DwarfCast 78 – The Beginning Commentary

It’s the end! No, wait, the opposite of that. It’s The Beginning, as we draw our coverage of Series X to a close, just in time for the coverage of Series XI to begin. Join Jonathan Capps (via Skype), Tanya Jones, Danny Stephenson, Ian Symes and the Fan Club’s Jo Sharples as we discuss such burning issues as how many of the Rimmer brothers are illegitimate, what Arnold’s dying words actually were, including whether or not he even said “gazpacho soup” in the first place, and our feelings on Series X as a whole, with the benefit of nearly four years of thinking time.

Plus, we bring you a round-up of all the major Red Dwarf XI news that didn’t make it to the front page of G&T in the last week, and the long-awaited announcement of how exactly we’ll be covering the new series, bearing in mind that the release schedule for each episode is a confusing, divisive mess. Listen to the DwarfCast for far too much detail about our reasoning, but the short version is this:

Live DwarfCasts at broadcast pace. Written material at online pace. Discussion threads for both. Everyone gets some coverage asap after they’ve watched it, and nobody has to miss out on anything they can’t catch up on. Let’s make the TV broadcast the big event, and treat the online releases as an optional preview.

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DwarfCast 77 – Dear Dave Commentary

Rejoice as we finally reach everyone’s favourite episode of Series X, Dear Dave. Your intrepid team – Tanya Jones, Danny Stephenson, Ian Symes and TORDFC’s Jo Sharples – tackle such topics as the nature of the JMC on-board computer, the best burial place for a shit episode, Alphonse Areola, and a potential spin-off series for Asso: Spanish Detective. Oh, and sexism. Let’s see if this shitty little (mostly) boys’ club can sort out that thorny problem once and for all.

But before all that, a round-up of the latest Red Dwarf XI news, and all the details you need to get your hands of one of five pairs of tickets to Dave’s exclusive fan screening of the first two episodes. Yes, you have to listen to the actual DwarfCast in order to get the instructions, but don’t worry, it’s quite near the start.

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You Have Been Watching… Part 2

Dig very, very deep into your memories and you might recall a little article called You Have Been Watching… Part 1, which was published a staggering 35 months ago. But never fear because now, finally, I have returnethed with part 2, covering every last guest character from the final three episodes of Red Dwarf Eggs (Entangled, Dear Dave and The Beginning). There are a lot of the bastards, so strap in and prepare for some hastily researched biographies and overwrought opinions on the fine people that helped make his series the lovably flawed beast that it is.

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End of Part One

During the current break in production between Red Dwarf XI and XII, now seems the perfect time to talk about something very specific to the Dave era of Red Dwarf. Oddly enough, it’s something we haven’t really discussed in any great depth here on Ganymede & Titan, although we did touch on it briefly in our commentary on Gunmen.

Firstly, for some context, let’s go back to how the BBC-era shows are presented on Dave. And for all my whinging about Red Dwarf repeats, there is one particular joy I have in watching Red Dwarf on a commercial channel – one which you might think of as merely a pain in the ass. And that is: the commercials themselves. Or, more specifically, the placing of those commercial breaks.

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It’s Been 15 Days…

…since we did a roundup of slightly spoilery things spotted on social media, so let’s combine one of those with the usual “ooh, there’s a recording tonight” post. Let’s get that stuff out the way first: episode three records tonight, we won’t be there but there are correspondents in the field, set report coming this weekend. Probably on the Sunday rather than the Saturday this time, but I’m sure you’ll cope.

Anyway, over on Twitter, we spotted this intriguing tweet:

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Red Dwarf: The Complete Guide To Almost Everything

Do you remember a time, a few years either side of the turn of the century, when the internet was mostly comprised of auto-playing midi files and non-HD porn? Back then, if you searched Yahoo, or Alta Vista, or Lycos, you could find tonnes of Geocities-hosted web pages for each and every one of your favourite TV shows, which invariably featured the same handful of low-res jpegs, lists of quotes, episode guides and those ubiquitous auto-playing midi files. Then blogging came along, and we all realised that we could just write about our opinions on our favourite shows, rather than trying to provide a comprehensive mine of information, given that new-fangled things like Google and Wikipedia could do that much better.

So things like episode guides disappeared from fansites. Not entirely, but they were no longer an essential component. It was only recently that we realised that G&T had nothing even resembling such a guide – not even a list of episodes anywhere. When we started, in 2002, we launched an ambitious project of producing detailed “capsules” for every episode, but, well, you can see how that went. We got to thinking that it might be fun to try and write an episode guide now, and see where it ended up. As it turns out, it kind of got out of hand…

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You Have Been Watching… Part 1

Just in case you’ve forgotten, Red Dwarf is set three millions years into the deepest of deep space, in a lonely, alienless Universe, well past the natural life span of the now distant human race. Despite this, and as early as series 1, we’ve always had our fill of guest stars, from artificial intelligences, to human created GELF monstrosities and haughty and / or insane holograms. The apparently narrow scope for guest characters has never been a problem.

Series X is now over and done with and every single episode featured at least one guest character of some description. They’ve all combined to make for a unique series, with encounters of the like we’ve never before, as well as ones expanding on past stories. So join me now, if you will, as I trawl through every single guest character, get to know the actor a little better (search for them on IMDb), assess them (needlessly and overtly infuse the piece with my own opinions) and finally try to work out which ones, if any, we are likely to see again come a potential Red Dwarf XI.

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DwarfCast 45 – Series X Semi Retrospective Byte Two

Team G&T has once again assembled in order to talk at length about Series X, in Byte Two of our semi-retrospective. Join Ian, John, Tanya, Danny and Cappsy as we talk the living shit out of Entangled, Dear Dave, The Beginning, Model Shots and what Doug Naylor should be doing with his career, all in our own inimitable ‘based-on-watching-show armchair production physiology’ style.

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DwarfCast 44 – Series X Semi Retrospective Byte One

Join the full Ganymede & Titan team – Jonathan Capps, John Hoare, Tanya Jones, Daniel Stephenson and Ian Symes – for a journey way way back into the past, as we attempt to take a retrospective look at Red Dwarf X, recorded about a week and a half after the series finished. Byte One of this beast contains our thoughts on Trojan, Fathers & Suns and Lemons, revised and updated since the Live Instant Reactions, with the benefit of repeated viewings, insights from the DVD documentary, and several weeks’ worth of arguments on G&T.

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Ten From Ten – Red Dwarf X’s big talking points

The one accusation that can’t be levelled at Series X is a lack of ideas. With scenarios and stories floating around Doug’s head for over a decade, there was never going to be a shortage of adventures for the crew to get up to. Indeed, many episodes seem to have almost too many ideas, with several interweaving plots competing for screen time. As such, there’s a nagging feeling that we’d liked to have seen more of certain elements, as not all of the questions raised by the concepts were fully answered in the series.

This article, therefore, lists ten of the biggest talking points from the series – a series that contains enough invention and intrigue to keep us talking for years. We’re not saying that these are plot holes or things that Doug neglected; these are just topics that it’s fun and interesting to speculate on in a far more in-depth manner than the pace of a half-hour sit-com episode will allow. In several cases, it’s good and proper that these things weren’t expanded upon within the episodes; not only would it have taken up valuable screen time, but it would also have been a shame if we hadn’t been able to ponder on any in-universe interestingness in the weeks, months and possibly years we’ll spend waiting for Series XI.

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