Home Forums Ganymede & Titan Forum Should they have continued Red Dwarf after Series VI?

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  • #216661
    Jawscvmcdia
    Participant

    I refer to a comment on Den of Geek, which was:

    “Once a story’s been done, characters are explored, there’s no point in continuing something just because you liked what came before.

    Red Dwarf wrapped up in season six really – the departure of Rob Grant and the lack of enthusiasm of Chris Barrie after that should have meant they left it alone. I understand the draw for continuing – it’s similar to our draw towards re-watching it, but it should have been resisted.

    Sometimes it’s just better to leave things well alone and keep them as happy memories. This show should have been quietly taken out to the woods and shot in the head years ago. Since Rob Grant’s departure, laughs have been very rare. It’s obvious from their two separate novels, Last Human and Backwards that Rob Grant was the creative force behind the show.”

    Thoughts?

    #216662
    (deleted)
    Participant

    That makes no sense about the books, it’s such an empty cliche that always gets trodden out. “Obvious”? I love both books fairly equally but there is demonstrably more ‘creative force’ in Last Human, regardless of what you think about each novel or what your favourite is. It’s spitting with fresh ideas amongst the recycled bits, even despite the odd stumble in executing them, whereas Backwards is slickly executed but only really has the Agonoids section that isn’t adapted from existing material (and even then they’re amalgam of the Simulants and the Lows).

    Over 20 years since VII was shot and still this bloody argument…

    #216664
    Dax101
    Participant

    Thats a tricky one as did Series 7 and 8 live up to the past 6 seasons to the point it makes them worth existing, i dunno how to answer that one, they are bumps in the road of the franchise and BTE wasn’t all that amazing either.

    But we as fans always want more no matter either way.

    #216665
    NoFro
    Participant

    I think Red Dwarf is a show that works so well in continuing on, even if the execution hasn’t always been as good as in those first six series*. If they brought Men Behaving Badly back now and Gary and Tony were still doing the same thing it would likely be depressing. Alternatively they might have had kids or something and, whilst such a change to the status quo could be pulled off, many shows have had such a change ruin the whole thing. With Red Dwarf you can return 20 years later and still have the exact same set up. It’s in a bubble, it’s world doesn’t change with ours and there’s no outside force that should be massively changing our characters over the years. That makes it quite unique for a sitcom and is probably part of the reason it feels so natural for it to come back.

    *For me VII is okay, VIII is atrocious, BTE is good, X is okay though with different pros and cons to VII, XI is very good so far. For reference, the first six would be described as amazing.

    #216674
    Ian Symes
    Keymaster

    Christ almighty. We’re in the middle of a new series. Do we need three separate discussions about the merits of Series VII and VIII right now?

    #216690
    (deleted)
    Participant

    It’s the rule of VII.

    #216691

    Yes. Yes we fucking do.

    #216692

    Yes.

    #216693
    Ridley
    Participant

    Link to the Den of Geek comment, plz.

    #216694
    Jawscvmcdia
    Participant
    #216696
    Moonlight
    Participant

    Backwards better than Last Human?

    Nah.

    No.

    No, no, nope. Last Human was a much better novel. I enjoyed Backwards, but I didn’t get invested in its story the way I did with Last Human. Plus, it also provided the closest thing we’ll ever get to a true ending to Red Dwarf. The stuff with Rimmer’s damaged light bee felt like a great send off to his character.

    #216697
    si
    Participant

    Currently rereading Last Human, not my favourite of the four. Can’t quite work Kochanski in my head. The characterisation is obviously a step away from Claire Grogan’s Kochanski, and towards the way she’s portrayed in RDVII, but when reading it before then, before Chloe was even cast…and found it awkward. I think Backwards is a better novel, really; the adaptation of onscreen scenes and dialogue is much more noticeable in Last Human, Backwards is more about the idea. My main problem with Backwards, though, is the amount of time Lister and Cat spend as kids. Similar to Kochanski in Last Human in that it’s a little more difficult to visualise. But to be honest, neither reach the level of Infinity or BTL.
    I’d be interested to see what a new book might throw up, though. Maybe Robert could have a go.

    #216698
    MANI506
    Participant

    I think Backwards is better purely for the Ace Rimmer stuff but both novels are best in their abridged audiobook form I think. That said, unabridged new Chris Barrie recordings are still top of my Christmas list. Come on boffins – sort it out!

    #216699
    ChrisM
    Participant

    I can understand people preferring Backwards to Last Human (I’m not one of them, although I liked both books) but it seems that post writer is equating preference with creativity, which is smegging annoying and just not true.

    I find Last Human a much more creative novel. And I’m not just saying that because I prefer it. There is just so much more going on. Cyberia. Whole new gelf cultures. Parallels self shenanigans. Plotting and action and… it dares to be sad and poignant too. (Although there’s a bit of that in Backwards as well.)

    I don’t say that to criticise Backwards though. It was a tighter novel and its realisation of a Backwards reality was far better than the episode of the same name. It was a good novel with a lot of merit, but I thought Last Human beat it where creativity is concerned.

    #216700
    Ridley
    Participant

    >http://www.denofgeek.com/movies/red-dwarf-the-movie/37144/red-dwarf-and-the-movie-that-never-was

    Grazie. Why did you combine three separate people’s opinions into one though?

    Matthew Hewitt [to] George • a year ago

    Seasons 2 & 3 were the absolute peak for me, after that it was a long, slow decline. Season 7 was awful, season 8 only slightly better and the Dave episodes are plain embarrassing. Sometimes it’s just better to leave things well alone and keep them as happy memories. The only idea of interest to me would be to re-cast and turn the first couple of books into feature films.

    George [to] Matthew Hewitt • a year ago

    Yeah, for me it’s 2-3-4 with 5 and 6 being much patchier (probably because Ed Bye was no longer producing).

    I think that once a story’s been done, characters are explored, there’s no point in continuing something just because you liked what came before.

    Red Dwarf wrapped up in season six really – the departure of Rob Grant and the lack of enthusiasm of Chris Barrie after that should have meant they left it alone. I understand the draw for continuing – it’s similar to our draw towards re-watching it, but it should have been resisted.

    I like your idea of a recast and turning the book into features. The idea is sound, and “that sort of thing” is easier to do now than it ever was (in terms of an appetite for science fiction, more unusual comedy, etc). Just: no cameos, please.

    Neal Murdoch • a year ago

    This show should have been quietly taken out to the woods and shot in the head years ago. Since Rob Grants departure, laughs have been very rare. It’s obvious from their 2 separate RD novels, Last Human and Backwards that Rob Grant was the creative force behind the show.

    #216706

    I’ve never been that fond of Last Human. It just feels a bit too populated. Backwards manages to have half the book set on 20th century Earth and still focuses largely on the main four, whereas Last Human has such a large cast despite being set in deep space. Is the title a joke, by the way? Given that it features Kochanski, alternate Lister and Rimmer’s son as important characters. It’s a pretty good SF novel, but I just find Backwards funnier and just overall more Dwarfy.

    #216707

    Better Than Life and Backwards are just fucking lovely.

    If Doug decided to write an episode based purely on Ace circa the test flight, I would be so happy, he’s a diamond in it.

    #216710
    Kris Carter
    Participant

    Yes, they absolutely should have continued Red Dwarf after VI, and I’m glad they did.

    Although, yes, it has taken a very long time to recapture itself after all the upheaval that was wrought between VI and VII, but we’re now into the strongest run of episodes for a long time, and I’m glad we’ve got them and more to come.

    #216711
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    I find the prose in Backwards more similar to Infinity and BTL.

    The tone of Last Human just feels all wrong too. And Kochanski is even worse than she is in VII (though not quite VIII levels of rubbishness.

    #216712
    Dax101
    Participant

    Infinity welcomes careful drivers is a great novel, better than life has a slight tone change towards more complex sci-fi but it is still pretty damn good, last human and backwards both are decent but both feel like there is something missing

    #216713
    Dax101
    Participant

    It does feel like a star trek or star wars novel in some ways where gelfs, robots and holograms stand in for aliens and Doug fully takes advantage of as many other characters he can fit in as possible.

    #216714
    Dax101
    Participant

    Oops i tried to quote someones elses post and somehow my own post ended up quoted and edit doesn’t work, ah well you get the point ;p

    #216719
    Taiwan Tony
    Participant

    Yes I believe they should. Because you can ignore series VII & VIII and BTE and great swathes of X and an episode of XI, and enjoy the good ones.
    And who wouldn’t love another book or two.

    #216722

    I’ll be as honest as ‘Honest’ Bill Honesty here, the most honest man south of Honest-upon-Upton.

    I really cannot stomach Series I. I tend to start at Kryten, race through to Blue, then do ten minutes of Nanarchy and end up at Series X.

    I really do like Series I but it’s never been a must-watch for me unlike Kryten or Out of Time or Dimension Jump.

    #216733

    After watching the lot of them umpteen times, I find the first series the one I’m less inclined to come back to*, just through it generally being less textured (both visually and in terms of of script and characterisation). Humour-wise it’s fucking excellent, but it’s only at Me² that the rewatchability level really steps up.

    *other than VII and VIII, of course. I’ve only watched those two once in the last, seven or eight years.

    #216737
    Nick R
    Participant

    Christ almighty. We’re in the middle of a new series. Do we need three separate discussions about the merits of Series VII and VIII right now?

    It seems that with a lot of fandom discussions, the stuff they hate the most seem to get returned to more often than the stuff they should celebrate.

    Case in point: there’s a brand new RedLetterMedia Harry Plinkett video on The Force Awakens. But it ends up spending nearly 50% of its time reiterating or continuing arguments related to the problems with the Star Wars prequels, which by this point must surely be the most-discussed films on the Internet. (It also happens to be a relatively poorly-argued critique compared to those earlier videos.)

    Fandoms love to hate…

    #216744

    Oh go on then, I love Series VIII.

    Anyone wanna match me?

    Come on, who put Pete at No. 1 in the Silver Survey?

    #216751
    cwickham
    Participant

    As another thought: what would have happened to the franchise if Doug hadn’t decided to carry on after Series VI? Would the revival have happened? Would the DVDs be anywhere near as good as they are? How different would this site, and indeed Red Dwarf fandom in general, be? How would the show be thought of now?

    #216753

    Good point really, the wind may have went out Doug’s sails if both Rob and himself decided to call it a day after Series VI.

    We’d have vanilla DVD releases with virtually no special features and a foolhardy, limited scrap of fan websites reporting on the most bollocky associative minutae regarding the cast of the show in their post-Dwarf careers.

    Wait a minute…

    #216761
    (deleted)
    Participant

    Whatever you think of the post-split series (and please to god let’s keep it to ourselves now), if it hadn’t have been for the two-year run of VII/Xtended/Night/Remastered/VIII then Red Dwarf would have basically disappeared. Doug, Ed Bye and the GNP team worked themselves into dust to turn Red Dwarf from a parochial, already-seen-as-past-it, zeitgeisty (and to some extent borderline *disgraced*) cult TV property into a resurrected, reborn, international legacy brand with massively improved sales potential and audience reach.

    What they achieved, with infinitely less resources than they made it appear, wasn’t far off the impossible. How can you not have wanted all that to happen? It’s the reason you can enjoy “IT’S A COMEDY SPRAY” and 16mm footage of Pete Tyler’s hands in the comfort of your own living room, and the reason Sunday afternoon repeats of Queeg can still appear on BARB ratings charts.

    #216765

    It wouldn’t have worked regardless, Dona was too petite for the shot and her hands are not of the same hue as Danny’s.

    How distinctly unique and odd it is to discuss rushes from an episode of a cult sci-fi show made 28 years ago in a Manchester hotel.

    #216801
    Dax101
    Participant

    Really i think the movie was a driving force for Doug to continue making this show, infact Series 7 and 8 both feel like testers for a movie with series 7 not being filmed infront of an audience and having orchestric music, while 8 brought the crew back which the movie was gonna be a reboot and was likly to have Hollister and Co in and Doug attempted a 3 part story for the first 3 episode which was film length

    If Red Dwarf had stopped after 6 it probably would have came back in some form or another, whether rob would have been more likely to come back or not who knows

    As for keeping the show alive with Series 7,8 and the remastered… thats a tricky one, yay to keeping the show alive but they still sorta feel like bumps in the road.

    #216807
    Ben Paddon
    Participant

    Really i think the movie was a driving force for Doug to continue making this show, infact Series 7 and 8 both feel like testers for a movie with series 7 not being filmed infront of an audience and having orchestric music, while 8 brought the crew back which the movie was gonna be a reboot and was likly to have Hollister and Co in and Doug attempted a 3 part story for the first 3 episode which was film length

    You’re half-right, at least according to the Series VIII book – Doug planned VII as a test run for the movie (which is what convinced Ed Bye to come back).

    #216830
    cwickham
    Participant

    Here’s another suggestion: in a parallel universe where Red Dwarf’s original run ended with VI and Back to Earth didn’t happen, would the Beeb have considered making a new episode for their recent Sitcom Season? Would Rob and Doug have been up for a reunion for it? (Alternatively: a universe with the same scenario, except VII and VIII did happen?)

    #216831

    I can’t see how it could’ve ended after VI with a neat or positive ending. There were books, out-take tapes, merchandise, conventions, all sorts that would that in a way, wouldn’t have allowed for Red Dwarf to simply snuff out for a number of years post-1993 bar Doug running in and doing a KLF, namely deleting the back catalogue and telling everyone to sod off.

    Would be interesting though, I wonder what fandom would be like now if we had just six series and the odd bit of archive material along the way.

    #216834
    Stephen Abootman
    Participant

    In that universe, doing a version of Bodysnatcher as a one off would surely have been the ideal choice.

    #216838
    destere
    Participant

    I get so tired of this line of view. I will flame people, but it’s through honest opinion backed up with logic.

    Very simply: The series post VI are not the dismal ‘mistakes’ that they are made out to be. (Apart from BTE which was a step too far – IMO)

    The vast majority of RD’s audience do not care or feel so deeply about this issue, and can enjoy the programmes perfectly well. They are funny. They are different, and maybe not quite as consistent, however anyone that says there ‘isn’t a single laugh’ (or along those lines) is a liar who simply needs to get off their heigh horse and find out what a life is.

    The vast majority will not be 1% as vocal as those that take this ‘issue’ to heart.

    If you don’t like it, don’t watch it. The rest of us will be perfectly happy watching the rest of XI, XII and beyond.

    #216840
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    >Very simply: The series post VI are not the dismal ‘mistakes’ that they are made out to be. (Apart from BTE which was a step too far – IMO)

    So, we’re allowed to say BTE is a dismal “mistake” but not anything else? Just as long as we know how to adhere to the “correct” opinion.

    #216841
    destere
    Participant

    You can call it what you want. Possibly not my best wording admittedly. But all I’m saying is that many more people enjoy the newer series, which isn’t necessarily reflected on sites like this.

    I never said people can’t have opinions, and I never said it shouldn’t have been made. I may not like BTE so much, but someone out there will like BTE very much. Furthermore it was a restricted production in so many ways, but it paved the way for X and so on. So it was very much worth making for that reason alone.

    Adhering to the ‘correct’ opinions is what these questions always suggest. To the point where people don’t want others to enjoy the newer stuff because it so badly regarded (apparently/allegedly/so I say). That’s what annoys me. Live and let live. We’ve heard it all before. Just don’t watch it – don’t wish to deny the majority the joy of more Dwarf.

    #216847
    si
    Participant

    You’re all wrong.

    And so are your mums.

    #216853
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    > I may not like BTE so much, but someone out there will like BTE very much.

    People are entitled to agree with that, but I don’t see how that’s any different to what people are doing here. Your negative opinion on BTE doesn’t change my opinion on BTE one iota; just as negative opinions on VII, VIII and X really shouldn’t bother you.

    Opinions work both ways, irrespective of whether they’re positive or negative. And if you visit a fan-site, you’re going to see extremes of both which may not align with “the vast majority of RD’s audience”.

    I think this thread is odd, sure. Alex S has edited together three comments made a year ago on a different site, and it does seem to be a stirring the pot. However, it’s all been fairly tame and based on conjecture and hypothetical situations. Right up until someone expressed boredom with an opinion and threatened a bout of flaming.

    >Live and let live.

    Exactly.

    #216856
    Taiwan Tony
    Participant

    >Just don’t watch it – don’t wish to deny the majority the joy of more Dwarf.

    Just don’t read this thread?

    #216858
    Chris Stokes
    Participant

    I definitely think I-VI are more consistent but I just can’t agree with the hardline view that ANYTHING post VI isn’t as good.

    We have a habit of viewing Dwarf in the past tense, even when it’s on telly, and as such hold the original 36 up to standards *some* of them don’t deserve.

    This isn’t to say that some of the criticisms of Vii onwards aren’t without merit, but I’d argue that many of those criticisms can be levelled at a chunk of the original run as well, we just tend not to because of rose tinted specs.

    Obviously there was a hey day, obviously it was prior to 1997 and we are unlikely to recapture it but I definitely think VII, Bye, X and XI are criticised under more scrutiny.

    VIII too, I just happen to agree with the consensus on that one. I remember being the only one of my friends having misgivings at the time.

    #216863
    destere
    Participant

    >Just don’t read this thread?

    A tad silly. Just don’t read MY comments? Just don’t go near a computer? Sit in a corner of a dark room, close your eyes and put your hands over your ears? Where does this end?

    Chris makes a good point: It’s the hard line views that just don’t make sense. That’s what I’m getting at. It’s this line in the OP that invoked me: ‘Since Rob Grant’s departure, laughs have been very rare.’ Objectively, that isn’t true on any level.

    #216865
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    >It’s this line in the OP that invoked me: ‘Since Rob Grant’s departure, laughs have been very rare.’ Objectively, that isn’t true on any level.

    Maybe flame the person who made it then? On a different site. A year ago.

    #216867
    Taiwan Tony
    Participant

    >>Just don’t read this thread?
    A tad silly. Just don’t read MY comments? Just don’t go near a computer? Sit in a corner of a dark room, close your eyes and put your hands over your ears? Where does this end?

    Exactly. And that was YOUR argument, you daft cunt. “If you don’t like it, don’t [read] it.”

    #216870

    #216879

    Good thread this.

    #216880
    destere
    Participant

    Haha. I have a feeling that much of the response is down to the fact that I don’t conform to the usual I-VI is holy club. Fair enough. I should have expected that.

    > Maybe flame the person who made it then? On a different site. A year ago.

    Unfair comment. The thread starter did ask for ‘thoughts’.

    >Exactly. And that was YOUR argument, you daft cunt. “If you don’t like it, don’t [read] it.”

    Doesn’t mean that I can’t air my opinion. The thread was started with an opinion, and I responded to it. Nothing wrong here. All I’m saying is that this argument has been done to death, and that there are plenty of people that enjoy the post VI series. You’re not making any real point. You’re just being rude for the sake of it.

    #216882
    Taiwan Tony
    Participant

    Dude. As an opinion, it’s fair enough. Don’t watch what you don’t like.
    In turn I suggested that you don’t read things you don’t like. As a kind of “joke”. However, you failed to see the irony (as only a fan of series VIII would do), and took it at total face value. You called it a silly argument. I agree. It is a silly argument. Ahhhhhhhhh.

    By the way this has nothing to do with your not conforming to the views of the ‘holy club’, as you put it. You just seem like a bit of a git.
    Who says they “flame” people?!
    Peace and love. TT.

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