This can’t be the first time this has done the rounds, as bloodteller also helpfully linked to this ancient document from 1994, which details the differences between the two edits. But it’s new to me, and I’ll wager to the majority here. I imagine a full write up will follow at some point when we’re not busy polling you all.
It will hardly have escaped anyone’s attention that 2018 is Red Dwarf‘s 30th anniversary year. Five years on from the Silver Survey, our attempt to canvas the opinions of as many fans as possible to create the ultimate ranking of every episode ever, it’s time to do it all again. How will Series XI and XII compare to their many and varied predecessors? Has opinion on the then-recent Back To Earth and Series X changed in the intervening years? Is the Series 1-VI bubble still a thing, now that those 36 episodes are outnumbered for the first time? Will there ever be a survey in which Back To Reality and Pete (Part Two) aren’t top and bottom?
It’s October, the month in which Red Dwarf XII hits Dave, after having hit UKTV Play a week earlier. You can count the number of days to go on one hand, which means it’s about time we prepared ourselves as much as possible to receive, process and dissect six brand new episodes. Last year, Series XI hit us like no other series had before, and lessons have been learned this time around, so we’re making a few little changes to our plans. We’ve also taken the opportunity to make some small but significant changes to the site’s structure, so allow us to talk you through it all.
Over here at Ganymede & Titan, we like to think we bring a certain amount of professionalism to our reporting. We’re happy to let you know then, that 1982 radio sitcom Wally Who? – penned by a certain Rob Grant and Doug Naylor – is currently being repeated every Wednesday on Radio 4 Extra, at 9:30am, 4:30pm, and 4:30am.
Admittedly, this piece of reporting may have been more impressive if this run hadn’t started on the 17th May, and if we hadn’t missed the first three episodes. It may also have been more impressive if we hadn’t started uploading and reviewing the series ourselves back in 2009, but stopped after the first episode. Mickey Mouse operation, etc.
On the 23rd February 2007 – 10 years ago to the day – Ganymede & Titan published four articles.
It perhaps seems odd to remember we used to be like this. After all, these days you’re sometimes lucky if you get four updates a month. We were a rather different beast back then. True, we still did loads of in-depth articles, but we also prized ourselves on reporting every single bit of Red Dwarf-related news going. Fun though that might have been, it’s the kind of thing that is entirely unsustainable now we have, y’know, proper jobs and stuff. We’d rather concentrate on giving you fewer, more substantial things to get your teeth into.
Still, I thought it might be fun to take a look at what we were up to exactly ten years ago today. If you’re lucky, you may just notice a few comments on one of my bugbears. But I think it’s quite subtle.
As you’re probably already aware, Red Dwarf features in this month’s SFX magazine in a pretty big way. Not only is there a big feature on the forthcoming series, there are four variant covers – each featuring a shot of one of the main characters – and a free mini-booklet celebrating the show’s history. After traipsing round every magazine vendor in West London in an attempt to collect all four, I accepted defeat and actually read the magazine instead.
I was surprised to discover several previously-unseen pictures from forthcoming episodes, many of which give intriguing clues as to the content of the series. I tweeted my discoveries as I went, and those tweets are collated here. You won’t find reproductions of the magazine or any of its contents – you’ll have to actually go into a shop and pay money for that – but there is plenty of description and analysis…
Sometimes, things just work out to provide the perfect story.
Back in 2012 – in the lead-up to Red Dwarf X – I wrote a series of articles detailing the edits UKTV had made to Red Dwarf repeats. One of the worst was in Series III – the seemingly random broadcast of the Remastered version of Marooned, and the only episode of the series where the Remastered edit was broadcast instead of the original. (While it was the first time we had discussed the issue, but it had been going on for years before this. We were too busy complaining about Gold blurring out Fletch sticking two fingers up in Porridge.)
It can not have escaped your attention that UKTV plans to premiere each episode of the forthcoming Red Dwarf XI on their on-demand service, UKTV Play, one week ahead of their television broadcast on Dave. This puts us in a somewhat tricky situation in terms of our coverage. We had planned on doing pretty much exactly what we did last time – an “instant reaction” DwarfCast almost immediately after each episode, broadcast live on the internet, with a tidier version in the usual feeds the following day, followed by a written review over the weekend.
This isn’t so straightforward when not everyone’s going to be watching at the same time. This move has made it a hell of a lot harder to be part of a communal shared experience, but we’re determined to make it work. That’s where you come in. We’d like to know more about how you’re intending to consume this series, and your preferences for how we go about things. To that end, here are a series of polls; the results of which we’ll take on board, but won’t be legally binding or anything. Annoyingly, we’d like to request that those of you from outside the UK abstain from taking part in this vote; it’s the people who have a choice as to how they watch the series that will be most affected by our decisions.
As we ramp up inevitably towards September, there’s probably some news we should be reporting. Like, for instance, this early screening at Edinburgh of the first episode of XI on the 24th August. (With a strict embargo on spoilers, and it ruining the first watch of the show as a shared experience, it’s not really worth it for us even if we could wheedle ourselves in.) Or as noticed in our forums, it seems the DVD for XI has a provisional release date of the 8th November in Region 1. (We deliberately haven’t reported on Craig Charles’s foot injury, because nobody needs a tedious stream of Thanks for the Memory quotes.)
Anyway, we don’t care about all that. What interests us is the repeats of Series III, which started on Gold last night. Which is perhaps a bit of an odd thing in itself. If UKTV are trying to cement Dwarf as a Dave show, how does it make sense to start a repeat run on Gold? If it confuses hardcore fans, however dumb we are, surely it’s also confusing to the more casual viewer? I can’t help but feel this repeat run would be far better suited to just being on Dave.
Still, Dave, Gold, whatever – a repeat of Series III on a UKTV channel means only one thing: the never-ending game of Marooned Remastered. We previously reported on this last year – with the inevitable disappointment – but we’ve been talking about it for years. (Bonus points to anyone who can be arsed going through G&T’s archives and finding out when we first talked about it.)
Well, Marooned has its latest repeat showing tonight at 11:30pm, and whilst it’s possible that the correct version of the episode may be shown, past experience shows that this is exceedingly unlikely. Which means more wailing from us, more gnashing of teeth, more abusing our genitals in dismay, and PRECISELY NOTHING CHANGING.
At 11:45pm on Christmas Day, BBC One showed the brilliantly-named programme Comedy Bloopers. I do hope you all enjoyed the BBC’s other offerings over Christmas: Sci-Fi Drama, Period Drama, and Some People Dancing.
As G&T is on reduced power over Christmas, I think I’ll just toss out the cliche that it was undemanding fun, perfect for the end of a drunken evening, without really being that original or brilliantly put together. (Compare it with early It’ll Be Alright On The Night episodes for how you really make this kind of show into something special, but I digress.) One thing that was pleasing about it however, is that it included a wide range of comedy, across different decades, rather than just concentrating on old or modern stuff. It’s fun to see a Two Ronnies clip right next to Citizen Khan – or indeed, an Inbetweeners clip right next to Red Dwarf VI.
Oh yeah, clips of Red Dwarf. And what would a G&T article be without a pointless list of them?