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Yes, we’ve stuck to something for two weeks in a row. Here’s the second of our Series X commentaries, which predictably enough covers Fathers & Suns. John, Danny, Ian and TORDFC’s Jo Sharples return to discuss such matters as how much help Lister got in creating his video, how this is the show’s third Holly-centric episode, Alf Garnett, and a hidden cock and balls. Oh, and racism. Let’s see if this room full of white people can sort out that thorny problem once and for all.

As well as that, we bring you an excessively angry one-man rant about UKTV’s decision to premiere Red Dwarf XI episodes online a week before broadcast, and how this is going to play merry havoc with our content plan, along with the rest of the news from the last seven days.

DwarfCast 74 – Fathers & Suns Commentary (54.3MB)

Join us next week as we deploy several substitutions in personnel, and go in search of lemons. And look out for more discussion on the Series XI online vs broadcast dilemma between now and then.

32 comments on “DwarfCast 74 – Fathers & Suns Commentary

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  • Really enjoyed the Trojan commentary, got this saved for tomorrow’s commute.

    Anyway, I’ve been inspired to revisit X myself, and primarily on a quest to see if there’s any isolated Howard Goodall music cues hiding inside the 5.1 mix, I’ve hacked and started examining the surround sound cues from my DVD copy (I know the Bluray is lossless but I don’t have the facilities to rip my Blu version).

    Anyway, it is one of the weirdest 5.1 mixes I have ever looked at (although I can’t say I’ve seen one for an audience sitcom before), but potentially a good research resource. Only had a look at Trojan so far, but the tracks go like this:

    FRONT L/R – Something approaching a complete ‘stereo mix’ of the show – all music, dialogue, audience, FX, atmos.
    REAR L/R – Just clean atmospheres (e.g. ship noise) and feature FX, combined with, fascinatingly, the isolated feed of the studio audience. This means you can tell if each individual audience laugh is genuine or altered/added in post because the dialogue bleed from the stage/monitors disappears conspicuously whenever re-editing is involved. This is strangely hypnotic to listen to.
    CENTRE – Virtually a ‘dry’ production mix of the show. Dialogue only, plus the odd effect for impact. Studio audience mixed out so only the bleed comes through, no atmospheres, no incidental music. This is very, very interesting.
    LOW-FREQUENCY – Not used. At all.

    Now, I’m going to try tinkering by forcing an inverted version of the centre channel against the fronts in a vain attempt to extract the music cues (which I don’t think is possible), but the main thing to take from all of this is that it is technically possible to remove Kerry Shale and create a karaoke version of the Taiwan Tony scene. Or replace him with anything you like.

  • Re: the RDXI problem.

    Ian, you and the rest of team G&T have never let me down. In fact, you’ve got better every year. Put your heads together and you’ll think of something. Try and seize the opportunity to make a virtue of necessity. I have loads of faith in you all.

  • Rebeccca Blacckstone’s tied back blonde hair can be viewed from other angles in We’re Smegged.


    I imagine the JMC installed ‘diverse’ vending machines in a ship for an international crew, and ignorance, three million year old tech or a combination of both results in Taiwan Tony.

    But the show itself is worse off for having Taiwan Tony in it.

  • The whole Taiwan Tony / Chinese whispers discussion gets quite interesting. I remember first watching it, as soon as the ‘meta Chinese whispers’ thing started I really cringed, it seemed like such an obvious joke to me.

    I quite like the idea of an Irish Taiwan Tony, but even having him actually finding Chinese whispers racist, and being really offended by it, would have been better I think. That would have made the whole racism meta idea a lot more obvious, at least. As it is, I find the concept of a racist vending machine quite funny, but the actual portrayal of it on screen was totally unforgivable.

  • Really enjoyed the Trojan commentary, got this saved for tomorrow’s commute.

    Anyway, I’ve been inspired to revisit X myself, and primarily on a quest to see if there’s any isolated Howard Goodall music cues hiding inside the 5.1 mix, I’ve hacked and started examining the surround sound cues from my DVD copy (I know the Bluray is lossless but I don’t have the facilities to rip my Blu version).

    How are Kryten and Cat Synced on Entangled? One L and one R ?

  • No, both in the middle. Dialogue is almost uniformly mono, as is general practice in film and TV, and I don’t think it would have been possible anyway as from the atmos sounds it was recorded with booms rather than radio mics and therefore not on isos to mix with. It would have been a fun gimmick though. A great radio idea, that.

    There’s not really much to show and tell from the X 5.1s to be honest, but I had a fun afternoon out of it anyway.

  • The audience being in the rear speakers is pretty cool, almost as though you’re sitting in the audience yourself with people either side….almost. :p

  • Taiwan Tony may be seemingly disliked but it killed on the night. Possibly the biggest woofer of the evening besides the Lister/Lister scene.

    Rimmer choosing Pree’s attributes and the laughing gas scene also got *huge* reactions from the audience which didn’t seem to translate to the broadcast version for some reason.

  • I remember when I did my fan edit for this episode, I made a point of removing the entire “Chinese Whispers” plot line – along with other tiny cuts. It really is a matter of opinion whether or not it improves the episode, but I think it did.

    Of course, it really sparked one of the most interesting discussions ever had around here, so you could argue Taiwan Tony did SOME good…

  • Taiwan Tony. Time hasn’t dampened my dislike of it.
    Even the clumsy alliteration. Imagine getting a new script with that in it…
    It belongs in an episode of Please, Sir! or Look Who’s Moved In Next Door.

    Does anyone know if Doug has ever mentioned it? To defend it or apologise for it?

  • He talks about Taiwan Tony and Dear Dave’s Slag line in the We’re Smegged documentary, and has no problems with either of them (well, he wouldn’t, he wrote them).
    These interviews, of course were filmed before the series aired – I’d be interested in the same interviews being done now with Doug and the cast’s knowledge of the TV audience reaction.

  • Naylor says flip all about Taiwan Tony in We’re Smegged?

    Bit odd that it doesn’t elaborate on his being told They wouldn’t be able to sell Lemons in Utah but doing the episode anyway.

  • Cheers Si. I haven’t seen We’re Smegged.
    I’d like to know if he’s changed his mind since…
    Interesting he was asked about those contentious points in advance. The interviewer should have been script editor.

  • Whilst checking the BBFC to see if XI was up yet I decided to look at the ratings for Series X.

    I was surprised to find Fathers and Suns and Lemons were a PG. “Bastard” and cannibalism (though it isn’t technically) I would have thought would bump them up to 12.

    Interesting to note that Trojan is considered a 12 due to “moderate sex references” whereas Entangled is considered 12 because of “moderate language and sex references”. I would have thought “utter twat” would have meant Trojan gets the old moderate language sticker too. Or are they allowed one twat per show? Though thinking about it, the only language I can remember from Entangled is “twatting about” from Lister in reference to the safety forms.

  • You can have plenty of swearwords at PG. Only “wanker” or “fuck” will put it up to a 12 and ‘motherfucker’ or ‘cunt’ will make it a 15.

  • Doesn’t he? Must obviously be misremembering.

    I distinctly remember my saying it would have been nice if Naylor had addressed it since he spoke about Dear Dave’s payoff then CackYourPants yelled at me followed by Phil doing a striptease in butter.

  • ‘Cunt’ made it an instant 18 in my day.
    ‘Motherfucker’ wasn’t an issue because when I grew up, most of the American stuff that made it over here was network stuff. Roseanne. Grace Under Fire. Platypus Man.

  • Still slightly disappointed that Pree wasn’t picked for the small picture on the side of the DVD cover instead of Jesus, such a good performance that no wonder they did a typo during the excitement of typing her name in the credits (I assume).

  • Still slightly disappointed that Pree wasn’t picked for the small picture on the side of the DVD cover instead of Jesus

    Was thinking the same as I stared at the box while listening to the post Commentary discussion. Face on a black background? Perfect spine fodder.

  • On a side note, BBC 2 broadcast a Shakespeare play a few years ago starring David Tenant around midday and it had a single use of the word cunt in it and it wasn’t censored. I believe it is available on DVD and is rated PG. But anyway, back to RD…

  • The shakespeare line though is “Lady may i lie in your lap?” oh “Do you think I meant country matters?” with the joke emphasised as Cunt-tree in pronounciation. So it technically doesnt appear in the dialouge only in euphamisam or double entender. Sort of get away with things.

    To cunt or not to cunt. That’s the question. (The G & T answer is Let’s Cunt!)

  • The thing that disappoints me more than anything, regarding the whole Taiwan Tony/Chinese Whispers saga is how it’s a gag, or a series of gags that revolve around race. It’s not too long ago that it was being talked about, on the DVD docs, commentaries etc., how great it was that Red Dwarf had never brought up race, never made it an issue. What Doug did on that storyline flew in the face of all that, really.

    Hearing Cat say the word ‘racist’ really really fucks me off, for some reason. I can understand where John is coming from, wanting to appreciate the storyline and the gags, cause it’s a new area for Dwarf to cover, but it’s so ‘un-Dwarf’… Rimmer’s lines about it early in the episode should have been the end of it, just a quick gag and Kryten’s reaction. Once you get to Cat asking the question, it’s like…really??

    Anyway…….the only OTHER thing that mildly annoys me about Fathers & Suns is how Rebecca Blackstone does the voice of the vending machine, before we even see Pree. Obviously on first viewing that wouldn’t enter your head, or maybe even on a couple of repeat viewings, but watching it now it niggles me a little that we essentially hear Pree’s voice before Pree appears (even though yes I know she isn’t using quite the same inflection in her voice….). Very minor and picky, yeah………

  • No I agree with that about Rebecca Blackstone doing two characters, I always notice it too.

    See also – the actress who plays the girl who fancies young Rimmer in The Beginning looks so much like Irene E it always throws me.

  • I’ve paused this podcast because I had a thought and didn’t want to forget it like what Ian done.
    I think the script was, in all fairness, about racism. But it was badly done so came across dreadfully.
    My mind then wandered to the Seinfeld episode The Cigar Store Indian as a good example of an episode about racism.
    There are probably others, but that one is top notch.

  • I was wondering when someone would mention that, and am grateful it’s taken this long. What a tit I am.

  • thanks for doing the website/dwarfcasts by the way. i’ve missed it because i’m trying to avoid spoilers and i know what gnp are like – i remember what they did to series vi

  • the weirdest aspect of race and red dwarf is that lister turns out to be white! he is like rachel dolezal!

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