The real reasons behind Rob and Doug's breakup

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  • #218709

    Jawscvmcdia

    The reasons behind Rob and Doug’s breakup have long been debated within the Red Dwarf community. The fact that it has never been truly explained has led to great speculation in a wide variety of forms. I would, however, like to summarise what we know so far.

    Doug Naylor stated in the Red Dwarf Series 7 documentary: “If anybody knows the reason, give me a ring”, suggesting that he himself was never fully informed as to the reasons behind the breakup. Additionally, he went onto add that during the production of a GNP series “The 10 Percenters”, which was broadcast between April 1994 to September 1996, Rob Grant was asked to rewrite some scripts that he had produced by ITV, but refused and left. Doug Naylor was then tasked with the responsibility of re-writing these scripts, which he later described as an “interesting time”.

    At the British Comedy Awards ceremony in December 1994, Rob Grant and Doug Naylor appear together (although they don’t speak to each other), with Craig Charles in between them. Rob states “I don’t know what we’re doing right this year, but we hope to do it again next year”, suggesting that at this time, the breakup was still yet to be permanent. At the end of his speech however, he quickly walks off the set while Doug Naylor is at the back, being cradled by Danny John-Jules. By September 1996 however, the breakup seemed to be permanent with the incorporation of Rob Grant’s company, the aptly titled “Taken for Granted Productions” (a subtle swipe?).

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    In Robert Llewellyn’s “Carpool” dated 4 October 2010, Rob bluntly states: “It was basically musical differences between me and Doug. That was it”. Robert (Llewellyn) then asks “lots of people ask if you still get on with Doug now, which you do” and Rob replies “er- yeah, we see each other from time to time”. I find it hard to believe however that a writing partnership that had worked well for almost 20 years (prior to 1995) would just split over “musical differences”.

    Rob told the BBC in 2004 (as part of Comedy Connections) referring to Red Dwarf “I just felt, I’d had enough of that and wanted to do something else”, yet there was nothing stopping Doug and Rob working on new material, so why would that be a reason to break up a good writing partnership? Paul Jackson later adds that he didn’t know the reason why the partnership failed and he didn’t know anybody else that did. Whatever it was must have been a closely guarded secret.

    Therefore, with Doug’s keen interest in continuing Red Dwarf, one might suggest that it was Rob who decided that either he could no longer work with Doug for unknown reasons. People have suggested that Rob had some kind of mental breakdown that prevented him from working with Doug, but surely if that were the case then they would have ‘taken a break’ and then got back together later on? Even if that had been the case, I am quite sure that Doug would have supported Rob back to work, so it can’t be something along those lines. Again, in the Series 7 commentary, Robert Llewellyn stated: “I’d be in their offices and Rob would walk in with lawyers. I’d attempt to lipread what they were saying. (He jokes) I want all the money. You can’t have it.” So perhaps it was something financially related? This would corroborate with Rob setting up his own company around this time.

    Clearly by 2007 however, whatever had happened between them was history as Rob Grant had returned to work on the Bodysnatcher DVD. Recording DVD commentaries with Doug, taking part in the documentary and even working with him on tightening up a long lost script, many would have thought that the two writers had finally put aside their differences. So why did Rob not return for Back to Earth, Series X and Series XI/II? We have reason to believe that Doug has asked Rob if he would like to return for each series, so why hasn’t he?

    Whatever the reason is, we will probably never know. But we can speculate, and I hope that one day the two greatest comedy writers of all time will get back together and make magic happen, once again.

    #218710

    Dave

    People have suggested that Rob had some kind of mental breakdown that prevented him from working with Doug

    [citation needed]

    #218711

    Dave
    #218712

    Ian Symes

    G&T Admin

    Oh, shut the fuck up, Jawscvmcdia, you tedious twat.

    #218713

    International Debris

    How do you pronounce Jawscvmcdia, anyway?

    #218714

    Ridley

    Read in the nude and etc.

    #218715

    Phobos And Deimos

    Is Doug Naylor Jawscvmcdia?

    Ganymedenders will return… right now.

    No, he’s not.

    #218716

    flanl3

    How do you pronounce Jawscvmcdia, anyway?

    /jaw-SKV-Mc-DEE-uh/

    #218717

    Ben Paddon

    Doot-doo, da-doo-doo.

    #218718

    performingmonkey

    One of them came in the room to find the other wanking over the long lost footage of ‘naked Kryten’, then promptly walked back out, never to return.

    #218719

    performingmonkey

    The Beatles split up. The Smiths split up. Charles and Diana got divorced. This is life. These things happen. It has approx. eff all to do with us; and who even gives two shovels of sugar about it anymore??

    #218721

    Seb Patrick

    Why do people never get this obsessed about Linehan and Mathews deciding to work individually?

    Why do people feel like they’re owed an explanation? Where does that entitlement come from? Doesn’t the creator’s obligation to the fans begin and end with their work?

    Why do people not accept the multiple explanations they’ve been given as being lots of contributory factors to a nuanced whole, instead dismissing them as falsehoods because they sometimes differ?

    Why do you keep creating such antagonistic threads? I mean, I literally knew this was you as soon as I saw the title in the sidebar.

    #218722

    Adam Bailey

    It’s clearly not something they want to publicly air, so discussing it is pointless and not really any of our business.

    #218723

    Darrell

    It’s because it’s such an unique and isolated thing to ever have happened in comedy though.

    Well except Linehan and Mathews.

    And Marshall and Renwick.

    And Idle and Innes.

    And Cleese and Chapman.

    And Cook and Moore.

    And Lee and Herring.

    And Smith and Jones.

    And Adam and Joe.

    #218724

    Phobos And Deimos

    My friend’s initials are JMC.

    #218726

    International Debris

    I think the ongoing nature of Red Dwarf is possibly why people are more inclined to speculate. If they’d finished the show at Out of Time and then gone on and done separate things it might not get so much attention, but the return of the show without Rob means the split seems more obvious. Particularly given the quality drop after Rob left.
    Also, Red Dwarf has a certain kind of nerdy fanbase which obsesses about these things in a way that the works of those other writers don’t quite have.

    I’d love to have a straight forward explanation that suddenly makes it all click into place, but that’s not going to happen. These things are complex, and based on subjective responses to creativity and interpersonal relationships, they can’t be summed up in a simple sentence. I’m sure there were probably key moments which added to the split, but they’re almost certainly personal things that don’t need to be aired in public.

    #218736

    bloodteller

    jawscvmedia opened the forum to start a new thread, only to discover a tactfully deployed subpeona. he had finally been served.

    #218738

    Phobos And Deimos

    The Naylor Parable.

    #218739

    bloodteller

    upon recieving the subpeona, jawscvmedia was brought to the grand court of naylor, in which it was revealed to jawscvmedia that rob grant actually never left red dwarf, but instead was simply left on starbug during the conclusion of out of time, unfortunately resultant in him being blown into a thousand really small bits by richard griffiths rimmer.

    #218740

    Seb Patrick

    #218743

    KyoSo

    Is Rob Grant the vampire?

    #218746

    Ben Paddon

    Can we pull the dirt over the top of this one?

    #218768

    Plastic Percy

    Rob was bored of Red Dwarf and Doug wasn’t. I think that’s about it, really.

    #218770

    KyoSo

    Yeah, but do you have SCREENCAPS AND SQUARES to back it up?

    #218771

    Darrell

    They had a row while watching Strike It Lucky – after the first half with the contestants, Rob wanted to get on with writing but Doug wanted to watch part 2 with the game. “You’ve seen the good bit now, come on, you’ll be wanting to watch Soldier Soldier and World In Action then and we’ll get nothing done,” he was reported to have said. They haven’t spoken since – the Bodysnatcher project was achieved using puppetry, archive demo tapes and TV funnyman Kevin McNally.

    #218772

    Dax101

    Rob probably wasn’t bored of red dwarf since he did write backwards soon after and that was a pretty long novel, maybe the longest of the 4, but I have always imagined the writers egos were quite high after the shows continued success by 1994.

    #218773

    Pete Part Three

    Rob never actually left, he’s simply been an uncredited writer since 1997. The reason for this is to fuel 20 years of pointless conjecture and conspiracy theories.

    Well, it’s a laugh, isn’t it?

    #218775

    KyoSo

    Rob probably wasn’t bored of red dwarf since he did write backwards soon after and that was a pretty long novel

    Yeah, but solo-writing a novel at your own leisure is not at all the same experience as co-producing a TV series under massive budgetary and time restrictions. It’s like cooking yourself dinner as opposed to operating a busy restaurant.

    #218776

    Dax101

    Thats not getting bored of Red Dwarf though per say.

    We know Rob and Doug were writing the 3rd novel when they split as doug has said in interviews that rob wanted to write by himself so they tried to do it in a way where they could each write a part of the book solo but that didn’t work out very well and i assume things just went down hill from there.

    #218777

    Phobos And Deimos

    Maybe we should just ask him.

    #218778

    KyoSo

    Three series of the dark blue tunic is more than enough. I say they play color/costume combo again and give Rimmer a dark green quilted jacket for Series XIII.

    Come on, we all know that’s a more interesting subject matter than the well-trodden Rob/Doug split.

    #218780

    International Debris

    We’ve had grey, green, red, blue and yellow, I reckon orange or pinky purple for XII.

    #218784

    Dax101

    Blue is the hard light costume colour, well unless you are howard Rimmer in which case you can where whatever you like because hard light was clearly invented not long after lister went into stasis. (i guess)

    #218785

    Darrell

    If blue is the hard light costume colour, then that means that the soft light costume colour is ‘green or red or the clothes you died in or a cycling outfit or someone else’s admiral uniform or a grey T-shirt with a slogan on or a military general’s outfit or the uniform of a ship you wish to join’. That’s quite some system.

    #218788

    International Debris

    Hard light Future Rimmer is yellow in Out of Time.

    #218793

    KyoSo

    Or we could have purple like when he went softlight in Entangled.

    Don’t make me crack out the screencaps and the eyedropper to show you; it’s purple and nowhere close to the normal red some clearly colorblind people have insisted to me that it is.

    #218794

    Dave

    I thought it was not quite as bad as the red but worse than the blue. Sort of a mauve.

    #218796

    pad_ehh

    Well if we do get a XIII and XIV filmed back to back, I hope a change in Rimmer’s costume happens, either in style or in colour, or even both.

    #218798

    KyoSo

    I’d love to see an entirely new costume this time. If it still goes with solid colors, III/IV green or V/VI red would suit it fine. Hell, the alternate blue Red Dwarf uniform from Ouroborus would be pretty awesome but I know that’d never happen. Again, return of the quilted jacket but in dark green would be cool, but they established in preproduction of BtE it made him look too “big” now.

    Red Dwarf visually changes so much it just feels wrong to me for Rimmer’s costume to stay the same for 18 episodes straight.

    #218804

    Dax101

    Blue is Rimmers hard light colour, it helps tell apart when he can touch things and when he can’t.

    #218807

    Dave

    Although given that there are few restrictions on when he can use hard light, it doesn’t really seem that necessary to stick to just one hard-light colour.

    Besides, wasn’t yellow future-Rimmer in Out Of Time hard light too?

    #218808

    si

    Can’t be arsed to read this whole discussion, but has anyone mention the fact that Ace was a hard light hologram in Stoke Me A Clipper, and wasn’t dressed in a Space Corp uniform at all, be it blue, red, green, yellow, purple, lilac, puce, tangerine, or anything.

    #218809

    International Debris

    Just to mention, for the third time, that Out of Time future-Rimmer was yellow and hard-light.

    Let’s be honest, the important question is: what did Rimmer do with the car stickers when they arrived on Thursday?

    #218810

    flanl3

    It may just be that they’ve agreed upon this as it may sometimes be more comfortable to go about in softlight sometimes.

    Let’s be honest, the important question is: what did Rimmer do with the car stickers when they arrived on Thursday?

    I’ll bet there’s some on the back of the car sofa.

    #218811

    Dave

    Come to think of it, why are hardlight holograms clothed at all? They could just wear real clothes.

    #218813

    International Debris

    Where does food go when a hard light hologram eats? Do they have a working digestive system too?

    #218816

    flanl3

    If they’re a proper simulation with exact edges everywhere they belong, then it’d get ground up and come out the other end a pile of moist dust, I suppose.

    #218817

    Dave

    How about if a real person eats hard-light hologrammatic food?

    It would presumably be virtually indestructible, so it would have to be something small, like peas.

    #218818

    Jason aka Smeg4Brains

    When Rimmer removes his light bee in Legion shouldn’t some half-digested mimosian food drop to the floor?

    #218819

    Dave

    Is Ace Rimmer’s wig part of his hologram? It doesn’t really explain how it can be passed on from one Ace to the next.

    Is it a real wig that’s just being worn by a hard-light hologram? Or is it a hologrammatic wig with its own individual light bee?

    #218820

    Darrell

    If the Smegazine was still going, that wig would have had its own strip spanning a dozen issues.

    #218821

    clem

    > a hologrammatic wig with its own individual light bee

    Sort of a toupbee, you mean? Oh come on, it’s nearly Christmas!

    #218822

    flanl3

    Perhaps his the extra energy required to run in hardlight mode is acquired through the light bee taking in the mushy powder his digestive system would produce, the bee’s placement is sensible enough to catch it in the later stages of its journey.

    #218823

    Dave

    Sort of a toupbee, you mean? Oh come on, it’s nearly Christmas!

    Most bees make honey, but this one makes a syrup!

    #218824

    si

    I always wondered: when Rimmer switches off his own light bee in Legion…where does it go? Likewise in Gunmen. He gets shot in the mid-section, then he comes to in the cockpit. Where’s his light bee?

    #218825

    Dave

    Does it not just fall on the floor both times?

    #218827

    International Debris

    I never really got the whole ‘turning himself off’ bit in Legion anyway. Does it mean he can just put his hand through his own hardlight skin?
    You certainly don’t see the light bee fall to the floor (or just… exist) in that scene.

    #222356

    Jawscvmcdia

    Bump.

    #222369

    Darrell

    But why did you bump three separate threads at once though?

    #222370

    Stephen Abootman

    Why ‘bump?’ Has some new information come out? Did Rob leave after Doug combined 3 seperate jokes into 1 and subsequently refused to explain why?

    #222375

    Pete Part Three

    >Bump.

    Oh, do piss off.

    #222381

    performingmonkey

    What a cunny wee fella.

    #222402

    Ben Saunders

    1) Rob Grant wanted to leave
    2) Rob Grant left

    #222403

    Jawscvmcdia

    1) Opinion
    2) Opinion
    3) Opinion

    COMBINED ACTION!!

    #222404

    Jawscvmcdia

    1) Opinion
    2) Opinion
    3) Opinion

    COMBINED ACTION!!

    #222407

    International Debris

    Looks like it’s time for a new joke, everyone.

    #222414

    Ben Saunders

    We should try combining three old jokes into one to create a whole new superjoke.

    #222415

    Paul Muller

    When is Chloe Annett’s foaming cloche going to update the Blue Midget page?

    #222418

    cwickham

    EPILOGUE: The second joke after the “combining three separate opinions into one” one, which was much less intelligent than the first, stowed away in the “I’ve finally figured out why…” thread – where it died of old age many years later.

    #222419

    Ridley

    HARRIOTT: We like a butter cloche, don’t we?

    #222424

    Dave

    Can’t cloche won’t cloche.

    #222531

    Rival Schools

    Didn’t Rob have a breakdown of sorts after Series VI?

    #222541

    Taiwan Tony

    He wrote Dark Ages. So yes.

    #222543

    Rival Schools

    I might have to watch that one, it looks quite good, IN THEORY.

    #222566

    Ben Saunders

    The Strangerers was shite but I think he did Dark Ages after that so maybe it’s better, I didn’t care enough to find out

    #222572

    International Debris

    It’s worse.

    #222577

    Paul Muller

    I remember thinking it was quite funny at the time. But then again, I was twelve…

    #222584

    Ben Saunders

    I’ve always wondered how people would react if Rob Grant returned to Red Dwarf, and it was shite. That would throw a real spanner in the works.

    #222585

    Rival Schools

    You mean, more shite.

    #222586

    Phil

    Oh, hey, welcome back.

    #222587

    Rival Schools

    I’m here to avenge the BBC.

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