Red Dwarf USA Pilot- Early Version

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    someone just posted this on the TOS forum, but i thought it’d be worthwhile to get in here too. it’s an early version of the US pilot (in slightly higher quality) which has a lot of scenes in it that weren’t in the final version-

    shame this edit wasn’t used, there’s a lot more scenes with the cat and rimmer. and they also use the original theme tune rather than that fucking dreadful one that’s used in the final edit.

    full list of difference between the original and final version here if you’re curious-



    Christ, that’s so much better than the one we ended up with. Not difficult, I know, but heck. Jane Leeves is probably still the most excruciating performance, mind.



    “back off! i am a lot bigger than my appearance may suggest” genuinely made me laugh out loud when i heard it. it’s a wonder why they didn’t just use this edit, it’s a lot better.



    Instantly better for using the original theme and not that horrific synth garbage that sounded like a title screen MIDI from a game you’d find on a bootleg shovelware CD in 1994.



    Clunky as it is, it actually gets into a decent groove once you’ve hit the point where Lister and Kryten are together. But everything up to that point is extremely cringe-inducing, particularly that very first scene.

    Chris Eigmann was excellent as a Rimmer-like character in Malcolm in the Middle, so I have to blame the writing for why Rimmer is so poor in this. Chris Eigmann could have been perfect if the role hadn’t been slavishly trying to copy the original Rimmer, who is deeply rooted in UK conceptions of class that don’t really exist in America. Hell, as miscast as Lister is in this, he’s actually decently Americanized. He’s written like an American equivalent to our Lister, whereas Rimmer seems to just be a bad photocopy of our Rimmer.

    Why didn’t they just write an American spiritual successor to Red Dwarf instead of trying to remake it? If they actually wrote for this cast instead of trying to poorly copy the original show, they could have actually had a decent pilot here. All the worst jokes are the poorly reworded gags ripped from the original series, whereas all the best material is unique to this pilot.

    I’m glad Dwarf USA failed, but I would love to see an American sci-fi sitcom in the vein of Red Dwarf. Although America is now allergic to genre comedies that aren’t overt parodies of a specific work, so I doubt we ever will.


    Ian Symes

    G&T Admin

    Blimey! Thank you, I’m stealing this for a front page update.

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