Almost XIII news

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    International Debris

    Doug just tweeted this:

    Scientists have spotted repeating radio signals 1.5 billion light years into deep space directed at Earth. According to SETEE the signal is in an algorithmic rhythmic communication system which appears to translate as: ‘13 – when? 13 -when? Don’t make us invade.’ #RedDwarf.



    I don’t get it.



    It’s just a joke about a current news story. There is a scientific published document about a fast radio burst from deep space which is rare and causes debate about what is causing the signal whether it’s a star under unique conditions or Aliens!!



    Oh, I thought Doug had made the whole thing up and it was a complicated joke.



    I thought it was some hidden message among the capitals type of tweet. Or maybe it is and no-one has cracked the code yet.



    SESETEEDRD – what could it mean … what does any of this mean. This forum is covered in complete and utter, nonsense jibberish



    I think it’s something to do with the Daleks as Doug is hiding behind the SETEE.



    Hopefully SETI/setee isn’t a tease of the standard of joke we can expect in XIII.



    After the MILFs joke in XII it would still represent an improvement.



    I honestly would advise anybody to not get your hopes up about a XIII. The commission/production/distribution line of XIII is defunct – Dave has completely different commissioners, Kerry Waddell is no longer at Baby Cow, Henry Normal is no longer at Baby Cow, and Dave are much more concerned with Taskmaster, having not mentioned Red Dwarf in a press release for some time now and with their merch store about to close. XII got a much softer marketing push, it’s not on the radar of the execs that are there now. They dropped the ball and lost momentum – in terms of chance of a new series we’re about where we were 15 years ago all over again. I’d love to see it happen and it’s not impossible, but I think we’re running on magic beans now. A tour via Phil McIntyre Promotions is still possible, but I’d bet actual money against it returning to TV and I think Doug’s being slightly cruel teasing something which to all intents and purposes may never exist. Hope I’m wrong, don’t think I am.



    The more I think about it, the more I feel like I’m actually not that fussed about a new series.

    I think there’s been some good stuff in XI and XII but I think Skipper was a nice send-off for the show and I wouldn’t be upset if we didn’t see anything further.

    A live show would be lots of fun and would make for a good celebration of the series, and I’d love to see another book at some point – and yes, I’d obviously look forward to a Series XIII if it was announced.

    But I don’t feel the need for closure or correction in the same way as in the aftermath of series VIII.



    Same as Dave. The last half of XII made for the strongest ending since VI, and with all those nostalgic callbacks it would work nicely at the end of the legacy. They had a good run.



    Well, I still want to see XIII.



    I also agree that XII will have been a really nice thing to have gone out on. Four belters out of six, that’s astonishing.



    In one way i wanna see the show keep going. and in another i am kinda fed up of being disappointed by the new shows… so I’m a bit split on whether I’m that interested in a new series.

    Either way Doug will probably find a way to get a new red dwarf off the ground.


    International Debris

    Given the amount of talk we’ve had about the series so far, I would be surprised if we don’t get a XIII. For all the focus on Taskmaster, RD has still been an enormous success for the channel, and I can’t imagine them turning it down.

    At the same time, if there is less interest, it might take something like ‘the last ever series!’ or something for it to get commissioned. A lot of people would tune in to see the show’s send off.



    I wonder if a format like BTE is a possibility, if they finally wanted to do ‘Earth’ properly.



    I get the feeling that the existence and timing of the unexpected third series of Zapped, airing last year in the slot that XI and XII had, is somehow meaningful here.



    The only reason I want a XIII is because of Richard and Doug discussing extra rehearsal time in the XII doc. Otherwise I would be very happy if what we have is what we have. I know the G & T team and community would have plenty to discuss whatever happens. I am more hopeful for more Dwarfcasts than a new series.



    Threat level: Robert Llewellyn has taken “soon to be in Red Dwarf XIII” out of his Twitter bio



    I don’t think I’d mind if there wasn’t an XIII. XI/XII were really inconsistent in terms of quality, and if we’re going to get an XIII with another episode as dreadful as Timewave, or as poorly-structured as Can Of Worms, then maybe it’s better to just leave it as it is. For all the problems I have with Skipper, it does work well enough as a final episode of the show, although arguably BtE and The Beginning were much, much better finales. Red Dwarf doesn’t need to go on forever, and I think 29 years is a pretty good run


    Stephen Abootman

    Yup, if there’s going to be 2 poor episodes out of 12 probably best not to bother.



    I remember some comedy writer or other say that in a sitcom series two episodes will be great, two will be average and two will be below average. I think you could apply that to most sitcoms and I think every Red Dwarf series (VII, VIII and BTE excluded) could be broken down this way. There was more than enough great stuff in XI and XII to justify XIII imo although I’m starting to think that Twentica may have been best of all straight out of the gate.



    >I think every Red Dwarf series could be broken down this way

    I don’t know, I think almost all of I-V’s episodes are great, and 4/6 of VI’s are great. The two great/two average/two below average system doesn’t really work for me



    I lost hope approximately when the biggest DJ ever went by without a peep about 13. Remember when it seemed very possible that we’d get not just a 13 but a 14? And then here we are almost convinced a 13 won’t ever happen. What is about this show where it can be so fucking popular and yet nobody ever wants to give it any money?



    It was Ben Elton, when talking about Blackadder 2-4 specifically and sitcoms generally.



    ^ No it wasn’t, it was Richard Curtis.



    It’s just frustrating as anything really wanting to have more of the Series XI/XII incarnation of Red Dwarf but only having 12 episodes, one of which is Timewave. As much as I loved Series X when it was the newest series, it’s just felt largely underwhelming in comparison to Series XI and XII since they came along. And Back to Earth of course isn’t something you’d just throw on as an episode of Red Dwarf to rewatch.

    Even after a few years, Series XI and XII still have that newness to them. I don’t yet feel like with the original run of the show that I’ve seen it many times recently even when it’s been a while. There’s still a novelty to seeing these episodes that I haven’t been watching for more than a year or two. Even Series X dates back 6 years, and Back to Earth is literally coming up on its 10th anniversary.

    I just want to keep enjoying new episodes of this show now that it can be consistently as enjoyable to me as the average classic episode. And I really can’t help but feel like it was Series X’s clusterfuck of a production that put us in the position we are now. X could have been as good as XI, _and_ XI could have come in like 2014 instead of 2016. If Series XI and XII had been shot in 2013 we’d almost definitely be waiting on Series XIV right now, or maybe even be coming off the back of its airing.

    Red Dwarf had so much room to get new episodes made in the past decade that it couldn’t take advantage of because it was busy trying to get money or working out whatever stupid insane problems the previous production put up with. I personally would be infuriated if we didn’t get Series XIII after we came off the back of Series XII seeing it as a certainty, with even a Series XIV teased as likely by Doug.

    And of course, I like Series XI and XII a lot more than most of you seem to. Series XI is one of my favorite series of the entire show, and the back half of XII is absolutely fantastic. I can’t say I feel satisfied with the show ending at Skipper when it’s only just finally regained its ability to produce such quality episodes.



    For me Dave era Dwarf just suffers from unnecessarily over stuffed plots, over use of call backs and while there are funny moments, there are also bits of comedy that either go on too long, just don’t work that well or just seem more sketch show silly then funny.

    Am also not fond of the direction Doug went with the Cat in the last 2 series. I dunno why Doug made him into an insecure idiotic teenager whose scared that his school chums will find out he is a virgin or needs glasses.

    Even Skipper which is the highlight of 11 and 12 for me has some issues that I feel could have been fixed very easily.

    So yeah I am abit nervous what Doug would do with a series 13



    >Even Skipper which is the highlight of 11 and 12 for me has some issues that I feel could have been fixed very easily.

    Yeah, agreed. It’s one of the better ones out of XI/XII, but I still think it has some problems here and there, especially towards the end of the episode.

    I think maybe an XIII would be better than XI/XII because Doug would only have to write/direct 6 shows rather than 12, so shit like Timewave wouldn’t seep through the cracks, but even so… I don’t know. Out of the whole Dave era, the only one that actually FEELS like Red Dwarf to me is BtE. Which I know sounds weird given that the content of the story is nothing like Red Dwarf, but it works for me in a way that X-XII just doesn’t. Watching X-XII for me is like watching sort of, a slightly off-brand version of Red Dwarf, it doesn’t feel like I’m watching the same show as I-BtE.

    I don’t know, I’d have to wait until a Series XIII was actually made until I could pass judgement on it. One one hand, it could be an entire Series of stuff as good as Give & Take, but on the other hand it could open up another Can Of Worms, which would be rubbish. I think an XIII has the potential to be good though, that’s for sure. Doug can write really good Dwarf sometimes


    Ben Saunders

    Everybody knows that if there’s even the slightest chance that one sixth of your work might be a little sketchy you should just not bother at all, right?



    Frankly, just from my own writing experience, I think it’s pretty astounding that we got as many good episodes as we have from Doug alone when the show used to be a joint effort. Trying to fill in for your co-writer’s brain is a bitch, doubly so because you’re missing the voice that tells you when something isn’t working or suggests an idea you’d never have thought of.


    International Debris

    For me, the last three episodes of XII were where Dave Dwarf began to forge its own identity. Despite all three episodes having heavy (and, in places, unnecessary) call-backs, they don’t feel like they could be so easily called “a mix of II and IV” or whatever, in the way that X, XI and earlier XII episodes do. I’m hoping Doug can carry this on for at least a series.



    I feel the new shows could be far better than it actually are, because i have seen the show be better in the early days so i know its possible. its just the balance for the new shows is all over the place and i think it doesn’t help that Doug has taken full creative control over everything.

    I think what made alot of the early best episodes work would be lost if they were made today because Doug wants to throw in so many ideas and probably add an extra bit of edge to the episodes, as well as really pushing the humour to be louder and a bit sketchy.

    I think if Dimension Jump was made today it wouldn’t be a simple character piece story about a parallel rimmer from another dimension helping the crew get off a water planet. it would probably still be the water planet stuff but there would be an extra threat at the end like some villains or another sci-fi issue that needs to be fixed to top off the episode, and it would have Rimmer desperately trying to upstage Ace and making himself look silly multiple times, and then it would probably end with Rimmer saving the day and getting some earned respect from Ace while Rimmer looks like he is about to give some mutual respect back… but then just is a cocky git about it (enter audience applause)

    Basically it would be dimension jump, but with an extra 7-10 minutes, then trimmed down the whole thing to 28-29 minutes.



    Dax, your capacity to make things up and then get genuinely annoyed about them never ceases to amaze me.



    Maybe UKTV will pass on XIII and Doug can take it to the BBC who could give it a 6 or 8 episode series to finish the show for good. Rob could even come back for it. It started and ended on BBC 2. How fitting.

    What? After Brexit, anything can happen.



    Let’s get Rob Grant writing his own Red Dwarf IX.


    Taiwan Tony

    Darrell, you’re back out of retirement. What brought you back?



    Apathy for my own apathy.



    Wasn’t that a Metallica album?



    So when does Doug announce that sales of the I-VIII Blu-ray collection (and resulting sales of Dave era series) have not only guaranteed Series XIII, but provided enough extra funding to not only massively increase per-episode production values but allow for 8 episodes, giving you just that much more show without over-stretching Doug?

    It could happen.

    I mean it won’t, but it’s technically possible.



    Den Of Geek had me going for a second there with their latest Dwarf article.

    “With more Red Dwarf on the way…”



    Andrew followed that up by saying the fact he hasn’t had a call to work on XIII probably means that it isn’t imminent



    Odd that DoG keeps suggesting that XIII is a done deal.

    Brimming over with wrongability.



    Seb has updated the TOS FAQs this past week but is this XIII answer new/updated?

    “Following the success of the most recent series on Dave, new episodes of Red Dwarf are something that all parties have a keen interest in making happen. As always with the world of TV commissioning and production, however, various things have to be worked out and worked through in order to bring it to the screen.”

    With the update in mind, it’s interesting that the official response still indicates that all parties want to make XIII happen.

    I am very curious as to what all these issues could be. It seemed that XI/XII had much smoother productions than X and came in at a lower cost per episode.


    Pete Part Three

    So when are tickets available?



    Den of Geek has been insisting Series XIII has been officially commissioned basically since Series XII finished airing. Sometimes the actual article admits the headline is straight-up lying and actually spells out the situation as it is, but it’s not like anyone pays attention to that part and they know it.



    >So when are tickets available?

    I think the person to ask is Robert Llewellyn. Best thing to do is tweet him.



    the delay is due to finalizing things with rob and a new deal with netflix.



    Netflix should work out some new deals where they actually put stuff people would want to watch on their platform. The only decent thing I could find on there was Red Dwarf, and I’ve already seen that

    Also they have Ghostbusters 2 but not the first one??




    Ah, this will be why every factual CBeebies show lately seems to be made in the house style of Discovery Kids.



    Dave generally seems to be moving away from “scripted” comedy, and going for things scripted to appear that they don’t have a script. Taskmaster was a massive success and now it seems like everyone that’s ever been on Taskmaster has been given a show on Dave. Hypothetical (?) being the latest with Josh Widdicombe (ugh) and James Acaster. Probably costs about 20 quid outside of talent and has a broad appeal with the ‘Would I Lie To You, ‘Mock the Week’ and ‘Taskmaster’ crowd, compared to Red Dwarf which employs people like The Model Unit and Millennium Effects and doesn’t have the mass market appeal, though it is very popular.

    Financially it’s no surprise it’s yet to return. I’d love it to go somewhere else to be honest, Dave’s great and all but I feel like it forces Dwarf to be something slightly different because it’s ‘the comedy channel’. The dream would be Netflix but I can’t see it.



    Panel shows will always be cheap to make. And you can come up with a million and one different formats that are really just vehicles for comedians to be funny.

    I would largely agree with what your saying about Dave spending its money there as its cheaper, but Red Dwarf has constantly been the highest ratings show on Dave. Taskmaster has come close, only to be surpassed by Red Dwarf again.

    And for how Doug etc tells it, they’re always making Red Dwarf on a shoe string. It might be more than a panel show, but I wouldn’t mind betting it isn’t that much more. Especially when they only have to make 6 episodes a year for it, production is just a couple of months etc, and Taskmaster films and broadcasts 16 in a year, pretty much making it all year round at this point.

    Red Dwarf also has the ability to generate DVD sales and such, which panel shows don’t really do. They just get repeated ad infinitum on Dave. Which is something Dave could do more with the Red Dwarf it owns if it wanted to, the way it used to with classic Dwarf back in the day which lead it to making the damn show in the first place.


    Ian Symes

    G&T Admin

    I think Taskmaster is ahead of Dwarf now, ratings-wise, isn’t it?



    I said it before, but I’ll say it again, it would be interesting if Red Dwarf actually ended up back on BBC 2.

    It’s not as if BBC 2 couldn’t use some decent programming…



    Red Dwarf back on BBC Two is hardly the most far fetched thing. The BBC have been known to dust off some old comedy shows and bring them back and Dwarf remains one of their most popular. As much as I appreciate all that Dave has done for Dwarf, new Dwarf would certainly get a viewing figures bump if it were to be shown on the BBC rather than Dave.



    Maybe when Doctor Who gets put on hiatus/cancelled they’ll re-revive Dwarf and give Doug all the budget.

    Doug will then do a series with an improved budget that looks nice and then stop making it so he can work on the movie again.

    In 2030 digital channel Phil will commission a new special with all the cast being digitally de-aged.



    >I think Taskmaster is ahead of Dwarf now, ratings-wise, isn’t it?

    I’d seen this mentioned before and just accepted it but now I’ve had a look at the BARB.

    All 7-day viewing:

    Cured: 1.2m
    Taskmaster S05E05: 0.635m

    Siliconia: 1.179m
    Taskmaster S05E06: 0.652m

    Timewave: 1.189m
    Taskmaster S05E07: 0.593m

    Mechocracy: 0.973m
    Taskmaster S05E08: 0.875m (the finale)

    M-Corp: 0.901m
    Skipper: 0.846m

    Red Dwarf also does a little better in 28-day viewing and repeats (marginal but noticeable).

    Taskmaster Series 6 and 7 have upped a little on that. A few of the episodes go above 1m in 7-day viewing:
    Taskmaster S06E01: 1.238m
    Taskmaster S06E10: 1.109m
    Taskmaster S07E01: 1.131m

    I’d say they are roughly at the same level of success now. Which is great as they are both two of the best shows on TV.



    Taskmaster is easy and quick to make too. Alex Horne and Tim Key write it, they do all the task inserts in mini blocks with a skeleton crew, edit the packages, shoot the live nights very close together, cut those and they’ve got ten hours of television which can be ready for TX very soon after the recordings.

    Red Dwarf is a mixture of being genuinely more complicated to make than a regular sitcom and just being a deceptively ordinary sitcom to make that’s terminally prone to having its production overcomplicated by a kamikaze, self-sabotaging showrunner with a chronic resistance to the creative assistance of outsiders bordering on absolute madness and less of an aptitude for writing last minute script pages on the fly than he thinks he has.


    Taiwan Tony

    Any figures on how much they cost to make?



    Taskmaster is probably deceptively expensive as it has 7 name leads at a time, and Avalon are notorious for playing financial hardball. But then again they don’t need any of their people for anywhere near as long and they get triple the finished screentime as Dwarf gets.


    Ben Saunders

    It would be interesting if the BBC were once again interested in the type of audience Red Dwarf used to attract


    International Debris

    Even if Taskmaster is more ‘successful’ now, Red Dwarf is still the channel’s second most successful show, and one which really opened up the channel to original programming. It’s the closest to a classic / legacy show the channel has, and I’d be really, really surprised if they turned down the chance for another series.


    Ian Symes

    G&T Admin

    My bad on the Taskmaster ratings comparison, I may have just been thinking of overnights.



    Red Dwarf also gave Dave it’s highest ever rating and also holds the record for the most watched TV show on a non-terrestrial UK channel ever.



    10 years ago though. Not a lot in real terms but I’d be amazed if there’s a single person at Dave or UKTV now who was there when that happened. And again, that wouldn’t be relevant were it not telly, where everyone wants to come in with a new broom because they’re all paranoid. BBC Two were callously uninterested by VIII’s ratings record what, 7 years later?

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