Home Forums Ganymede & Titan Forum Best And Worst Episode Endings

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  • #236462
    bloodteller
    Blocked

    Rob and Doug supposedly often had trouble writing endings to an episode, and would somtetimes change them or come up with them at the last minute. Sometimes this worked really well (Queeg, for example) but other times it arguably didn’t. Which episodes do you think had the most satisfying endings? Which had the least satisfying ones? Mine would be-

    Best- Queeg, Thanks For The Memory, Back To Reality, Krytie TV, Give And Take

    Worst- Officer Rimmer, Timewave, Only The Good, Dimension Jump, Justice

    #236463
    bloodteller
    Blocked

    The best part of Queeg’s ending is the audience laughter as it dawns on everyone that Holly was playing a prank all along

    #236464
    Warbodog
    Participant

    There are more obvious ones, but first one that came to mind was Me², since I’m still impressed at how quickly and organically that whole episode seems to have come together. Closing the mystery and double Rimmer plot efficiently, Rimmer’s soul laid bare, and a tender bonding moment immediately destroyed because Lister’s got a great pun.

    #236466
    MANI506
    Participant

    Backwards has a superb ending, I always think that was part of the reason it got bumped up to episode 1.

    #236467

    Interesting question, I’ll bite. Though I think this question would be asking which ending is the most memorable rather than ‘best’, unless that’s the criteria.

    Best: Balance of Power, Better Than Life, Timeslides, White Hole, Gunmen of the Apocalypse, Out of Time (Personal Favourite), The Beginning

    Worst: Dimension Jump (I don’t hate any tbh)

    Best Honourable mention: The End (I’d have put it, but I’d only be doing so cause its classic and not out for my personal enjoyment), Rimmerworld (Hate the rest of the episode, but this always made me laugh)

    Expect Entangled to receive several mentions down below, fingers-crossed we don’t get into another Irene E debate

    #236469
    bloodteller
    Blocked

    Can’t believe I forgot to mention Polymorph under worst- original or Remastered, Polymorph’s ending is absolutely rubbish. They should have just ended it on the model shot revealing there were 2 of them in the pod and left it at that.

    In the episode as broadcast, the effect of the second Lister transforming is dire, and Remastered’s version could have been good- end it with another shot of a beach ball coming down a corridor,fairly good idea- but then they elected to add that painfully unfunny epilogue.

    #236475
    Dave
    Participant

    I always quite liked the end of Justice, although I know a lot of people don’t. Lister’s over-enthusiastic explanation of the ideas underpinning the episode followed by a good slapstick gag feels like it puts a nice cap on things.

    The end of Balance Of Power is good, even if it is immediately undermined by the next episode.

    And the ending of Gunmen always puts a smile on my face.

    Bad endings? It’s the inconclusive ones that bug me the most. DNA feels like it ends before resolving everything that it needs to, and Officer Rimmer just

    #236477
    Dollar Pound
    Participant

    back to reality has a nice vibe at the end: cosy, quiet, profound, flat in a good way

    #236480
    bloodteller
    Blocked

    Beyond A Joke’s ending is pretty lousy, I thought- the final Curry World scene feels like an unnecessary addition that just kills the momentum of the episode.

    Same goes for Pete Part 2- the final big laugh of the episode is the baby dinosaur screeching during Hollister’s massage, so the extra office scene after that feels like it just kills the flow

    #236484
    Dax101
    Participant

    >In the episode as broadcast, the effect of the second Lister transforming is dire

    As an ending i really like that one. alot of polymorph was a homage to alien and they likely wanted to end it in a way that felt like a horror movie.

    The effects aside, personally i think it was a crime to remove that ending from the Remastered.

    #236488
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    I was about to get angry at you for DARING to claim that the ending to Justice was unsatisfying.

    But then I realised I was getting it mixed up with Meltdown.

    #236489
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    I love Terrorform’s ending.

    I’ve heard it a million times but I still simply cannot believe that the Queeg twist wasn’t planned from the beginning. It just works so well, and the idea of writing yourself into a hole like that just makes me question what the fuck they thought they were doing.

    Tikka to Ride has the best ending of any episode of Red Dwarf if you cut it by about seven seconds

    #236493
    Dave
    Participant

    Tikka extended’s ending is good, but the lack of audience laughter makes it weird and sad.

    #236530
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    I always thought it was a bit extreme, and incredibly awkward without laughter, and the way Lister sops up the curry sauce with his napkin and sucks on it freaks me out

    #236531
    Dave
    Participant

    Not as awkward as the front two-thirds of Starbug blasting forwards on those shitty little boosters.

    #236532
    bloodteller
    Blocked

    >the way Lister sops up the curry sauce with his napkin and sucks on it freaks me out

    It’s not a napkin, it’s a bread roll.

    #236534

    It’s a napkin. Well, one of those little towels they warm up for after the meal. Apart from the fact it’s whiter than a shirt in a Daz advert, it’s in a little plastic sleeve. When was the last time you saw individual bread rolls in little plastic sleeves? When was the last time you saw a bread roll with a curry?

    #236537
    Warbodog
    Participant

    Me aged 12: Is that a “poppodom?”

    Dad: No.

    #236541
    bloodteller
    Blocked

    No, it’s definitely a bread roll. Look closely and you can see the top of the bread poking out. The reason it looks like a napkin is because it’s all wrapped up, and Craig couldn’t get it open properly- but they didn’t feel like doing another take of the scene, so him struggling to get it open is left in the episode (he even tries to open it with his teeth a little at one point)

    He only manages to get the top part of it open, meaning it looks a lot like he’s holding a napkin. I can’t remember where I heard this bit of behind-the-scenes trivia, but I’m sure it’s legit.

    #236547
    MANI506
    Participant

    Episode endings that made me go wtf..

    Emohawk – Polymorph 2 – the first wtf
    Beyond A Joke
    VIII Episodes 2-8
    Back To Earth Part 2
    Entangled
    Dear Dave
    Samsara
    Give And Take
    Officer Rimmer
    Can Of Worms
    Timewave

    #236548
    bloodteller
    Blocked

    Why Give & Take? I thought that had a really good ending tbh

    #236549
    bloodteller
    Blocked

    Also yeah, Emohawk’s ending is absolutely dreadful. “What A Dibbley” can fuck right off. But then so can most of the second half of that episode, really

    #236550
    Warbodog
    Participant

    Napkin, it flattens out when he takes it out of the packet:

    https://youtu.be/lQrWCIQ84Ao?t=4m32s

    #236551
    clem
    Participant

    If it was a bread roll surely he’d take a bite instead of just sucking it. Nobody ever says “serviette” anymore, do they?

    #236552
    Lily
    Participant

    I’m in the ‘warm towel’ camp. Is that not the essence of the joke, that he’s so desperate to eat the curry that he’ll suck it off a towel?

    #236553

    Is that not the essence of the joke, that he’s so desperate to eat the curry that he’ll suck it off a towel?

    When the full thing is there right in front of him?

    It always made me feel queasy, either way. The only food that should be sucked is a lollipop.

    Why the hell didn’t they show the Xtended versions to audiences instead of the 30 minute versions? That would at least make them watchable.

    #236554
    Ben Paddon
    Participant

    Beyond A Joke’s ending is pretty lousy, I thought- the final Curry World scene feels like an unnecessary addition that just kills the momentum of the episode.

    Not to pick nits, but… it’s an epilogue. It’s not supposed to contribute to “momentum”. I mean, yeah, it’s a crap ending, but still.

    #236555
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    >Not as awkward as the front two-thirds of Starbug blasting forwards on those shitty little boosters.
    To be fair, it is space. You don’t need all that much thrust.

    #236556
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    (Unless it absolutely rockets forwards, I can’t remember)

    #236557
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    The ending of Fathers and Suns is good on a conceptual level, but awkward in execution, because they only had about 3 foot of corridor to work with and they spend an awful lot of time being “crushed to death” by increasingly non-threatening spikes

    #236563
    Dax101
    Participant

    The ending of Fathers and Suns is kinda frustrating because i feel like Lister should have realized how to stop pree before he got shot out into space and then he came back through the scoop to save the day.

    What we got instead was Lister being shot into space and then making it back onto the ship just to be like Ok what do we do now? and it just makes the whole being shot into space thing seem like just an excuse for some floating in space effects to be used on screen.

    The tripping on the boxes and falling into the airlock in entangled almost defies the direction in which people would normally fall over. but then i suppose she did do everything wrong… but then that also feels like a poor excuse to make the ending work.

    The tikka to ride extended ending isn’t great as its almost like it doesn’t know when it should end because there is no big gag to go off on.

    Terrorform i have always felt that it fell flat with the final gag as it felt kinda obvious Rimmer, Lister and Cat would say “No” so it wasn’t a surprise.

    #236566
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    Fair point on the Fathers and Suns thing

    #236571
    si
    Participant

    Officer Rimmer doesn’t have the worst ending. It just doesn’t have one.

    #236573
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    Timewave has a pretty shit, sudden ending as well

    #236580
    Flap Jack
    Participant

    Timewave’s ending is perfect, by which I mean I mean it’s equal in quality to the 30 minutes that preceded it.

    #236581
    bloodteller
    Blocked

    Timewave’s ending is doubly more infuriating than it normally would be for me, because the actor playing Ziggy stumbles over the last line of the episode- “Drain ’em! Drain ’em…them all!!!”. Like, what the fuck? Could they not get a better take of that one line? Did someone really look at that and think “yeah, that’s okay, leave it in, good job guys”. I guess you could say the same for the rest of the episode, but leaving in a take where the actor fucks up his line is just lazy.

    It”d be like if The End ended with “The slime…slime’s coming home!” If the actor fucks up the line, you’re meant to do another take. How come they forgot that?

    #236582
    bloodteller
    Blocked

    I guess it’s a pretty minor nitpick in comparison to the faults that plague the rest of the episode, but even so

    #236583
    Dave
    Participant

    I can barely remember the ending tonTimewave now, as I haven’t actually watched it again since the first stream on the UKTV Play app. I don’t know if I ever will.

    #236584
    Dax101
    Participant

    I think i have only seen Timewave all the way through the once but i believe it ends with Rimmer,Lister,cat and Kryten running away from the table because they criticised a picture.

    #236585
    bloodteller
    Blocked

    There’s also the part where the threat that the entire episode spent building up-the Enconium crashing into Rimmer’s Moon- is resolved instantly in one line of dialogue, rendering that whole part of the plot completely useless aside from an excuse for the posse to board the ship to begin with.

    I guess M-Corp had the same problem though, with Kryten instantly defeating a mega corporation in all of 5 seconds-resolving the plot in a single line is really really unsatisfying, and I don’t know why Doug thinks it’s a good idea to keep doing it.

    #236586
    Dave
    Participant

    Maybe he increasingly sees the plots as a platform for the comedy, and thinks people care more about the show finding time to be funny than about a satisfying plot resolution.

    I agree that the balance seems to have shifted a bit, to the show’s detriment. I expect you could pick holes in the plot of any episode from any era, but it does feel like the Dave-era plots in particular are a bit less rounded and satisfying (with some exceptions, like Give & Take).

    #236588
    si
    Participant

    Not watched XI or XII in ages. I can barely remember what actually happened in most stories. Should maybe catch up before DJ. I’ve been more Who than Dwarf in recent months.

    #236589
    Dax101
    Participant

    > I don’t know why Doug thinks it’s a good idea to keep doing it.

    Probably because Dougs episodes usually are so jam packed with ideas the episode need to be compressed somehow.

    Craig went through the whole old age make up thing for something that didn’t really make much impact to the story. infact i ain’t totally sure i understand what even happened there

    #236590
    Dax101
    Participant

    Siliconia isn’t great either. it goes full speed towards the end and alot of things get forgotten about,

    I am glad they cut that ending with Cat and Rimmer singing though.

    #236591
    tombow
    Participant

    The only was I could enjoy “Justice” is if I just imagined really hard that they saw Lister was ok and he was waving for help or something.

    #236592
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    >Maybe he increasingly sees the plots as a platform for the comedy, and thinks people care more about the show finding time to be funny than about a satisfying plot resolution.
    The fan reaction to VII/BtE may have convinced him of this, if I were going to try and armchair psychologise him

    #236595

    Don’t Dave … you’ll spend an hour scrubbing yourself clean.

    I swore never to watch it again after I first watched the UKTV stream, then I did a few weeks later just to see if maybe it was a little better on second viewing. It wasn’t. I wanted to vomit.

    #236598
    bloodteller
    Blocked

    Timewave got a little better for me on second viewing. That’s not saying much though, as on my first time watching I felt legitimately confused and upset about what I’d just seen. At least on the second watch I was only thinking “wow, this is fucking awful!”

    #236599
    Dax101
    Participant

    >The fan reaction to VII/BtE may have convinced him of this, if I were going to try and armchair psychologise him

    Well the early series did it just fine. infact if you compare Back to reality which had a moment of exposition at the end (which actually made sense) to Back to Earth where id argue the exposition feels abit messy, id say Doug is either more or less compensating or he feels he is improving on the show.

    #236924
    Manbird
    Participant

    When you say endings do you mean the last scene or plot resolution? For all the knocks it gets – quite rightly so, perhaps – “Officer Rimmer” does wrap everything up quite neatly (albeit unimaginatively). For sheer ‘we really can’t be bothered to think of anything better’-arsedrudgery, I’d say “Gunmen of the Apocalypse”. I’m not saying that to be controversial, I just feel it’s so half-baked building up the tension only to spunk it away on self-congratulatory bit of (in-episode) continuity fan-wank.

    #236926
    Hamish
    Participant

    Explanation?

    #236953
    tombow
    Participant

    I think the first ending that popped out to me as being memorable was Holly saying “I’m fantastic” in Queeg.

    Bad? I was always bothered by those ones that end with some big throwaway disaster which is never mentioned again (like Rimmer dying again in Timeslides), but I guess that’s the nature of sitcoms.

    I think my least fave is really BTE part 1, because it just felt unsatisfying and like nothing had happened yet, and I was just getting into it (after being excited)

    #236957
    Ben Paddon
    Participant

    Watched “Samsara” with the flatmate last night. Blimey, that one really does plod along after Lister and the Cat get locked in the cantine, doesn’t it? Four minutes of plot stretched out over fifteen minutes. Wasn’t quite enough meat on that particular bone, was there?

    #237050

    Wasn’t quite enough meat on that particular bone, was there?

    That’s because all the crew were dead. You could say there was less meat on them then a chicken McNugget

    #237101
    Plastic Percy
    Participant

    Surely less meat on them than a chicken ..nugget.

    #237102
    Ben Paddon
    Participant

    Quinn was referring to the remastered version of Kryten.

    #237105

    Thanks for having my back Ben, I think.

    #237119
    Dave
    Participant

    the remastered version of Kryten

    Is that when he starts taking orders from Lister instead of Rimmer?

    #238433
    bloodteller
    Blocked

    I know people complain about the Dave era having abrupt endings, but I’m rewatching IV right now and Camille’s ending basically comes out of nowhere, doesn’t it? Holly interrupts the two of them in the middle of a scene (via being really crappily composited onto the cinema screen. she isn’t even at the right angle to be facing them) to tell them that Camille’s husband who’s never been mentioned until now has arrived. The whole thing’s really abruptly done, and although Kryten lying to Camille to get her to leave ties in nicely with the training scene at the beginning, the husband seems to basically just spring into existence in order to resolve the plot quickly. It’s really poorly done IMO

    #238434

    You’re right bloodteller, though the cynic in me would say that if it were a Dave ending, Holly would pop onto the screen and next you’d see Camille and her husband strolling off down the corridor, cut to credits.

    You wouldn’t get the nice moment between Kryten and Camille “droid meets droid” etc and then Kryten and Lister afterwards

    #238436
    Warbodog
    Participant

    And it means they can do a Casablanca ending too (though in the film, the husband’s there all along). So a few threads come together in a working-backwards-from-the-end way.

    Most of IV’s other endings are abrupter and/or weirder.

    #238438
    Dave
    Participant

    I don’t think it’s an abrupt ending in Camille so much as a late twist. The ending is actually quite nicely done.

    #238440
    bloodteller
    Blocked

    >Most of IV’s other endings are abrupter and/or weirder.

    Yeah, I just finished DNA and Justice and they have dodgy endings too. DNA is about 10 seconds away from the Officer Rimmer ending, and Justice has the really out-of-character epilogue where everyone is pleased when Lister falls down a big hole and decide to seal him in. It doesn’t at all fit with the rest of the episode tbh-which makes sense I guess, as it was apparently quickly written and shot when Cat hitting himself in the face with the shovel was deemed an unsatisfying way to end the episode

    #238441
    bloodteller
    Blocked

    Dimension Jump has possibly the most strange one. What’s the Hammond Organ recital bit at the end doing there? It’s completely irrelevant to the rest of the episode, and done entirely as a voiceover. Rimmer attempting to prank Ace but failing doesn’t work at all either since you can’t see it’s a net full of kippers he’s trying to pour on him, and the Star Wars scrolling text just clutters up an already messy ending

    #238442

    There are definitely some questionable endings in there (Justice is a very bad one), but none of them actually feel like they’ve been cut halfway through a scene like a lot of the XI and XII ones do.

    #238443
    Dave
    Participant

    I like the ending of Justice. So there.

    #238444
    Dax101
    Participant

    The ending to justice, if i had to compare to any episode in the Dave era would be Twentica, because there is that moment at the end where its clear Doug didn’t know how to end it so you just get a what i have learned today speech.

    Although i do prefer the Justice ending purely because the idea of the justice system was a much bigger part of it then what technology does for us was in Twentica, so listers rant makes more sense for it

    I don’t think Camille ends abruptly. the ending actually takes its time after the reveal.

    #238445
    Dave
    Participant

    The reason I like Justice is that it’s a typical “what have I learned today” speech but with a punchline that acknowledges how annoying those pontificating speeches can be, and makes it clear that the crew are happy that the injustice of what happens to Lister ends his speech.

    You couldn’t get away with something like that every episode, but for Justice I think it works. Sometimes it’s fun to puncture the pomposity of characters even when they’re in the right.

    #238447
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    Sometimes life is just abrupt like that. Last time I watched Camille, last year, I received a phone call during the final scene informing me that my gran had died and the funeral was in a few days. How’s that for a late twist. I’ll never forget it, though.

    #238449
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    Justice ending with Cat hitting himself in the face would be on par with the shiteness of Officer Rimmer, surely. Glad they re-wrote that one, even if the new ending is just slightly less naff.

    #238453
    Flap Jack
    Participant

    How do we categorize episodes which have endings that are decent on their own, but are made worse retrospectively by the beginnings of the very next episodes immediately undoing them?

    Balance of Power and Parallel Universe the key offenders here.

    #238454
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    Lister falling down a manhole and the others closing the lid on him, everybody kicking the shit out of Lister at the end of Tikka, Rimmer being locked in the garbage hold with Talkie Toaster. You’d be forgiven for thinking that this group of space chums don’t actually like each other.

    I’ve never really thought about shit beginnings before. I like Tongue Tied honestly.

    #238455
    Warbodog
    Participant

    I don’t mind the Justice ending, but Cat falling over would have been funnier.

    I don’t get why some people think DNA seems unresolved, when Kryten had already decided to change back and Holly was getting better at using the machine. Plenty of episodes end on a punchline of the situation getting worse and being unresolved, like Stasis Leak and Bodyswap, but we don’t demand closure there.

    #238457
    Warbodog
    Participant

    DNA would be a candidate for worst episode opening though, when they’re all jabbering over each other with serious technobabble. Thank god for Cat.

    #238458
    Dollar Pound
    Participant

    the flat ending to btr feels really real and natural. it’s unique. it’s the best ep ever so there can’t be anything wrong with it.

    #238459
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    The point of the opening to DNA is to undercut it with a joke, though, surely, so it’s all worth it.

    One of my favourite endings is Terrorform tbh, mostly for the cancerous polyp line

    #238462
    bloodteller
    Blocked

    >Plenty of episodes end on a punchline of the situation getting worse and being unresolved, like Stasis Leak

    Isn’t the whole point of Stasis Leak’s ending that the situation just gets progressively more and more complicated and tangled up, and that Rimmer is at the centre of it all with absolutely no idea what’s going on? I always liked that ending, everything’s just spiralled into a big mess with multiple versions of everyone shouting at each other and Rimmer’s just sat there thinking “What the fuck”. It’s like Rob and Doug had a bet going to see how overcomplicated confusing they could make it

    #238464
    bloodteller
    Blocked

    Really the ending to Stasis Leak is a bit like the ending to Blake’s 7, only much less depressing

    #238467

    Extending the ending of Stasis Leak is one of the very few improvements Remastered made. Going into the original after knowing the remastered one for five years felt really underwhelming.

    #238470
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    They actually made something longer? Oh boy I’ll actually have to sit through an entire remastered episode now (or skip to the end but I could do with watching Stasis Leak again)

    #238476
    Warbodog
    Participant

    I just checked, it includes a few seconds of deleted material after the other Rimmer shows up and before Rimmer tells them all to go awah, where they all talk over each other. In case you had your hopes up for double double double future copies.

    #238477

    Yeah, there’s just a few more seconds of chaos at the end which makes Rimmer’s ‘go away’ scream just feel a little more earned.

    #238478
    clem
    Participant

    > They actually made something longer?

    There’s also a few extra seconds of Rimmer in Cat’s body at the end of Bodyswap Remastered.

    #238479
    Unrumble
    Participant

    Remastered was my first experience of the back 3 episodes of Series 3, so I didn’t fully appreciate how bad that CGI chase sequence in Bodyswap was, until I saw the original version when the DVD came out…

    #238490
    tombow
    Participant

    It’s just dawning on me it’s possible that I’ve only seen Series 1 Remastered.

    #238547
    Moonlight
    Participant

    Black card.

    Wait, you don’t know what that means.

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