OK, I’ll admit it – I’m usually sceptical about this kind of thing. And I still am. But: there’s a fucking fantastic trailer on for it at the moment. See for yourself:

UKTV G2 Trailer Small (MOV, 6MB)
UKTV G2 Trailer Large (MOV, 16MB)

Isn’t that just utterly fantastic? Such a clever idea – Lister’s plight is similar to Dorothy’s (sent far, far away…) – and it’s executed so damn well. All the characters are worked in brilliantly (Kryten as the Tin Man, Cat as the Cowardly Lion) – and it just looks superb, with the old film effect and the beautifully designed captions. And to top it all off – it ends with a glorious mix of Somewhere Over The Rainbow and the end of the Dwarf theme that just works perfectly. Time and effort has been spent on this. It’s one of the best trails I’ve seen in ages, and far better than the bland stuff than the terrestrial channels usually stick out. They could have just slapped together a load of episode clips – but they didn’t. They came up with something memorable.

So, what’s actually on during the weekend? Well, this Saturday from 9:00pm has Camille, D.N.A. and Justice. It’s then repeated at 11:00pm… and then at 1:00am there’s a signed version of Camille, which is probably fun. Sunday from 9 sees the second half of Red Dwarf IV, with a signed version of Meltdown at 12:20am. Lazy scheduling? Undoubtedly – a 110% Dwarf Weekend should do rather more than just repeat one series of Red Dwarf. Twice.

And this is UKTV’s problem in a nutshell. On one hand, the have a history of doing these brilliant trailers. They did a lovely one at Christmas with a choir singing about what was coming up on UK Gold; they had a brilliant one advertising a week of Rik and Ade shows with lots of extreme violence set to Two Little Boys – and best of all, they advertised a Carry On season using Beep by the Pussycat Dolls. With various rudery happening on the beeps. It was one of the funniest things I have ever seen. Each trail I’ve just mentioned really shows a huge love of telly, and were created by people who – frankly – give a damn.

On the other hand, their actual programming is often dreadful. Take the aforementioned Rik and Ade week – they showed Filthy, Rich & Catflap (and the more I watch that show, the better it gets) – and edited out the very first scene of the series. Our first introduction to the characters – gone. Or take the Carry On season – the actual prints they used were appalling. And here we are again with a Red Dwarf weekend – one of the best trailers I’ve seen in a long time, but utterly mediocre scheduling.

To be fair to them, they do sometimes get it right. They showed some specially-shot stuff over Christmas with celebs (including Mr. Barrie) giving their views on the perfect Christmas, which was fun enough. And their Coogan weekend recently showed signs of improvement, as clear effort had been made – with some fantastic Coogan links. But still, there was dodgy stuff – they bothered to dig out the (fucking excellent) Tony Ferrino Phenomenon – but then edited out one of the songs. They showed Three Fights, Two Weddings and a Funeral, which was lovely to see – but also scheduled no less than three episodes of I’m Alan Partridge. Three? Two is fine – one from each series – but three is just really lazy scheduling. Why not a Knowing Me, Knowing You?

Back to the Dwarf weekend – and I suppose there’s a chance that this weekend will have some specially shot stuff in-between the episodes – if it does, I’ll take some of this back, at least. But God, if only their programming matched their trails, I’d be constantly glued to the various UKTV channels. As it is, it’s all the more infuriating that so much effort goes on beautiful trailers for weekends like this – and no effort at all goes into the actual content of the weekend itself.

23 comments on “UKTV G2’s 110% Dwarf Weekend

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  • I’m loving the lead-in from Somewhere Over The Rainbow to the Dwarf theme. I actually applauded the TV when i heard it…

  • I like the trailer but it isn’t really a 110% weekend…..more like a half assed Dwarf weekend

  • Yeah, excellent trailer – and upon seeing it I got excited, ‘cos as luck would have it I’ll be home this weekend with access to Sky – but shame about the weekend…

  • I came home turned on the TV caught this trailer thought “Wow! That’s a fantastic piece of TV” flicked channels and found UK Gold showing ‘Girl in the fireplace’. When did TV get good again?

    A truly superb trailer.

  • There was a girl in a fireplace? Must’ve hurt her, but been incredibly erotic.

    Anyways, it seems that these ‘marathons’ are pretty crap. The last good one was on fox over here, on new years they played series 1-8 in a row.

  • Well since BBC2’s Red Dwarf night everything else just seems……beh.

    I think I was about 8 at the time and I can still remember it.

  • >they advertised a Carry On season using Beep by the Pussycat Dolls. With various rudery happening on the beeps. It was one of the funniest things I have ever seen.

    Has someone put that up on the web somewhere? It sounds good.

  • Clever use of clips from several series’ to disguise the fact that it’s just IV there…but it’s still a great trailer. If something like that was on terrestrial the whole world might just die in a ball of flame (OK OK, the Life On Mars promotion was very good).

    If there’s any specially shot stuff is there any chance of it turning up on a DVD sometime?

  • By the way, the Coogan links are fucking hilarious. Seriously, there’s no-one who does bitterness like him (Gervais probably thinks he’s better at that whole thing but he’s too obvious, obviously…).

  • they advertised a Carry On season using Beep by the Pussycat Dolls. With various rudery happening on the beeps. It was one of the funniest things I have ever seen.

    Has someone put that up on the web somewhere? It sounds good.

    It’s my favourite ever TV trailer ever. Unfortunately, like an idiot, I didn’t record it.

    If anyone has a copy, I’d love to see it again as well…

  • Well, last night they were showing Backwards, Marooned and Polymorph. And then after that was…Backwards, Marooned and Polymorph again! And then after that was…Backwards, Marooned and Polymorph again. Followed by Backwards one final time.

    I only watched the first showing of Backwards, as nothing else was on. Even though it was after the watershed, they’d cut out the “What a bastard!” line. I mean, why? Most shows can get away with the word “Bastard” even during the daytime. I’d hate to see how Polymorph gets edited – there’s a lot of rudeness in that one.

  • UK Gold still using the same versions they’ve been using for ten years, there. Look out for the edit in Polymorph, it’s great.

    “Well I say let’s get out there.”
    [huge audience laugh]

  • Hmmm. I’m embarassed now. I didn’t realise it started Friday, not Saturday. I should have guessed, as it said ‘Easter Weekend’. Bah.

    Still, the edits make it even worse – as Ian says, they’re just showing the crappy pre-watershed edited ones, rather than the proper ones. It’s just a case of sticking on whatever the nearest copy is rather than doing it properly, and it’s as unprofessional as fuck. As I said in the article – there’s someone who cares about trailers there, but nobody who cares about the actual programmes.

  • >?Well I say let?s get out there.?
    [huge audience laugh]

    I was wondering how they’d “fix” that bit. If I’d had to edit that out I’d probably cut out the line and laughter completely, so Lister just gets up and then Rimmer says his line. I take it that the “clitoris” bit was removed as well?

    Still, it’s not as bad as the edits Family Guy has to suffer. There’s one episode where Peter and Lois are lying on the couch nude, but at an angle so you can’t see any of their “naughty bits” anyway. Despite this, they were completely redrawn wearing underwear for the broadcast version.

  • >Despite this, they were completely redrawn wearing underwear for the broadcast version.

    By the studio who usually does the show? (Forgive me for not knowing the name.) I’d assume so…but wow. That’s interesting and cowardly all at once.

  • Came home rather drunk last night, and watched Backwards with “Signing” for the deaf for a bit, it was an interesting experience. Kind of like watching the show with a small deaf friend standing in front of the TV set.

    I’m sure the experience should have made me appreciate that I was born with
    good ability to hear, or maybe an experience that made me think more about
    the plight of people who are missing a key ability such as hearing. But mainly
    I just sat there laughing at the excellent facial experessions the signing guy
    used to convey the story, especially during Lister’s confused comments in the pub where he was working out finally for himself the reason why this planet was so confusing to him. It made the episode funny in a new way for me as I saw someone
    else trying to enterprit the emotional feeling through skilled sign language
    and low level gurning to say what the characters were saying.

    Is that why they add signing? it’s not just for deaf people who cant read is it?
    It’s an alternative to subtitles in that in some ways signing can convey more
    what tone of voice or inflection might?

    The guy did his best not to obscure the subtitles that appear on the
    original show. (when backwards speak happens) but they should have repositioned
    him or faded him out like they did at other times.

    Then I tried to see how many signs I could understand based on my knowledge
    of the show. In an attempt to see how much of the dialouge it’s possible to
    translate into sign language at the pace the show is going. I think the guy
    did a good job but Red Dwarf must be harder to sign.

    Jokes like “When in Rome do as the Snamor do” must be hard unless you rapidly
    spell it out. I think ultimately the guy was signing a few moments behind the

    There was I think a sign made to explain drinking beer going backwards into a glass.
    Made by cupping one hand like a glass and the other hand protraying the pouring of liquid back into the glass after lowering the cup hand down from your mouth. Nice I will remember that for the next time I meet a deaf person in a backwards universe
    and go for a drink!

    It’s a shame that they didnt take to the opportunity to throw in some
    backwards signing! If they did I missed it. Would have been another unique
    first for the episode.


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