Home Forums Ganymede & Titan Forum Red Dwarf VIII is flawed

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  • #260063
    Rubber
    Participant

    Controversial statement, of course, but I rewatched recently and there were some aspects of the series which didn’t sit well with me:

    1. What actually goes on with Holly in BITR3? He says he creates a second set of nanos — what? Is that then proven wrong because they’re in AI when he says it? How do you put a computer in AI if it doesn’t lick envelopes? Do both bighead Holly and prison Holly have the run of the ship’s circuitry, or is prison Holly only able to move between the watch and the cell screen? Never ever really followed any of this tbh.
    2. Rimmer is subject to two serious sexual assaults in the first half of the series but they go unpunished. How is this acceptable?

    3. Rimmer uses coercive control on Kochanski and nobody seems to mind. Appalling.

    4. I asked this before but I still can’t get a handle of the scale or location or configuration of the orange prison tower in the CGI exterior shots.

    5. Who does Cat live with?

    On the plus side, Rimmer’s dad’s ‘conception sperm alibi’ was at least borne out to be true, a decade later.

    #260064
    Dave
    Participant

    I hadn’t ever considered that VIII could be seen as anything less than perfect, but this is certainly food for thought.

    #260065
    si
    Participant

    Red Dwarf VIII is flawed

    “And today on ‘No Shit’… “

    #260066
    Rubber
    Participant

    Red Dwarf VIII is flawed

    “And today on ‘No Shit’… “

    I think the end of your post is missing!

    Ackerman update: Google ‘Graham McTavish shirtless’ for a nice surprise.

    #260079
    Plastic Percy
    Participant

    The prison tower is one that always throws me. We’re told the Tank is on Floor 13 (on a spaceship with thousands of floors, this doesn’t make sense aside to sound cool – unlucky 13 and all that) yet there’s a skyscraper which appears to be just wing of it somewhere in the ship.

    With Holly’s claims about creating little distractions for Lister to keep him busy, I thought this was a point that should’ve been discussed a lot more than it is, as it implies Holly has manipulated or set up some events in the past and it would shine a light on a few things. Obviously, Queeg is the best example – playing a nightmarish practical joke on them to get them to show him some respect – but are there any other examples? Did he deliberately pilot Starbug into the timehole? Lie about the cluster of black holes?

    #260082
    Renegade Rob
    Participant

    Series VIII is intentionally flawed because, in a Steven Moffat-esque stroke of genius, the entirety of Series VIII was a mere feint to serve as the first phase in Doug Naylor’s 13-year-long master plan to set up that one joke at the end of Series X.

    #260083

    The prison tower is one that always throws me. We’re told the Tank is on Floor 13 (on a spaceship with thousands of floors, this doesn’t make sense aside to sound cool – unlucky 13 and all that) yet there’s a skyscraper which appears to be just wing of it somewhere in the ship.

    There is a way of solving this I think.

    We know there are “Levels” on Red Dwarf, but there are also “Decks”. Presumably no more than 26 decks as we know there is a Z deck but nothing after that.

    So I’d suggest the ship is divided into 26 decks, all with multiple Levels/Floors on.

    Given Holly say’s “the brig on floor 13” and Lister replies “there isn’t a floor 13”, you could read that to mean he has literally never heard of this place existing. Not that there isn’t a level 13, or a deck M, but a place on Red Dwarf called “Floor 13”.

    What “Floor 13” could mean is a hidden deck, of multiple floors, in a corner of the ship, with this multi-stacked prison cell spanning down it. It’s probably easier to hide something like that going vertically in a small area of the ship than it is to assume you could hide an entire 5mile long level.

    So we could say “floor 13” is the official name of “the tank” which is space across multiple levels, hidden on a deck somewhere towards the back of the ship where people don’t go very often.

    You only then need to explain away the lift having a floor 13 button … but that could be one very specific lift that goes to that one very specific place.

    It doesn’t actually make sense for all the lifts on the ship to travel to all floors. You’d have lifts that traveled between decks (the X-Press Elevator seen in Stasis Leak) and then on each deck separate lifts that travel between the floors on that deck.

    #260086
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    It doesn’t have to actually be floor 13, btw, it can just be called that

    Quinn did just say that pretty much tbf

    #260088
    Rubber
    Participant

    The prison tower is one that always throws me. We’re told the Tank is on Floor 13 (on a spaceship with thousands of floors, this doesn’t make sense aside to sound cool – unlucky 13 and all that) yet there’s a skyscraper which appears to be just wing of it somewhere in the ship.

    There is a way of solving this I think.
    We know there are “Levels” on Red Dwarf, but there are also “Decks”. Presumably no more than 26 decks as we know there is a Z deck but nothing after that.
    So I’d suggest the ship is divided into 26 decks, all with multiple Levels/Floors on.
    Given Holly say’s “the brig on floor 13” and Lister replies “there isn’t a floor 13”, you could read that to mean he has literally never heard of this place existing. Not that there isn’t a level 13, or a deck M, but a place on Red Dwarf called “Floor 13”.
    What “Floor 13” could mean is a hidden deck, of multiple floors, in a corner of the ship, with this multi-stacked prison cell spanning down it. It’s probably easier to hide something like that going vertically in a small area of the ship than it is to assume you could hide an entire 5mile long level.
    So we could say “floor 13” is the official name of “the tank” which is space across multiple levels, hidden on a deck somewhere towards the back of the ship where people don’t go very often.
    You only then need to explain away the lift having a floor 13 button … but that could be one very specific lift that goes to that one very specific place.
    It doesn’t actually make sense for all the lifts on the ship to travel to all floors. You’d have lifts that traveled between decks (the X-Press Elevator seen in Stasis Leak) and then on each deck separate lifts that travel between the floors on that deck.

    Love this thinking! Thank you. Could you draw a cross-section of the ship?

    #260094
    bloodteller
    Participant

    Who does Cat live with?

    nigel, he’s nice

    #260095

    What is going on

    #260096
    cwickham
    Participant

    Tragically, a question never asked during the production of Red Dwarf VIII.

    #260097
    JamesTC
    Participant
    #260098

    Love this thinking! Thank you. Could you draw a cross-section of the ship?

    No. Not because I don’t want to, I just wouldn’t be able to.

    #260099

    Who does Cat live with?

    nigel, he’s nice

    in all honesty, I’d happy crash with Nigel, he seems like a proper interesting bloke!

    #260101
    Pete Part Three
    Participant
    #260104
    Unrumble
    Participant

    After all this conjecture, maybe the thread should be renamed “Red Dwarf VIII is ‘floored'”

    #260105
    Ridley
    Participant

    And as usual it is left to G&T to point out the VIII-tal floor in your logic.

    #260107
    clem
    Participant

    I don’t care for some of the storeys in VIII.

    #260108
    Flap Jack
    Participant

    Red Dwarf Series VIII fails on so many levels.

    #260112
    Hamish
    Participant

    I don’t think Doug was playing with a full deck when he wrote VIII.

    #260113
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    I think he was a bit busy making a sitcom to play card games

    #260114
    Hamish
    Participant

    Neither is Ben apparently.

    #260118

    Yeah, Ben’s comment wasn’t quite on the level.

    #260122
    Dave
    Participant

    He’ll be floored by you saying that.

    #260123

    He’ll nivelo live it down

    #260125
    Joe
    Participant

    He’ll certainly deck you for that comment.

    #260127
    Dave
    Participant

    Diesel be worth putting in the hall of fame.

    #260128
    clem
    Participant

    This is getting tiersome.

    #260134
    Rubber
    Participant

    I love you guys.

    #260135

    These cargo on much longer surely?

    #260136
    Dave
    Participant

    We need to Lift our spirits somehow.

    #260137
    Nick R
    Participant

    A superlative suggestion, sir, with just two minor floors.

    #260138

    I can’t stop stair-ing at this thread thinking of a good reply.

    #260139
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    This is no time to carpetulate.

    #260141
    si
    Participant

    Someone should bring this tower conclusion.

    #260142
    Dave
    Participant

    Are you suggesting ceiling this thread off completely?

    #260143
    clem
    Participant

    It’s only a bit of fun – there’s no need to get all lofty.

    #260144
    Unrumble
    Participant

    Admims will surely have to take steps soon

    #260145
    clem
    Participant

    Before things escalate, you mean?

    #260146
    Rubber
    Participant

    Hey, don’t attic the thread.

    #260147
    Rubber
    Participant

    Assuming that was the general vibe of the past few, um, mezzaninages.

    #260149
    Hamish
    Participant

    Now we are all just wing-ing it.

    #260150
    Renegade Rob
    Participant

    Looks like this discussion is building to a climax.

    #260155
    Nick R
    Participant

    ERECTION.

    #260156
    Spaceworm Jim
    Participant

    Looks like this discussion is building to a climax.

    The smeg it is.

    #260158
    Dave
    Participant

    Time to put this on Hold.

    #260159

    Admins should bungalow effort tag on this thread

    #260160
    Nick R
    Participant

    I don’t think the thread should end yet – not while we’ve still got more constructive criticism.

    #260162

    I’d hate to be walled off from the rest of the site.

    #260172

    A) stop spamming, B) that looks like a hunk of junk and C) there’s a reason we hang out here and not on TOS in the first place.

    #260173
    No
    Participant

    A) stop spamming, B) that looks like a hunk of junk and C) there’s a reason we hang out here and not on TOS in the first place.

    It smells of ass in here

    #260174
    No
    Participant

    But the https://unofficialreddwarfforum.com/
    Doesn’t smell of ass

    #260175

    Then piss off and stop contaminating it.

    #260176
    No
    Participant

    Then piss off and stop contaminating it.

    Don’t piss on me you heathen

    #260180
    Rubber
    Participant

    I quite like being pissed on, if anyone’s offering.

    #260186
    Dave
    Participant

    Pops into the thread to post another delightful floor pun

    #260194

    Did you come in and think urine trouble Dave?

    #260195
    Dave
    Participant

    I thought he might be a “wee” bit of a massive fucking twat.

    #260198
    Hamish
    Participant

    You do seem a bit pee-ved.

    …can we go back to talking about floors now?

    #260199
    Dave
    Participant

    No, I’m board of that.

    #260200
    Rubber
    Participant

    Laminate sure if there are enough puns left tbh.

    #260201
    Hamish
    Participant

    I guess we are all starting to get tiled of this.

    #260202

    Since Ian pulled the rug out from under his feet, we can definitely get back to the ground work of laying these puns down.

    #260205
    Dave
    Participant

    I guess we are all starting to get tiled of this.

    Maybe you’re not rugged enough.

    #260206
    Hamish
    Participant

    Ian deserves a place in the Hall of Heroes.

    #260563
    clem
    Participant

    I’ve just realised this is why I’ve had Freak Me in my head for the last couple of days.

    #260824
    Yaron Ru
    Participant

    Every so often I try and watch through VIII (the only series I don’t like) and hope to find myself enjoying it this time, only to end up bitterly disappointed.

    I think that if the pieces were spliced just right, there’s a decent “Feature length special” in there, as there are decent stories and jokes, it just requires a lot of cutting. Hopefully one day I’ll produce a cut that works well and can act as a decent unofficial bridge between VII and BTE for fans that would prefer to make it part of their “headcanon”.

    #260827

    you can’t just ignore and re-write huge chunks of a TV series and call it headcanon. Headcanon is for filling in gaps and unknowns, not changing something you don’t like. Fans of, well anything really, have to take the good with the bad.

    VII I might not be great but you can’t erase it and replace it with something else. Otherwise why bother watching the show at all, just come up with your own adventures in your head and call that the show.

    #260829
    Dave
    Participant

    It’s my headcanon that Holly has always been played by Floella Benjamin.

    #260831
    Flap Jack
    Participant

    If you can headcanon to fill in gaps, and canon can undo or contradict itself, can you also undo actual canon with headcanon?

    The answer: not under normal circumstances, but if you have a powerful enough head, anything is possible.

    #260842
    Yaron Ru
    Participant

    You can ignore Dennis The Donut Boy and that’s final.

    #260846
    Rubber
    Participant

    I always assumed VIII was entirely Donut Dennis’s psychotropic trial for impersonating a senior officer, set in motion countless millennia ago. The regular cast featured in it but only as figments of his imagination.

    In reality they simply reboarded the nanobuilt Red Dwarf without a reconstructed crew, and Back to Earth picked up from the end of VII. The chameleonic microbe references in The Beginning refer to something that happened in the intervening period. It was a loooooooong gap, after all.

    #260847
    srmcd1
    Participant

    All of Series VIII can be whittled down to one hour. I did it myself. It’s quick and relatively painless.

    #260874
    bloodteller
    Participant

    what is it about the “Dennis The Donut Boy” stuff that gets everyone so wound up? it’s one throwaway line in an episode, and it’s not really out of character for him to have blackmailed his way into being Captain, is it? along with “one of the knights has escaped from the AR machine” it really seems like one of those things that everyone inexplicably gets annoyed about

    #260875
    Rubber
    Participant

    Why was there a shiny suit of medieval armour on Starbug?

    #260878
    Dave
    Participant

    It escaped from the AR machine.

    #260879
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    Why was there a shiny suit of medieval armour on Starbug?

    They’ve been all over the galaxy and have picked up a load of shite.

    The Dennis the Donut boy line doesn’t even paint the Captain as incompetent or that wacky, I mean the man bullshit his was into a position of immense status and power, you have to be fairly competent and have your head fairly screwed on to be able to achieve something like that.

    #260883
    clem
    Participant

    I think that’s it. Hollister wasn’t a comedy character before VIII but that joke doesn’t really work for either characterization. I’ve disliked it ever so slightly less since somebody pointed out it’s likely a reference to “Pinback” in Dark Star, though.

    #260886

    it’s not really out of character for him to have blackmailed his way into being Captain, is it?

    By this point, his ‘characterisation’ was of a competent, well-respected Captain in charge of a five mile long ship.

    It’s the equivalent of bringing Petersen back but him being the sober straight man objecting to Lister’s drunk laddish behaviour.

    #260888

    It also re-charactersises him as someone that is no better really than Rimmer, he is just capable of cheating better than him.

    I much prefer the the idea that everyone is actually capable of doing their job and got their on merit, and didn’t just cheat their way to the top as Rimmer regularly tries to.

    It might not undermine Hollister’s competence, but it changes it from someone who is actually a stand up Captain to a bit of a no-body he blackmailed his way to the top. It removes a level of respect that the crew would have for him if they found out he didn’t know what he was doing, and he says as much himself.

    #260891
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    It also re-charactersises him as someone that is no better really than Rimmer, he is just capable of cheating better than him.

    Doesn’t that make him better than him in general, really? The real world typically works on who can lie and cheat and step over people the best, and “I much prefer the the idea that everyone is actually capable of doing their job and got their on merit” is fairly naive if you look at real life. A Captain can just have all the much smarter people around him do the big brain stuff, he just has to be a decent leader.

    #260892
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    Trying to think of a real-world example of a person who is leading people despite having no qualifications that prove they’re worthy of leading people, beyond the ability to cheat and gain the position on dodgy deals and shenanigans.

    Nope, can’t think of any. I guess you’re right, Ben.

    #260893
    Flap Jack
    Participant

    The issue with “Dennis the doughnut boy” is that it’s a huge reveal that changes our understanding of the character of Hollister, but it’s also just a quick throwaway gag, and a pretty cheap one at that.

    It’s all costs and benefits, ultimately. If you’re paying the cost of a major reveal about Hollister that recontextualises all of his previous appearances, then you need an equally weighted benefit – either this doughnut boy thing is setting up a significant and good story for Hollister that actually acknowledges it or it’s one of the most side-splittingly funny lines ever. It’s neither.

    Also it doesn’t help that it doesn’t make much sense for Hollister to randomly confess this in a vlog. I guess we’re meant to assume that the vlog doesn’t actually exist and is purely a narrative device / in his mind.

    But of course it happens in the same story that has magical robots resurrecting people who died in ancient history and the main cast being put on trial in their dreams, so I guess it’s not too unbelievable.

    #260894
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    I can see why they wanted to give Mac something funny to do. The man is fantastic at deadpan and Hollister in The End, Me2 and Stasis Leak didn’t give him the opportunity to do anything vaguely comic…but the Series VIII (and Skipper) version of him is such a broad trope. The shouty, incompetent man in charge. And he’s fat! And he has embarrassing medical complaints! Hilarious.

    #260902

    The Hollister that is giving Rimmer a bollocking in Me2 over failing to seal the drive plate isn’t the same man who is cowardly escaping alone in an escape pod.

    They’ve retconned the character to try and make him funny and it’s for the worse imo.

    #260915

    It largely falls into Doug’s post-VII problem of “I have to make everything funny”, not realising that a serious context can make the jokes inherently funnier. Hollister is played as a serious, if likeable, ship’s captain, and his reprimanding Lister in The End shows he considers the safety of the crew and mission important. That he suddenly becomes a comedy fat bloke with no actual credentials undermines that, and, as Flap Jack points out, it’s not even done for a worthwhile narrative or comedy reason: it’s just a throwaway gag.

    I remember watching BBC2’s showings of Third Rock from the Sun as a teenager, and the between-scene CG planet shots, with moons bouncing off planet rings and stuff, made me think of Red Dwarf, and if it was done the same, you’d have daft scene-breaks like the ship going past and suddenly being infinitely long or being bright colours or whatever. And then I realised that wouldn’t work at all because Red Dwarf exists in a serious universe, only one where the characters are witty and absurd circumstances happen to them. But the rest of the universe and its inhabitants have to be serious to make that work, and turning Hollister into a clown doesn’t work at all.

    #260922
    tombow
    Participant

    maybe Lister ordered the suit of armor from sort kind of online 3d printer thing. Why not? Starbug is big now, and he was ordering the coffee maker thing in Trojan.

    #260923

    Agree with everything Debris said.

    Maybe the suit of armour actually did come from the AR machine. Maybe a Knight did escape, Lister killed him then donned his armour to fight Rimmer.

    #261011
    tombow
    Participant

    I’m trying to decide what my actual worst single moment of S8 is, but having trouble choosing.

    #261014
    Rubber
    Participant

    I’m trying to decide what my actual worst single moment of S8 is, but having trouble choosing.

    Probably either of the rapes for me. Or that bit where Birdman says ‘and this is Pete!’ with a big grin that I think is supposed to be endearing.

    #261015

    I won’t hear a bad word said against Birdman you heartless cretin.

    The single worst moment of series VIII has to be the moment the BBC commissioned it I think

    #261016
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    I think I’ll plump for the Data Doctor which was early enough in the series to make me think “what the fuck has this show turned into?”

    #261018

    If we’re being serious, the Blue Midget dance has to win surely? Dream/AR sequence or not, that’s just a waste of screen time.

    #261020
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    I think I’ve repressed my first viewing of that.

    #261025
    Ben Saunders
    Participant

    The worst part of VIII is discussing it on G&T, again

    #261027
    Dave
    Participant

    THE SMEG IT IS

    #261028
    Renegade Rob
    Participant

    The worst part of VIII is discussing it on G&T, again

    See you in ten minutes?

    See you in ten minutes?

    See you in ten minutes?

    #261029

    The worst part of VIII is discussing it on G&T, again

    it’s not as though you have to be involved. You could ignore it, the way we ignore your Star Wars ramblings when you go off on those tangents.

    There’s plenty of other threads, and you could start you’re own about any number of topics. Why begrudge a thread to the people that are enjoying the discussion just because you don’t happen to like it.

    #261031
    RunawayTrain
    Participant

    If we’re being serious, the Blue Midget dance has to win surely? Dream/AR sequence or not, that’s just a waste of screen time.

    Yup. Not much of VIII actually made me physically cringe, but that did. Yeesh.

    The assaults on Rimmer still confuse me. He took the sexual magnetism virus to become irresistible to women, then when they can’t resist he tries to refuse? I’m not victim-blaming at all, but at the same time the women were not in control of themselves – we saw how it affected Kochanski, and how she felt disgusted and mortified once it wore off; her actions were not willing – so the women with Rimmer would feel similarly, and equally their actions were not willing either.

    (Btw if the genders were reversed I would still be confused; it just would may have been more immediately recognised as problematic.)

    I can only conclude that Rimmer trying to refuse was another thing for the sake of ‘oh this’ll be funny’ without thinking through the implications. The implications of the virus making someone actually irresistible – not just attractive – are problematic in themselves, too. I cannot see a way around the situation (e.g. Rimmer consenting) that would make it okay.

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