Red Dwarf X: Dear Dave Review

deardave_rev_featured

Dear Dave,

Remember me? I’m Hayley, your plot device. I know you’ve never mentioned me before, despite Red Dwarf being on its tenth series, but I still expect you to care that I might be pregnant by you, despite the fact that both I and the baby died 3 million years ago, and that your oddly casual reaction concludes in you just as casually calling me a slag once you realise that you’re not the father after all.

First broadcast: 1st November 2012, 9:00pm, Dave

Written by: Doug Naylor

Directed by: Doug Naylor

Main Cast:
Chris Barrie (Rimmer)
Craig Charles (Lister)
Danny John-Jules (Cat)
Robert Llewellyn (Kryten)

Guest Cast:
Isla Ure (Dispensers 23 & 34)

Synopsis:
Lister has women trouble when he gets himself in a love triangle with Snack Dispensers 23 and 34; then, to make matter worse, gets a letter from an old girlfriend telling him she’s pregnant and it might be his. Lister and Rimmer hunt through the mountain of letters from the mail pod to discover if Lister is finally a dad.

Set Report | Discussion Thread | Dwarfcast

I’ll quit this letter whilst I’m ahead, I think. Don’t get me wrong. I enjoyed ‘Dear Dave’, but that was because I like my comedy to have jokes in, and this episode had plenty. Perhaps the best set piece in the episode was the vending machine love triangle; a lovely bit of writing, fitting in perfectly within the series universe. If you’re stuck in deep space, with machines that talk to you, it’s only natural that you’ll talk back to them, and even have a bit of a flirt, seeing as there’s no-one else to do that with. In fact, it’s a real shame that this hasn’t been explored a bit more, with there being a build up to this love triangle in previous episodes, as it certainly would have made a better alternative to the problematic Taiwan Tony plotline. As mentioned in the G&T Dwarfcast, there’s a real difference between a French stereotype and a Taiwanese one, and the very fact that I had to think about whether to put ‘Taiwanese’ or ‘Chinese’ there highlights some of the awkwardness, especially from a show written and produced in a former imperial power. When the Chinese are our mighty imperialist overlords, perhaps we’ll be forgiven for doing the odd ‘ho-chi-hi-chee’ comedy voice, but until then, we should probably avoid it, if possible.

So, the episode had plenty of jokes, which, unfortunately, was also part of the problem. I know, I’m never happy. Even when I was laughing at Lister seemingly having sex with a vending machine, the thought did cross my mind that if he really wanted to make the vending machine upright again, lying on top of it was probably the wrong position to be in. Getting his jacket caught would have been simple enough to write in, so maybe Doug isn’t as pedantic as his fans. Sorry Doug; ‘Nit-picky’ is the middle name that my parents would have given me if they’d had any indication of my personality whilst I lay in my cot.

Let’s take the plot to which the title refers. I just don’t buy the pregnancy love triangle story as there’s not nearly enough concentration on it. We’ve met Lister’s past girlfriends before, but we’ve had a bit more background and a bit more reason to see them, with Lise Yates in ‘Thanks for the Memory’ being the most famous example. Importantly, we also saw Lise Yates, which also gave us some idea of why Lister was so fond of her memory. It also helped that ‘Thanks for the Memory’ is all about that memory, and that you have some cracking performances from both Craig Charles & Chris Barrie. In ‘Dear Dave’, I didn’t get from either of them that they really gave a shit. Perhaps that reaction’s understandable from Rimmer, but it’s very odd from Lister. It also makes the last joke of the episode very strange, which probably resulted in it offending friend of the site Jo Sharples. Whilst it didn’t offend me, I’m not really minded to defend it, either. Without this plot having the treatment it needs and with a shallow performance from Craig, it just looks like quite a callous dismissal from Lister of someone he was meant to care deeply for, which isn’t the Lister we know and love. Surely Lister could have done the final reveal without using a word that hasn’t actually been used in Red Dwarf before, and is a judgemental slur that you need to justify pretty well? Especially as the finger-wetting joke is far funnier, and has a good scene with Cat into the bargain. Lister could have made more of a reference to that, I (for one) would have laughed dirtily, and we would have avoided the unpleasantness.

Actually, the use of this word is just one of many universe problems that Doug has with series X. ‘Dear Dave’ is cursed with a budget storyline that makes no real sense, and hasn’t been part of the universe up until now. Isn’t the whole point of being 3 million years in deep space that JMC is no longer something the remaining crew have to deal with, because they’re pretty much on their own? Expression of personal bugbears aren’t bad in principle; but the context is essential. For example, the well-established concept of Red Dwarf mean that the Outland Revenue finding Rimmer in Better Than Life is very funny, as most viewers sympathise that paying taxes is inevitable for most ordinary people, even if they’re in deep space. However, it’s a bit more difficult when your expression of personal annoyance revolves around budget problems. Most viewers aren’t making television series, and, although this is no doubt annoying for production teams, viewers are the same as any other customers that you’re delivering a product to; they don’t care about production problems, it’s the end product that counts. If the plotline made sense in the Red Dwarf episode, it would be better, but instead, you have Rimmer trying to write a report that, in theory, actually goes somewhere, undermining the character joke, which is Rimmer clinging onto defunct procedures because that’s all he’s got, and Kryten running around with a pile of toilet rolls, whilst the Cat’s either trying to keep the turtle’s head from the door, or is mincing around with a shitty bum (that really wasn’t clear, much like the Cat’s pants). There’s not even a resolution (no, I don’t count Cat using Rimmer’s report to wipe his arse a resolution), so the crappy telephone helpline plot from Trojan actually beats this one, which I didn’t think was possible.

Production problems are no doubt real obstacles to getting your ideas to screen, but Doug’s kind of jettisoned this excuse by writing classic episodes of Red Dwarf, such as Out of Time, whilst it was actually being recorded, so I don’t think it’s the problem that it’s been made out to be by some people. What DOES cause real issues, however, is the lack of discipline which causes the main plot to be underwritten, leaving it with nowhere near the impact that it should have, and gives us two sub-plots which, although they have some amusing jokes, either don’t make sense or could have helped to give far more of an ‘in-universe’ feel to the episode. One of the problems Doug has is that he has such a solid universe, which has been explored fairly deeply already. It’s difficult to watch Lister and Kryten’s exchange about him missing the human race without thinking of the opener to Timeslides; and concluding that Timeslides is far better written. Also, and I hate to bang on about it, far better performed by Craig. There’s a weird lightness of touch about Craig’s performance in this episode, which doesn’t help sell the script when it’s a bit weak. Part of me wonders whether he would have benefited from a more Talkie Toaster-like character to interact with, or, indeed, an extended scene with Sympathetic Vending Machine, as that could have brought a bit more depth to their encounter later. As I’ve said in comments on this site, Doug keeps dangling great moments from past series in front of our eyes; and then doing something that in no way matches up to them. Kryten saying ‘I’m being replaced again, aren’t I?’ during the game of charades/charades/let’s call the whole thing off is also a reminder that The Last Day is a brilliant episode, and that this isn’t. Rimmer’s obsession with a death worm in the same scene reminds me of Quagaars in Waiting For God; but like Dorothy, we’re not in Kansas any more.

As I said, I liked the jokes. Well, most of them. It’s interesting that this episode is entitled ‘Dear Dave’, because the plot to which it refers doesn’t have that much of an impact on the episode. Here, I suspect, lies the real nub of the problem with this episode, and Red Dwarf X in general; it’s difficult to make a good sitcom based on what seems to be a writers’ room brainstorm. It’s frustrating, too, because Red Dwarf X doesn’t HAVE a writers’ room; all these ideas come from one man, Doug Naylor, without whom we wouldn’t have Red Dwarf to begin with. For someone as experienced and creative as Doug, Red Dwarf X isn’t the showreel it should be, and that makes me sad.

TINY TEASER: Death Worm – Rimmer’s repeated guess for everything that Cat mimed
ACTUAL SCENE COUNT: 23 (Total so far: 121)
ACTUAL SMEG COUNT: 1 (Total so far: 13)

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90 Responses to Red Dwarf X: Dear Dave Review

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  1. “It’s interesting that this episode is entitled ‘Dear Dave’, because the plot to which it refers doesn’t have that much of an impact on the episode.”

    Should have called the episode “Slags”

    Lister – trying to pork the vending machine
    Vending Machine – see above
    Cat – always going on about shagging something
    Rimmer – he would bonk anything
    Kryten – ironing whore

    = Slags.

    Turns out Hayley is not a slag after all. Just a bit whorish, waving her bucket around etc.

  2. Fuck me, that was quick.

  3. Neither Entangled or Dear Dave left me elated in the same way the first three episodes did but with a couple of rewatches I’ve warmed to them both. The end gag in the last two shows have been sold by Craig in the best possible way and while neither gags are priceless, I do think that Mr Charles deserves credit for delivering them so well.

  4. Lister’s jacket stuck in the machine would’ve been so much better!

  5. This is the first Tanya article since I joined, and smegging fantastic it is, too. Wish we’d hear more from you, Tanya, though I understand you’re busy with work and all.

  6. I actually thought he was stuck for a second. It’s not so bad when he has one foot on the ground but it still takes a fair bit of work to buy into. Still, it had me laughing.

    Also, love the screencap of Danny at the top. That scene shouldn’t have been as funny as it was.

  7. >Getting his jacket caught would have been simple enough to write in

    So simple, and yet such a remarkable improvement.

  8. i have to say i have been very underwhelmed by the storys this series mostly because these episodes contain rushed plots going all over the place

    i mean i can understand doug wanting to give all the cast something to do but look at episodes such as holoship which is an all Rimmer story. can you imagine if they gave Rimmer his own plot and then gave the other 3 guys there own little plot ? i guess we would have a story that didn’t flow very well, and that also goes for marooned with rimmer and lister… giving cat and kryten there own plot? hmm…

    this series defo needs what was said in the dwarfcast and thats more discipline

  9. I actually thought he was stuck for a second.

    Yeah, when I first saw it I assumed that the next shot we’d see would be the machine’s dispensing slot closed over Lister’s meat & 2 veg or something.

    On the subject of nitpicking, didn’t the machine say that it’d watched Lister through the crack in his door yet it hadn’t seen round the corner of the corridor? Maybe Cat wheeled it there in exchange for an extra milky tea.

  10. I maintain that Dear Dave is not only the least ‘spoofy’ feeling instalment of the season thus far, but also the most heartfelt. And I think that’s what really contributed to my enjoyment of it as a whole.

    Sadly, Series X has shaped up to be an oddly heart-less [sic] endeavour, imo. ‘Trojan’ ended with Rimmer practically gloating over the death of his brother who just moments earlier, had committed self-sacrifice and spilled his guts (in more ways than one). ‘Entangled’ ended with an innocent character being blown out of an airlock with zero attempt to rescue her (despite Lister being suited up for EVA, and there being at least two minutes before she definitely expired). For my taste, the sudden, inexplicable death of even an admittedly-flawed character does not automatically = ‘funny’. Characters discussing/dealing with death in pragmatic/ludicrous terms *can* be funny, but the two examples above, just felt… well, wrong to me.

    What an absolute joy then, it was to see Lister give a toss about hurting someone’s feelings, after a lousy day, and then apologise for being out of line. That’s the Lister I remember. A good man. A man of moral courage. Even if he’s saying sorry to a vending machine..!

    Also, my personal favourite episodes of I-VI have always been those which first and foremost, delved into the characters’ psyches and inner drives as opposed to just showcasing endless locations/brain-melting plots (see: Marooned, Out Of Time, etc). Yes, spectacle is an obvious draw, but only if you can deliver. If BIGGER and/or BETTER just isn’t feasible, then simply do the best with what you have available (surely, one of the show’s most lasting mantras – both in tone and work ethic).

    Therefore, Dear Dave turned out to be a great bottle episode, for me. The plot, such as it was, concerning Lister (still!) dealing with his perpetual loneliness and subsequent fear of never having made a mark on The (or for that matter, Any) World, was simplistic and easy enough to follow, but also inextricably in-depth and empathically ponderous. The character motivations felt reasonable and fairly true to form (I’m on the fence about being on the fence with the “slag” line. It still doesn’t bother me, but possibly could’ve been replaced with a better out). The comedy/dialogue sounded far more original than in some recent efforts and also, reassuringly pithy. Lead guest character/star was on the money. At times, the pervasive bureaucracy even felt borderline Hitchhiker’s. I simply adored the Rimmer/Lister Drive Room bollocks – from the fish tank biscuit dunking to the areolae football line. After so many years, the true spirit of Red Dwarf finally felt *back* – at least, to me, and if only for a few brief, wonderful minutes.

    So, all in all, an 80% successful trip. I suppose, more so than anything, I’m just relieved that I at least found one episode to be highly enjoyable this year. Who knows, maybe next week, that figure may increase to two… but given my enjoyment ratio so far, who knows.

    In retrospect, perhaps, Dear Dave is this season’s Waiting For God (…now, guess which Series I episode is my favourite).

    BTW – great review, Tanya. :)

  11. G&T Admin

    Thanks for the praise! The jacket idea wasn’t mine, though, someone said it during the Dwarfcast, but I can’t remember who now. If I can think of anything else worthwhile, I’ll write it, although shift work doesn’t always make it very easy.

  12. An excellent and well-written review, Tanya. Have been reading some of your articles on ‘Noise To Signal,’ as well. Always fun to read.

  13. On the last word… note the context, which is that he’s just spent over a minute verbally (and a lot longer internally) building himself up as a father, as someone who “contributed something” to the world that kept going after he went into stasis. And then, having set himself up (wrongly – the smart thing to do would have been to try and convince himself it WASN’T his, but this was an emotional thing and it’s quite understandable, doubly so given his mindset at the start of the episode.), AFTER THIS BUILD-UP, he gets the bad news.

    *tries to think of a gender neutral counterpart* If you’d applied for a job you really wanted, and spent a while fantasising about it, and opened the letter in the presence of others after telling them what you’ll do with the job… and then it’s a rejection letter, would you call the person names?

  14. Somebody, you might consider posting that on the “Let’s talk about Dear Dave” thread where this is currently being debated.

  15. G&T Admin

    An excellent and well-written review, Tanya. Have been reading some of your articles on ‘Noise To Signal,’ as well. Always fun to read.

    Thanks, Ben! They were a pleasure to write, but quite labour-intensive, which is why we eventually had to discontinue the site. Bloody real life, getting in the way.

  16. G&T Admin

    On the last word… note the context, which is that he’s just spent over a minute verbally (and a lot longer internally) building himself up as a father, as someone who “contributed something” to the world that kept going after he went into stasis. And then, having set himself up (wrongly – the smart thing to do would have been to try and convince himself it WASN’T his, but this was an emotional thing and it’s quite understandable, doubly so given his mindset at the start of the episode.), AFTER THIS BUILD-UP, he gets the bad news.

    *tries to think of a gender neutral counterpart* If you’d applied for a job you really wanted, and spent a while fantasising about it, and opened the letter in the presence of others after telling them what you’ll do with the job… and then it’s a rejection letter, would you call the person names?

    I don’t know about you, but I don’t generally care as deeply about people who interview me as Lister is meant to about Hayley, so I don’t think your analogy really works. And the whole point of the offence here is that slag is NOT gender neutral, and there’s little point trying to ignore the society that Red Dwarf is written in. After all, Rob and Doug were trying to make similar points on Parallel Universe, so I don’t see why Doug should get a free pass here. Also, part of my review was making the point that even if you did decide to see it as a product of extreme emotion, the plot isn’t given enough time to make this emotion credible, and I would (and have) argued that Craig doesn’t get this emotion across in any case.

    Doug could (and should) have done something else. He didn’t, it’s not the end of the world, but it’s a shame, because he’s put something into the mouth of a character that is problematic and not justifiable.

  17. G&T Admin

    The jacket idea wasn’t mine, though, someone said it during the Dwarfcast, but I can’t remember who now

    *tiny voice* It was me.

  18. Good review, though I respectfully disagree on most of it. Exercising my extreme rationalization skills, here are some counterpoints:

    1) There is a plot to this episode but it isn’t so much a narrative plot of ‘things happening’ as much as a thematic plot. The episode is about Lister’s loneliness and missing the human race, which manifests itself in both the vending machine and Hayley strands. As mentioned above, the vending machines love triangle is a symptom of having no humans to talk to, but the point of the Hayley subplot is that it’s a potential way for Lister to make a partial peace with his situation. In many ways, it really is all one plot in that sense. Kryten’s speech towards the end about moving on and living in the present demonstrates this, as the speech, and the episode, are about moving on from pining from a dead past race with past girlfriends and enjoying the present with whatever crazy entities or vending machines are around to hang out with. And while I can’t fully appreciate the pros or cons of using the word ‘slag’ coming as I do from the other side of the Atlantic, what I can say is that Lister’s emotional connection to Hayley herself isn’t the point at all, which applies to the plot as a whole as well as the last line. That plot’s about him having a connection to the race he once had; Hayley herself is secondary at best. That speech at the end about the generations of Listers says it all. So when he calls her a slag, it’s nothing to really do with his opinion or affection for her, it’s because by believing he had children, he found potential peace to his situation, which was immediately subverted when he read the letter, so the “slag” was more a lash out at that more than at Hayley herself.

    2) Maybe it’s just me, but when Lister was humping the vending machine, I got the impression that he wasn’t just trying to lift it upright but was trying to shimmy it horizontally across the floor as well, in which case, you might actually do what he did. Also, and I know this is blasphemous, but in isolation I like the vending machine scene more than the Polymorph boxer shorts scene because the Polymorph one, while funny as hell, is a bit contrived and exists only for that joke. The vending machine humping, while clearly echoing Polymorph, still feels more organic and something that could plausibly occur, and also ties in beautifully with the vending romance subplot as whole instead of being just an isolated gag.

    3) I will agree with you that the Rimmer/report subplot was underwritten and deserved a better payoff. But as far as the budget-system goes, I kind of got the impression that with a city-sized spaceship with a whole bunch of sentient computers and electronics banging around, having a currency system actually makes a lot of sense. Money on the isolated ship in deep space might even be worth more as a result, between the inhabitants on board. Kind of reminds me of the city-society situation on Battlestar Galactica. They were on their own, but I’m pretty sure they had money (if not they had some sort of system).

  19. G&T Admin

    Thanks for your reply, Rob, and I need to deal with it in separate bits;

    I’m fascinated at the efforts of some commenters on here to play down the lack of a well-written plot in this episode, presumably because they really enjoyed it. I need to say that I enjoyed it a fair bit too; but the plots are a mess, and the episode suffers, because an episode of sitcom needs a solid structure to support everything else. Characters and themes need something to hang off; they can’t just float around by themselves. The reason why I think some people are praising the character jokes and themes in this episode is because there’s so many tropes taken from past (stronger) episodes. I really don’t think any of these character tropes or themes are developed in any way, which is why commenters are posting such long and individual interpretations, and why the ‘slag’ insult offended some and not others. For me, it’s a sign of weak plotting if you really conclude that Lister is calling the human race a slag. I don’t see any sign that he’s achieved any kind of closure with his predicament, but if it makes you happy, good for you!

    It’s a real faff to try and move a vending machine in the fashion that Lister attempted, but hey, between us, we’ve come up with two reasons that Doug might have used, but he chose not to use either. I think the joke’s weaker for it, and is far less plausible than the Polymorph joke that it’s echoing.

    It’s not really the money system as an abstract concept that’s the problem here. In fact, a money system is hinted at in Queeg, because it’s used as a threat that seems to frighten Rimmer and Lister. It’s the fact that JMC hasn’t been an authority ever since Lister emerged from stasis (correct me if I’m wrong, as the timelines have been fucked about with quite a lot), and the sudden appearance of it as a challenge to Rimmer isn’t properly explained. It’s a plot that doesn’t really need to be there, because if you go with Lister’s loneliness as your main theme for this episode, why would you muck about introducing JMC as a going concern in the penultimate episode of your tenth series? For an episode that’s so ‘thematic’, it’s bloody slow at it; Lister’s letter doesn’t appear until the second half, leaving virtually no time to explore the theme, save a fairly laboured exchange at the beginning of the episode.

    Nah, I don’t get it. The episode’s a mess. A broadly enjoyable mess, but it could have been so much better if Doug had chosen a plot and stuck with it.

  20. but the plots are a mess, and the episode suffers, because an episode of sitcom needs a solid structure to support everything else. Characters and themes need something to hang off; they can’t just float around by themselves.

    Exactly right and perhaps the biggest issue with Doug’s Dwarf from Series VII onwards has been the plotting. In the 24 episodes that there have now been, how many have had a genuinely decent plot that didn’t segue off into something irrelevant? Cassandra and BTE perhaps but they were both based on previous episodes and Epideme but Paul Alexander came up with that one. Far too many of the other eps randomly move all over the place which make them a hell of a lot deeper than they should be.

    Another big issue with this ep (and the series in general) is the characters and that everything seems to be OTT. The guest stars camp up their performances and the performances from the main cast are nothing like as subtle as they used to be. I think the reviewer who wrote the set report mentioned the pantomime nature of things and I would agree with that. Sadly it’s not to my taste at all.

  21. >Nah, I don’t get it. The episode’s a mess.

    I’ve just got it. This episode is a triple fried egg, chilli, chutney sandwich. All the ingredients are wrong. But put them together… Well, for me at least.

  22. “I’ve just got it. This episode is a triple fried egg, chilli, chutney sandwich. All the ingredients are wrong. But put them together… Well, for me at least.”

    I’ve always got a pen.

  23. >I’ve always got a pen.

    I haven’t. If that doesn’t prove the theory, then what will?!

  24. >In fact, a money system is hinted at in Queeg, because it’s used as a threat that seems to frighten Rimmer and Lister.

    I would argue the reason the credits system has returned is because Holly is now no longer around. He was probably actively bypassing the credit system for food, supplies, etc, which would’ve been rationed out when the crew compliment was far greater. Now, with there being only one official crewmember, the credits system is virtually obsolete, with probably a massive surplus in inventory – hence Cat being able to order so many Fish dishes in Series I, for example.

    Without Holly, all the bureaucratic JMC systems now have free reign – and operating on automatic, either cannot comprehend or have no notion of the JMC not existing anymore. They could’ve relied on Holly for clearance/updates – a final authorisation by the (originally) highly intelligent mainframe before roll-out and implementation. Remember in Back To Earth, Lister had to pay a visit to the supply decks in order to find some tomatoes – possibly as he had ran out of food credits for the dispensing machines..?

    Yes, all this could’ve done with being explained a bit more thoroughly, but it’s not a gaping plot hole, imo. Just a plot fissure.

  25. I’ve enjoyed all the episodes so far to varying extents but definitely agree that some discipline is needed and that certain aspects of plots and ideas need tightening up. I’m sure Doug is directing for budgetary reasons as much as anything else but maybe Doug shouldn’t write, direct and produce series XI if and when we get one. I’d much rather he just focus more on writing, especially as, in my opinion, he’s so close to writing truly great stuff!

    My opinions of course but…
    You could see the research that had gone into Lemons in the script and automatically the whole thing felt a whole lot more Dwarfy and complete. Fathers & Suns was about 80% pure Dwarf to me with just the one thread stopping it from being an all but classic episode. Trojan was again an episode I really enjoyed with a lot of great laughs, but if Doug had paced it a bit better so the ending wouldn’t have been so rushed I would have been a whole lot more satisfied. And then there’s the subplots, which for the most part I haven’t minded but if they didn’t have to have such laboured set ups we would get more time with the main plot and most of the main plots have only really needed an extra scenes worth of attention to make them a whole lot more fulfilling (Howard and Rimmer, Pree, ERRA, Hayley).

  26. I’ve always got a pen.

    If only the bloke who wrote that message with his organs in Psirens was as anal as you.

  27. “the bloke who wrote that message with his organs in Psirens”

    I don’t think he meant to do that. It probably just… plopped out.

  28. ‘Absolute slag’ was used to get a cheap laugh from the audience in order to achieve some kind of comedy endng to this messy affair. Pretty desperate, yeah, but at least it was something, and they just about get away with it due to it being all about Lister exploding after being in denial throughout the episode.

  29. its a shame doug doesn’t get Ed bye back to direct, i mean there is nothing wrong with dougs directing but it would take some of the pressure off doug that he can then concentrate on the writing and plot rather then budget and stuff

  30. ‘Absolute slag’ was used to get a cheap laugh from thaudience in order to achieve some kind of comedy endng to

    Two weeks running that the episode has ended with something unexpected to evoke that laughter. Not that I’m complaining, I’ve enjoyed them both.

  31. The grading on this completely changes the Cat’s outfit from red (as seen in production stills) to pink!

  32. I didn’t think this was that good. It was okay, as said some funny bits but nothing that leaps out. Oh well. It wasn’t terrible.

  33. >The episode is about Lister’s loneliness and missing the human race

    Yet he sincerely couldn’t care less when he met another human being last week and she got killed in front of him.

    I think this episode would have worked a lot better in this regard if the previous four episodes didn’t recharacterize Lister as an unfeeling sociopath.

  34. Is there a reason why nearly every single episode has had a negative portrayal of women? Or that, those women have been sexualised to some degree, as well as having no character development.

    Trojan = Sexualised/Betraying/Evil – died
    Fathers and Suns = Sexualised/Cold & logical/Evil – died
    Entangled = Sexualised/Useless idiot – died
    Dear Dave = Vending Machine 1: Needy, obsessive. Vending Machine 2: Suspicious, accusing. Hayley: “Slag”

    It’s interesting that the only episode with traditional Red Dwarf plotting, Lemons, features an older woman, where nothing sexual is involved and so she’s portrayed as harmless, but a bit annoying.

    I don’t know if I’d have so much a problem if these stories were spread about a couple of series, but when it’s one after the other, it becomes really uncomfortable to watch with my friends, family or girlfriend.

  35. >The episode is about Lister’s loneliness and missing the human race

    Yet he sincerely couldn’t care less when he met another human being last week and she got killed in front of him.
    I think this episode would have worked a lot better in this regard if the previous four episodes didn’t recharacterize Lister as an unfeeling sociopath.

    A classic post.

    I think it also would have worked better if there had been more depth to the writing and more pathos.

    This series has had very few Lister/Rimmer scenes and this episode was crying out for them. Instead we had a couple of short, badly-acted scenes between them which added nothing to the characters.

    I don’t really get why Doug has had Lister on his own so often this series:- on the phone, the medibots/talking to himself, talking to the vending machines etc. There has been a lack of really good interaction between the characters this series which has always been one of Dwarf’s strongest suits.

  36. I don’t really get why Doug has had Lister on his own so often this series:- on the phone, the medibots/talking to himself, talking to the vending machines etc. There has been a lack of really good interaction between the characters this series which has always been one of Dwarf’s strongest suits.

    Agreed. Better episodes would have had Lister engaging with the other characters, rather than pointless one-offs. It would also have served the purpose of making the plots feel more organic, and letting the characters work together, instead of splintering them off on mindless dead ends.

    To paraphrase the end of Legion, when they’re all pulling in the same direction, it’s very much for the better. Especially when the alternative is Lister talking to some never-before-seen medical equipment to drive the plot, while Kryten enrolls in clown college, Rimmer opens a detective agency, and Cat hilariously shits himself.

  37. Doug seems to find it easier i guess to write for lister, i mean look at the last human novel and the amount of lister based episodes under solo doug

    but i do agree the storys need more substance, like trojan should have just had the rimmer and his brother plot and worked the other characters around that rather then switch between that and another plot

  38. Is there a reason why nearly every single episode has had a negative portrayal of women? Or that, those women have been sexualised to some degree, as well as having no character development.

    Trojan = Sexualised/Betraying/Evil – died
    Fathers and Suns = Sexualised/Cold & logical/Evil – died
    Entangled = Sexualised/Useless idiot – died
    Dear Dave = Vending Machine 1: Needy, obsessive. Vending Machine 2: Suspicious, accusing. Hayley: “Slag”
    It’s interesting that the only episode with traditional Red Dwarf plotting, Lemons, features an older woman, where nothing sexual is involved and so she’s portrayed as harmless, but a bit annoying.
    I don’t know if I’d have so much a problem if these stories were spread about a couple of series, but when it’s one after the other, it becomes really uncomfortable to watch with my friends, family or girlfriend.

    Maybe it’s to make KOCHANSKI look better by comparison. (You knew that was coming.)

    Seriously, you have a point. I love Dwarf and I’ve enjoyed having it back, and while I don’t think ALL the female-related bits are bad, there’s enough to make me raise an eyebrow. Then again, I’m trying to recall if old Dwarf has the best track record with female characters in-depth … and I’m not coming up with much. Curiously, the best might have been Kochanski in Series 7 – she tried to keep things in line as best she could considering she was an officer fighting an uphill battle against a slob, an indifferent, a jealous mechanoid, and the memory of a pretty popular absent character (no, not Norman), and she didn’t end up with Lister as might have been expected.

    As I’ve said before, I sort of accept that Dwarf is not going to be About The Girls and try to enjoy it for the sausagefest of flawed characters that it is. But that does get strained on occasion. Perhaps Doug could benefit from having a female scriptwriter look over his concepts and give ideas for alternate methods of disposition, if he doesn’t want to keep a female character around more than one episode, as well as dialogue? (I’m not saying a man can’t write a good woman, nor am I saying Doug is a bad writer; I’m saying in this case, consulting someone on that aspect might be good.)

  39. I think there is far too much negativity on this site about this new series. Can’t we just enjoy it? Can we not just bask in the light that is NEW Red Dwarf? This is great stuff, not perfect but fun. I’ve really enjoyed every episode so far and hopefully will enjoy the 6th and then the next series as well.
    As for people saying that Lister’s reaction to the news at the end was off. I say, NO WAY. This woman cheated on him and while he was willing to forgive her if they had a child together, he soon changed his mind when the truth became clear. I thing she deserved that.
    Just like in the last episode when Irene E was sucked out of the airlock, Listers reaction wasn’t totally off. He did frown and quietly talk to Rimmer because he knew of his loss. But there had to be a joke in it so there was the “Pen” line.
    Irene was gone. You can’t just go into space without a spacesuit on. You die instantly.
    Sure in real life you would expect more reaction but this is a comedy.
    And Rimmer’s reaction to his much hated brothers death? Well what can I say? He is such a complete and total bastard.

  40. I’m still of the opinion this was the lesser episode of series X thus far, but my opinion has improved over a couple of rewatches. It grows on you. I have no issue at all with the final line, words are only as powerful as you allow them to be. Like most things, it’s a personal perception and subjective.

  41. >I think there is far too much negativity on this site about this new series. Can’t we just enjoy it? Can we not just bask in the light that is NEW Red Dwarf?

    Yeah, let’s just unconditionally love it because it’s called “Red Dwarf”, stars Craig Charles and ends with “It’s cold outside” just like all the other great episodes. Bollocks to critical responses.

  42. >Yeah, let’s just unconditionally love it because it’s called “Red Dwarf”, stars Craig Charles and ends with “It’s cold outside” just like all the other great episodes. Bollocks to critical responses.<

    Or we could all just pick it to pieces because we could write better scripts, do better acting and come up with better ideas for a series. Not to mention do it all on a tight budget.

    I'm not saying that you have to love it. It's not perfect by any means. And if you really want to pull it apart then by all means do it.
    I guess I'm just trying to enjoy it rather than be a critic. I'm loving the new series. I could join in on the negatives and I'd be here for a while but right now I'm just letting the positive vibes flow. If it were total crap like BTE i'd be the first to say it. But I don't think it is.

    You can defend your right to be critical and I will defend my right to not be. I appreciate how hard it must be for all those involved to have made this series. And while there are issues here and there that not even I can ignore, there are far, far more positives to celebrate in my opinion.

  43. G&T Admin

    Quite apart from anything else, there are also loads of people being genuinely positive about series X on “this site”. There’s no consensus.

  44. >You can defend your right to be critical and I will defend my right to not be.

    >If it were total crap like BTE i’d be the first to say

  45. Quite apart from anything else, there are also loads of people being genuinely positive about series X on “this site”. There’s no consensus.

    I agree. There are those being positive and that’s great. There are those that are not and that’s great too. But there are also those that want to go on about how Craig didn’t look emotional enough or Chris is doing a poor job of acting. I honestly can’t see it. I think they are doing a fantastic job. And maybe these people are being too picky.

    I’m not putting anyone down or saying that we have to just love it because of what it is. I was just saying “Hey, lets just enjoy it”
    Does it really matter if that didn’t quite make sense or if this girl has never been mentioned before? To some yes. To me no not really because I enjoyed it. If making complete sense and having perfect continuity were very important then I would probably hate Red Dwarf

  46. >You can defend your right to be critical and I will defend my right to not be.

    >If it were total crap like BTE i’d be the first to say

    And your point is? That I can only be positive and never negative? Or that I can never come onto your site and say anything without your prior approval?

  47. Firsty, it’s not my site.

    Secondly, your complaint about people having a critical response to Series X is rendered moot by you labeling BTE as “total crap” (without actually giving a reason why). Do you “appreciate how hard it must be for all those involved to have made” Back to Earth, or does that not matter because THAT was “total crap?”

  48. G&T Admin

    I’m not putting anyone down or saying that we have to just love it because of what it is. I was just saying “Hey, lets just enjoy it”

    Fair enough, but that’s just being unrealistic. Everyone who comments on here has different expectations and prioritises different things about the show, and so different aspects of this new series has rankled some and not bothered others. The day that people stop going into unnecessary detail about their thoughts and expressing whatever level of opinion they want, is the day we may as well close the comments down.

    Judging other people’s judgements is just going to rub people up the wrong way (and you’re by no means the first to do this, plenty of other have done it over the last few weeks) so probably best to steer clear of that in your first few posts.

    Welcome to the site, by the way.

  49. Firsty, it’s not my site.

    Secondly, your complaint about people having a critical response to Series X is rendered moot by you labeling BTE as “total crap” (without actually giving a reason why). Do you “appreciate how hard it must be for all those involved to have made” Back to Earth, or does that not matter because THAT was “total crap?”

    I wasn’t complaining at all. I was just trying to be positive. I thought BTE was crap because of what it tried to be and how it didn’t achieve it’s goal. No laugh track ruined it for me for a start but I would never criticise the actors etc for their work as some have done here. I just thought as a whole it didn’t work.
    I have followed this site for many many years and simply wanted to give a generalised comment to people to lighten up a bit.
    I certain didn’t expect anyone to be offended.I’m not targeting anyone in particular. Unlike yourself.
    If your Mum walks into the room and says “Come on Pete, Cheer up. It’s a beautiful day” would you tear strips of her for ruining your negative vibe?

  50. I’m not putting anyone down or saying that we have to just love it because of what it is. I was just saying “Hey, lets just enjoy it”

    Fair enough, but that’s just being unrealistic. Everyone who comments on here has different expectations and prioritises different things about the show, and so different aspects of this new series has rankled some and not bothered others. The day that people stop going into unnecessary detail about their thoughts and expressing whatever level of opinion they want, is the day we may as well close the comments down.
    Judging other people’s judgements is just going to rub people up the wrong way (and you’re by no means the first to do this, plenty of other have done it over the last few weeks) so probably best to steer clear of that in your first few posts.
    Welcome to the site, by the way.

    Well thanks. But I wasn’t judging anyones judgements in particular. I was just trying to be positive. I didn’t mention names or make quotes. I thought that what I said was completely harmless. I certain said it in a harmless way couldn’t you tell.

    You make very good points about the comments and of course you are right. This is why I have spent so many,many hours reading your different views. I just haven’t read many that just said yes I liked that worts and all. Maybe I have been reading the wrong ones

  51. I agree. There are those being positive and that’s great. There are those that are not and that’s great too. But there are also those that want to go on about how Craig didn’t look emotional enough or Chris is doing a poor job of acting. I honestly can’t see it. I think they are doing a fantastic job. And maybe these people are being too picky.

    You can think that which is fine but discussions about the cast’s performances are integral towards debating the show and always have been. The criticism on this site seems to be constructive in the vast majority of cases and some of the comments about the cast members have been echoed on the OS.

    Danny seems to have been widely praised (which I completely agree with) for his portrayal of the Cat whereas the other cast members have been accused of being too OTT and ‘pantomimey’. Perhaps because the Cat is such a big, comedy character anyway that the tone of the series suits him.

    For me Chris Barrie has been the biggest disappointment as he has struggled as Rimmer imo. Even in Series VII (which I’m not a fan of) he excelled in the role but he doesn’t seem to have the same energy anymore.

  52. >I thought BTE was crap because of what it tried to be and how it didn’t achieve it’s goal. No laugh track ruined it for me for a start but I would never criticise the actors etc for their work as some have done here. I just thought as a whole it didn’t work.

    But in criticising how it didn’t achieve its goal, you’re criticising the production as a whole. The actors may be getting a free pass, but the producers aren’t. I don’t really see how it’s any different, frankly.

    I’ve got no problem with your criticisms on BTE but I think it’s a tad hypocritical if you think people can’t voice similar concerns about Red Dwarf X “not working”. I can completely understand that people are enjoying this series, but I think it’s a little naive to expect everyone else to “just enjoy it” if you didn’t “just enjoy it” three years ago.

    I wish I could just enjoy X but, if I think there are massive problems with the structure of the episodes and the strength of the comedy, I, um, can’t.

    >If your Mum walks into the room and says “Come on Pete, Cheer up. It’s a beautiful day” would you tear strips of her for ruining your negative vibe?

    No, but I might ask her how long she’d been hiding in my flat.

  53. Quite apart from anything else, there are also loads of people being genuinely positive about series X on “this site”. There’s no consensus.

    I agree. There are those being positive and that’s great. There are those that are not and that’s great too. But there are also those that want to go on about how Craig didn’t look emotional enough or Chris is doing a poor job of acting. I honestly can’t see it. I think they are doing a fantastic job. And maybe these people are being too picky.
    I’m not putting anyone down or saying that we have to just love it because of what it is. I was just saying “Hey, lets just enjoy it”
    Does it really matter if that didn’t quite make sense or if this girl has never been mentioned before? To some yes. To me no not really because I enjoyed it. If making complete sense and having perfect continuity were very important then I would probably hate Red Dwarf

    Early in my career I had readers who criticized me, called me names, what have you, even though I was doing my job as well as I could and, I thought, competently (investigative reporter). I was fairly miserable until my editor, who’d done it for 40 years, sat me down and pointed out it meant I was being read and taken seriously and that it can’t always all be praise. In the ensuing 20 years, I’ve come to see what he means. Critical response isn’t going to crush Doug after 35 years of a career, so it shouldn’t crush us. People are watching and they care. Writers want that.

  54. >You can’t just go into space without a spacesuit on. You die instantly.

    Actually… as far as I know, even a sudden pressure change of one atmosphere is likely not even enough to blow someone out of an airlock – let alone kill them ‘instantly’. Plus, Red Dwarf has anti-gravity, so Irene probably would’ve just stayed where she was. All Rimmer/Lister needed to do to save her was re-seal the outer door, gradually restore the atmosphere, and then carry her to the medi bay (…ugh) for treatment – and bingo-jingo, we have a new, gorgeous crew member to go on adventures with.

    But assuming, Irene did end up tumbling helplessly away from the ship – she would have about about two minutes left before she definitely expired. Heat needs time to radiate away so she wouldn’t have frozen anywhere close to ‘instantly’, either. She’d have possibly passed out and begun to asphyxiate, but as I mentioned above, Lister was already kitted out for EVA, so there was more than enough time to save her.

    So, in ‘reality’, Irene was simply left to die for no reason… :(

  55. >You can’t just go into space without a spacesuit on. You die instantly.

    Actually… as far as I know, even a sudden pressure change of one atmosphere is likely not even enough to blow someone out of an airlock – let alone kill them ‘instantly’. Plus, Red Dwarf has anti-gravity, so Irene probably would’ve just stayed where she was. All Rimmer/Lister needed to do to save her was re-seal the outer door, gradually restore the atmosphere, and then carry her to the medi bay (…ugh) for treatment – and bingo-jingo, we have a new, gorgeous crew member to go on adventures with.
    But assuming, Irene did end up tumbling helplessly away from the ship – she would have about about two minutes left before she definitely expired. Heat needs time to radiate away so she wouldn’t have frozen anywhere close to ‘instantly’, either. She’d have possibly passed out and begun to asphyxiate, but as I mentioned above, Lister was already kitted out for EVA, so there was more than enough time to save her.
    So, in ‘reality’, Irene was simply left to die for no reason… :(

    She would’ve been a hell of a bellwether to have around, though, and prevent those wacky and dangerous situations we’ve come to love:

    Irene: Oooh, what a perfectly lovely little space station that looks like. So friendly and secure!
    Crew: TURN THE SHIP AROUND. NOW. LET’S MAKE TRACKS FASTER THAN A DIARRHETIC MOOSE!

    But yeah, I liked her too. She would need to do more than just make eyes at Rimmer the whole time, though. :-D

  56. “Early in my career I had readers who criticized me, called me names, what have you, even though I was doing my job as well as I could and, I thought, competently (investigative reporter). I was fairly miserable until my editor, who’d done it for 40 years, sat me down and pointed out it meant I was being read and taken seriously and that it can’t always all be praise. In the ensuing 20 years, I’ve come to see what he means. Critical response isn’t going to crush Doug after 35 years of a career, so it shouldn’t crush us. People are watching and they care. Writers want that.”

    ^This.

    As Oscar Wilde put it, “the worst thing than being talked about is not being talked about.”

  57. Dax101 / November 4, 2012 at 1:44 pm / #
    its a shame doug doesn’t get Ed bye back to direct, i mean there is nothing wrong with dougs directing but it would take some of the pressure off doug that he can then concentrate on the writing and plot rather then budget and stuff

    Personally I’d love to see Andy DeEmmony be given a shot at another six episodes. As much as an influence Ed has had in crafting and indeed reinventing the show over I – IV & VII -VIII, I still think Juliet May’s V and Andy’s VI look the best visually. VI in particular has a highly focussed direction, and fantastic pacing.

    If Andy couldn’t be coaxed back, then how about someone completely new entirely, for a fresh approach?

    I agree with the original point though – I’d rather let Doug focus on writing and really pulling together tight plotting. X is proving he’s still got the gaggery.

  58. >Or we could all just pick it to pieces because we could write better scripts, do better acting and come up with better ideas for a series. Not to mention do it all on a tight budget.

    You’ve convinced me. The fact that I — allegedly — can’t write better scripts strips me of my right to have and express an opinion on these episode. Just as the fact that I can’t prepare 5-star cuisine myself means I should be perfectly happy with any old slop someone throws down on a plate for me to eat, and the fact that I can’t play any instruments means I must enjoy all music by virtue of the fact that I can’t do better.

    The day “can you do better?” dies as the default, brainless rebuff to all critical thinking is the day I wake up a happy man.

  59. Personally I’d love to see Andy DeEmmony be given a shot at another six episodes. As much as an influence Ed has had in crafting and indeed reinventing the show over I – IV & VII -VIII, I still think Juliet May’s V and Andy’s VI look the best visually. VI in particular has a highly focussed direction, and fantastic pacing.
    If Andy couldn’t be coaxed back, then how about someone completely new entirely, for a fresh approach?
    I agree with the original point though – I’d rather let Doug focus on writing and really pulling together tight plotting. X is proving he’s still got the gaggery.

    I agree with the idea of bringing in a brand new director who would probably have different ideas and would bring in something very different. The production team at the moment seems like quite a closed shop (probably the wrong expression).

  60. G&T Admin

    […] we may as well close the comments down.

    This is increasingly seeming like a great idea.

  61. There are some really pathetic comments being churned out on here, (and im sure this one will join their ranks). People seem to forget everyone is entitled to an opinion. Unfortunately some people do not share the same enthusiasm for the series as others do.. that doesn’t mean they should leave the site, or change their opinion to suit yours.

    Fair enough, it’s new Dwarf, but if it’s not any good I have no trouble in admitting this. Why like something if it’s not any good? Some people enjoy it, some people don’t, discuss it, but stop it with the arguing.

  62. G&T Admin

    As Cappsy pointed out, it’s not even as if the negativity is dominant. In terms of the G&T writers, three of us absolutely love the majority of the series so far. The other two have big reservations, but have both enjoyed bits of it a lot. Even the comments are broadly more positive than negative, it’s just that the negative bits are obviously going to be discussed more than the positive bits the longer the discussion goes on – there’s no mileage in a conversation about something being good, but there’s plenty to be said when someone says that they don’t like something.

  63. G&T Admin

    Quite apart from anything else, there are also loads of people being genuinely positive about series X on “this site”. There’s no consensus.

    I agree. There are those being positive and that’s great. There are those that are not and that’s great too. But there are also those that want to go on about how Craig didn’t look emotional enough or Chris is doing a poor job of acting. I honestly can’t see it. I think they are doing a fantastic job. And maybe these people are being too picky.
    I’m not putting anyone down or saying that we have to just love it because of what it is. I was just saying “Hey, lets just enjoy it”
    Does it really matter if that didn’t quite make sense or if this girl has never been mentioned before? To some yes. To me no not really because I enjoyed it. If making complete sense and having perfect continuity were very important then I would probably hate Red Dwarf
    Early in my career I had readers who criticized me, called me names, what have you, even though I was doing my job as well as I could and, I thought, competently (investigative reporter). I was fairly miserable until my editor, who’d done it for 40 years, sat me down and pointed out it meant I was being read and taken seriously and that it can’t always all be praise. In the ensuing 20 years, I’ve come to see what he means. Critical response isn’t going to crush Doug after 35 years of a career, so it shouldn’t crush us. People are watching and they care. Writers want that.

    Perfectly put. Doug’s a very successful writer, which is why I took time to justify why I had problems with this episode & X so far. He deserves no less, & certainly doesn’t need uncritical adulation or someone just saying his work is crap without a reason.

  64. >You can’t just go into space without a spacesuit on. You die instantly.

    Actually… as far as I know, even a sudden pressure change of one atmosphere is likely not even enough to blow someone out of an airlock – let alone kill them ‘instantly’. Plus, Red Dwarf has anti-gravity, so Irene probably would’ve just stayed where she was. All Rimmer/Lister needed to do to save her was re-seal the outer door, gradually restore the atmosphere, and then carry her to the medi bay (…ugh) for treatment – and bingo-jingo, we have a new, gorgeous crew member to go on adventures with.
    But assuming, Irene did end up tumbling helplessly away from the ship – she would have about about two minutes left before she definitely expired. Heat needs time to radiate away so she wouldn’t have frozen anywhere close to ‘instantly’, either. She’d have possibly passed out and begun to asphyxiate, but as I mentioned above, Lister was already kitted out for EVA, so there was more than enough time to save her.
    So, in ‘reality’, Irene was simply left to die for no reason… :(

    A lot of people are saying things along this lines, but remember the character we’re talking about. She literally always gets things wrong, even had they saved her she would not last long, just too accident prone.

    And her other characteristic is the irony. Rimmer finally finds someone interested in him, because of this inbuilt irony, it can’t last, she had to die.

    I speculate she always had to die when she did, or imminently soon if she had been saved – like a ‘final destination’ type effect, due to her nature. Maybe she would have been saved but killed by a door malfunction as soon as she got back in. Pretty ironic.

  65. >Rimmer finally finds someone interested in him, because of this inbuilt irony, it can’t last, she had to die.

    This is exactly as ironic as rain on your wedding day.

    >I speculate she always had to die when she did, or imminently soon if she had been saved – like a ‘final destination’ type effect, due to her nature. Maybe she would have been saved but killed by a door malfunction as soon as she got back in.

    How nice of them to save her the time.

  66. This is exactly as ironic as rain on your wedding day.

    Alanis Morissette is God. Seriously. Check out the movie Dogma.

    *Nice giant shit monster in it as well.

  67. >And her other characteristic is the irony. Rimmer finally finds someone interested in him, because of this inbuilt irony, it can’t last, she had to die.

    Still don’t buy that they’d just *leave* her to die, though. It’s too callous. Even Rimmer could’ve jumped out and grabbed hold of her – being a hologram, he can survive the vacuum of space (Tikka To Ride). I could come up with a million justifications for this. Essentially, I don’t like the joke – it felt out of place both in character and tone. Like a lot of X. But I’m genuinely glad that people are digging it in ways I’m not.

  68. Maybe when Rimmer and Irene are walking along the corridor talking about sex on a first date etc, she all of a sudden ends up turning back into the monkey. Rimmer takes one look and says, “On second thoughts……” Then he runs off.

    The monkey chases, but as Irene did…..trips on the box (harder to do granted) then continue with how it ended.

  69. >This is the first Tanya article since I joined, and smegging fantastic it is, too. Wish we’d hear more from you, Tanya, though I understand you’re busy with work and all.

    I’ve always very much enjoyed reading anything Tanya has written so I would echo this also.

  70. As Cappsy pointed out, it’s not even as if the negativity is dominant. In terms of the G&T writers, three of us absolutely love the majority of the series so far. The other two have big reservations, but have both enjoyed bits of it a lot. Even the comments are broadly more positive than negative, it’s just that the negative bits are obviously going to be discussed more than the positive bits the longer the discussion goes on – there’s no mileage in a conversation about something being good, but there’s plenty to be said when someone says that they don’t like something.

    That’s how newspaper Opinion pages stay in business and why they’re usually the popular part, besides the funnies and classifieds, LOL.

  71. >You can’t just go into space without a spacesuit on. You die instantly.

    Actually… as far as I know, even a sudden pressure change of one atmosphere is likely not even enough to blow someone out of an airlock – let alone kill them ‘instantly’. Plus, Red Dwarf has anti-gravity, so Irene probably would’ve just stayed where she was. All Rimmer/Lister needed to do to save her was re-seal the outer door, gradually restore the atmosphere, and then carry her to the medi bay (…ugh) for treatment – and bingo-jingo, we have a new, gorgeous crew member to go on adventures with.
    But assuming, Irene did end up tumbling helplessly away from the ship – she would have about about two minutes left before she definitely expired. Heat needs time to radiate away so she wouldn’t have frozen anywhere close to ‘instantly’, either. She’d have possibly passed out and begun to asphyxiate, but as I mentioned above, Lister was already kitted out for EVA, so there was more than enough time to save her.
    So, in ‘reality’, Irene was simply left to die for no reason… :(

    Yeah but they couldnt do any of that, until filling out the relevant forms.

  72. Maybe it’s to make KOCHANSKI look better by comparison.

    I hope at some point we get at look at how Kochanski was meant to fit into this series. With RDX generally being well received I’d love to see her role in the dynamic. Ideally getting a fair share of screen time too since I thought Cat and she got bumped into the background for VIII, and the prison setting didn’t allow her to outrank Rimmer.

    Sorry Doug; ‘Nit-picky’ is the middle name that my parents would have given me if they’d had any indication of my personality whilst I lay in my cot.

    Tanya Nit-picky Jjones

  73. >Yeah but they couldnt do any of that, until filling out the relevant forms.

    This encapsualtes Series X for me. Hyperdrive jokes in Red Dwarf. Spoof as opposed to satire. I just can’t relate to it.

  74. Even Rimmer could’ve jumped out and grabbed hold of her – being a hologram, he can survive the vacuum of space (Tikka To Ride).

    Well, no. Because he’d have had to open the door from the ship into the airlock – which would likely be impossible with safety protocols. He could have gone into soft light projection to get through the door and then changed to hard light projection, but by the time they’d run to get the remote she’d already have pressed the button and been ejected into space.

  75. >Yeah but they couldnt do any of that, until filling out the relevant forms.

    This encapsualtes Series X for me. Hyperdrive jokes in Red Dwarf. Spoof as opposed to satire. I just can’t relate to it.

    Except that joke wasn’t in Red Dwarf, it was in a comment on G&T.

  76. >safety protocols

    …The same protocols that allowed Irene to accidentally ‘trip’ out of an airlock? :D

    >He could have gone into soft light projection to get through the door and then changed to hard light projection

    Now that you mention it, I don’t get this new ‘projection mode’, either. How can a physical light bee pass through a solid surface? I’m sure it’s possible in the world of technobabble, but it wasn’t adequately explained in the episode, so it just shattered the verisimilitude for me instantly (not to mention, the ‘let’s just watch Irene die’ attitude of Lister/Rimmer which I loathe as much as you hate the “slag” line).

    >Except that joke wasn’t in Red Dwarf, it was in a comment on G&T.

    I vaguely recall some ‘forms’ business being in one of the new episodes, though – reminded me of the tone. I can buy Rimmer being officious with paperwork – it’s in his character. But it’s the whole *feel* of the series that I’m trying to get at here, Jo. It’s witty, yes, but also uncharacteristically ‘spoofy’. And that’s what keeps bouncing me out of the episodes. Dear Dave was the first time that nearly everything made sense to me. It presented characters dealing with relatable situations in comedic/fantastical terms. It felt more in line with what I consider Red Dwarf does best. :)

  77. >safety protocols
    …The same protocols that allowed Irene to accidentally ‘trip’ out of an airlock? :D

    But she tripped through the door and pressed the wrong button herself. Safety protocols can’t help if someone always does everything wrong!

    >He could have gone into soft light projection to get through the door and then changed to hard light projection
    Now that you mention it, I don’t get this new ‘projection mode’, either. How can a physical light bee pass through a solid surface? I’m sure it’s possible in the world of technobabble, but it wasn’t adequately explained in the episode, so it just shattered the verisimilitude for me instantly

    It wasn’t explained fully, no. They said he switched to soft-light projection mode and then to hard-light projection mode – obviously something he can’t do all the time as he switched back to the standard hard light bee as soon as he got out of the room… I’m happy with that, I don’t need a full explanation of the mechanics and inner workings of the light bee.

    (not to mention, the ‘let’s just watch Irene die’ attitude of Lister/Rimmer which I loathe as much as you hate the “slag” line).

    I don’t loathe it, I just don’t think that it’s in character and I don’t like it. Though I can understand why you’d think that, it’s just the wave of people saying that it’s fine or that she deserved it (WTF?!) that makes me feel that I need to defend my point of view. I’m actually more annoyed about the attitudes displayed by some viewers than I am about the use of the word in the episode.

    >Except that joke wasn’t in Red Dwarf, it was in a comment on G&T.
    I vaguely recall some ‘forms’ business being in one of the new episodes, though – reminded me of the tone. I can buy Rimmer being officious with paperwork – it’s in his character.

    Forms were involved, I didn’t think they were overplayed though and suited Rimmer’s character nicely. Fair enough, just the way you responded to that seemed as if you were annoyed at the episode for doing something it didn’t actually do.

    But it’s the whole *feel* of the series that I’m trying to get at here, Jo. It’s witty, yes, but also uncharacteristically ‘spoofy’. And that’s what keeps bouncing me out of the episodes. Dear Dave was the first time that nearly everything made sense to me. It presented characters dealing with relatable situations in comedic/fantastical terms. It felt more in line with what I consider Red Dwarf does best. :)

    I understand you’re not happy with the series as a whole and I’m not saying you’re wrong for hating it, that’s your opinion… have at it! You posed some specific questions/points and I was just answering them based on my understanding of the episodes in question, that’s all! I don’t want to fall out with you darling ;)

  78. G&T Admin

    >This is the first Tanya article since I joined, and smegging fantastic it is, too. Wish we’d hear more from you, Tanya, though I understand you’re busy with work and all.

    I’ve always very much enjoyed reading anything Tanya has written so I would echo this also.

    Aw, thanks, Mick!

  79. >I don’t need a full explanation of the mechanics and inner workings of the light bee.

    Again, not wanting to argue the toss here, but at the very least, I would have preferred there to have been a *bit* more justification/explanation behind such an interesting concept. I love the science speculation in Dwarf! :)

    EDIT ——-

    Actually, I just thought of a much better idea than that convoluted new scene I wrote.

    KRYTEN
    Sirs! There’s a crack in the door just large enough for Mr Rimmer’s light bee to fit through!

    There. Solved. :)

    EDIT ——-

    >I don’t want to fall out with you darling ;)

    Who’s talking about falling out with anyone? There’s nothing like a good debate. :D

  80. >I don’t need a full explanation of the mechanics and inner workings of the light bee.

    Again, not wanting to argue the toss here, but at the very least, I would have preferred there to have been a *bit* more justification/explanation behind such an interesting concept. I love the science speculation in Dwarf! :)
    EDIT ——-
    Actually, I just thought of a much better idea than that convoluted new scene I wrote.
    KRYTEN
    Sirs! There’s a crack in the door just large enough for Mr Rimmer’s light bee to fit through!
    There. Solved. :)

    Yep. I said that too. Technical advisor jobs, here we come! ;-)

    (suuuuuure … LOL)

  81. >Yep. I said that too. Technical advisor jobs, here we come! ;-)

    There you go – great minds. ‘Tech Advisors’. Hmm. Would be great for dinner parties. “Remember that bit where Kryten was talking about bits of wire? We came up with that.” ;)

  82. >Yep. I said that too. Technical advisor jobs, here we come! ;-)

    There you go – great minds. ‘Tech Advisors’. Hmm. Would be great for dinner parties. “Remember that bit where Kryten was talking about bits of wire? We came up with that.” ;)

    “Yeah, we told Doug to lose the- Yes, DOUG. WE told DOUG. He listens to us, you know …”

  83. Who’s talking about falling out with anyone? There’s nothing like a good debate. :D

    Good, good :)

  84. “Surely Lister could have done the final reveal without using a word that hasn’t actually been used in Red Dwarf before”

    I’m surprised that no-one has pointed out that slags HAS been used before, in Polymorph “come on then, all of ya slags. All together or one at a time it’s all the same to me”

  85. G&T Admin

    I’m surprised that no-one has pointed out that slags HAS been used before, in Polymorph “come on then, all of ya slags. All together or one at a time it’s all the same to me”

    Oh, do pay attention, Bond.

  86. I’m surprised that no-one has pointed out that slags HAS been used before, in Polymorph “come on then, all of ya slags. All together or one at a time it’s all the same to me”

    Oh, do pay attention, Bond.

    has this already been mentioned? I did a Find On Page for the word and couldn’t find any other reference except in an early comment.

  87. G&T Admin

    I’m surprised that no-one has pointed out that slags HAS been used before, in Polymorph “come on then, all of ya slags. All together or one at a time it’s all the same to me”

    Oh, do pay attention, Bond.
    has this already been mentioned? I did a Find On Page for the word and couldn’t find any other reference except in an early comment.

    You’d be better off actually reading the thread, rather than taking words out of context.

  88. Just FYI, Lister said “slags” in Polymorph. Not sure how you all missed that.

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