Which episodes act somewhat as 'prequels' to XI?

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    I’m wondering which episodes one would have to see to understand basic concepts which are anywhere from shortly referenced to universally used in XI, since I’d like to show my family some of it when it my DVD comes but they haven’t seen all (or even much) of RD. Thoughts?


    Phobos And Deimos

    The one where the Scouser says smeg.



    In order there are the episode referenced directly.

    S02E04 -Stasis Leak
    S03E03 – Polymorph
    S04E03 – Justice
    S06E04 – Emohawk: Polymorph II
    S10E06 – The Beginning

    There are other references but nothing of any real importance.



    Oh I forget S02E01 – Kryten



    Maybe Me^2, to show what Rimmers plural are like.


    International Debris

    I’d say Rimmerworld too. The hint of weariness in Kryten’s voice when he says about this happening before would benefit from both.



    Excuse my not remembering, but why Stasis Leak?



    We are all aware that a prequel is an installment made *after* the work it’s a prequel to, right?



    >Excuse my not remembering, but why Stasis Leak?

    The time travel in Give & Take.



    We are all aware that a prequel is an installment made *after* the work it’s a prequel to, right?

    And therefore they act as such while not actually being such.


    Nick R

    We are all aware that a prequel is an installment made *after* the work it’s a prequel to, right?

    Let’s just pretend the title said “predecessors”, “antecedents” or “precursors” instead.



    But… Stasis Leak won’t make sense without The End or Balance Of Power, and The Beginning won’t make sense without, well, quite a big run-up.

    To be honest, you might as well start with The End and Future Echoes. If they’re not quite sold, carry on through Six Of The Best until it clicks, and if they are just carry on episodically. If XI is anything, it’s fair to say it’s not really built for newcomers, and no-one fresh to RD is going to get much out of it.



    Well, thank goodness they’ve seen all of I then.


    International Debris

    I honestly think skipping anything I – VI is pretty crazy behaviour.


    Phobos And Deimos

    But surely we all agree that VIII is classic Dwarf.


    International Debris

    Well you need the end of Only the Good to give context to the jokes in The Beginning, and you need Back in the Red 1-3 to give context to Only the Good. So as that’s half the series you might as well put them through the rest of it.



    The not-we love VIII.

    I mean, *I* like it, and a couple of episodes I REALLY like. Its relative divisiveness is massively overstated.



    My main point is that surely by now it’s time to stop seeing it as a pantomime villain and just enjoy the good in it and accept that it’s there, and not only that but lots of people like it. It’s ‘valid’. It’s nearly 20 years old for god’s sake.



    I agree. It may feel more like a Dwarf sketch show than Dwarf itself, but it is Dwarf, and I’d call it a good series by the measures of most TV shows.



    I think that most of us accept that series VIII not only exists, but is part of the show’s history. However that does nothing to make me feel better about it, rather I more begrudgingly accept it as part of a show that I love…….even if I still think series VIII a collection of not only the shows worst moments, but some of the worst television period.


    Phobos And Deimos

    Jesus Christ, I was only kidding.

    VIII is a bag o’ wank.



    Is it bad that Series VIII has better production values than XI?



    I doesn’t though the sets and cinematography in series VIII were really ugly and the CGI was atrocious, it was not an attractive looking looking series at all. Even if it did, series VIII was made with a bigger budget then the Dave era episodes. A few ropey effects aside, series XI had some very attractive production values!



    VIII has some stunning lighting and production design, and the videolook really brings that out. It’s what makes me wish they’d shot the new stuff 50p.



    Jesus Christ you guys, I wasn’t kidding. I actually really enjoy Pete feature length no matter how stupid it is. I’m sorry for being such a disappointment.


    International Debris

    There are some really good jokes scattered throughout VIII, but as a series overall I genuinely think it’s not very good at all. Not The Persuastionists bad, but not something I’d ever recommend anybody watching. I always think of VII as bad Red Dwarf, but VIII as bad television.



    I’ve legitimately put in my VIII discs because I wanted to watch the episodes, not just to finish watching through the whole show, and I honestly can’t figure out if I actually can’t pick from the rest because they’re so amazing (I-VII and BtE-XI being the more amazing ones), if I just pick VIII because they stand out more in my mind (they are quite different), if I’m actually such a disappointment that they’re my favorites (pretty sure that’s not it), or if I just hate myself enough to put myself through them (probably).



    I have nothing against people liking series VIII, I know it has it’s fans and taste is subjective. However I will always make my opinions of those episodes known, because I’m probably one of the biggest grouches around when it comes to that series. You aren’t wrong that it stand out, but for me it stands out to me for the wrong reasons. It stands out because for me it’s where Red Dwarf transformed into a completely different show, a show that I legitimately hated.

    Has there not been such a big break and continued from where 8 left off, I actually likely wouldn’t be watching the new episodes now. If anything I can be grateful for the decade long hiatus, because it has made me more open minded about the show. Also given how much I actually enjoyed series XI, I really would have been missing out.


    International Debris

    I think three things that a lot of us love about earlier Red Dwarf are tight plots, clever/witty use of unusual/sci-fi jokes, and – most of all – the character work. I don’t think it would be unfair to say, if we’re trying to be objective, these are the three things that changed dramatically in VIII, and thus why people hate it so much. However, if you can see past these changes and still enjoy the show then I don’t think anyone would criticise you. There are a LOT of jokes in VIII, and it has a lot of callbacks to earlier series, so there’s obviously stuff there to entertain people.
    For a long time I preferred it to VII. In fact, it was only my last watch through – six years ago, I think – that I realised just how much I can’t stand it. It was this that made sense of BtE for me. Played straight after VIII it was so refreshing.



    I am wondering this same thing about XII. Which episodes would you need to watch to understand all the specific references from XII?


    Ben Saunders

    It’s best if you don’t watch Dimension Jump, Emohawk, Stoke Me A Clipper or Me², in order to understand Skipper.



    You need to watch Timeslides as most of XII revolves around the Om song.



    I do know that Fathers and Suns would be necessary, as well as the fact that pretry much every episode has a The End reference. Also, every single episode shown in the smear ads.



    And White Hole, obviously.



    Back to Earth Part One seems important to understanding the massive reaction to Holly (and why he’s not there the rest of the time)



    The Persuasionists was perfectly alright really.



    Back to Earth Part One seems important to understanding the massive reaction to Holly

    So you’re saying that the audience being so excited to see a character return after nearly 20 years would confusing to viewers unless they specifically saw and remembered the throwaway line excusing Holly’s initial absence in BtE?

    I don’t get it. Holly’s still a classic Red Dwarf character who’s been gone for three series straight whether or not you watch BtE. The prerequisite for appreciating Norman’s return is simply knowing and loving his version of Holly.



    >remembered the throwaway line excusing Holly’s initial absence in BtE

    Huh, I’ve missed that. There’s so much not explained between 8 and BtE that I figured it was just one of those things.



    nah it’s like “oh, holly’s offline because lister left a bath running for nearly a decade, and the skutters still haven’t finished drying him out”


    Taiwan Tony

    Is Rob Grant getting a writing credit for XII?
    That White Hole and The End dialogue was directly lifted on stuff they co-wrote, after all.

    It’s a serious and honest question. I haven’t studied the credits.


    Ben Saunders

    Hmm, good question. He probably gets some dosh from the new shows anyway, given the “created by” credit, but I don’t know. Maybe Doug is super careful to pick out lines only he specifically wrote (obviously he can’t because he said at a DJ that he can’t remember who wrote what)

    I’d think Doug would have free reign to do what he wants, but that’s just me thinking not knowing



    Somehow I doubt Rob gives a shit.


    Ben Saunders

    True, but there are still probably cases where he had/has to sign off on legally not giving a shit

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