10 TV Scenes That Led To Massive Lawsuits

8. Using The Copyrighted Phrase "Choose Your Own Adventure" - Black Mirror: Bandersnatch

The Queens Gambit

If you're wondering why Netflix never followed through with their original plan to branch out with more "Choose Your Own Adventure" stories following the Emmy-winning success of Black Mirror's Bandersnatch, there's a damn good reason for it.

Shortly after the interactive feature-length episode was dropped on Netflix in late 2018, Chooseco, the company which owns the republishing rights to the very idea of Choose Your Own Adventure books, filed suit against the streaming giant.

Their primary contention was that, by using the phrase "choose your own adventure" five times throughout the non-linear film, Netflix had infringed Chooseco's trademark.

Chooseco sought $25 million in damages as a result, alleging that Netflix did indeed try to license the term in 2016 but negotiations broke down.

Netflix's claim that they invoked the term within the confines of fair use was ultimately thrown out, and in late 2020, they finally settled with Chooseco for an unconfirmed sum.

Needless to say, Netflix might see such storytelling as more trouble than it's worth, even if there's very little stopping them from producing similar branching narrative stories in the future without any mention of that copyrighted phrase.


Stay at home dad who spends as much time teaching his kids the merits of Martin Scorsese as possible (against the missus' wishes). General video game, TV and film nut. Occasional sports fan. Full time loon.