thursday, when Netflix answered a question of curiosity: is the song as good as the snippets sound? Yes. Yes, it is.

Granted, one of the lyrics, "hey ya whoah-ho" actually sounds like "hey I'm a hoe," and it makes you question whether your music taste really is the same as the young obsessed teenage girl of the episode, but hey. I'm a fan.

Series creator Charlie Brooker had to secure clearance from NIN's Trent Reznor before adjusting the lyrics. For example, "I'd rather die than give you control" became the slightly more wholesome "Riding so high, achieving my goals."

"Trent got it straight away, it was via email and he was really happy pretty quickly," Brooker said at a press event, according to iNews. "He wanted to see the script, and I got to rewrite his lyrics in a chirpy way. I'm not the best lyricist in the world, in the first song she's singing: 'I'm stoked on ambition and verve' instead of 'You're gonna get what you deserve.'"

For reference, this is the original NIN song:

The Black Mirror episode itself sees Cyrus play Ashley O, a pop singer whose overbearing management exploits her to frightening Black Mirror levels. Ashley O's latest merch is an Alexa-like companion robot called Ashley Too, which teenager Rachel and her sister Jack interact with. A relatively lighter episode, with a caper-like plot-line involving a rat van, it explores what technology can do in the music industry.

Add Ashley O alongside Hannah Montana to the Miley Cyrus entourage.