MINUTES OF THE ANNUAL GANYMEDE & TITAN “DECIDING WHAT SHOULD BE IN THE CHRISTMAS MESSAGE” MEETING
DATE : 21.12.2008
PRESENT : John Hoare, Ian Symes, Tanya Jones, Jonathan Capps, Seb Patrick, Daniel Stephenson
ABSENT : Phil Reed, Austin Ross
STRICTLY PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL
* Seb began by calling the meeting to order.
* Ian countered that it was his [expletive deleted] website to start with, and if anyone was going to call the [expletive deleted] meeting to order, it was [expletive deleted] well going to be him.
* Seb immediately hit back by saying that Ganymede & Titan had long since become a group democracy, and any links to that poorly-designed, scarcely-updated Zyworld Page Builder-constructed monstrosity were tenuous at best.
* Ian replied that Seb’s mother was a poorly-designed, scarcely-updated Zyworld Page Builder-constructed monstrosity.
* Tanya said that the meeting would never get anywhere if everyone insisted on fighting, declared that the best place to start would be with January’s news, and threatened to send Ian and Seb to bed without their tea.
* Cappsy declared that that was a most improper suggestion.
* Danny posited that January probably wasn’t the best place to start after all, since very little of import actually happened. Cappsy pointed out that G&T actually managing to post a DwarfCast was pretty big news, particularly as the Dimension Jump XIV retrospective was impressively only three months late.
* At this point a voice piped up from the laptop in the corner, and the group realised that Austin was trying his best to get his video conferencing working after all. Ian turned the sound down.
* John said he had a nagging feeling that something important happened this month, but he wasn’t sure what it was.
* Seb said he was clearly forgetting G&T’s Finest Hour, a mega massive poll of the site’s writers that saw them rank all 52 episodes of Red Dwarf in order of greatness, from Pete Part Two at the bottom to Back to Reality at the top. Tanya felt it was worth pointing out to readers not familiar with the concept of irony that this was, of course, to celebrate the twentieth birthday of Red Dwarf, and that it was only a shame that the site hadn’t managed to update with quite so much exciting celebratory birthday content.
* Seb put forward the idea of doing a G&T episode poll every few weeks in 2009.
* Seb was punched in the face by Cappsy, and then by Ian. And then punched John in the face.
* Danny thought this was a good time to mention other bits of Dwarfy news that filtered through in the anniversary month. He said how excited he was to hear that Craig Charles had a new autobiography out, and was looking forward to reading it come next March. Ian pointed out that the release date was in March 2008.
* Seb pointed out that a nice segue would fit in the article at this point, going from one disgraced Dwarf star to another, courtesy of the news that broke on the 16th of Danny John Jules’ arrest.
* Austin popped up on the computer to ask what “segue” meant, but nobody heard him.
* Cappsy said he was proud of his continued ability to dig up old episode commentaries from his hard drive, and that we should point out that the site managed to post an entire two DwarfCasts in March.
* John looked up from playing with a pen to declare that “PAEDOPHILIA” was his favourite headline ever posted on G&T.
* Danny noted with disappointment that the release date of Craig Charles’ autobiography had been put back, but that he was still looking forward to see when it would be released.
* Cappsy suggested skipping over April entirely, especially the 4th, as nothing important ever happened in that month. Tanya felt it was worth pointing out to readers not familiar with the concept of irony that this date was, of course, the fifth birthday of Ganymede and Titan, and that it was only a shame that the site hadn’t managed to update with quite so much exciting celebratory birthday content.
* Ian looked rather ashamed.
* John called Ian a [expletive deleted] [expletive deleted] and went back to playing with a pen.
* Seb remembered that the month had also begun with another typically excellent April Fool’s gag, and that particular praise was due to Danny for the brilliant “Just the Deleted Scenes” artwork. Danny suspiciously asked why Seb was being so nice all of a sudden. Seb told Danny to shove it up his [expletive deleted].
* Austin finally managed to get the sound and video working, and declared himself ready to join in with working out what to write in the Christmas message. He’d even managed to get Phil to travel all the way to his house to join in, and they were particularly excited about contributing new content to the site for the first time in eons. Truly, it was a Christmas miracle.
* Unfortunately, because nothing had been posted in May but a single meaningless blog entry, the team had taken this opportunity to go down the chippy. When they returned, the screen was blank.
* Danny asked if there was any news on Craig’s autobiography yet.
* John looked smug and referred everyone back to his ludicrously speculative post about “The Future of Red Dwarf”, in which he picked up on some comments from Charles Armitage to extrapolate the suggestion that we were going to get a 22-episode series nine, six DVD releases and three new novels (two by Naylor, one by Grant) before 2008 was out – and just look how right he’d been proven.
* Cappsy felt it was worth pointing out that this was the month that the fanclub got a shiny spangly new website, finally dragging them kicking and screaming into the 90s.
* Seb said that the mention of websites was another nice segue into the cautionary tale of Groovetown and Crapola, Inc – two sites that finally gave up the ghost this month, having been online Dwarfy mainstays for years but sadly declined due to a lack of updates. He pointed out how important it was for sites such as G&T to continue to deliver consistently strong, regularly updated, cutting-edge content.
* The room went quiet for a bit.
* Tanya mused on how July hadn’t appeared to be a great month for Red Dwarf cast members. Seb agreed that the combination of Norman Lovett’s apparent cry for help, and further news on Danny John Jules’ apparent cry for better refuse management services, cast a bit of a pallor over the month. Cappsy told Seb to stop using poncey words like “pallor”, the stupid Southern fairy. Seb pointed out that he was, in fact, also a Northerner, and that Cappsy should really stop pretending to be Gene Hunt.
* Ian intervened to remind everyone that despite all of the downers, July was nevertheless the month that saw us first get a true hint that there really was something special on the way, courtesy of Robert Llewellyn’s tantalising Youtube comment.
* John agreed, commenting also that it was a remarkably sensible thing for Ian to say.
* Ian affrontedly wondered what was so [expletive deleted] remarkable about his being sensible.
* The room went quiet for a bit.
* John wondered how we should space out talking about the gradual filtering through of EXCITING NEWS from this point onwards. It was agreed that just linking to the story while laughing smugly at the innocence of our unknowing optimism was probably the way to go. Yeah, no, that was definitely the way to go.
* In the absence of any other August news Danny at this point had wanted to remind everyone of how good that fake Series IX trailer we’d found at the end of July was, and how indeed this one particular person had lots of other good stuff on their Youtube page.
* Ian agreed that it was pretty neat, but asked Danny why the [expletive deleted] he hadn’t brought that up while they were still discussing July. Danny said he hadn’t wanted to interrupt everyone going quiet for a bit.
* Before the room could go quiet for a bit, Ian was reminded of the prototype calendar images that we saw this month. He wondered when we were finally going to see the proper one.
* Seb, meanwhile, was reminded of Cappsy’s use of the word “podcast” to describe the latest exhumed episode commentary, and glared at his former housemate for a while.
* John wondered if we could get away with doing the “pretending that there wasn’t any important news this month when actually there was something really mega massive and exciting” gag a third time. Tanya felt it was worth pointing out to readers not familiar with the concept of irony that this was, of course, part of the joke, and that it was only a shame that the site hadn’t managed to come up with any better ones.
* Ian thought it was worth going step-by-step through the unfolding of “the Dave news” bit by bit, as it provided an interesting look at the process – so it was decided to include links to the Guardian story, the Robert quotes, the first post that kind-of-sort-of-confirmed-something-was-happening, and then finally, on 19th September 2008, the glorious, magical news that Red Dwarf was officially making a comeback.
* Seb thought, though, that since we already had an inkling in August that something was afoot, and that this was really only confirmation for the slow-witted, the real story of September was Iain Lee being a [expletive deleted].
* The others found it hard to disagree.
* John noted with shame that it had taken him two whole weeks to get round to talking about All the Shows, although Tanya patted him on the head and explained that pushing a September story into October was quite useful, and that he’d spun an impressive amount of discussion out of an oversized black boxset containing episodes that anyone likely to be visiting the website would already own at least two or three times over.
* Tanya’s response to John’s next question was “Not here, it’s too sandy.”
* Cappsy pointed out with pride that October saw the relaunch, finally, of one of his many pet projects – the print archive – with some terrific and in-depth scanned magazine interviews with the likes of Peter Ridsdale-Scott and Mel Bibby. He also pointed out with anger how few [expletive deleted]s had read and commented on the [expletive deleted] things.
* That was a hint, by the way.
* Seb declared himself impressed with the site’s ability to only update three times over the course of a month in which quite a few significant developments occurred.
* Ian said if Seb made one more crack like that he’d be impressed by a punch in the face.
* Cappsy swung discussion back around to the EXCITING QUIZ that G&T had run this month. He said that once again, Danny deserved some extra kudos for actually bothering to put some work into the site while others sat around taking cheap potshots, and that we really didn’t appreciate him enough.
* Danny said that that wasn’t really necessary, but he really would like to know what had happened to Craig Charles’ autobiography. John gave Andrew Ellard a ring to find out, but his question was greeted by a torrent of anguished wailing and a dial tone.
* Ian pointed out that the last bits of news for the month, and indeed for the Christmas message as a whole – due to there being barely anything to mention in December – were the confirmation of the shooting dates and the exciting pictures of Robert being fitted for his new mask.
* Seb said that “exciting” depended on your point of view, but agreed that that would wrap things up nicely, and declared the meeting ready to conclude.
* Ian told him not to [expletive deleted] start again.
* Although the necessary information had been gathered, the room was unable to agree on who should sit down and write the thing. Ian pointed out that G&T had long since become a group democracy, and so the responsibility should no longer fall to him or John by default. Although it probably should be John anyway.
* Seb suggested just typing up the minutes to the meeting and printing those, since – as existing content – it was about the only way to guarantee actually updating the site in a timely fashion.
* The motion was passed unanimously, although Austin’s vote was taken by assumption as no-one could figure out what his frantic hand-signals were trying to say.
* It was also decided that this final point would be the best place to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas or other non-denominational winter festival and a Happy New Year before the site disappeared entirely into a black hole of up-its-own-arse meta-referencing. Tanya, remaining the only team member with a sense of decorum, also suggested offering thanks to all the site’s visitors, especially our enthusiastic group of forum regulars, for keeping the site alive during all the times we’ve been lame and not bothered to update. We hope to reward you all by continuing to be brilliant in 2009.