Home Forums Ganymede & Titan Forum I would like another 'Back to Earth' style mini-series

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  • #230877
    Mr-Stabby
    Participant

    Bored this weekend, I put the BtE Bluray in. I haven’t watched it since it came out really, and over the years i’ve probably taken on a bit of overall fan opinion and remembered it as being a noble failure.

    I really was surprised how much i liked it this time around though. I think it suffered from the actors not having played their characters for so long and Doug not writing for them for so long, so overall the comedy and writing was a bit clunky for sure. The production itself though was great and the acting quality from Craig Charles in particular spot on. Craig puts in so much more of a nuanced performance in this series than any other. Even in the deleted scene of him wondering around and seeing the kid. I really enjoyed the more serious scenes in the remembrance garden and between Lister and Kochanski, and the more muted comedy style. It was a nice change.

    So i thought how great it would be now for them to do a similar style of mini-series, maybe even as the shows final series. Everyone involved is much more comfortable with making the show again now that they’ve had 3 series post BtE. I really would like to see more cinematic Dwarf.

    Am i the only one? I love the sitcom style too of course don’t get me wrong :D

    #230879
    Me Own Stunts
    Participant

    I never hated Back to Earth, but it is flawed. It edges further towards drama than series VII, which seems a lot less comfortable in its skin, but still suffers from strange jokes being shoehorned in like the tomato sneezes stuff at the start of episode 1. At times it’s as if Doug would be happier writing more dramatic stuff, then panics when he remembers he’s supposed to be doing a comedy. All in all I think post-Rob Red Dwarf would benefit from more confidently losing the need for a gag every 30 seconds.

    #230880
    Me Own Stunts
    Participant

    Ever since first broadcast I found it immeasurably better than series VIII, too. It was a relief that VIII wasn’t the last ever Red Dwarf anymore.

    #230883
    bloodteller
    Blocked

    > the tomato sneezes stuff at the start of episode 1

    wasn’t that scene put in there to show how meaningless and pointless their lives are 9 years down the line? i think doug mentioned on the director’s commentary that the stuff at the beginning is to show that the four have drifted apart over the years or something, and so lister’s life at that point is just pulling empty pranks on rimmer.

    or i’m misremembering and it’s just a crap joke, i don’t know

    #230885
    Plastic Percy
    Participant

    I was happy too that Red Dwarf no longer ended on a cliffhanger. I wasn’t bothered that it didn’t explain how ‘Only the Good…’ was resolved, continuing the show’s find tradition of not bothering with cliffhangers, and loved the look and feel. Ironing sneezes, giant testicle/tentacle, “how’d it even hold a pen?” were all truly great gags to me.

    The only thing I’d change is adding a laugh track to scenes aboard Red Dwarf at the beginning and end, to add to the unreality a bit more.

    #230886
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    As a Red Dwarf fan I too am torn between “I want VII but funnier”, “I want longer form narratives and maybe even no audience like BtE” and “I just want more traditional sitcom.”

    What I want is something GOOD, regardless of format. But BtE certainly has its merits, I agree.

    #230887
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    >All in all I think post-Rob Red Dwarf would benefit from more confidently losing the need for a gag every 30 seconds.
    Also this, to be h

    #230888
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    >The only thing I’d change is adding a laugh track to scenes aboard Red Dwarf at the beginning and end, to add to the unreality a bit more.
    Apologies for the triple post, but it would be pretty funny if the Red Dwarf universe just had a laugh track the whole time, and like Lister makes a joke in part two but doesn’t hear any laughs and wonders if he wasn’t funny enough or something.

    #230889
    Warbodog
    Participant

    >adding a laugh track to scenes aboard Red Dwarf

    – You know what they’d probably do?
    – Laugh.
    – Yeah. They probably would.

    #230891
    Me Own Stunts
    Participant

    > testicle/tentacle

    Blimey, really? I noticed that ‘testicle’ and ‘tentacle’ sounded vaguely similar when I was eight years old, and I couldn’t believe Doug Naylor thought it would sound fresh to any grown ups watching.

    #230895
    Me Own Stunts
    Participant

    > or i’m misremembering and it’s just a crap joke, i don’t know

    It’s that. Any number of things could have shown how the crew had drifted apart more over the years. The ironing sneezes scene doesn’t even do this particularly well, but it’s also painfully convoluted as a joke and performed very poorly. Craig Charles doing his cheeky “Am I pissing Rimmer off yet lol?” face, and Chris Barrie doing his “Urgh disgusting!” face are amongst the least realistic bits of acting in Back to Earth, probably only beaten to worst place by Kryten doing his “What are we going to do?” call-back to “You’re lying!” in the shop later. But the former examples stand out because they are in the first scene of the episode, which we were scrutinising especially closely because it was the first new Dwarf we’d seen in a decade.

    #230896
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    Ironing sneezes is a shit joke and Barrie overplays it, very weak start. Testicle/tentacle is worth a light chuckle. Even to this day the lack of a laugh track makes the sneezes scene feel… empty, although by the diving bell scene everything feels right.

    Why do people hate “you’re lying” so much? I like it, and “what are we going to do”. And “bit crap”.

    #230897
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    Ooh and kryten immediately becoming stressed again after his brilliant intro is wonderful

    #230905
    Dave
    Participant

    “Bit crap” might be the best gag of all three episodes.

    #230906
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    And also a fitting description of them.

    #230922

    Ooh and kryten immediately becoming stressed again after his brilliant intro is wonderful

    Yes, this is excellent. It’s a signposted gag, but a satisfying one.

    I fucking hate BtE at the time, but over the years have warmed to it, particularly after the first time I watched VIII and it back-to-back. It suddenly seems like Red Dwarf again, even if it’s not very good Red Dwarf. It’s full of interesting ideas and great character moments, and there are enough good jokes to fill a standard 30 minute episode, but then there’s really terrible shit like an extended joke of Kryten thinking a postbox is an android.

    Ironing sneezes I would like – the utter stupidity of it suggesting Lister has really run out of things to try and wind Rimmer up with – but for two things:
    1. it’s played like the ‘both cheeks’ man scene, gurning and hamming it up
    2. there’s no way in hell Lister is a curry-a-holic who is allergic to tomatoes

    #230925
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    Ironing sneezes is not even close to on the same level as both cheeks man, man.
    And good point with the tomatoes, although there’s always the extremely slim chance that he just happens to eat all the curries without tomatoes in. (I am not a curry expert, they might all have tomatoes for all I know. The word curry could be indian for tomato.)

    #230929
    Plastic Percy
    Participant

    <<Blimey, really? I noticed that ‘testicle’ and ‘tentacle’ sounded vaguely similar when I was eight years old, and I couldn’t believe Doug Naylor thought it would sound fresh to any grown ups watching.>>

    I liked it because it’s the sort of malpropism I love from Cat.

    #230930
    clem
    Participant

    Yeah it’s a decent enough malapropism and worth it for “He means tentacle”, “I hope so”. My favourite bit of that scene where Cat’s telling them about the squid is a brief but brilliant shot of Rimmer reacting wearily, and it isn’t in the director’s cut.

    #230933
    Dax101
    Participant

    The “mizzz” joke with Kryten,Rimmer and Katerina is such a rusty joke that i can’t believe it even got through to the final product.

    Its not clever, its feels like a slightly desperate tired joke and its not convincing that Kryten couldn’t just have made it a little more obvious she was behind him.

    #230935

    It, too, is recycled from VIII, with the “lol Hollister is fat” scene.

    #230936
    bloodteller
    Blocked

    >It, too, is recycled from VIII, with the “lol Hollister is fat” scene.

    the version of the joke in BtE is arguably a little better though, just for Rimmer’s reaction of “my breasts…?” *looks down at chest* as if him spontaneously growing a pair was just a regular occurence in life

    #230945
    Ben Paddon
    Participant

    In fairness, it has happened before.

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