Better Late Than Never

What with my workload last week, and then all the server problems here – it’s all rather late to be examining the Bodysnatcher storyboards. But then, this wouldn’t be G&T without being ever so slightly useless. And excellently, some of the storyboards pictured are from the script extracts – I’d forgotten we were even due storyboards for those bits…

So, let’s get started then. Speculation alert. The first four are clearly from Bodysnatcher itself – showing how the bunkroom, corridor and Drive Room sets are represented; and they perfectly evoke Series 1. The fifth one has an alt text of Infinity Patrol – described in the script extracts article as “a fun adaptation of an old Dave Hollins radio sketch, with some interesting new stuff chucked in”. Anyone got any ideas which one? (Yes, it’s stupid that old G&T is up, and new G&T isn’t. Yes, I should really finish transferring the last bits of G&T content onto the new site, set up redirects, and shut the old site down for good. Yes, the famed competence of G&T strikes again.)

The sixth is clearly from Dad, with Lister on his way to the delivery room (and doesn’t what he’s wearing remind you of his similar getup in Legion?), whilst the seventh has the alt text Lister’s Dad – one of the script extracts. This was described as “a significant scene conceived for the episode Timeslides. Lister comes face to face with his real dad in a pub thanks to one of those time-travel photographs.”. Fascinating.

By a process of elimination – the other script extracts having already been represented – the eighth picture must be from the extract Rimmer’s Dummy – which we haven’t been told about yet, because apparently it would spoil the gag. Bah.

The ninth and tenth piccies look like they’re from Bodysnatcher again – that’s surely the Series 1 mirror in the ninth – and they feature Lister losing his hair (has it been cut off by Rimmer, constructing a new body for himself?), and Mugs Murphy, the character designed to be a piece of futuristic pop culture, before Rob and Doug decided to stick in a load of Marilyn Monroe references instead. Extreme speculation time: Mugs is clearly seen on a TV screen here. Did Rob and Doug write the sequence in the cinema in the replacement script Me2 showing Mugs because money had already been spent animating the sequence? (And whilst we’re at it, did the original 16mm film ever show up for inclusion on the the DVD?) After all, the model shots were shot in time for the first aborted studio dates, as the clapperboards on the raw effects footage indicate.

The 11th picture is clearly from Dad, and is possibly the most disturbing thing I’ve ever seen in my life, with the possible exception of a certain video entitled Aged to Perfection. (I suspect Peter Wragg is pleased Dad never went into production – otherwise he would have had to create possibly the most disgusting prosthetic ever produced.) The 12th and 13th pictures are difficult to write about without having any more context – even I can’t really spin much speculation out of those, although if you lot can, feel free. The last picture, however, is extremely intriguing – two Listers? One a hologram? Does that remind you of the opposite of Me2? And why the bloody hell is the bunk on fire? It has to be Bodysnatcher – but I’m fucked if I have any idea how they get to that point. Food for thought. And, indeed, Food for Thort.

There was some discussion before G&T went down about whether the choice of how to portray Dad – Series 2 costumes, but Series III sets – was the correct one. My first reaction was perhaps that it would have been sensible to feature both the Series III sets and costumes, as that’s how the programme would have ended up being made – but that would have been a rather tediously literal way of doing it. The way it’s been done accurately reflects the limbo Dad finds itself in – between Series 2 and III.

Should they have taken the opportunity to add a few Series 2 sets in there as well, as mooted in the comments on G&T a couple of weeks ago? In many ways, that would have been lovely… but I think the beauty of keeping the Series 2 costumes but the Series III sets is that both series are always represented on-screen at the same time. If Series 2 sets were featured, then there would be points where it just looked like a Series 2 episode – and that doesn’t really reflect the episode’s limbo status.

All fascinating stuff, anyway. (And if you don’t think so, what the fuck are you doing here? Piss off.) Ignore the fact that G&T is currently poorly sick – all this stuff will be transferred to the proper site once it’s back up. Speculate away below. Frankly, I still can’t believe that after years of tantalising hints about Bodysnatcher and Dad – we’re getting something like this. It’s absolutely incredible.

Oh, and one final thing about The Bodysnatcher Collection – Andrew has let the following slip on the Webboard:

“Interesting side-note: you won’t hear me on Bodysnatcher, but the Remastering documentary will feature a connecting voiceover by little old me.

It’s a pretty dense piece – lots to talk about, loads of topics to cover – and needed stronger exposition, with faster momentum, than the ep docs. It’s one of the shorter pieces we’ve done – just over 20 minutes, I think – but the style means it probably has the depth of something twice that.”

Excellent stuff – we’ve not had a narrated documentary on any of the previous Dwarf releases (with the exception of Comedy Connections, of course), so it’s new departure for the range – and the fact that the Remastered documentary is packed full pleases me greatly. Whilst I can no longer say that it’s the extra I’m looking forward to most, it’s definitely the docco I’m most excited about.

Hugely exciting stuff, then. Frankly, if I read one more post accusing The Bodysnatcher Collection being barrel-scraping elsewhere on the net (and whilst that opinion is by no means universal, there are rather too many of them), I shall have some form of embolism. Clue: barrel-scraping is when you release the same thing again with one or two small additional extras. Not something like this, which is clearly having so much effort and love put into it, and has an absolutely amazing set of new stuff. Fine, the release isn’t going to interest some people – that’s absolutely no problem, and I can totally understand that – but to go from that to accusations of barrel-scraping is an enormous pile of shit. There’s being healthily cynical… and then there’s just being a bit of a tool.

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One Response to Better Late Than Never

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  1. > the eighth picture must be from the extract Rimmer?s Dummy

    Ooh, I never replied to this!

    Actually, there are no shots of Rimmer’s Dummy because, again, to show a storyboard would completely blow the gag.

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