Here at G&T, we’ve spent pretty much the last nine months gushing about every announcement from GNP over what eventually became The Bodysnatcher Collection. Not that there’s anything wrong with that – whinging about something just to appear independent would be utterly ridiculous. Unfortunately, that’s something that a lot of the media seems to do rather too often…

Still, the artwork for the Bodysnatcher release has now been announced. And I can say: I don’t like it. And no, it’s not about the slipcase.

Oh God, I love the idea. Tying the whole thing into the Series 1-VIII releases is definitely the right thing to do in my eyes; it’s the cumulation of TV Dwarf, and it belongs with the previous DVDs. (If a Series IX was ever made, I’d want the DVD release to tie in in the same way.) And I adore the actual background image itself – it’s a return to something truly iconic from Dwarf, that you could argue the Series V-VIII covers lacked somewhat. And it just looks beautiful. (I would have loved it to use the toilet as well, in a homage to one of the best jokes in Series 1 – but I can see why they didn’t, with the reviews thing. Also, it’s more usual to see the sink there in any case.)

But, in the translation to DVD cover, it loses something. For a start, I think both the front and back cover look too cluttered. The back is perhaps understandable, as there’s a lot of information to fit on there, to help sell the release – but the front desperately needs some elements removed. I think there are two problems here; partly, there’s too many additional graphical elements added onto the cover in the first place, and secondly, whilst beautiful, the background art is just too busy to work as a cover. And I’m not really keen on the logo for The Bodysnatcher Collection itself – I don’t think it looks right stretched, and the outline also adds to the clutter.

I remember at the time of the Series IV release, there were murmurings that the cover looked slightly too busy. I think that release looks fine – but here, I think there’s a problem. I think the background is more detailed, for a start – but I also don’t think the fact it’s grey helps either. You’d think that it being dark would help it blend into the background, and lessen the feeling of clutter – but somehow, it doesn’t work that way, although I can’t quite work out why. It just feels like one dark grey mass… that’s also too cluttered. As a whole, the cover just doesn’t leap out at me at all.

I can’t help but feel that in this instance, less would have been more. If that artwork was going to be used, then I think the graphics needed to be extremely minimalist. As it is, at the moment, it’s definitely my least favourite Dwarf DVD cover so far – ironic, considering that the content itself appeals to me the most.

On the plus side, the use of the original RE-MASTERED logo is a nice touch. And the discs themselves look lovely – including the Bodysnatcher disc, which works far better than the cover itself.. And the reuse of the Series 1-3 coverart for the discs is great – and also makes up for the lack of picture discs on the Series 1 and 2 releases. And it’s only when you read the back that it hits you that “the lost episode of Red Dwarf I” is the hook for this entire release. It’s a brave decision, to try and market the release like this, as it’s a slightly difficult message to get across to people who aren’t in fandom. But I really, really hope it pays off.

(I’m glad that the original artwork from the Remastered VHSes wasn’t used – as bloody wonderful as that was, just like the Series 1-VIII DVD releases, the packaging needs to convey that this is something new. Moreover, it wouldn’t suit how this release is being pushed – it’s the extras that are being marketed as the most important thing here, not the Remastered series itself. A recreation of the Series 1 bunkroom works marvellously to represent Bodysnatcher – the reuse of the Remastered artwork wouldn’t.)

Of course, I’ll reserve final judgement until I hold the packaging in my sweaty, cum-stained hands – and I really, really hope I change my mind – but, for now, I’m not keen. What should be iconic, beautiful packaging, considering its concept, just comes across as a bit of a mess. Ah well – there had to be one aspect of the release that I wasn’t going to like…

46 comments on “Bodysnatcher Cover!

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  • sorry, we?re a bit behind, as usual?

    Yes, because posting a link and the words “more later” every week is obviously keeping you so busy.

  • Or maybe we actually have lives, and jobs, and things.

    Ahh, poor you. Would it have taken maybe 10 minutes to write something, if trying really hard.

    You can say “well if you think it’s so easy, you try it” if you like…

  • I don’t think someone has to be an administrator for the site in order to write their feelings about a TOS update. John (or whomever) is not obligated to be the first one to discuss an update at length. In fact, I’d hazard to guess that that’s the very reason he puts these links up as topics. He’s inviting people to discuss them before he’s had time to sit down and write something satisfying.

    Everyone here has an equal right to discuss whatever they like at whatever length. I don’t know quite who started the rumor that John was obligated to go first.

  • It takes more than ten minutes to write an article if you do it properly. Only a complete idiot would publish, say, a one-sentence movie review.

  • So we could expect ‘The Movie Greenlit! Cunt! More later…’ something along those lines? Or ‘Cast Reunite For Earth-Based Sitcom! Teh Ellards will fill you in on the comments…’ I’m afraid that just won’t do. It won’t do at all.

    It’s like the drill sergeant in Full Metal Jacket says – ‘How tall are you, Private?’ ‘5ft9, sir’ ‘5ft9? I didn’t know they stacked shit that high!’ ‘Tonight men you will sleep with your rifles. You will give your rifle a girl’s name because this is the only pussy you people are going to get. Your days of finger-banging ol’ Mary J Rottencrotch through her purty pink panties are over!’ ‘You little scumbag! I got your name, I got your ass! You will not laugh, you will not cry, you will learn by the numbers I will teach you. Now get up, get on your feet! You had best un-fuck yourself or I will unscrew your head and shit down your neck!’ ahem.

    Speaking of the movie, are you sure you want to greenlight this movie, you nobcheese investors? It does mean changing the bulb from red all the way through amber up to fucking green. Can you do that for me, maggots, or do I have to call your mommy to do it for you? Hell, she can wipe your ass while she’s at it!

    I love the cover, it’s great.

  • Nothing like giving it a little stir, it there?

    One sentence is all you need to review a movie.

    If I’m going to be an insufferable cunt, I’d rather do it over here. Or you could cut me off from the rest of the world behind my back again.

  • >Ahh, poor you.

    Oh, don’t worry about it. It’s rather fun. You should try it some time.

    >One sentence is all you need to review a movie.

    I think a few decades of professional movie journalism would disagree with you there.

    >Or you could cut me off from the rest of the world behind my back again.

    Melodramatic, much? Did we deprive you of the entire rest of the internet simply because we felt it impossible to work with you any more?

  • Yes! At last, my favourite background art for any RD boxset! It’s perfect, the original bunkroom which so many fans love, I think it’s entirely fitting for this collection, reflecting the hub of what makes Rd so popular, Rimmer and Lister, and showing them in front of their good old grey bunkroom just epitomizes what made RD so incredibly fun to begin with. It’s just the perfect choice, not what I initially thought it was going to be. Just imagine walking into your local HMV/ Virgin and seeing copies of this baby on the shelves, what a treat!!

  • I’ve thinking about this for 24 hours, and it seems, annoyingly, that I don’t like the cover at all :(

    The art work itself is lovely (and it’s a great idea to use the bunkroom and keep the main template in place) but why on Earth is it so dark? That’s not going to jump off the shelf, it’s going to blend into the bloody metalwork!

    So, reckon, lightning up the background considerably and removing some of the clutter from the front (I know this is difficult, as it
    s essential to communicate how big the set is) would improve things a great deal.

    On the other hand, it’s not hugely essential and it could look *much* better when I hold it in my clammy hands, so we’ll see.

  • I think the font of “The Bodysnatcher Collection” is the only thing I don’t like about the cover. Maybe because it’s very similar to font used for “The Brittas Empire”.

  • The whole thing seems a little cluttered to me, too much information (I agree that it’s jam packed full of lovely features but the method of describing them on the front and back leaves a lot to be desired) I can’t see it standing out on the shelf IMO

  • I agree that it certainly doesn`t jump out at you. The `Bodysnatcher Collection` writing seems to blend into both the front and back covers and the lettering used to indicate the presence of the re-mastered series doesn`t work too well either I don`t think.

    Maybe that`s just because I`m looking at it in such a small form though.

  • Well, “the lettering used to indicate the presence of the re-mastered series” is the actual “Re-Mastered” logo from the time.

  • I agree with most of Cappsy comments. Thats kinda how I felt about seeing it.

    There is nothing wrong in many ways with the design, and it being in fitting
    with the 8 series releases so far is good thinking for it to match up.
    But I guess they had really run out of colour ideas in that line up,
    I would have probably gone back to more red.

    It’s a good solid design. It’s just too standard, too dull looking to
    sum up how brilliant all the content is. I still think it will stand out
    to any casual fan who sees it in a shop, especially given the fatness of the
    box. At the very worst they will mistake it for a box set of already released
    extras and shows. Is the snapcase cardboard over thingy going to be the same picture do we know?

  • The fact that any trace of the Mark Wilkinson artwork has been dropped it a total travesty, it was the VHS release’s only saving grace.

    Im very dissapointed.

  • I actually don’t dislike the cover at all.

    I agree with every one of John’s points. It IS too cluttered…I can see that.

    But, for whatever reason, it isn’t bothering me. Maybe I’m just too excited about what’s inside. Or maybe I’m just too happy that it’ll sit so neatly and appropriately beside the other covers.

    Regardless, I just thought whoever designed the cover might be happy to know that there’s at least one person out there who likes it.

  • Excellent comment from that DVD time article:

    They’ve obviously been taking lessons in DVD releases from George Lucas…


  • Because as Jonn will pedantically tell you, the numerals didn?t arrive until Red Dwarf III. Johno and I happen to agree on this.

    Anyway, I don?t mind it. Aside from the font itself, it could probably do without the ?Deluxe Box Set? blurb.

    I like that it?s a plastic case rather than digipack, I love that it?s the extras that are promoted above the PILE OF SHITE REMASTERED CRAP. ARGHHHH. DIE DIE DIE!!!

    Aherm. I?m wondering the background would look better if it wasn?t so in focus and sharp.

    Oh, and how big is that certificate? Bloody BBFC.

  • But they didn?t arrive until Red Dwarf VII if you want to be THAT pedantic. None of I, II, III, IV, V or VI have them on screen.

    And Red Dwarf VIII should be only referred to as ?Red Dwarf IIII III?.

  • Well, if you?re THAT pedantic you pay attention to the titles in the Radio Times when the shows are first broadcast.

    And Red Dwarf VIII should be only referred to if it?s really necessary.

  • The only problem I have with this DVD is where to put it in my DVD collection. Does it go before the other Dwarf DVD’s, after them all, or between the series and Beat the Geek? I think it’ll go before the rest of them…no i dont have anything better to do.

  • I’ve already made a space for it on my shelf – it’s going to go between Red Dwarf Series VIII and Babylon 5 season 1 (I’m not buying “Beat the Geek”).

  • I think it’d fit nicely after Beat The Geek. it definitely needs to sit next to it, anyway, as they both have slipcases, so that works well.

  • The Bodysnatcher Font is awful. Also I think having the ‘Red Dwarf’ in red and white adds to the clutter – keep it silver like the rest of the DVDs – that might help.

  • > 12

    It’s the law, I think. Once your spine is over a certain width (wider than standard DVD, as it happens) you have to display the BBFC certification.

  • >> If I?m going to be an insufferable cunt, I?d rather do it over here. Or you could cut me off from the rest of the world behind my back again.

    Couldn’t happen to a more deserving guy.

    Now whoever you maybe stop being a vile malicious little cunt and if you truly believe you could do better, prove it. Start a fansite, rival G&T. Heck they asking for competition at DJ.

  • They were on Mark Wilkinson’s website a while back, may still be there, google it, I cant be arsed.

  • Yeah, the wallpaper of the artwork looks lovely – which sort of confirms that, for me at least, it’s not the artwork that’s the problem at all, simply that the mix of fonts and colours is a bit busy on the front…

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