DwarfCast 86 – Series XI Semi Retrospective Byte Two

All around the world, Red Dwarf fans have been on tenterhooks for the past seven days, desperately longing to find out the G&T team’s semi-retrospective thoughts on the second half of Series XI. Rejoice, because the moment you’ve been waiting for his finally here, as Cappsy, John, Tanya, Danny and Ian conclude their revisit by documenting their thoughts on Officer Rimmer, Krysis and Can of Worms, as well as touching on the DVD/Bluray release, conclusions on the series as a whole, and the forthcoming Series XII.

Along the way, we’ll be discussing the full extent of Butler’s manipulation of the crew, the infamous Dirty Dave, pink glittery tracksuits, the existence of God, Howard Goodall’s darkest secrets and the flaws of Rimmer’s ill-thought-through corridor designs. There will be several instances of the word “maaargh”, and several more of the word “cloche”.

DwarfCast 86 – Series XI Semi Retrospective Byte Two (74.2MB)

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30 Responses to DwarfCast 86 – Series XI Semi Retrospective Byte Two

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  1. Amazing Dwarfcast. So good to hear positive John, it feels like a longer emotional journey than kryten and the universe took to have listened from back to golf dwarfcast era through to the rotascoped rimmerest of rimmer delight. It was getting to be a toss up between “best guest” being heard more in the show or “I struggle” being heard more in the podcast. Ive also never been so in agreement with Tanya before to the point of applause. There is something so vicky pollard about that track suit choice that I’ve still never got my head around the cat looking that way through most of the episode, despite character journey. Snakes in a container isn’t Samuel L Jackson in that one Cappsy? Krysis is going to be the final episode of series XI if I do a full series watch. I’ve always thought COW the worst of this series and I rate the other 5 the same heights as Ian with perhaps just a little more inflated love for Twentica from recording night watch. Polymorph III fails remove any character emotions in a sucessful way like the other two Polymorph episodes. I find nothing wrong with the corridor locked part of the ending of officer rimmer though, its fine to me all that, but yes there are better endings to the rimmer monster than abrupt bazookoid fades. Having rimmer close the officers club to destroy its mission purpose of being a crazy bouncer etc would fix all that.

    Ian I have small post series XI gift, I will bring to DJ for you, now these XI casts are over.

  2. You know when a meme suddenly appears (usually having escaped from 4chan), like Dat Boi or something, and it’s suddenly everywhere but there’s no actual explanation and it’s just really baffling?

    I feel that way about cloche.

  3. I’m glad to hear such positivity about Officer Rimmer, because I’ve found myself coming back to that one the most of any XI episode.

    I have to say though, my very initial reaction to Lister asking the Rimmonster if it’d made a list was that he was going to trick it into disintegrating like Captain Herring. And then they just shot it a bunch.

    Also, if The Universe isn’t from Earth, doesn’t that make it an alien?

    Did I break Red Dwarf?

  4. if the earth isn’t from the earth is *that* alien?

  5. The Earth isn’t a sentient intelligent entity. The Universe is.

  6. Morgan Freeman.

    Not Morgan Freealien.

  7. Wait a minute, Morgan Freeman isn’t from Earth?

  8. Lovely stuff. Disagree with half of it, but all jolly fun listening to.

    After a few watches, I still rate Twentica at the bottom. Give & Take at the top. The others are kind of interchangeable.
    What I like most about Krysis is a certain warmth to it that really feels like the classic series. It’s not the funniest episode of the series, but it’s the one that feels the nicest to watch.

  9. Wait, once Rimmer resigned his rank, didn’t the monster rank over him?

  10. I agree Rimmer having to resign to stop the Rimmer monster would have been far a better way to end the threat and Rimmers officer-hood

    Sadly i think Doug tries to be so ambitious with these stories that he tends to over look the more simplistic ideas.

    The episode i think have least issues with this series is Krysis and thats because its a little more simplistic compared to the others which is weird because i actually really like the more ambitious grant naylor co-written episodes but the ambitious Doug naylor solo episodes bother me alot.

  11. These retrospectives have been really cool. Has actually encouraged me to watch Krisis which is what I’m doing right now.

    On the point of Kryten being 3million years old, Kryten actually says 2million 976thousand years old. So he is from several thousand years into the future than Lister and Rimmer. Helps explain how he has working knowledge of a lot of the tech and species that they come across as there will have been advances in genetics between Red Dwarf leaving the Solar System and the Nova Five. Which is backed up by the books isn’t it?

  12. I always assume ‘three million years’ is a ballpark figure anyway, but yes, I’m sure that was a reference to the fact that Kryten comes from much later than the Dwarf crew, who have still only reached skutter level in the service droid department (just another hideous continuity error in Back in the Red).

    On a similar subject, in reference to the Samsara discussion on the previous podcast, even if the ‘three million years’ caption isn’t a rough figure, it should take into account the multiple stasis sleeps the crew have had, not to mention the 15 years+ screen time, making it several hundred years down the line anyway.

  13. Kryten mentions he comes from the 24th Century, having been built in 2340, in Back in the Red (Part 1). Lister and Rimmer are from the 22nd Century, with the events of The End taking place in 2180.

  14. Lister also calls himself an “enlightened 23rd century guy” in DNA. Trying to put specific dates on Red Dwarf is unwise.

  15. Just stick to the idea things happened in the 3 million years, thats a long darn time after all lol

    Personally i have abit of an issue with doug using a simulant for Trojan because it implies simulants were around during the time lister went into stasis and that they were only just about to start their uprising blah blah but its feels so premature when you have 3 million years of time to ride that idea.

  16. Personally i have abit of an issue with doug using a simulant for Trojan because it implies simulants were around during the time lister went into stasis and that they were only just about to start their uprising blah blah but its feels so premature when you have 3 million years of time to ride that idea.

    Does it? Howard has been a hologram for three million years, we don’t actually know at what point in that time Sim would have been created/joined the crew of the ship. It could have been several thousand years later.

  17. Also, the Simulant backstory in Last Human makes it clear that they’re not a distant-future thing, nor are GELFs.

  18. There are plenty of issues one could have with the dating thing, particularly the fact that after only a couple of years they begin to bump into the furthest reaches of humanity. They’ve only been travelling back for a few years before they bump into planets that have been terraformed for colonisation, psy-moons, research bases etc. This either means that people have been that far out in recent years (ie the human race is still alive and well), or that they actually got there thousands of years ago, which would be before Red Dwarf got out that far – thus they would have overtaken RD and humanity would be aware what happened to the ship / would possibly have tried to rescue it.

    But it’s never stated when Howard and Crawford came from, so I’d say if anything it’s one of the rare episodes which doesn’t suffer from that at all.

    If you ignore the turning around element of Future Echoes and the post pod turning up “now that we’ve turned around”, you can always imagine that they’ve been travelling homewards for a million or so years anyway, which is how I try and head-canon it.

  19. There are plenty of issues one could have with the dating thing, particularly the fact that after only a couple of years they begin to bump into the furthest reaches of humanity. They’ve only been travelling back for a few years before they bump into planets that have been terraformed for colonisation, psy-moons, research bases etc. This either means that people have been that far out in recent years (ie the human race is still alive and well), or that they actually got there thousands of years ago, which would be before Red Dwarf got out that far – thus they would have overtaken RD and humanity would be aware what happened to the ship / would possibly have tried to rescue it.

    But it’s never stated when Howard and Crawford came from, so I’d say if anything it’s one of the rare episodes which doesn’t suffer from that at all.
    If you ignore the turning around element of Future Echoes and the post pod turning up “now that we’ve turned around”, you can always imagine that they’ve been travelling homewards for a million or so years anyway, which is how I try and head-canon it.

    If we take the Nova 5 from the books as evidence of how the ship works, it has a drive that can hop it across space in jumps, like in BSG, albeit much further distances. So at some point humanity developed FTL travel and expands across the universe.

    Now we don’t know when this occurred, but lets says its 100 years after Red Dwarf very suddenly and without explanation (from the view of everyone else) sped out of the solar system and kept accelerating away. If, after 100 years, would you still be searching for a dingy old mining vessel that at this point is presumed lost beyond recovery? There’s things and people that have gone missing on this planet that we have stopped looking for with any seriousness much sooner than that. They would probably just keep half an eye out for it on their explorations, but given the vastness of space, and the speed the ship was travelling, it would be easy to understand how it would be missed.

    Just to make things a little tidier too, I think we can tentatively take it that perhaps Red Dwarf was travelling at close to light speed on the return journey too. Lister says its going to take 4,000 years to turn around, I think we have to assume thats hyperbole as theres no reason for it to take that long. Best guess is that Holly sling shots them around a planet before reaching light speed and then they travel a considerable distance back in the right direction, only slowing down because the future echoes are messing with them, and its seriously hard for him to navigate at that speed.

    They soon find they have started to encounter evidence that humanity has managed to explore at least as far out as the Nova 5, or has the technology to reach such distances. Lister decides not to go into stasis on the chance they actually find humanity, or the technology to get home quicker.

    In the earlier series these encounters were fewer and further between and have started to get closer together. Clearly Red Dwarf has the capacity to travel at some speed if Holly can propel it out of the Solar System at a moments notice so even if its not designed to travel at light speed, it can certainly travel faster than the tug boat speeds we probably imagine it does from the shots we see of the ship floating through space, which I put down to having slowed or stopped for various reason. To investigate a planet or what have you.

    Couple that with the fact they have done a few jaunts in stasis, especially in Krysis where they presumably travel for up to several hundred thousand years to reach to it, the universe is becoming more and more populated and they are much closer to earth than the 3million year distance they were at the start.

  20. I’d forgotten about the FTL jumping from Infinity, that makes more sense of a lot of it certainly, especially if any ships out that far were utilising similar technology (which is likely). It still sits a little uncomfortable with me when you actually have specific space stations and such being THAT far out – like in Legion and Quarantine – and it doesn’t tie in with the fact they barely meet anyone for ten years between VIII and X, but it’s a better explanation than mine so I’ll go with that for the minute.

  21. it doesn’t tie in with the fact they barely meet anyone for ten years between VIII and X

    Space is random. They could easily come across a ten-year gap.

  22. Just as how in Star Trek there’s ball-all in the Beta Quadrant.

  23. Just as how in Star Trek there’s ball-all in the Beta Quadrant.

    And that’s just one Galaxy. Those 9 years where they didn’t encounter much could have been traversing the distance between galaxies.

  24. Now, I’m not entirely sure why they’d gladly go into stasis to find an old robot but not because there’s so little they will go insane.

  25. Now, I’m not entirely sure why they’d gladly go into stasis to find an old robot but not because there’s so little they will go insane.

    Because plot.

    Or maybe in those 9 years, they were in and out of stasis for centuries. They lived 9 years in real time, for want of a better way of putting it, but spend hundreds or thousands of years just floating through empty space. Coming out of stasis for a month or two here and there when the computer detects something interesting. 9/10 though its just dust on the scanner scope.

  26. Perhaps it’s recommended for health/safety of the ship/some perception of time that a small amount – say, two months every ten years – be spent out of stasis. This however, could pose an issue with Kochanski having left on a Blue Midget (?) – although she could very well have taken a Starbug deep sleep pod or a Midget equipped with one.

    In fact, let’s just say this isn’t the case.

  27. While I couldn’t, initially, get over certain aspects of Officer Rimmer (the ending) and Krysis (Morgan Freeman voice, and basically everything to do with the ‘Universe’) I now enjoy those episodes for what they are. Maybe the acceptance of middle age is setting in………. Though they both feel like Red Dwarf of old.

    Can of Worms, on the other hand, is fucking inexcusable. It’s like a parody of Dwarf, done within a series proper. And it’s the finale, to boot… The ‘life signs’ scene is at least one bright spot, but other than that, we’re looking at the lower end of any Dwarf ever. Seriously bottom of the pile, and that’s saying something when you’ve got the likes of Nanarchy, Pete and Only The Good… Now, there are elements of VII and VIII in Krysis, I reckon, but the BETTER parts of VII and VIII. Can of Worms plumbs new depths, due to it being literally unsuccessful as an episode.

  28. I keep thinking Krysis is what VII would be like if it had been done right. Some Kryten angst, long voyage across space, returning GELFs.

  29. I like alot about Krysis but my main criticism is with the universe stuff because it still feels like the Dwarfers meeting God to me.

    And yeah i know Kryten pretty much points out its not but it feels like the closest thing to god when you think about the idea of it

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