Home Forums Ganymede & Titan Forum Your Unpopular Red Dwarf Opinions

Viewing 368 posts - 1 through 368 (of 368 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #232869
    Piplup2003
    Member

    The title says it all. What opinions do you have about Red Dwarf that no-one else seems to agree on?

    For me, it’s that VIII is my second favourite series (behind V) and that I prefer Chloë over Claire as Kochanski (this may be partially influenced by the fact that I’ve met Chloë).

    And please, no arguing.

    #232871
    Stephen R. Fletcher
    Participant

    Series VII is one of my favourite series. I like Ouroboros and Duct Soup. And Nanarchy is one of my favourite episodes. THERE, I said it.

    #232872

    Gunmen of the Apocalypse is an average episode.

    #232874
    Piplup2003
    Member

    >Gunmen of the Apocalypse is an average episode.

    I feel like this for the majority of VI if I’m honest.

    #232875
    Taiwan Tony
    Participant

    Series 1-4 are top tier
    Series 5 is mid tier
    Series 6 is lower mid tier

    Johnny Vegas is shit in everything he has acted in (but is a great stand up).
    Duct Soup is an okay episode. No worse than the rest of VII.

    All IMO, obvs.

    #232877
    quinn_drummer
    Participant

    I don’t think endings like Officer Rimmer are rushed or cut short. I think they work fine. It’s an odd edit but I don’t lose sleep over it.

    And I largely think most of the Dave era is just as good as the first 36. Only exceptions are Dear Dave for obvious reasons and Timewave for obvious reasons.

    Mechocracy is a bit shit but no worse than some of the mediocre early eps.

    Cured is one of my all time favourite episodes.

    #232878
    Dax101
    Participant

    Red Dwarf X,XI and XII are abit poop.

    Mechocracy is a weird episode that feels nothing like Red Dwarf

    My possible unpopular opinion.

    #232880
    bloodteller
    Member

    my unpopular Red Dwarf opinions are:

    -i really quite like Waiting For God (why do people dislike this one?)

    -i really rather like Series VIII (except for Back In The Red Part 3 and the latter half of Only The Good)

    -Series XII isn’t very good, and i don’t like the constant satire of current events in it. did we really need an episode of Red Dwarf parodying the US election?

    – Dear Dave is okay, i like the vending machine romance plot. it’s very cute

    -Series VI isn’t that great. i mean it’s good, but not anywhere near as good as anything from I-V. Emohawk and Rimmerworld are bad (the latter’s only redeeming feature is the excellent teleporter gag imo)

    #232882
    Piplup2003
    Member

    > I really quite like Waiting For God (why do people dislike this one?)

    I don’t know, I love this episode!

    #232883
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    Series VII is better than BtE, X, XI and XII for the simple fact it feels more like the Red Dwarf that went before imo.

    The new Starbug is fucking awful, although I appreciate the cockpit looks nice, it’s just not Starbug

    #232885
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    Series VII is good, for the most part
    M-Corp is nowhere near as good as people seem to think

    I will say I quite -like- a good chunk of VIII, I won’t argue about it being “good Dwarf”, though

    #232888
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    Moving the show to Starbug in Series VI doesn’t actually benefit the show in any way, beyond the opening 10 minutes of Legion. Emohawk and Rimmerworld have such half-arsed second halves that they might as well have had Moe Szyslak hurriedly wrapping things (“And the crew were saved by…let’s say, Kryten”).

    Holly coming back is a shit idea, as Doug hasn’t written anything worthwhile for the character for 30 years.

    The show falls spectacularly on its arse now when it does scenes of character comedy that do not specifically drive the plot forward, whereas up until Series IV, that was one of its greatest strengths.

    Series X looks like they spunked the budget up against a wall. With the exception of the bunkroom, all the sets look crap; especially the much-lauded market in Lemons and the Simulant ship in The Beginning. Trojan is the only episode that’s a notch below good, and the rest are a few drafts beyond being evenpassable. Entangled is horrendous long before the finale, and its scripting problems were clearly evident long before we found out about them on the DVD.

    When the cast say the “show is back to its best”, they don’t have a fucking clue what they’re talking about, as they’ve been pedalling that bullshit since 1999. The Cast commentaries are shite for much the same reason and aren’t worth a second listen.

    Samsara is a load of wank. Skipper aint all that.

    Chris Barrie has been on autopilot since VI.

    Kevin Eldon was wasted in Twentica.

    Most of the Smeg-Ups aren’t remotely funny.

    Give & Take and M-Corp are the only two episodes that convince me that Doug can write Red Dwarf without Rob.

    #232890
    bloodteller
    Member

    >M-Corp is nowhere near as good as people seem to think

    i’ll side with this. it started off okay but fell apart completely in the second half. it felt like it was setting up a theme, with the beginning of the episode showing age is catching up to Lister- yet he turns into an old man late on in the episode, and absolutely nothing is done with this idea at all. Kryten buying a virus that shuts M-Corp down is an incredibly lazy solution to the plot, and the ending with Lister losing all his memories of the past 30 years just so they can do that scene from The End again is stupid. i also generally don’t like the idea of social/political commentary in Red Dwarf.

    #232891
    bloodteller
    Member

    another unpopular opinion- Rimmer is dreadful in the Dave Era episodes, in terms of both performance and writing. Chris overacts almost every line (SHAKESPEARE, IT’S OVER!!!) and the majority of the time it feels like i’m seeing a pantomime version of the character. coupled with the writing of the Dave era where Rimmer is constantly portrayed as a truly nasty bastard with absolutely no redeeming qualities whatsoever, he’s a character that becomes genuinely unlikable most of the time. no wonder Cat makes so many jokes about wanting him dead.

    he doesn’t at all feel like the Rimmer from 1-8, where yes he was a bastard, but you liked him. you could relate to his struggles, you could tell he genuinely cared about the crew and there were enough sympathetic moments for him that you actually liked the character.

    #232893
    Dax101
    Participant

    The Cat has his moments of being way too dumb, whiny and degrading in XI and XII.

    Unpopular opinion.

    #232895

    -I think Series X is legitimately the best series of Red Dwarf

    -Timewave wasn’t that bad

    -Rimmerworld was a shit episode

    -Have your opinions about Doug writing solo; after reading Backwards (the novel), I don’t think Rob going solo would be good either

    -I still think a movie could work

    #232896

    Moving the show to Starbug in Series VI doesn’t actually benefit the show in any way, beyond the opening 10 minutes of Legion.

    Yes. And keeping this as the case for VII as well was a terrible idea.

    Waiting for God is one of the better episodes of the first series.

    Duct Soup isn’t the worst episode in VII.

    The Inquisitor isn’t a particularly funny episode in general.

    Back to Reality, although excellent, is nowhere near the best episode of Red Dwarf.

    #232897

    >he doesn’t at all feel like the Rimmer from 1-8

    That actually kinda works for me lol, since I like to think the Dave-era Rimmer is nano-Rimmer that only has the memories but not the actual emotions of the original Rimmer

    #232899
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    >The Inquisitor isn’t a particularly funny episode in general.
    Very strong plot, though, very good science fiction.

    >I think Series X is legitimately the best series of Red Dwarf
    Oof

    Talking of Barrie’s performance, I thought he was -really- on point in parts of XI and XII, but off in a couple too.

    #232901

    I’m a little biased, it was my first series of Red Dwarf, but I always enjoy every episode (even Dear Dave)

    #232903
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    Red Dwarf doesn’t need to be funny to be good. Although by that I mean ignore ‘jokes’ altogether and write good sci-fi or character moments and let the comedy come if it comes, don’t shove 10 jokes in because you think you’re missing a woofer.

    #232904
    bloodteller
    Member

    really unpopular opinion- the Pete duology isn’t that bad. yes it has some dodgy moments- that awful VFX shot where the dinosaur breaks through the wall, See Ya In 10 Minutes etc. but there are so, so many moments that make me laugh- i especially enjoy when it becomes apparent, after much conversing about the mechanics of airplane toilets, neither Rimmer or Lister have any clue what they’re on about.

    even the really silly gags like “The whole hog? Like it wasn’t hard enough getting the whole cow…” made me laugh, and i don’t mind the episode being about repeated trips to the captain’s office- it’s a funny idea, and it plays out almost like a sci-fi version of A Shot In The Dark. it’s an episode that’s really grown on me over time, and i don’t think it’s the worst episodes of Red Dwarf. i used to, but i think that was just because the general opinion of it was that it was awful.

    #232905
    Piplup2003
    Member

    >The Pete duology isn’t that bad.

    Pete is probably one of my favourite episodes.

    #232906
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    Pete would move up at least 10 places in my own personal rankings if they’d done the frozen canaries with effects and not li-i-i-i…ive – I get that there’s an audience but we know that there needs to be effect shots. Oh and if the time wand looked less like a rampant rabbit from the 22nd century I’d bump it up another one or two.

    #232907
    clem
    Participant

    > Chris Barrie has been on autopilot since VI.

    See, “autopilot” suggests he’s phoning it in, whereas I think he tries a bit *too* hard if anything, at least in the Dave era. I can’t tell whether Chris thinks a broader performance is what’s required based on the way Doug writes the character these days, or he’s just… forgotten how to play Rimmer properly. Bit of both probably.

    Based on the Pearl Poll results I agree Waiting for God is very underrated. And Polymorph is very overrated.

    #232908
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    Thought Chris was great at times in XII, but that moves segment and Shakespeare bollocks for example was horrendous material to work with. Nobody can do anything with that. It’s like Doug was working on some terrible stand up for an English Literature convention and shoved it in when he ran out of time.

    #232909
    Ben Paddon
    Participant

    Back to Earth is a lot better than people give it credit for. Beyond that, the single-camera studio-audience free take works very, very well indeed. I think, meta story aside, BTE provides a template for which a single-camera comedy-drama version of Red Dwarf could be like.

    I feel much the same about some of the Xtended versions of VII. Not all of the jokes land, but the show works a lot better without a studio audience than people seem prepared to admit.

    #232911
    Dave
    Member

    The original theme and opening sequence used in Series 1 and 2 is miles better than the rock/montage version from III onwards.

    #232913
    Warbodog
    Member

    Parallel Universe is an VIII quality episode and the worst of I-VI by a long way, even if the banter at the start is good.

    I don’t see what’s so amazing about Marooned. Lots of good lines, but I prefer the average Lister-Rimmer interactions in series 1-2.

    Marooned and The Last Day aside, Series III is a bit frivolously zany and needs to calm down. IV was an improvement.

    Possibly in a contradiction, I like the running gags in VI bringing back a jokey tone after peak gloom in V, even if it’s diminishing returns after Legion.

    #232914
    Dax101
    Participant

    Balance of power is still fairly forgettable to this day.

    The remastered colour grading is actually better then the original.

    Roberts performance as Kryten has been abit off for the last few series.

    I prefer the series 3,4 to 5 bunkroom to the series 1 and 2 version.

    I actually didn’t mind the CGI skutter in BTE.

    #232915
    Plastic Percy
    Participant

    Back to Reality really doesn’t deserve to be the best episode of all time, at this stage it’s almost entered Doctor Who ‘recieved fan wisdom’ level that its the greatest episode ever

    I really don’t have a problem with Dear Dave. The word doesn’t bother me.

    I think III, for all its whizzbang new changes, actually looks horrible. Kryten’s mask in particular looks dreadful.

    I quite like Kryten’s costume in X. The shoulder hoops in particular give it a very III – V feel, especially now the shoulder pads are part of the main chest piece again.

    #232916
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    >Red Dwarf doesn’t need to be funny to be good
    >Back to Earth is a lot better than people give it credit for
    I really don’t have a problem with Dear Dave. The word doesn’t bother me
    Agreed

    >The original theme and opening sequence used in Series 1 and 2 is miles better
    Agreed but the rock theme really does suit III-VIII more. Maybe the old theme would suit X?

    III is a bit wacky and looks like utter shit at points, but it’s still very funny. Kryten looks so sweaty.

    I don’t think Red Dwarf needs an audience. I think the comedy drama angle works. I think they should calm down on the gag rate, Rob and Doug going off to America and learning about one-liners was a mistake.

    #232918

    I think the Series I and II theme fit their respective series but wouldn’t clash well with any other series (minus maybe BTE)

    Since the theme helped convey how depressing the concept was, but after Series II the premise got a bit more peachy (if that’s an appropriate way to describe it)

    #232923
    Katydid
    Participant

    Backwards is profoundly overrated. Polymorph is an average episode with an exceptional third act. Outside of Marooned (which is basically the best episode of Series II delivered a series late), I’d have to rank Series III in the lower half of the first six, definitely not one of the best. It’s a bit overly silly in many places, clearly very excited to play with its new toys and so hasn’t yet developed the restraint of IV, which far more successfully balanced sci-fi and character comedy.

    #232925
    Jimboid
    Participant

    Back to Reality is overrated.

    Dear Dave is one of the best episodes of X.

    Cat was at his best in V and VI and has been shit ever since.

    The cast are good performers but aren’t naturally funny people.

    #232926
    Jimboid
    Participant

    Oh, and they probably should have called it a day in 1993.

    #232940
    Flap Jack
    Member

    ‘Dear Dave’, ‘Entangled’ and ‘Can of Worms’ are perfectly decent episodes despite their problematic elements.

    ‘Stoke Me A Clipper’ is outright bad.

    Hayridge’s Holly is easily better and more definitive than Lovett’s Holly overall (actually, this might not be an unpopular opinion at all, but Doug doesn’t seem to agree or realise).

    Kochanski has the potential to be great as a regular character.

    ‘Bodysnatcher’ is nowhere near as good as ‘Me^2’, and as far as unmade episodes go, I feel we lost more for not getting ‘Identity Within’.

    The phrase “THE END? THE SMEG IT IS.” (along with most other instances of over-reliance on “smeg”) doesn’t actively annoy me, outside of it being an unresolved cliffhanger.

    The 2 Grant/Naylor novels are just OK.

    ‘The Last Day’ is the best episode of Red Dwarf ever.

    #232942
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    White Hole puts Hayridge over Lovett for me. She’s got range, and gave them far more options but they just didn’t use them. Norman has some classic lines don’t get me wrong, and Queeg but he’s playing himself really, I think Hattie could have done Queeg well, but I don’t think Norman would have been as good in White Hole and Demons & Angels. It’s a shame she’s sort of an outsider.

    #232948
    bloodteller
    Member

    possibly unpopular opinion- the show really ought to end soon. just have an episode where they finally get back to Earth and be done with it. Red Dwarf is one of my favourite shows, and i don’t really want to see it last forever and progressively get worse as it goes, like the Simpsons.

    i wouldn’t really want to see Red Dwarf continue past XIII, imo. honestly, it could have ended after X and i would’ve been fine with that.

    #232949
    Flap Jack
    Member

    I don’t think there’s any real chance of that happening. The Simpsons’ longevity is due to:

    (A) It being a global mega-franchise, so merchandise and syndication sales are too great to want to stop – not true of Red Dwarf.

    (B) The actors only being needed for voice work, so it’s easier to get them to record 20+ episodes per year: no need for costumes, lighting, lengthy rehearsals, live audiences, getting all of them on set at the same time etc. – not true of Red Dwarf.

    (C) The writing/direction being shared by dozens of staff rather than forever tied to 1 or 2 people with a specific personal connection to the show – not true of Red Dwarf.

    I wouldn’t want RD to overstay its welcome either, but limiting it to just 1 more series seems too soon. It’s got more potential life in it than that!

    #232950
    Dave
    Member

    Hmmm, this may be an unpopular opinion in itself but I think I’d prefer it if the show never had a ‘final’ episode in that sense. The whole setup is so nihilistic and laced with the inevitability of loneliness and eventual death that I can’t imagine an ending feeling true to that while still being satisfying and enjoyable.

    I prefer an ending like Skipper, with a certain acknowledgement that the situation of all these characters is hopeless and unchanging, that they’re stuck with each other, but which leaves them still out there, three million years in the future, chugging along without ever reaching the end.

    #232951
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    Given that Red Dwarf has been getting -better- in recent years (in my opinion), I see no real reason for them to pack it in just yet. As long as it’s good I’ll welcome it.

    #232953
    bloodteller
    Member

    >Hmmm, this may be an unpopular opinion in itself but I think I’d prefer it if the show never had a ‘final’ episode in that sense. The whole setup is so nihilistic and laced with the inevitability of loneliness and eventual death that I can’t imagine an ending feeling true to that while still being satisfying and enjoyable.

    the originally planned finale for VIII called “Earth” would’ve been a fitting ending, i thought. The crew finally getting the ship back to Earth to discover the human race miraculously survived that whole time, only to wipe out the entire planet as they land- there’s quite a nice bit of irony to that, and it probably would’ve been really a really funny and epic way to go out.

    The Beginning was also a fitting ending, imo. the final line being “the slime’s coming home” as they head back to the ship felt like quite a nice way to end it all- it’s as if the ship itself has become home for them.

    #232955
    cwickham
    Member

    I thought the ending of “Earth” was meant to involve the race human beings had evolved into.

    If VIII had ended with “Earth”, might Doug have considered the matter closed? Would he have never even tried to get Series IX off the ground? When UKTV came asking, would he have declined? Whatever the failings of The Beginning, Skipper or even Back to Earth, they’re still better ways to go out than Series VIII.

    #232956
    Ian Symes
    Keymaster

    Last Human is better than Backwards.

    #232958
    Katydid
    Participant

    Red Dwarf doesn’t need to be funny to be good. It just needs clever science fiction and good characters, and jokes can spring naturally from the story where appropriate. An episode like The Inquisitor is absolutely brilliant and one of the best ever despite not being close to the funniest episode even in its own series.

    I also don’t dislike a single episode of VII. That’s not to say it isn’t among the weakest series, but there’s no episode in it that feels like a boring, unwatchable slog to sit through the way the majority of VIII does. I don’t tend to go back to VII, but I don’t sigh in frustration when it comes next on a complete run-through.

    My unpopular opinion about VIII is that Cassandra is an unfunny, sloppily plotted rehash of Future Echoes that spunks its only interesting new idea (invulnerability by fate) in favor of more sex jokes and perving.

    #232959

    If VIII had ended with “Earth”, might Doug have considered the matter closed?

    Given that he spoke in early-’00s interviews about handing over the series to other writers and just focusing on the reboot films, it definitely seems that he was done with the TV version at the time.

    #232960
    Dax101
    Participant

    Doug wanted to close the show off after series 8 so they could jump onto movies. its just they didn’t have the budget to pull off the “earth” ending they wanted to do. so Blessing in disguise? not sure.

    Then again Doug may still have made Red Dwarf X by continuing in some sci-fi parallel universe idea. after all its not like Doug has shown all that much care about the ending to Series 8.

    #232962
    Hamish
    Member

    I am okay with the Blue Midget dance.

    Gary Martin is not annoying as Epideme.

    Series VII gets better towards the end after Rimmer leaves, in spite of the fact I still do not like Kochanski as a main character.

    Series V is the weakest of the first six series.

    Kryten’s costume in V is shit.

    X is better than XI and XII.

    #232966
    clem
    Participant

    Kryten’s whininess and jealousy of Kochanski in VII don’t bother me at all. In fact I think quite a lot of funny stuff comes out of it.

    #232967
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    Red Dwarf is too precious to end. There’s so much shite on TV now, even this version of Red Dwarf which is a bit of a diet version is still vastly superior (mostly) than many alternatives. Even though Doug doesnae give 2 shits about the universe he created with Rob when it comes to continuity, it’s actually a really interesting one, maybe have a series where there’s an arc over the entire thing, like the xindi series of Enterprise. Try something different, maybe introduce some new characters that aren’t Dave sitcom characters that could be translated easily into Zzaped or whatever it’s called, or an episode of My Hero haha.. if it’s successful get a spin-off going. Maybe they get a signal about the fate of a human colony and they hunt for it, meeting some challenges, an asteroid belt, some none comedy simulants, Gelfs that aren’t inexplicably called Garbage Gobblers.

    #232968
    bloodteller
    Member

    >X is better than XI and XII.

    i agree with this, i liked X much more than XI/XII.

    >Red Dwarf is too precious to end.

    i feel the opposite honestly- it’s too precious not to end. i’ve been watching these characters for most of my life, at the end of it all i do want to see them succeed and finally get back to Earth. i don’t feel like i’d be happy if the last ever episode was just them continuing to be stuck in space forever and ever and ever, unless it was done like the Backwards novel, where Lister realises he belongs with Kryten and Rimmer and Cat-they’re his family, and Red Dwarf is his home. because that was really quite a fantastic ending, i thought.

    #232972
    flanl3
    Member

    Getting back to earth and there being any people there (and earth being real, of course) as a series finale would be worse than any bad episode.

    #232974
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    By too precious to end, obviously it will end in it’s current form – Robert the poor sod is almost a pensioner and at some point it’s just cruel to keep making him wear the Kryten costume, I just hope it doesn’t end full stop. The seam is still there to be mined with Red Dwarf, lots of unexplored avenues, different media, Red Dwarf Extended Universe sort of cross over business would be great. Old man Cat telling us the story of the cat race would be amazing with a budget.

    #232975
    besbvesdy
    Participant

    Krytie TV is my favourite episode of 8

    Dear Dave is my favourite episode of 10

    They’ve both got problematic bits for sure but the show is riddled with them, and for that matter so are most people. The difference with Timewave is that it’s a shit episode in the first place with some genuine ugliness thrown in to make it worse

    Never understood why Waiting For God gets so slated – great episode among great episodes

    #232976
    bloodteller
    Member

    >Krytie TV is my favourite episode of 8

    i prefer Cassandra myself, but i do also think Krytie TV is a great episode. all the elements established at the beginning tie up in a funny and interesting way- the appeal, ackerman’s date, kryten’s tv station, they all come together at the end of the episode and i really liked that. most XI/XII episodes didn’t have that- they ended with a lot of plot threads left hanging, stuff that was completely unexplored, unsatisfing endings.

    it’s also just a really funny episode. “A breakup is very much like a bereavement…it’s usually followed by a cremation and some sandwiches” was a particularly funny line i thought, but the whole episode is filled with stuff that makes me laugh anyway so it’s hard to pick.

    #232978
    Hamish
    Member

    > all the elements established at the beginning tie up in a funny and interesting way … they all come together at the end of the episode and i really liked that.

    Strangely enough that is the exact reason why Cured is my favourite episode from XII, even though Krytie TV itself was placed as my second worst episode in the Pearl Poll.

    #232980
    bloodteller
    Member

    opinion- Cured would have been approximately 996% funnier if they’d used Toto’s Africa in the jamming scene as originally intended, rather than The Happy Wanderer. would’ve just made for a much more amusing scene, imo.

    #232982
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    >A breakup is very much like a bereavement…it’s usually followed by a cremation and some sandwiches
    Wrong thread but what the fuck do you cremate after a breakup? Pictures? What do sandwiches have to do with it? What the fuck does this line mean?

    #232983
    bloodteller
    Member

    the joke is that Holly is talking bollocks, no? the line starts off as if it’s going to be some sort of actual analogy on the similarities between breakups and bereavements…only for Holly to make a remark that is utter nonsense and shows that the two aren’t at all alike. lister calls him out on this “You haven’t got a clue what you’re on about, have you?”

    #232985
    MANI506
    Participant

    I think Epideme is an excellent episode and the line about coat hangers is a great Cat gag.

    #232988
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    >What the fuck does this line mean?

    It’s a shittier version of the Olivia Newton-John line from Stasis Leak.

    #232989
    Hamish
    Member

    Which was already a fairly shit line anyway, if only because it is not really funny if you do not know who Olivia Newton John is.

    #232995
    bloodteller
    Member

    >I think Epideme is an excellent episode and the line about coat hangers is a great Cat gag.

    i don’t think Epideme is excellent (it’s not bad though) but yeah, that is a good line. in general i think Cat gets the funniest lines in VII

    #233000
    PFMC84
    Member

    Most of VIII was rather meh. Anything after VIII has been mainly rubbish. BTE was shite. X had a strong start with Trojan and the rest, bar The Beginning, was crap. XI was OK in parts but mainly awful. Same with XII. The acting/characterisation is all over the shop, the plots are weak, the jokes are bad, Doug is destroying the show by being the only one in charge and has lots of yes men at the production company who will let him do whatever he wants. But hey, it wins the odd comedy award so lets just keep flogging this dead horse another few years, eh?

    Having said all that, I’ll still watch any new episodes. Perhaps that’s the problem…?

    #233003
    besbvesdy
    Participant

    i think you might be looking for the ‘things everyone agrees about’ thread

    #233004
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    Epideme would probably be an excellent episode if the virus itself didn’t make me feel like I was physically ill

    #233007

    That’s generally what viruses do.

    #233008

    The BTE bunkroom looked way better than the X/XI/XII bunkroom.

    #233009
    bloodteller
    Member

    >The acting/characterisation is all over the shop, the plots are weak, the jokes are bad

    i agree with this to be honest. i’m really not a fan of the Dave era, and at least for me the majority of the new episodes simply aren’t very funny. and i do think Red Dwarf needs to be funny to be good- the humour has always been a key part of the show for me. so it definitely feels rather disappointing when a show that, for the first 8 series was consistently funny and made me laugh in every episode, has turned into a show where i can go through a whole episode and not laugh at all.

    to go from brilliant stuff like “They’re tying ’em to the stake…it’s Winnie The Pooh!” to “SpitOnHerWrist” is a pretty fucking steep step down.

    #233011

    Unpopular opinion: I think this thread has more popular opinions than unpopular ones

    #233018
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    >That’s generally what viruses do.
    That’s what I was going for, you see

    #233019
    Flap Jack
    Member

    Series VIII is better and funnier than Series VII, and is truer to the spirit of Red Dwarf, which is meant to be a TV sitcom, not a cinematic comedy-drama.

    I don’t actually hold this opinion, by the way. I just figured I’d save John the trouble of posting it.

    #233024
    Dave
    Member

    My unpopular opinion is that Chris Barrie doesn’t actually play Rimmer, it’s been another actor all along. You wouldn’t believe how unpopular this opinion is, which obviously makes it really interesting and valuable.

    #233027
    Taiwan Tony
    Participant

    Feels good to get it off your chest though, doesn’t it.

    #233030
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    Good, Flap Jack, because otherwise I’d have to fight you

    #233033
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    Series VII isn’t comedy drama. The gag quotient is just as regular as most of the earlier series, they just don’t land as often and there’s no studio audience to bounce off.

    Absolutely no Red Dwarf story has benefited from being longer than 29 minutes, and even the recent ones which people said “could have done with another 10 minutes”, would have just had 10 extra minutes of padding.

    None of the space corps directives are funny, and should be put out to pasture along with jokes about Cat thinking more about his clothes than his health, remarks about the long list of Rimmer’s negative attributes, and shitty old similes.

    Hogey the Roguey was crap.

    99% of the original strips in the Smegazine were rubbish.

    Tongue Tied is crap, is shoe-horned into an episode to which it has no relevance, and is utterly bizarre to watch with someone who’s never seen the episode before.

    #233037
    Dave
    Member

    When my daughter started watching Red Dwarf about a year ago she loved Tongue Tied, and probably asks to watch that bit more than any other.

    Maybe you have to see it when you’re young to like it.

    #233039
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    First future echo:
    the mirror I stare into
    shows my father’s face.

    #233040
    Dave
    Member

    I’m not personally a huge fan of Tongue Tied, especially these days, although I think it has its moments.

    It’s actually been interesting how different we are in terms of the bits she finds funny. Cat is the absolute standout character of the show for her by miles.

    (Thanks for introducing me to that haiku though, I like it.)

    #233042
    bloodteller
    Member

    >None of the space corps directives are funny

    i liked the one in White Hole where Rimmer goes “Yes, but Rimmer Directive 435 states just as clearly- No chance, you metal bastard”. but outside of that they weren’t at all funny, imo. especially in VI where the exact same gag of Rimmer getting it wrong and Kryten correcting him is repeated ad nauseum- it’s just crap, and it’s the same thing repeated with almost no change to it.

    same goes for Cat’s “We’re deader than [clothing item” gags, they can fuck off too.

    #233043
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    Deader than tank tops is the only one that lands for me, but I do find that particular one absolutely fucking hilarious and one of my all-time favourite Cat lines, alongside the two-month waiting list for birds to appear every time he is near. The fact that the other deader-than lines are shit doesn’t mar the good one, imo.

    #233044
    Warbodog
    Member

    I like them, but both running gags peak early in Legion (“oral sex in zero gravity” and tank tops followed up with the enjoyably specific “A-line flares with pockets in the knees”). That whole Legion opening is just so good (space weevil/raw carrot, verrucas/mint imperial, Thursday with an F, blue alert, including Welsh/sorry bye sorry, and my personal favourite, stop your blathering and get in the damn tube).

    #233045
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    Lemons is fucking awful despite Jeff Lynne doing well to get a Middle Eastern market set halfway to convincing with budget restraints.

    The Dave episodes have only had one good guest character, Pree, the rest are at best pretty forgettable even though they’ve managed to get a couple of well respected guest actors on board, and no I haven’t forgotten Mark Dexter. I just don’t get why everyone raves about his performance.

    Robert’s issues with remembering lines needs to be accounted for because it’s affecting the quality of the shows. Whenever he gives a techno babble speech, it always sounds like he’s panicked or like he’s reading it off something he can’t quite see.

    #233046
    flanl3
    Member

    The space corps directives not being particularly funny is another thing wrong with Timewave.

    Is that unpopular? Probably not.

    But it might be unpopular for me to say that Timewave is the only bad episode of Red Dwarf.

    #233047
    curtis
    Participant

    Backwards is better than Last Human.

    Danny John-Jules is the most consistent performer and the best thing about the Dave era.

    Continuity does matter

    Mr Rat is probably the show’s funniest moment full stop

    Hard light made Rimmer less interesting.

    #233050
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    >i liked the one in White Hole where Rimmer goes “Yes, but Rimmer Directive 435 states just as clearly- No chance, you metal bastard”.

    Yes, nothing wrong with the one and only Rimmer directive. But after Quarantine, they should have done one joke of Rimmer getting it wrong, being corrected by Kryten….AND THEN STOPPED FOREVER.

    The fact that they’re so interchangeable and, unless you’re a Red Dwarf mastermind, you’d have no idea which one is from which episode, makes me think that Rob and Doug just got together at the beginning of the series and rattled out a bunch of them and then picked them out of a pot as they wrote each episode.

    #233051
    Piplup2003
    Member

    >the one and only Rimmer directive

    What about the Rimmer Directive that clearly states Never tangle with something that has more teeth than the entire Osmond Family?

    #233053
    bloodteller
    Member

    >Pete is probably one of my favourite episodes.

    not trying to be a dick or anything, but why? i mean, i don’t dislike Pete myself- it’s a very funny set of episodes and there’s always something in every scene that makes me laugh- but i wouldn’t be putting it in my Top 10 or anything.

    #233071
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    >Lemons is fucking awful
    Thank you

    #233074
    bloodteller
    Member

    i liked the bit in Lemons with the fruit merchant- “this one here? is it famous?” and “you walked halfway across the known world…for eight lemons.” but the episode just kind of falls apart after Jesus shows up.

    #233076
    bloodteller
    Member

    i suppose him being amazed by bags and other relatively simple things that we take for granted in the modern world was rather funny-but that bit where he goes back and takes the piss out of the Ten Commandments is just dire. it’s not clever or original and it’s not funny. lots of comedians have done routines on religion before that were actually comedic and this wasn’t one of them.

    #233079
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    The thing about those jokes is, while amusing, are standard sitcom jokes not really Red Dwarf jokes. If those jokes were in an episode of Not Going Out they wouldn’t be out of place, that’s not to cast aspersions on Not Going Out, it’s not necessarily my thing but I’m sure it’s fine, but I feel like Red Dwarf and Not Going Out shouldn’t have interchangeable lines. I feel like Doug doesn’t want to write a sci-fi show, he wants to write jokes and satire and more traditional sitcom setups and I’m not so keen on that, and his satire is a bit World According to Clarkson occasionally unfortunately.

    I feel like he needs what him and Rob were when they went to America, he needs a wave of negativity because I think he’s surrounded by the equivalent of the fake laughing executive types.

    #233080
    quinn_drummer
    Participant

    I really like Lemon’s for what (few IMO) faults it has. I really like the twist that it isn’t actually Jesus … in fact first time seeing that made up for the fact the biggest gag, Lister “jesus!” Jesus “Yes?” was given away in trailers.

    The one area I think it falls down a little is bringing Jesus back to Red Dwarf. I know it’s somewhat necessary for him to see a bit of the future, find out about Christianity etc … but with a little creativity they could have done that with the crew still stuck in the past.

    The kidney stone operation is funny up to a point but definitely the weakest bit IMO, and once you remember it isn’t actually Jesus, just seems a bit silly. Especially as there are less intrusive ways to remove kidney stones even now, you’d think in the future they’d have advanced a little on that front

    But overall I like it. That’s my 2 cents.

    For another actually unpopular opinion. I think Kryten’s costume (Series 2 aside) progressively gets worse as the series goes on. I prefer the really industrial, advanced yet a bit scrap heap look of series 3. As they try to make it look better, (and especially once they hit series 7) it starts to look cheap and more like a man in a cosply robot costume of Kryten then it looks like Kryten.

    And whilst we’re on costumes, I said higher up I think Siliconia is shit. They definitely shouldn’t have made that episode unless they could suit up enough people in enough proper outfits, and not black underalls with a mask and a chest piece etc

    Imagine Camille but with future Mrs Bobby in a similar suit. It wouldn’t have worked.

    #233081

    I say we all go on Twitter and cyberbully Doug so he can write better episodes

    #233085
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    He needs a writer that knows the show to say no occasionally, not bullying, but if you think taking the piss because his hair’s nearly completely fucked off will get us another Back to Reality then maybe it’s worth a try haha

    #233087

    Its a risk I’m willing to take

    #233090
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    Jesus himself was utterly shit, which I think qualifies as an unpopular opinion given what I’ve read here. And the whole IKEA flatpack time machine thing felt a bit obvious and silly. The whole episode felt a bit obvious and silly. Walking the incredibly long distance they did just to realise they need something from back where they came is pretty funny, the set is quite impressive, etc, but most of the jokes are a bit eh. I’d rather re-watch Dear Dave.

    #233091
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    There are a few “traditional sitcom jokes” (read: lazy jokes) in Dave Dwarf, yeah. Smaller than the salad section in a Scottish supermarket may have some nice alliteration to it, but it’s the kind of joke you’d expect from post-Boyle Mock the Week, not Red Dwarf.

    #233092
    Flap Jack
    Member

    OK, I may have another one:

    The Red Dwarf interior in Series X is the best it’s ever looked.

    #233093
    Dax101
    Participant

    >I feel like Doug doesn’t want to write a sci-fi show, he wants to write jokes and satire and more traditional sitcom setups and I’m not so keen on that, and his satire is a bit World According to Clarkson occasionally unfortunately.

    Doug likes to do doing more Hitchhikers guide to the Galaxy style sci-fi these days.

    The Dwarfers meeting the Universe for example feels wrong in my opinion. it abit too close to being God.

    Storylines wise Doug does come up with interesting ideas but they come out as abit messy for some reason.

    #233094
    quinn_drummer
    Participant

    The best that particular interior has looked or the best interior they series has ever had?

    I’ve said this before, but I’m not a fan of the updated techy feel to the RD interior. It’s a big bulky mining ship, it should feel more like an industrial submarine or a oil rig, not a fancy futuristic space ship. Starbug suffers from this more then the Dwarf does too (well the cockpit anyway). The medical/science bay in the last series is just far too Star Trek for my liking for example.

    However, I think the sets for the last 3 series look best in series X, though that is mostly down to the lighting and the lack of ruddy great big bunk numbers painted on the walls … out of no-where. WHY?

    #233095
    Dax101
    Participant

    The Driveroom in Series X was shit. it looks like a Cockpit that they didn’t do a good enough job hiding.

    Krytens Costume in X and XII is also Shit. not very flattering on Robert and looks cheap

    #233097
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    I thought the boilersuit and chestplate mechs of Siliconia looked better than Kryten did to be honest. Robert needs less costume because the costume makes him look like like he’s a XXXL and he’s probably an L. The cyberman legs have got to go. I think a series V esque redesign could be more flattering.

    #233099
    Flap Jack
    Member

    The best that particular interior has looked or the best interior they series has ever had?

    The best the collection of Interior sets for Red Dwarf has looked overall.

    I don’t mind the more Star Trek-esque aesthetics of certain sets or series – mining or no, it IS a giant, high-tech, futuristic spaceship with a lot of varied facilities – but I just really like the red/orange colour scheme of X in particular.

    #233100
    bloodteller
    Member

    >The Driveroom in Series X was shit. it looks like a Cockpit that they didn’t do a good enough job hiding.

    i didn’t mind it- technology is advanced enough now that you have these tiny portable phones that you can do all kinds of assorted stuff with. it seems reasonable enough that you could control a big mining ship with a very small room.

    #233103

    Hard light made Rimmer less interesting.

    I’d agree if they’d done anything interesting with him as a hologram since Bodyswap, but other than a couple of light bee jokes his character might as well be human by the time Legion comes along.

    Series VII isn’t comedy drama. The gag quotient is just as regular as most of the earlier series, they just don’t land as often and there’s no studio audience to bounce off.

    Agreed. I think at some point somebody must have mentioned it moved in a ‘slightly more dramatic direction’ – which I’d say is true, overall it feels less overtly sitcommy and it does have a few scenes that are played completely straight – and then that got turned into ‘it’s a comedy drama’ through Chinese Whiskers. It’s still very much a comedy throughout, just with different production values.

    I enjoyed the running gags when I was a kid, but these days they feel really cheap. I can almost forgive the Space Corps Directives though, because I absolutely love the Timewave line.

    Ok, here’s an unpopular one for sure: Timewave is a funny episode. The plot is shit, there are several problematic elements, some of the performances are terrible, but there are a lot of very funny jokes. It makes me laugh loads more than Cured and Twentica for a start.

    #233104
    flanl3
    Member

    …there were funny jokes in Timewave?

    #233105
    bloodteller
    Member

    …there were jokes in Timewave?

    #233106
    Dave
    Member

    …there was Timewave?

    #233111
    Dax101
    Participant

    …Timewave?

    #233112
    quinn_drummer
    Participant

    > I enjoyed the running gags when I was a kid, but these days they feel really cheap. I can almost forgive the Space Corps Directives though

    I see the Space Corps running gags as a character development of Rimmer’s. He gets the Space Corp Directive book in Quarantine, he studies it, becomes obsessed with it and tries to fold it into his “acting captain head of the crew” position he have sort of made for himself. Problem with Rimmer though is that he is crap, and as much as he may study them, and sort of remember what some of them are, he has no fucking clue really and so he tries to use this new found knowledge and just fucks it up time and time again.

    It is one of the running gags that actually makes in universe character sense.

    The others are literally just repeating the same old joke for no real reason other than the laugh.

    Even Cat’s disdain for Rimmer to the point he’d like to ditch him leave him behind, which is a character trait, would be funnier if it was done once. The more it happens the less affect it has because its just the same joke.

    At least the space corps directive jokes allow for some funny and utterly ridiculous directives.

    What DOES bother me however, why are things like parking spaces right next to POW rules?

    #233114
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    One of the things I noticed about VII when I re-watched it is the apparent sudden re-emphasis on character after the action-heavy VI. Kennedy dying, Rimmer leaving, Kryten thinking he’s being replaced etc are all touching, character-heavy moments. Coupled with the lack of laughter and the film effect, and the fact that literally nothing at all happens in Blue, it does feel more like comedy drama and/or mindless action than what immediately preceded it.

    #233115
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    Oops, that should read “less like mindless action”, obviously. Not that VI is mindless.

    #233116
    Dax101
    Participant

    Jokes about the cats distain for Rimmer are something that’s been happening since series 1. But I agree that they shouldn’t become a regular habit in 1 series alone.

    #233117
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    “Timewave… [has some] very funny jokes… I laugh(ed) loads more than Cured and Twentica….”
    Absolutely. Cat being hostile to Johnny Vegas and completely oblivious to why he shouldn’t be was very funny. Captain Asshole made me snigger, and I have to say I find the droopy titties line a real rib ticker. Sorry, everyone.

    #233118
    Dax101
    Participant

    or *disdain even.

    #233120
    quinn_drummer
    Participant

    His disdain for him I’ll allow, that is part of his character. It’s the jokes about leaving him behind, letting him die etc are over done and lose something each time a new one is rolled out

    #233122
    bloodteller
    Member

    “Quick, let’s get outta here before they bring him back!” was funny because it’s a subversion of the typical reaction you’d have to someone being kidnapped, it’s a good character joke as it fits into the crew’s dislike for Rimmer, and generally the structure and delivery of the gag is excellent.

    after that, they haven’t been funny. and when Cat rolls out 4 of them in one episode in Timewave, you’re just internally thinking “shut the fuck up already!”

    #233126

    I like those jokes, but I agree they should be few and far between. I wouldn’t mind any of the running jokes if they turned up once or twice a series and were instead spread out over a longer period of time. Timewave is a particularly bad one for Cat wanting to leave Rimmer to die.

    …there were funny jokes in Timewave?

    Next time I watch it, I’ll make a list.

    #233131
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    “We’re all deeply sorry, bud. Apart from me and him and him” is classic too, if overplayed in the trailers

    #233135
    Flap Jack
    Member

    I suppose it’s inevitable that an ‘Unpopular Opinion’ thread would ultimately lead to “Timewave is good, actually.” but… sorry, I… seriously though?

    Really we could close the thread at this point, but I would like to at least see if anyone’s going to come out as a fan of Pete Part 2.

    #233137
    Piplup2003
    Member

    I honestly didn’t realise how much hate the fandom has for Timewave.

    #233139
    bloodteller
    Member

    > I would like to at least see if anyone’s going to come out as a fan of Pete Part 2.

    i don’t think it’s a great episode, but i don’t really think it’s bad either- it’s rather funny; the delayed fight sequence, “we’re not going in ’til we know what we’re doing.” “…that could take years…”, “dinosaur bowel movement frequency tables” and “you’re finished/bye” were particular highlights of it. i definitely wouldn’t call it an amazing episode, but i think it’s at least good. i couldn’t really hate a Red Dwarf episode that makes me laugh so much. the “see you in 10 minutes” bit is shit though, i can’t defend that. why does that scene exist?

    imo, Back In The Red Part 3 is the only VIII episode i’d consider to be bad. 8 minutes of bloody recap, dennis the donut boy, irrelevant claymation sequence, conehead Holly were particular disappointments.

    #233142

    I still don’t think Timewave is good – the bad elements outweigh the good – but there are plenty of jokes that make me laugh in there, which is why I rate it above, say, all of VIII.

    #233151
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    Timewave made me actually angry and should be deleted from history, though for my relationship with Red Dwarf it wasn’t as bad generally as the double whammy of Krysis and Can of Worms which made me not touch anything Red Dwarf related for months and had me questioning whether Red Dwarf was ever going to be worth watching again.

    #233153
    bloodteller
    Member

    Timewave made me feel sad :(

    #233156
    Dax101
    Participant

    I have only watched Timewave once and sadly I still remember parts of it.

    Once the pink policeman started rubbing his nipples I felt a little part of me die.

    #233157
    flanl3
    Member

    …there were funny jokes in Timewave?

    Next time I watch it, I’ll make a list.

    Don’t bother, I’ll do it for you right here in this very post.

    #233158
    flanl3
    Member

    I honestly didn’t realise how much hate the fandom has for Timewave.

    Oh, don’t worry, there are all sorts of pro-Timewave groups on Facebook and Reddit. Although even they were at least mildly disappointed.

    #233159
    flanl3
    Member

    I honestly think most of the people saying “Red Dwarf ought to be done soon” are just tired of XII being, like, 60% recycled material. If it had been more original, even if less good, I doubt as many of you would be on about “don’t give it more than a couple new series”.

    #233160
    Hamish
    Member

    > Krytens Costume in X and XII is also Shit. not very flattering on Robert and looks cheap

    The one in XI however must be excellent.

    #233162

    tbh, I re-watched Timewave since my first viewing and I quite enjoyed it really.

    Sure, some of the jokes don’t land like the spit of the wrist or the save planet Rimmer ones, but others I found to be pretty humorous.

    The lieutenant asshole, the kryten shut up, Chris Barrie’s performance as Rimmer’s Inner Critic, I think Ziggy and the Crit Cop are well-acted with the material they have and they put good effort in.

    The sets might look ridiculous but they are supposed to, the lighting is the best for the two series in my honest opinion. Watching too many XI and XII episodes hurts my eyes after a while due to the blue lighting they have; but the lighting they have on the criticism ship is a nice breather. When the crew are walking through Red Dwarf’s corridors there are always the fans that give off these green reflections; none on other ship. I like the set design, nice costumes all around, none of the characters make me really cringe. The scene on Planet Rimmer looked really good too, the flag and the spacesuits, nice touch.

    If I voted on the Pearl Poll I’d have ranked Timewave a good mid-40s spot. I disliked Cured more; but really I don’t hate any Red Dwarf episode minus maybe Duct Soup which bores me to death.

    Series XIII I hope they do more drama, yeah, but XI and XII had good moments of comedy in-between what I feel are BTE which was drama-centric and X which had an undercurrent of melancholy I can’t describe well. So XIII being similar to that would make XI and XII good for me watching the whole series again just to lift the weight off me.

    #233165
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    >Chris Barrie’s performance as Rimmer’s Inner Critic

    This is just a rehash, both in voice and character. The only new thing is the make-up.

    #233170
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    >This is just a rehash, both in voice and character. The only new thing is the make-up.

    And a Psi-moon is so much more interesting than a sci-fi contraption that pulls a little version of you dressed as Blofeld out and puts it in a bell jar.

    #233188

    Yes, the ‘science’ behind the critic remover thing is really fucking bollocks. “We’ll make criticism illegal, and also invent a machine that turns an abstract concept in people’s minds into a small person”.

    #233189
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    You have to have the same issue with self-loathing, confidence and paranoia, surely

    #233204
    flanl3
    Member

    No, at least the explanations for those either make some sense or are interesting enough of concepts to forgive

    #233250
    bloodteller
    Member

    i think complaints about the “science” are a bit bollocks, really. red dwarf has had lots of concepts that don’t at all make sense-Backwards World, the Triplicator, the Matter Paddle, the Mirror Universe etc. are all basically magic explained with some brief technobabble, no? and even with the technobabble they sometimes still don’t make sense- the Matter Paddle transports you at the speed of light, they then instantly proceed to go to a planet 200,000 light years away and yet it doesn’t take them 200,000 years to get there.

    that said, the Critiscism Extractor isn’t explored at all in any way and it’s a bit daft and nothing funny comes of it anyway, so it’s still worse. at least all the other stuff was used for good laughs or an interesting exploration of the idea. what’s done with the Critiscism Extractor? turns Rimmer into Bloefeld and they have a bit of a tiff which winds up having no real relevance to the plot.

    #233252
    Lily
    Member

    I liked Can of Worms and really don’t know why people hate it so much.

    #233253

    Can of Worms was a fine episode, nothing particularly wrong with it

    #233263
    Dax101
    Participant

    Its an episode that reminds you why you shouldn’t make a cat episode. If degrading the cat to an insecure Duane Dibbley-esk dumbass is the only way to do it then it might be worth being left alone.

    Although thats probably just my unpopular opinion.

    #233265
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    I have a list as long as my arm with things that are wrong with it, but there are a couple of bits that I really like.

    #233271

    I tend to be fine with the nonsense science normally explored, but the criticism extractor is both a bit too nonsensical (why a person?) and also, my real issue, is why it exists at all. It must have come along after the ship decided to outlaw criticism, which means that it was made by people on that ship – difficult to accept without the fact that the ship was run incompetently. Plus, if you could extract people’s inner critic, why not just do that instead of making a law against it? It’s just really lazy plotting – taking a human social concept as the basis of 20 minutes of plot and then just going “oh yeah there’s a sci-fi machine that does that too”.

    #233272
    Dax101
    Participant

    >i think complaints about the “science” are a bit bollocks, really. red dwarf has had lots of concepts that don’t at all make sense-Backwards World

    Well there were articles going round back in 2016 that said “Scientists Propose a ‘Mirror Universe’ Where Time Moves Backwards”

    https://www.sciencealert.com/scientists-propose-a-mirror-universe-where-time-moves-backwards

    Now whether or not thats bollocks or not i’l be shocked if i ever hear scientists feel we can have our inner critic removed and shrunk down into a jar ;p

    #233275
    #233276
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    Well if they just used the criticism extractor on everybody you’d end up with a load of little critics running around which you’d need to look after, imprison or kill, which has moral implications, on top of the moral implications of basically lobotomising people who call you names

    #233365
    Hamish
    Member

    The things is, despite all of the problems mentioned, there is actually a motive behind the creation of the criticism extractor. I am still more baffled with why anyone would ever go to the trouble of creating a psi moon to be honest. What purpose does it serve other than as an admittedly interesting way to explore Rimmer’s personality?

    #233367
    Warbodog
    Member

    Instant psychic terraforming is incredibly labour-saving. If it’s set up to only mentally link with the first person who comes along (it only seemed to be using Rimmer’s mind), you could send down your expert who’s mentally prepared and create a paradise or whatever you need. Assuming you need ironic personifications of your personality traits.

    There’s a precedent in sci-fi with the worldscapers in Roger Zelazny’s 1969 book Isle of the Dead, maybe others.

    #233375

    I am still more baffled with why anyone would ever go to the trouble of creating a psi moon to be honest.

    Because rich people would pay for it. The ultimate leisure experience: going to live in your own personalised paradise. Bear in mind that Rimmer does not know what the moon is, and is therefore mentally unprepared and thus his subconscious takes over. I’m sure if you pay to go there, you’d have a lot more control over the sort of things you’d want to have there.

    #233377
    bloodteller
    Member

    plus presumably psi-moons save a lot of money. if you live on one you could construct houses, buildings, even entire cities just by thinking about them. you’d also be able to create living beings instantly too though, and maybe that raises all sorts of moral implications.

    psi-moons are a bit overpowered then, surely? you’d basically be God on there, and constructing all those buildings free of charge probs wouldn’t be good for the economy either because you could rent them out to friends for a really cheap price

    #233380

    >i think complaints about the “science” are a bit bollocks, really. red dwarf has had lots of concepts that don’t at all make sense-Backwards World

    At the time at least, there were genuine discussions by physicists about the effects of ‘The Big Crunch’ including time itself possibly running backwards as a result of the contraction of the universe. I think this is both what inspired the episode, and might even be the explanation given by Kryten within it? (haven’t seen it for while).
    There’s been subsequent arguments that the suggest this is impossible, but for an episode of Red Dwarf the “science” of it is perfectly acceptable.

    It only become bollocks when they have stuff written backwards i.e. “Nodnol”. There’s no reason for that, given that it’s supposed to be our own universe with our own languages. Even if for some reason text WAS backwards, the letters should be mirrored, not just written in reverse order.
    And the whole newspaper story about a bank robbery that happens “tomorrow”, with guns sucking bullets – none of that makes any sense. The story would be normal, referring to a robbery yesterday, it’s just printed before it happens.

    If time really were running backwards nobody would know, except the Dwarf crew (this is the case in the episode, but the newspaper kinda contradicts it).
    Heck, time could be running backwards for us right now and we’d be completely unaware of it. I think that’s the most interesting part of the concept, but they don’t really explore it in the episode.

    #233383

    Indeed. There’s no real way they could have done a ‘proper’ backwards episode, so instead they just used backwards ideas to make jokes and a generally coherent forwards plot, which is kind of forgivable. An idea of what should have happened in the backwards universe is explored brilliantly in Rob’s novel, too, for those wanting better science there. I love that section of the book, particularly Kryten trying to persuade Rimmer that because the engine parts were rusted, their being stranded there was inevitable.

    #233384

    I think Backwards as a concept is done well-enough in the episode, there’s not much to add upon in my opinion. If you’re looking for a more realistic approach I guess the backwards section in Rob Grant’s Backwards does it good, though I can’t remember if they read anything or not. I thought the bit where Rimmer spoke to the lady and the conversation started at the end and ended when the conversation started was pretty funny.

    #233388
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    The logic of backwards is basically totally fucked, but it is a classic, inspired, hilarious exploration of a concept. I got the Impression that the psi-moon was a natural phenomena when I was young, but I don’t know if there’s a line in the episode to contradict that.

    Fucking hell I just realised why the episode is called Terrorform. Another one of those things you just sort of accept when you’re young and never really put any thought into it.

    I don’t think the Mini Critic is a bad concept or worse than Confidence & Paranoia, it just all happens so fast. A speedier opening with less Planet Rimmer stuff and more time spent on the critic would not go amiss.

    #233389
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    Also the backwards universe is *a* backwards universe, not *our* universe backwards, so some inconsistencies can easily be handwaved

    #233394
    quinn_drummer
    Participant

    They don’t go to another universe though, they specifically go through a timehole, meaning they end up at some point trillions of years in the universes future, which happens to be our 1993 with time running in reverse.

    #233398
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    But… that… if time… then…

    I don’t want to think too hard about that one

    (If time eventually goes backwards how can they travel to a time past when it all goes in reverse)

    #233399
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    I’ve heard a lot of people say “the backwards universe” so assumed it was another ‘verse. Is it a universe in the book?

    #233402
    Dave
    Member

    Don’t they access it the books by travelling to a sort of nexus of universes around the event horizon of a black hole (the same one that causes all the problems that the white hole does in the TV show)? It’s been a while since I read them.

    #233403

    Fuck me I can’t remember it and I only finished reading it a month ago, if I had to guess I think it involved something to do with Holly’s high IQ finding a way to get the crew there.

    #233405
    Dave
    Member

    Yeah, Holly pops out the computer disc that gives them the coordinates of Backwards world after Lister dies, doesn’t he?

    #233407

    Something like that I imagine, if I recall correctly I think we go from Lister dying to Lister immediately waking up on the Backwards Earth and then we get a flashback to the crew doing Holly’s tasks before Rimmer figures it out.

    #233408

    BTW, I always thought Better Than Life had the best ending of the four novels; I mean it ends with Lister setting his eyes on the love of his life for the first time in 3 million years thanks to the people he has thought he hated.

    #233413
    bloodteller
    Member

    >I’ve heard a lot of people say “the backwards universe” so assumed it was another ‘verse.

    rimmer calls it “a backwards universe” in VIII as well, when he’s explaining his “theories” to the woman who wants to shag him

    #233414
    bloodteller
    Member

    >BTW, I always thought Better Than Life had the best ending of the four novels; I mean it ends with Lister setting his eyes on the love of his life for the first time in 3 million years thanks to the people he has thought he hated.

    yes, the ending to Better Than Life is lovely.

    #233415

    In the TV episode, I always assumed they’d passed through a time-hole and reached a point in the (relative) far far future, after the universe had exhausted all energy and began to contract (big crunch). Everything that had happened prior to the end of the universe’s expansion was now happening again but in reverse.
    So 2018 went into 2017, which went into 2016 and so on.
    They arrived via the time-hole in (backwards) 1993.

    Perhaps this mean the same time hole originally existed in the real (forwards) 1993 linking it to a backwards ‘year 3million+’, somewhere nearer the beginning of the of the Big Crunch?

    In other words the time hole exists within our universe, and it links 1993 with a point in the year 3million+ but at the opposite side of Big Crunch. Traversing the time-hole takes you to a point in the life of the universe where time runs in the opposite direction from where you entered.

    I’m pretty sure this is more thought than Rob and Doug ever put into, mind you.

    #233416
    clem
    Participant

    They do the backwards writing thing in the novels, at least in BTL. The name on Lister’s driving licence is ‘Retsil Divad’. Kryten says the universe they take him to is “almost a mirror image of our own universe, except that time moves backwards there”.

    #233417
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    Convenient that there is a time hole basically inside the atmosphere of Earth in that universe/the future/past. You’d think people would (have) know(n) about it (and then forgot) and there would be numerous backwards people coming out of the hole three million years in deep space. Would they even know time was running backwards if they were that far out? And if it’s a short-lived phenomena, how lucky that it lasted long enough for our crew to return to their universe/time.

    #233418
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    Backward universes and talking to the universe sort of fucks the concept of free will, doesn’t it?

    #233420

    >Backward universes and talking to the universe sort of fucks the concept of free will, doesn’t it?

    Eh, idk

    The talking to the universe thing in Krysis tho, they did leave that kinda ambiguous if that was the actual universe or not since, as Rimmer points out, “says you”

    Meaning there’s nothing proving it was actually the universe and not like an AI gone computer senile or something, least that’s my interpretation of it anyway

    #233422
    bloodteller
    Member

    >Backward universes and talking to the universe sort of fucks the concept of free will, doesn’t it?

    so do future echoes. lister is inescapably fated to live to 171 and dress all in yellow, and there’s nothing he can do about it

    #233423
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    The thing I hate most about the universe is that they went with the shit Morgan Freeman impression.

    It’s sort of ambiguous whether or not it is the universe, I think a past Red Dwarf would have made it U.N.I.V.E.R.S.E and thought of something those letters could stand for or a Space Corps research program called Universe and then have the crew fuck it up and then it tries to kill them before they blow it up but that’s not to say that’s better. It’s similar to the Futurama universe, but I didn’t mind that so much because of the more Star Trek feel of Futurama, with all the aliens and stuff. A sentient nebula isn’t unusual in those universes, stands out a bit more in Red Dwarf though.

    #233424
    bloodteller
    Member

    bit of an underreaction if it actually is the universe. you’d think he could just send them back to earth or tell them where kochanski is or do literally Anything.

    instead they use the most powerful being in existence to get Kryten to stop being a bit sad

    #233425

    > You’d think people would (have) know(n) about it (and then forgot) and there would be numerous backwards people coming out of the hole three million years in deep space.

    We don’t know how long the time-hole was open for, though. It may have just been a couple of weeks or months, rather than a permanent fixture.

    It’s safe to say that nobody else was flying around the edge of Earth’s atmosphere in that particular region in 1993. And it’s even safer bet that nobody else was flying around that other point in deep space millions of years later.

    #233428
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    Is the universe really all Powerful, though, in the way god is, or is it just all knowing? What can it do?

    I wonder how they would have voiced the universe in a universe without Bruce almighty. I enjoyed the reference but it is a bit questionable

    #233429
    bloodteller
    Member

    >What can it do?

    well it says in the episode it made the Earth

    #233430

    Side-note, you think the crew are using Hogey’s cloth map during Series XI and XII?

    #233431
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    I hope Hogey used that to navigate his way to the fucking exit.

    #233433
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    Unpopular opinion. I really like Hogey the Roguey. I liked the relationship.

    #233434

    well it says in the episode it made the Earth

    It never states that it intentionally made it, though.

    #233436

    Hogey the Roguey was quite good. If they overused him than the joke would’ve gotten old pretty quick, but they keep him limited and the times he is on-screen he is pretty funny.

    #233437
    quinn_drummer
    Participant

    Yeah Hogey is fine. I love the idea of them having this relationship with a bored sim who just wants to play some games in the 9 year period we haven’t seen. If we were to actually see any more it’d be ruined, but it was a nice little “fill in the blank” bit of back story that was quite nice.

    Not sure if this is controversial or not, but I struggle with liking Bodyswap as much as other episodes because of the dubbed voices. Its a bit of a naff effect and really, implanting a mind into someone elses shouldn’t change their voice.

    Though I do love the frantic opening to that episode. How often are you thrown into the action like that with RD?

    #233442
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    I do really like Bodyswap but I bet they could improve it a lot with more time and modern audio engineering or whatever it’d be. Just make it sound more like it’s coming out of that mouth in that room with that stuff going on in the background.

    #233444
    Taiwan Tony
    Participant

    Another arm raised for Hogey being dreadful.

    #233448

    The whole different voice coming out of the body thing is a pretty common trope with body swapping / possession / etc. stories, and I agree that it’s mostly nonsense (the individual sound of your voice being entirely down to the physical structure of your throat and the particular size and shape of your larynx), the realistic route would be if they each did an impression of each other, but I think that would only work well with Chris doing his Craig impersonation.
    That said, it’s something that’s done so often that it doesn’t actually bother me so much. Also I enjoy how well Craig’s voice coming out of Chris’s mouth works, and with the fact that Lister’s outfit actually really suits Chris, whenever I watch it I completely believe that he’s Lister in those scenes.

    Here’s one of those tedious questions we’ve been revelling in lately: where does Rimmer-in-Lister’s physical Captain Emerald costume come from?

    #233450

    >Here’s one of those tedious questions we’ve been revelling in lately: where does Rimmer-in-Lister’s physical Captain Emerald costume come from?

    I always assumed Rimmer wears a standard, high-ranking Space Corps uniform. That said, is the JMC a subsidiary of the Space Corps? Has the relationship ever been fully explained?

    #233451

    It’s been discussed several times in the past, and the answer has always been some variation on ‘we don’t really know’.

    #233452
    Hamish
    Member

    > I got the Impression that the psi-moon was a natural phenomena when I was young, but I don’t know if there’s a line in the episode to contradict that.

    KRYTEN: My guess: this is a Psi-moon.
    CAT: Psi-moon?
    KRYTEN: An artificial planetoid. It tunes into an individual psyche and adapts its terrain to mimic his mental state

    Which is about all the explanation for the Psi-moon’s existence that we get. While some of the theories for its existence in this thread are plausible, the episode itself clearly does not give two fucks about this, as all it wants is indeed an admittedly interesting way to explore Rimmer’s personality.

    I still think it is a bit wank though. Just to put this thread back on topic.

    #233454
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    I always thought the JMC were the merchant navy of the Red Dwarf universe and the Space Corps were the actual Navy, but there’s not really a military in Red Dwarf, so in my head canon you apply to the Space Corps and if you’re officer class or really good you join the SC and work your way up in a field, and if you’re a bit shit, or need work or harbor no ambitions of joining the Space Corps Navy types or advancing a career then you can just work for the JMC on a contract, in the Red Dwarf Dollar Poundland or whatever.

    #233455
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    There’d probably be a cross over too. Like a navigation officer in the JMC could apply for a post in navigation with the Space Corps, but it’d be a bit like going to uni with a vocational qualification instead of A-levels, possible but not as straightforward.

    I imagine there’s other trade and mining companies too, or was, Red Dwarf doesn’t have many brands and M Corp seems to imply its quite easy to own everything.

    #233456
    Dax101
    Participant

    I think a sense of mystery can be a good thing, so not having to explain everything that exists in the Red Dwarf universe isn’t a bad thing.

    Its just when you do explain it and it stupid explanation then that doesn’t help.

    As for Hogey i remember after that episode was shown there were people saying how Hogey should be a show regular… yikes.

    #233457
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    Just for the fact that they covered Richard O’Callaghan in what was I think wood filler and grey primer I’m glad he’s not a regular for his sake.

    #233461
    bloodteller
    Member

    >As for Hogey i remember after that episode was shown there were people saying how Hogey should be a show regular… yikes.

    he only works in The Beginning really, because there’s the gag of what looks like a lethal simulant onboard and everyone having a severe underreaction to him until it eventually becomes apparent he’s just some mad old git who’s been pestering the posse for the last decade. also them suggesting a cooking contest a la Can’t Smeg Won’t Smeg really made me laugh.

    aside from that, there’s nothing you can really do with the character. he only functions as a one-off joke

    #233462
    bloodteller
    Member

    hoguey always wins the cooking contests with the help of an angry rice stealing droid called AI-nsley Harriot

    #233464
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    Ainsley Harribot surely.

    #233467
    Ben Paddon
    Participant

    Hoguey the Roguey was a brilliant idea undermined by a daffy accent and less-than-ideal costume design.

    #233479
    bloodteller
    Member

    opinion- that “tales of the riverbank: the next generation” bit in Camille is a lot funnier than the much more oft-quoted Wilma Flinstone conversation from Backwards.

    #233485
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    I like it just for Danny’s fluffed delivery.

    Whatever happened
    Whatever happened to old Hammy?

    #233486
    Dax101
    Participant

    Doug likes his funny accents.

    #233492

    Still think Hogey’s map should return. Touches like that, hints at a larger arc – like the quantum rod – are lovely, but seem to just die off. C’mon Doug.

    #233494
    Lily
    Member

    Unpopular opinion – not ever sci-fi show needs to have an arc and I think Doctor Who has suffered for it in the past.

    The only arc I want to see on Red Dwarf has Cats on it.

    #233495
    Warbodog
    Member

    Series 1 & 6 had good arcs that enhance those series. I’m wary of arcs because of how VIII turned out and X’s chaotic production that kept the set-up but ditched the pay-off, but I’d still love to see something more ambitious mixed in, rather than just playing it safe with Polymorphs and Backwardses until the end.

    #233496
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    It’s a shame that arcs/ multiparters are seemingly not an option though on Red Dwarf because Doug blames the format and not the fact that Back in the Red and Pete were not naturally long enough to be three episodes and shit respectively, even a series before, Epideme and Nanarchy weren’t bad, not classics but fine.

    I don’t really want multiparters/arcs that much but a little persistence would be nice, so something could happen and it maybe gets mentioned in passing at some point. I feel like the Dave series lack identity and having some kind of arc, or theme would help.

    #233498
    Jonsmad
    Participant

    Entangled is mostly genius writing of highest standard ever achieved by the whole of Red Dwarf,
    its exposition including the beggs choke scene makes total sense, is consistent with Koestler it’s source material and the episode is unique among the rules of television plotting as a result of it’s non causal approach. Everything is good until the monkey/naked stuff.

    #233499
    Dax101
    Participant

    The beggs choking is either totally silly or actually kinda clever… But If you go by the episodes logic that Kryten and cat were just aware it was gonna happen then that’s where it gets silly

    3 characters all choking at the same time seems lazy

    #233510

    I honestly think Entangled is fantastic until the chimp shows up.

    And yes, arc-wise I was definitely talking more about subtle hints and occasionally recurring ideas rather than a big, detailed single plot. The map just seems a very strange thing to have introduced and then just completely forgotten about.

    #233511
    Dax101
    Participant

    Id have been happy if the whole episode of engaged was just the crew on the hunt to find something or someway that they could remove the groinal exploder.

    I agree that the moment we get to the chimp it feels like Doug is biting off more then he can chew with throwing in so many different ideas and trying to bring them all together by the end.

    Oh and that ending with her tripping over some boxes sideways into the airlock which conveniently shuts behind her and is unable to be opened from inside is so bad IMO. even if the final line is kinda amusing it is still what Doug had to do to get to that point that is kinda stupid.

    #233512
    Dax101
    Participant

    I mean *entangled, not engaged…

    #233514

    >and is unable to be opened from inside is so bad IMO.

    Actually Professor E accidentally kills herself in that event, paraphrasing Rimmer, “Don’t press that!”

    #233520
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    Professor E was so shit anyway, and as an ending killing her was just ridiculously cold. She did everything wrong, why not make it obvious she’d be great with Rimmer and then have her make the wrong decision and leave? And if you really want her gone have her borrow a shuttle and say don’t go near that wormhole and then she goes down it. At least she’s alive. Also the upside down glasses were a particular low moment in Red Dwarf history.

    #233523

    lel, I didn’t think it was that bad.

    #233535

    The upside-down glasses are terrible, Irene E / irony is weak and largely nonsense (I suppose it kind of ties in with the quantum entanglement / coincidence thing, but even then it’s pretty shit), and the idea of a person who does everything ‘wrong’ is really one dimensional and cartoony. It really goes to shit once they arrive at ERRA, which is a shame as there’s LOADS in the first 2/3 of the episode that I absolutely love. Losing Rimmer in a poker game feels like a really classic Dwarf idea, ‘apart from me and him and him’ is a great Cat line, ‘English boarding school’, the BEGGs’ descriptions of the crew, ‘Did it work?’ ‘No’. All that stuff was the point where it really felt like Red Dwarf was fucking great again, after three episodes that were almost there for me. And then the ending threw it all away.

    #233536

    Cat’s “except for me him and him” is a shit line.

    #233537
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    I know the OP said no arguing but I’ll meet you outside after school and fight you for that one

    Entangled was incredible until it was shit, it was a real shame. I loved Kryten’s speech about the institute, it felt really magical and like Red Dwarf really was back. Briefly.

    #233538
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    Upside down glasses though, fucking hell

    #233540
    bloodteller
    Member

    i wonder if Entangled would’ve been thoroughly brilliant had they kept the original second half of the script (iirc it involved the chimp simply staying a chimp, but they couldn’t work around chimp actors only being able to do 45mins work at a time) or if the script would’ve fallen apart around that point anyway. kryten and cat’s entanglement never seems to get resolved in the episode either, so what was the point of all of it?

    #233543
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    I wonder how many other episodes of Red Dwarf would be improved by a man in an unrealistic chimp costume turning up for the last ten miniutes.

    #233544
    Hamish
    Member

    Officer Rimmer.

    #233545
    quinn_drummer
    Participant

    Waiting for God …. Lister follows Cat into the bowls of the ship only to find Cat has a pet chimp chained up and he is feeding him bananas.

    Lister stands up for the chimp, releases him, and he goes onto causes carnage, destroying everything it comes across before reaching the garbage pod and tearing through the waste, much to Rimmer’s horror.

    #233548
    bloodteller
    Member

    Pete Part 2 has two chimps for the price of one

    #233554
    bloodteller
    Member

    >I wonder how many other episodes of Red Dwarf would be improved by a man in an unrealistic chimp costume turning up for the last ten miniutes.

    timewave. a chimp comes onboard and leaves a banana peel on the floor for Ziggy to slip over and break his neck. he is then later killed by malpractice owing to the hairdressers doing the spinal reconstruction surgery injecting him with 500cc’s of TRESemmé

    #233557
    Dax101
    Participant

    >i wonder if Entangled would’ve been thoroughly brilliant had they kept the original second half of the script (iirc it involved the chimp simply staying a chimp, but they couldn’t work around chimp actors only being able to do 45mins work at a time)

    I can’t remember where Doug said it but i swear he talked about the idea of the chimp playing a big part in either that episode or another episode where Rimmer and Lister were gonna be acting like parents to this chimp as Rimmer wanted to use the chimp to help him pass the officers exam and Lister was gonna be against Rimmer using the chimp like that.

    I don’t know how i feel about that idea though.

    #233561

    >I can’t remember where Doug said it but i swear he talked about the idea of the chimp playing a big part in either that episode or another episode where Rimmer and Lister were gonna be acting like parents to this chimp as Rimmer wanted to use the chimp to help him pass the officers exam and Lister was gonna be against Rimmer using the chimp like that.

    I heard about this too, from where tho, can’t remember

    #233590

    I honestly can’t really see any ending working well. ERRA should have been the climax of the episode, and the quantum entanglement plot should have been used to wrap things up there – somehow involving Kryten and Cat relaying the code to remove the groin exploder by talking at the same time on different ends of the ship to each other, for example. It could have ended on Kryten going ‘owwwww yeah-yeah!’ or something.

    #233599
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    I think the og chimp plans are relayed via Richard Naylor on the documentary.

    #233630
    Taiwan Tony
    Participant

    Would now be a good time to do my monkey impression….?

    #234165
    Katydid
    Participant

    Series XI is one of the best series of Red Dwarf.

    #234167
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    It’s definitely in the top 6

    #234170

    >It’s definitely in the top 6

    Which Rob Grant-involved series did it overthrow?

    #234174
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    The first one

    #234180
    Hamish
    Member

    No

    #234182
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    Grr

    #234184
    bloodteller
    Member

    The first series of Red Dwarf is one of the best series of Red Dwarf

    #234190
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    Most of the series of Red Dwarf are one of the best series of Red Dwarf, honestly. There are only 12 and most of them are quite good.

    #234193
    Dave
    Member

    Apart from *that* one. Oh, and *that* one too.

    #234219
    Hamish
    Member

    Yes.

    #234228
    Flap Jack
    Member

    Red Dwarf Series 1 is easily in my Top 8 Red Dwarf Series.

    #234243
    Taiwan Tony
    Participant

    Series 1 and 2 are the best series of Red Dwarf

    #234244
    Ben Paddon
    Participant

    Back to Earth, while not perfect, is genuinely brilliant.

    The worst part is, a lot of people agreed with me as it was going out. We loved it. And then at some point after the shine wore off, people started to talk as if it had been an unmitigated disaster on all fronts. The idea that BTE is a bad show became accepted wisdom, and I don’t get it. I don’t get that transition at all, from adored to deplored in under five years.

    It puts me in mind of Avatar, a film that is universally reviled (and one I’ve somehow never seen) but managed to make nearly $2.79 billion at the box office. It’s still, still!, the highest-grossing movie in history – if nobody liked it, how come every bugger went out and saw it eleven times each?

    For my money, BTE is still some incredibly strong Red Dwarf, and a good template for how a complete reboot/reworking of the series as a single-camera dram-com could work. Certainly it’s a lot better at the comedy/drama balance than VII (which I also like, though nowhere near as much). For its flaws, BTE is the Dwarf I have revisited the most in the near-decade since its broadcast, and whenever people bash it – on here, on Twitter, at Q&As, wherever – it always feels like they’re squinting at a Magic Eye picture that I can see and they can’t.

    I can see the sailboat… I wish everyone else could, too.

    #234245
    bloodteller
    Member

    Back To Earth was quite good outside of the Coronation Street stuff and that crap scene where they drive Carbug to some ill-fitting music, I thought.

    Back To Earth is quite a strong character piece, especially for Lister- and it balances the comedy and drama fairly well- e.g. the scene with the kids on the bus is funny (“even in that Bible film, she said “Jesus? He’s not dead!”) but it’s also quite a good bit of character analysis on Lister and what sort of a guy he is.

    also, the chinatown chase scene is epic. it’s intense stuff, that

    #234246
    Dax101
    Participant

    Funny enough i remember BTE got a very Meh! reaction after the 3rd episode, and i remember being quite saddened about it at the time as i thought it might effect Dave putting money into making a new series since a fair amount of the criticism was that it felt like a tired self-referential comeback.

    In reflection though, i don’t like story because it feels like a fourth wall breaking parody with jokes about the Fans, the show in itself and the cast with one of the worse moments in Dwarf history in part 2 where the crew discovers they are characters in a tv show. its so surreal and ridiculous but is played as straight as the cast could make it work.

    Reminds me of the Dispensing machine bonking scene in Dear Dave since maybe it sounded good in Dougs head but it really does not work on screen at all.

    #234248
    Dax101
    Participant

    >Back To Earth is quite a strong character piece, especially for Lister

    Problem is the character stuff with Lister feels like an afterthought. and its possible it very well could have been since wasn’t it Andrew Ellard that came up with the idea of having Kochanski appear at the end?

    Even the Joy Squid feels abit like an afterthought too since by the end the concept of the “joy” squid doesn’t add anything to whats happening until they realize that it is infact the joy squid and then Kochanski suddenly appears to keep lister there.

    Yeah lister throws a line in about feeling great since they got there, but they were trying to find their creator so they wouldn’t die? pooping their selves in the elevator ride up there and then thought they killed the guy… such joy!

    #234249
    Flap Jack
    Member

    Just to join in with the “at the time it went out” perspective, I distinctly remember how I felt when Back to Earth first broadcast. I was delighted to see ANY new Red Dwarf, but I was also really underwhelmed.

    Outside of episode 2 the laughs were very thin on the ground, and the lack of a live audience – despite there still being gaps left for their reactions – made it feel especially awkward. The performances in a lot of scenes – such as the sneeze ironing scene or Rimmer dancing while the others were attacked by the squid – just felt kind of forced, illiciting a “this seems like it should be funny – why isn’t it funny?” reaction from me.

    I still firmly enjoyed it overall – the comedy in episode 2 and the atmosphere of episode 3 helped with that – but I still couldn’t avoid being disappointed that it didn’t feel like proper Red Dwarf.

    #234250
    Dave
    Member

    It’s quite common for initial enthusiasm for a series to give way to a more measured opinion over time. The same happened with VIII to some extent.

    For what it’s worth, I now enjoy BTE slightly more than I did when it went out. Initially I was quite disappointed but now I at least appreciate what it was trying to do and the limitations it was operating under, and it has some good gags in isolation.

    #234255
    Warbodog
    Member

    The weird fan episode polls after VII and VIII are probably the best evidence of the recency bias.

    You can see it with a lot of things. If you look up reddit discussions of Doctor Who’s arc-tastic episodes from 2011 that most people have decided they hated now, they were well into it at the time.

    I always thought BTE was fine for a special, but not something I’d feel like rewatching. It didn’t disappoint me like VII & VIII, but it didn’t fill me with over-optimistic confidence like Trojan either.

    #234256
    Plastic Percy
    Participant

    I still bloody love Back to Earth, me.

    #234262

    I always agree with the suggestion they should another special in the vain of BtE, improve on it with newfound experience.

    Plus, I always liked that deleted bunk scene, wish they kept it. But yeah BtE was fine, I remember being disappointed with it when I discovered the whole show and binged on it back in 2012; but now I think it’s fine.

    #234267
    tombow
    Member

    I liked BTE mostly, I liked it’s ambition and the jokes were fun, I liked the silly stuff like the Starbug car and the big ideas it had. I really think it needed some kind of audience laughter on its TV broadcast though. To be honest, I feel the same way about any sitcom-style banter being put in a movie context, like the Rising Damp film from the 70s – that kind of banter just doesn’t work without an audience to bounce off.

    And silly stuff like the car and going to Corrie is the kind of stuff that needs camaraderie and other fans with you to enjoy because it’s only really funny because it’s silly fun, it’s not like the most witty conversations from series 1-5 that I would enjoy in any format.

    Speaking of the Rising Damp film – it would have been similar to the RD film in that it was a reboot that started again and re-made the origin story.

    #234268
    Ben Paddon
    Participant

    I really think it needed some kind of audience laughter on its TV broadcast though.

    Every time someone’s tried to do this, it’s been terrible. It wasn’t written with an audience in mind, and showing to an audience after the fact a la VII wouldn’t have worked. BtE is better without one.

    That being said… so is VII, sometimes. The Xtended versions are a brilliant exercise in showing us why stuff that winds up on the cutting room floor should probably stay there, but awkward pauses aside VII fares a lot better without the audience laughter.

    #234270
    Dax101
    Participant

    >It wasn’t written with an audience in mind

    Well according to Doug the thought of having an audience was there, its just they couldn’t afford one.

    One idea was to have the audience for everything before they go “back to earth” and then the laughter track would be gone for their earth adventure. which would certainly add an even more meta feel to it.

    #234271
    Jawscvmcdia
    Participant

    I prefer the captain as “Dennis the Donut Boy”.

    #234272
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    I’ve started to enjoy Jawscvmcdia’s forum threads.

    #234280

    I thought BtE was worse than VIII when it went out. After watching the whole run through with my girlfriend and getting a bit of an ‘experiencing the show for the first time’ thing vicariously through her, I remembered what made the show great and BtE suddenly felt light years ahead of VIII. I still don’t think it’s especially good, but it is at least Red Dwarf, and listening to Doug’s commentary was a wonderful optimistic moment that made me think he’d rediscovered the show he was writing 20 years before again.

    #234281
    Dax101
    Participant

    You do get alot of insight into Dougs mindset in the commentary. for good and for bad IMO.

    #234294
    Flap Jack
    Member

    To me, the lack of an audience was really felt in episode 1, but it wasn’t too noticeable in episodes 2 and 3. So doing it either way wouldn’t quite work.

    Actually, imagine if episode 1 had a studio audience, but then the audience was absent from the moment they go into the “real” world? That could have been an amazing way to add to the misdirection of the plot.

    Or it could have been terrible. I don’t know, I’m just some asshole on the internet.

    #234296

    It’s been suggested before, and yes, I think it would be brilliant. Suddenly not having the audience would really give such a strange change of tone that it would really drive home how odd the moment is.

    #234298
    Dax101
    Participant

    It would drive home that the crew just stepped out of the tv show boundries and into the real world.

    Basically the same as what it was, just more meta, and just as silly.

    #234300
    bloodteller
    Member

    yeah, that would’ve been quite good.

    #234303
    clem
    Participant

    It’s mainly the Blade Runner stuff that drags down BTE for me. I agree having an audience until they get to Earth could have been really good. Doesn’t it go a bit handheld and less sitcom looking when they enter the “real world”?
    That might only be because a lot of the Earth stuff was filmed on location, though.

    #234304
    clem
    Participant

    Which of course was done out of necessity, so it’s not necessarily something they were going for.

    #234307
    Dax101
    Participant

    Personally i am glad they just didn’t have an audience at all. i really wouldn’t want the audience acknowledged like that no matter how more meta it is to convince the audience they were in our world and not the tv show world.

    #234308
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    I really hate the Blade Runner stuff it just doesn’t go for me at all. I know Doug loves Blade Runner, I love Blade Runner, but that doesn’t mean I try and crowbar it in to my work. A little reference is ok, a pinch of salt to some caramel, it can enhance the flavour, but Doug poured a tin of Carnation caramel onto a grit silo.

    #234330
    Hamish
    Member

    And I am not even particularly fond of Blade Runner.

    #234331
    flanl3
    Member

    I am not a massive fan of blades or running, myself.

    #234384
    Ben Paddon
    Participant

    One idea was to have the audience for everything before they go “back to earth” and then the laughter track would be gone for their earth adventure. which would certainly add an even more meta feel to it.

    I always thought that was a fan-idea rather than one that’d come up during production, but it was something I always liked the idea of.

    #234387
    Plastic Percy
    Participant

    I just never took Blade Runner to be a massive influence on the film. I thought Grant Naylor was fairly adamant it was Dark Star.

    #234423
    Ben Paddon
    Participant

    The Blade Runner stuff didn’t bother me any more than the Terminator stuff in “The Last Day” or the Casablanca stuff in “Camille”. I think it worked just fine.

    #234430
    tombow
    Member

    The voice swapping in Bodyswap is fine and works well for the idea.

    #234439
    Warbodog
    Member

    I don’t mind them doing Blade Runner, I just hate the line about Blade Runner being THE inspiration for Red Dwarf when it’s far from evident outside of this one and Back to Reality (unless it’s supposed to be some further squiddy link between those two episodes).

    It makes even less sense in-universe – if they’ve seen Blade Runner, hearing that their lives were based on it would just seem nonsensical. I’d be fine with Alien, maybe 2001, haven’t seen Dark Star.

    #234440
    bloodteller
    Member

    >The Blade Runner stuff didn’t bother me any more than the Terminator stuff in “The Last Day” or the Casablanca stuff in “Camille”

    there’s also the Alien stuff in Polymorph, and the Westworld stuff in Meltdown. Red Dwarf doing direct parodies of things isn’t anything new, so it didn’t feel at all out of place in Back To Earth for me.

    #234441
    Hamish
    Member

    Meltdown borrows the premise, but is not a direct parody.

    “Clues” is not a parody of “Thanks for the Memory”.

    #234445
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    The way Red Dwarf typically handles references compared to the way it handles them in Back to Earth, is like comparing Spaced to Ready Player One.

    #234447
    Dave
    Member

    Also Robocop in DNA.

    #234448
    Ben Paddon
    Participant

    The way Red Dwarf typically handles references compared to the way it handles them in Back to Earth, is like comparing Spaced to Ready Player One.

    I think that is more often than not the case, yes, but the show has plenty of overt examples of parody. “DNA” is one of them, specifically the Jaws reference, and the Casablanca stuff in “Camille” isn’t exactly subtle.

    Granted, BTE is the only example I can think of where the show actively states the name the thing it’s parodying, and we can argue about whether or not that was appropriate until the cow’s come home (or not, let’s actually not do that, please for the love of God) but it’s not something that bothers me, it doesn’t stick out much more than other overt parody in the show, and I’m fine with it.

    #234451
    Dave
    Member

    “DNA” is one of them, specifically the Jaws reference

    Dimension Jump, surely.

    DNA has mini-Robocop and a Die Hard gag though.

    #234452
    Dave
    Member

    Oh, you mean the bit with the lager can – I thought you meant the parts where the show explicitly references an existing property by name, like Jaws in Dimension Jump and Casablanca in Camille.

    #234454
    Ben Paddon
    Participant

    I can’t believe I said BTE was the only example etc. etc. wow, I’m an idiot.

    #234455
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    >Granted, BTE is the only example I can think of where the show actively states the name the thing it’s parodying
    Camille does as well

    #234456

    Rimmer’s death is a reference to Citizen Kane in Me² and gazpacho soup is a reference to rosebud

    Later in the episode, Lister tells Rimmer he and Cat are watching Citizen Kane at the cinema

    #234457

    The subtle-as-a-brick referencing of Blade Runner in BtE is obviously different to previous homages because of its meta nature, but it does seem a bit heavy going, outright copying sections without even a joke attached.

    The idea that Blade Runner was the main inspiration behind Red Dwarf is absurd. They don’t really share much. You can see Dark Star and Alien in Red Dwarf, but not Blade Runner.

    #234458

    Mimas in IWCD always gave me Blade Runner vibes

    #234460
    tombow
    Member

    Little off topic but, I read William Gibson’s Neuromancer recently and I was surprised at how RD-feeling it was, everything from the writing style being similar to the novels, VR worlds where people are tempted to stay with lost loves, A.I.s with cheeky personalities running ships, even afro-Caribbean guys with dreads being main characters.

    #234461
    bloodteller
    Member

    >Mimas in IWCD always gave me Blade Runner vibes

    it reminded me more of New York, especially with the descriptions of the traffic

    #258076
    Veni
    Member

    Related to the special, I really don’t care if it focuses on Cat, despite seemingly everybody else’s thoughts.

    Yes, the felis sapiens are returning, and I think it’d be great for a Cat subplot to emerge with a possible love interest, but beyond that it should be a Lister story ala Waiting for God which focused on Lister (despite my prior claims it was a Cat-centric story when I ranked all the episodes, and even then I admitted I was bullshitting).

    Cat is largely one-dimensional and a comic relief, yes, he has details related to him like his clothing, or certain traits and dislikes he may possess, but 90 minutes dedicated to him? God no.

    People always moan about him being an asshole in XI and XII, he was literally, always an asshole. He’s a dick during Rimmer’s sendoff in Me2, he mocks Rimmer in Thanks for the Memory behind his back about how many times he’s had sex, he mocks Holly during his battle with Queeg (and don’t give me the entire crew weren’t behind him, this was after Holly had confronted them about not supporting him and Cat does it again anyway), he openly tells Lister he doesn’t give a shit about him in Backwards. Cat is a douchebag, that’s his character. If anything he’s way more sympathetic in Dave Dwarf cause he actually has flaws.

    I don’t know, I never liked the character much to begin with anyway, so feel how you want to.

    #258077

    Is the special actually focusing on Cat? The press release made it sound like it was more of a Lister story. Waiting for God isn’t an episode focused on Cat even though the story of his species is the only thing resembling a moving plot in it, as Rimmer’s garbage pod story is entirely static. Even Can of Worms isn’t really revealing anything new about the Cat, or interesting about any of the characters.

    Cat doesn’t mock Holly during the battle with Queeg, he offers him (admittedly not very helpful) advice. Other than that, I broadly agree with you, Veni, except I think the difference between Cat’s arseholeness in the earlier series and these latest ones is that he was funnier in the old days. “Let’s get out of here before they bring him back!” is far funnier than that one from Entangled, “except for me, him and him”, which I think is an abysmal line and makes me cringe just as much as the Blue Midget dance from Back in the Red. Is that an unpopular opinion? I don’t know, I’m pretty mainstream and bland when it comes to opinions. I think Kryten is funnier than Rimmer in Series 6?

    The guy who hosts the Empire podcast said Red Dwarf 1 and 2 were crap and it only took off when Kryten joined, which left me almost annoyed! This is a bit apropos of nothing, but I have nowhere else to vent about that.

    Whatever, though, you can feel how you want to. That’s probably how feelings work.

    #258079
    Dax101
    Participant

    Going by the Gazpacho Soup article. yeah its bit more focused on Lister. but Rimmer and cat do get some story focus too.

    #258081
    Veni
    Member

    I was more so referring to Cat’s, “Bye, bye, baldy,” remark in Queeg.

    I definitely agree, though, Kryten in series VI is what made me really love the character, so he blows everyone else out of the water in that series if you ask me.

    #258085
    quinn_drummer
    Participant

    Cat is largely one-dimensional and a comic relief, yes, he has details related to him like his clothing, or certain traits and dislikes he may possess, but 90 minutes dedicated to him? God no.

    In large part because he hasn’t ever really been given anything to actually flesh him out much as a character. Yes, he has been used as one-dimensional comic relief, but there really isn’t any reason that a Cat focused story shouldn’t work if that’s what Doug decided to do. There’s actually a lot about the Cat we don’t know, there’s a whole history to him prior to meeting Lister and Rimmer that we know nothing about. That could be good to explore in the right setting, and meeting his own people after all this time could just well do that.

    #258086
    Dave
    Member

    I’m hoping for extensive “young Cat” flashbacks featuring a digitally-youthed Danny John-Jules, Marvel style, but on a Red Dwarf budget.

    #258090
    Taiwan Tony
    Participant

    Red Dwarf: Genisys.

    #258092
    si
    Participant

    Red Dwarf: Genisys.

    Red Dwarf: Mega Dryve.

    #258093
    Dax101
    Participant

    >I’m hoping for extensive “young Cat” flashbacks featuring a digitally-youthed Danny John-Jules, Marvel style, but on a Red Dwarf budget.

    If Doug could afford de-aging effects, he probably would write a whole episode around it. dunno how much of the budget would be left over for everything else though.

    #258095
    Dave
    Member

    Digital youthing on a Red Dwarf budget would be DJJ running around wearing a cardboard cutout of his face circa The End.

    #258096
    quinn_drummer
    Participant

    Just use his nephew who played young Lister. Granted he’d be mid 20s by now, but I’m sure it’d work.

    #258097
    Veni
    Member

    Yes, he has been used as one-dimensional comic relief, but there really isn’t any reason that a Cat focused story shouldn’t work if that’s what Doug decided to do. There’s actually a lot about the Cat we don’t know, there’s a whole history to him prior to meeting Lister and Rimmer that we know nothing about. That could be good to explore in the right setting, and meeting his own people after all this time could just well do that.

    The main point is I don’t care much for the character to begin with, so unless the movie is able to make him sympathize with him in the movie itself, I’m not going to be bothered.

    #258098
    Ridley
    Participant

    Digital youthing on a Red Dwarf budget would be DJJ running around wearing a cardboard cutout of his face circa The End.

    They should do that though.

    #258107
    desbug
    Member

    He youthed me!

    #258328
    Offline
    Member

    Series VI is my favourite of them all but I do agree that Emohawk and Rimmerworld are woefully average retreads at best and Psirens needed one or two more drafts to take it into great territory. Legion, Gunmen and Out of Time are absolute crackers though and the reason it elevates to the top for me.

    #258378

    RD works better without Holly since Kryten was introduced and they should stop trying to bring the character back. Sorry Norm/Hattie.

    #258379
    Katydid
    Participant

    Can of Worms isn’t a bad episode.

    #258380
    Dax101
    Participant

    We will never get anything Red Dwarf related that is as good as its peak years of the first 6 seasons. at least with Doug writing alone.

    #258404
    JamesTC
    Participant

    Series VIII has the best deleted scenes. Series V has by far the worst (aside from Back to Reality).

    #258405
    Hamish
    Member

    X has the best Smeg Ups. Not sure that is unpopular.

    #258406

    Hmmm….. my unpopular opinions… most have already been covered actually but here goes.

    I hated, well…. disliked immensely anyway…. Chloë Annett as Kochanski. She was always a stand in for me and was rarely funny To me bringing her in was by far the worst thing that has happened to Red Dwarf. She’s much too…. “classy” in her portrayal of Kristine. Claire was much more down to earth in her portrayal and much much closer to Daves …. social standing.

    Marooned is an average episode at best.

    Waiting for God is one of the better episodes period.

    Tikka to Ride and Cured were puerile attempts to “shock/titillate” though both had a few laughs.

    I never want to see the crew make it back to Earth and as such can only hope that an “ending” is never put on film. I always want to think of the crew as out there making someone laugh.

    I didn’t think Pete was as bad as most make out either and BTE was pretty good.

    There, my major differences with ….. most people. Oh, and I like Norman as Holly more than Hattie. Hattie was excellent mind you but to me Norman will ALWAYS be “Holly”.

    #258407
    si
    Participant

    I didn’t think Pete was as bad as most make out either

    I like quite a lot of Krytie TV.

    #258408
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    VIII is really funny in general, just less so than every other BBC series

    #258431
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    The Beginning is a genuinely poor episode outside of its ending. Nice model shots, but neither Hoguey nor the Simulants are funny, and the threat is very limply set up. The entire first half of the episode is just a wet fart.

    #258438

    The ending isn’t even that good.

    #258447
    By Jove its holmes
    Participant

    Surprised Rimmer never used that time drive to go visit his hero, Napoleon Bonaparte.

    Wouldn’t that have been a fun episode

    Napoleon did appear, onscreen, in Better Than Life. Granted he had no lines, but he was there.

    #258461

    That Napoleon isn’t even real.

    #258467
    By Jove its holmes
    Participant

    Compared to Pol Pot, Mao etc., Napoleon comes off pretty well. He released the Jews from the Rome Ghetto, but when the Papal States were restored after his defeat, they were forced back. His legal code remained the basis of much modern law in Western countries for a long time. I think the writers of RD didn’t go beyond the history the British wrote.

    #258468
    Renegade Rob
    Participant

    Series VII is a series I actively enjoy (in a different way than I-VI mind you) but even the Kochanski episodes have something to enjoy in them. And I especially love Nanarchy, which I think is a pretty well-executed mythology episode with a nicely-done Holly comeback. I’ve always been a fan of scenes where characters get together, compare notes, and just work out their plan of action, and Nanarchy has a couple nice examples of that. I think it’s a greatly underrated episode that was ahead of its time.

    Chris Barrie’s a phenomenal actor but Rimmer has lost all his edge and subtlety. Rimmer’s been a caricature since Series VI. He went from being the best character to easily the worst, to the point where I’m surprised someone hasn’t pulled him aside and said “Dude, wake up. Rimmer is a real person with pathos and edge.” Maybe it’s Barrie, maybe it’s the writing. I mean I do love the present iterations of the show, but while Lister, Cat, Kryten, and even Holly have shown glimpses of that old magic, a large part of me is afraid that Rimmer’s spark has gone out forever, unless something drastic happens.

    Back to Reality is a very good episode of Red Dwarf, but the more I think about it, I’m not even sure it makes my top ten.

    I actively think Polymorph is stupid. The autopsy, boxer shorts, “twat it,” and the planning scene at the end are all individually funny scenes in a vacuum, but as a whole I think that episode is pretty eh. Way overrated.

    While Series III is often held up as one of the show’s best, and indeed has some great eps and scenes, as a whole I think it’s aged terribly in a way that Series IV hasn’t, and even in a way that Series I and II haven’t either. Maybe it’s when the show’s ambition really started to outpace it’s budget, but I actively cringe during some parts of Series III (like that early shot of Marooned in the cockpit with the gray background, or the sloppy way Lister’s edited into the Hitler footage).

    I’m not really all that fond of M-Corp, but I can’t really put my finger on why.

    When people online say they like Can of Worms, I have no idea what the hell they’re talking about, because that episode is hot garbage, from the very first scene onwards (although hedgehogs in top hats are always welcome).

    I don’t really like Dimension Jump much at all. Some cool ideas and performances, but it’s hard to watch. Rimmer is an ass in a way he usually isn’t, like they play it up way too much for contrast. I don’t think the sparks between him and Ace are earned in those barely two scenes they were together, and Ace just saying at the end where their timelines diverged was anticlimactic.

    Maybe it’s because it’s the very first episode I ever saw, but I actually really, really like Rimmerworld.

    I think the Cat’s been killing it with all his outfits in the Dave era.

    I don’t understand why in all these polls Justice isn’t ranked much higher than it is. That episode is basically perfect.

    I really love Back to Earth. And I know it’s different with no laughter, but it’s a reunion special, not an actual season, and I was so damn glad to see these guys again in a special that harkened back to the shows better days, and all that emotional stuff at the end worked gangbusters. When people put it at the bottom of their lists, part of me gets it, but part of me’s like, you can’t treat it like normal episodes. It’s doing something different, and I super dig it, just on a sentimental level.

    #258471

    @RenegadeRob I agree with you about Rimmer. He’s easily my favourite character, but in the Dave era Chris Barrie’s performance is just way too pantomime for the most part.
    It’s the same with the Cat. EVERY SINGLE LINE he screeches it out in a high-pitch. He never used to do this. Remember how he says “good point, well made” after Kryten shoots down one of his implausible suggestions in series 5? It’s humble and pensive. These days he’d just screech something out while grimacing.
    Doug is obviously responsible too, in not wrangling these performances. I think Doug and the cast need to go back and watch the first two series and re-familiarise themselves with how they used to play the characters. As fairly realistic people, as opposed to over-the-top caricatures.
    Strangely, Craig Charles has gone the opposite route, and is way more laid back in his performance. I can see that being a development of the character, though. He’s mellowing with age. But Cat and Rimmer have gotten unrealistic and a little grating.
    Kryten’s doing okay.

    #258475
    si
    Participant

    It’s the same with the Cat. EVERY SINGLE LINE he screeches it out in a high-pitch. He never used to do this.

    That’s been bugging me for a while, and I’ve mentioned it before, fairly recently (might actually be on this thread), but from series VI onwards, he’s just been made ‘the stupid one’. He might still be vain and dress snazzily, but the cool he had in those first few series (1-IV especially) has just evaporated.

    #258480
    Offline
    Member

    Cat’s retarded, what’s to figure out?

    #258486
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    Cat’s voice is extremely inconsistent over the entire run of the show, he seems to have given up the high pitched thing entirely in Series 4

    #258493
    Ian Symes
    Keymaster

    Cat’s retarded, what’s to figure out?

    That’s your second strike. I know who you are, but with everything that’s going on and a new episode coming up, I was being lenient. Don’t make me ban you on today of all days.

    #258500
    Offline
    Member

    I never said Danny was, just that Cat seems retarded now.

    #258502
    Ian Symes
    Keymaster

    Off you fuck, then.

    #258513
    By Jove its holmes
    Participant

    the Dwarfers meeting Bill and Ted from “Excellent Adventure” would have been interesting. How would Kryten get along with Rufus, B & T’s mentor?

    #258517
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    “I didn’t call a real person an outdated slur, only a fictional character”

    #258518
    Ridley
    Participant

    They’re gone until the next sock anyway.

    At least it’s reassuring that that one person that shows up to elect themselves G&T’s unpleasant member tends to actually be the same individual each go around.

    #259709
    tombow
    Member

    BTE needed audience laughter

    #259710
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    BTE needed jokes.

    #259712
    Renegade Rob
    Participant

    Back to Reality is a very good episode but nowhere near my favorite. It’s a superb piece of television but short on the laughs.

    Last Human is better than Backwards.

    Series VII is actively good and severely underrated, and Nanarchy is ahead of its time and a well-executed mythology episode.

    Back to Earth is lovely. Short on jokes, yes, but a decent reunion special. Ranking it with other episodes is sort of unfair because it’s a reunion special and not meant to be a “normal” story, and it was so great seeing these guys after ten years in a story way more respectful to the franchise than Series VIII, that I’m surprised it doesn’t get more respect.

    Series III is way overrated. For some reason, way more so than Series II or IV, there’s something about III that’s sloppy and doesn’t age very well. The effects, the humor, and even the storytelling (which can be really stream of consciousness) seem sort of loosey-goosey and not in a good way. Series III is often held up as one of the best, but it’s fine. Also, Polymorph, while having some good jokes, is a piece of shit and definitely not a classic.

    Dimension Jump has some cool ideas and execution, but also it’s way overrated. Watching Rimmer be cringier than usual is not fun.

    EDIT: Just realized this was an old thread and I’m repeating myself. Womp womp.

    #259714
    tombow
    Member

    probably said this on the thread before, but I never really liked Backwards. I just find it a bit boring and I usually skip it if I rewatch S3. I love the concept in the novels though.

    As for the Morgan Freeman universe voice, I thought he should sound northern, like God did in the Better Than Life audiobook.

    #259715
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    It’s a superb piece of television but short on the laughs.

    So is Inquisitor, which has about 5 jokes, 2 of which are rehashes of older jokes.
    I’m exaggerating, obviously, but it struck me just how serious a lot of that episode is last time I watched it.

    I agree with everything else you said, apart from Polymorph.

    #259721

    Backwards, Polymorph and – particularly – The Inquisitor are all light on jokes. It might be why they’re not among my favourite episodes (although I do think they’re all very good).

    Ok, possibly unpopular opinion here: I think Doug should have ignored the fans and VIII should have taken the VII approach further. While I dislike a number of aspects of VII, I think there are some really good plots and character moments. It’s clear that, at this point, Doug wasn’t going to write ‘classic’ Dwarf, but I wish he’d just gone with the comedy-drama sci-fi thing rather than making what feels like a nine year old’s fanfic in VIII. VII is generally worse when it’s trying to be sitcommy (Duct Soup, for example), and that makes it feel like a halfway house between the old version of the show and the more comedy drama tag that is often applied to the series. If Doug couldn’t do trad Dwarf, he should have gone the whole hog with the new direction. GELF naming and language issues aside, I like the way VII expands on VI’s universe, populated by various GELFs, simulants, derelict ships, etc., as it enabled regular guest characters and sets without having dozens of humans featuring (as in VIII and a lot of XI/XII episodes), and made it feel like a fairly convincing universe that I’d like to have explored more. I can imagine a number of my favourite Dave-era stories fitting in with the style, too, like Fathers and Suns (minus the Taiwan Tony plot), The Beginning, Krysis, M-Corp and Skipper.

    So yeah, I think an extension of the VII style, focusing more on exploring the version of the RD universe of that era, with more emphasis on character stuff, I kind of wish we’d had the chance to see that.

    #259722
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    Red Dwarf doesn’t need “jokes” (Wilma Flinstone, Norweb etc) to be good.

    Character and conversational humour/ insults/ reveals here and there for the humour with a solid scifi plot is better than shoehorning in ‘Gags’ that are in general, not that funny anyway (Taiwan Tony, Formica, Moose etc) into episodes with a weak plot.

    I don’t know if that’s an unpopular opinion really, but from most Red Dwarf fans on the internet I see now, I think it is.

    “The giant floppy disk is the funniest thing Red Dwarf has ever done” – Twitter

    #259723
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    Doug should have ignored the fans and VIII should have taken the VII approach further
    Yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes I’ve been thinking this for years

    Backwards is full of gags, isn’t it? It’s just the gags are “thing but backwards” mostly

    The moose gag and the giant floppy disk gag are really funny though

    #259724
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    How do i KEEP getting quotes wrong, now? Have they changed the way it works? I don’t want to edit that, because that’s the second time it’s happened and I am annoyed and confused.

    #259725
    Dave
    Member

    Backwards, Polymorph and – particularly – The Inquisitor are all light on jokes. It might be why they’re not among my favourite episodes (although I do think they’re all very good).

    I think they’re all very funny episodes in their own way, but the humour often isn’t in simple setup/punchline form. It arises more from the characters and their interactions, and the situations.

    A bit more like the novels, in a way.

    Red Dwarf doesn’t need “jokes” (Wilma Flinstone, Norweb etc) to be good.

    Character and conversational humour/ insults/ reveals here and there for the humour with a solid scifi plot is better than shoehorning in ‘Gags’ that are in general, not that funny anyway

    Yes, this. The richest gags in Red Dwarf are never the ones that could slide easily into any sitcom, they’re the ones that are rooted in character more than anything.

    #259738
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    How do i KEEP getting quotes wrong, now? Have they changed the way it works? I don’t want to edit that, because that’s the second time it’s happened and I am annoyed and confused.

    You’re probably doing something wrong.

    #259744
    Plastic Percy
    Participant

    Series III is way overrated. For some reason, way more so than Series II or IV, there’s something about III that’s sloppy and doesn’t age very well. The effects, the humor, and even the storytelling (which can be really stream of consciousness) seem sort of loosey-goosey and not in a good way. Series III is often held up as one of the best, but it’s fine. Also, Polymorph, while having some good jokes, is a piece of shit and definitely not a classic.

    I agree. Parts of the set – the corridors made of white pallets and the cargo bay full of cardboard boxes – are really disappointing and dull to look at. There’s a weirdness to seeing the lovely new sleeping quarters on the awful old BBC cameras, compared to how it looked from IV onwards. Overall it just feels really dingy and dull to look at.

    Starbug’s cockpit is an absolute shambles of a design early on, with it looking particularly unfinished in Backwards. And I really can’t get past the obviousness of the wire extending from Chris, ready to eject him out of the cockpit roof.

    Kryten in III is the absolute worst mask Bobby Llew has worn. It looks clammy and fleshy, and gives Kryten quite a gaunt face.

    #259745
    si
    Participant

    Kryten in III is the absolute worst mask Bobby Llew has worn.

    It’s also the first.

    and gives Kryten quite a gaunt face.

    It’s also the younger, thinner face of a man in his mid-thirties.

    #259748
    Renegade Rob
    Participant

    “Red Dwarf doesn’t need jokes. Today is not the day to find out why it has so many.” -Eleventh Doctor (paraphrased)

    As a fan of Series VII, I obviously agree that doubling down on the VII format for VIII would’ve been preferable. The funny/sad thing is, for brief moments in VIII, some of what was missing in VII can be glimpsed: the Rimmer/Lister dynamic, the audience, and I’ll admit, Mac McDonald is game no matter how bad the episodes got. Much like the prequel/sequel trilogies of Star Wars compared to the original, VII/VIII are like triplicated half-copies of the classic 36 eps, with VII having the structure and pathos and VIII having a zany energy and swagger.

    I also agree that Red Dwarf’s best humor is plot/character-based instead of gag-based (although some gags still hold up obviously). The gags can work but usually when they do it ties into the character involved. The boxer shorts scene (my unpopular opinion of the day) isn’t that funny really because the setup is so contrived to get to that point. As genuinely fun as it is to hear the audience flip out, the groundwork laid to make that scene happen is a stretch, and not really character-based or even plot-based. Contrast that with, say Stasis Leak, where Cat freaks out at the “dog” strangling the woman in the lobby and attacks it. Isolated gag, sure, but it gels with Cat’s character and him being in the past, which is why I’ll take that over a million boxer short gags.

    Another Unpopular Opinion: Duct Soup is genuinely decent. Any episode that’s trying to be a spiritual successor to Marooned is at worst well-intentioned, and I’m surprised it doesn’t get more respect. While I get people not enjoying it, Duct Soup would be a good episode of any other sitcom. That kind of close-quarters bottle episode format is a trope for sure that both sitcoms and dramas do (like 17 People in the West Wing or Cooperative Calligraphy in Community) and while Duct Soup clearly isn’t as awesome as either of those examples, it’s gets at least partial credit from me for at least knowing to aspire to that (as opposed to VIII which aspired to dinosaur shit).

    Yet Another Unpopular Opinion: Justice is the perfect episode of Red Dwarf, and while I see it’s in a lot of people’s Top 20 or so, I’m flabbergasted that it’s not in more peoples’ Top 5 or even Top 10. It doesn’t really put a foot wrong. It’s one of the show’s most solid outings start-to-finish and while it maybe doesn’t have a memorable singular boxer gag to make it distinct, it’s pretty consistently stellar with a solid plot and intriguing sci-fi concepts, embodying the very best of Dwarf.

    One More Unpopular Opinion: While Holoship is one of my favorite Dwarf episodes, it does irk me whenever I watch it that the movie they’re watching at the beginning is so parallel to what happens at the end. Maybe Rimmer’s mentally using it as a template for his actions and even sort-of-quotes it, but the fact that the movie matches his situation exactly is so on the nose that I’m like oof, even though I love the episode overall.

    #259751
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    I’m a big fan of Renegade Rob’s opinions, even if I don’t agree with all of them. Those are some real opinions right there.

    My only problem with Justice is that it does the XI/XII thing of doing away with its villain extremely quickly. The simulant is only in it for about three minutes (I’m likely exaggerating). However, everything he does is excellent, and it’s only something I really noticed the last time I watched it, with such criticisms of XI and XII fresh in my mind. A perfect episode would be something like Holoship, for me, or… Tikka to Ride, honestly. Like Inquisitor, I like it for being extremely high concept within the confines of its sitcom roots.

    Holoship being on the nose is the gag, isn’t it? It’s what makes the yucky “I cannot believe I just said that” ending work, complete with the shmaltzy 50s movie “the end” title, or whatever. He absolutely is deliberately invoking the movie, at least at that point.

    #259754

    I like the fact the Simulant is done away with so quickly: he isn’t really the point of the episode, he’s just a fun coda. The same as the curry monster. It’s why I was happy that Asclepius was dealth with in the same way: I’m not big on ‘the crew vs. a monster’ type stories. The best antagonists are ones who reveal a lot about the characters, rather than simply things that exist just to offer a threat. In fact, threat and peril aren’t really why I watch Red Dwarf at all.

    #259756
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    It feels a bit like the Simulant is just something they had to deal with because they did the gag in the intro about thinking it’s Barbara Bellini or whoever. The episode forgets about him, as if the writers had. Maybe Justice would have been better had it focused entirely on the Justice World concept, or focused more on the Simulant. As it stands it’s a bit like the “shit we need to put a monster in this episode or people will think it’s boring” problem that plagues Doctor Who. It’s still a great episode though so maybe either alternative would actually be worse. If I remember right, the stuff deleted from Justice wasn’t particularly good anyway so maybe “more Justice” would be equally unimpressive. DNA monster at least felt like a logical progression of what the DNA machine would do, but you’re right that it is another thing that’s introduced and dealt with very quickly. It’s basically the end to Officer Rimmer with a one-liner and a not-particularly-funny ending scene after it.

    Do people like Lister really pronounce Michigan with a hard CH sound?

    #259759
    Renegade Rob
    Participant

    Aww thanks. I’m a big fan of your opinion on my opinion. But since this is a thread on unpopular opinions, I’m clearly doing a crummy job.

    The Simulant thing didn’t bother me because it’s good structure. They need to deal with the pod problem, they cross the threshold into the Justice Complex, master it’s Justice Field, then use that to rectify the problem that brought them there in the first place.

    I’m in the US and I’ve never heard anyone pronounce Michigan with a hard CH. I’ve also never heard anyone use the phrase “It’ll be a whole lease of line for both of us.” Lease on life, sure. But lease of line? Why would you take out a lease on a 1-dimensional object? It just isn’t done.

    #259761
    Dave
    Member

    It feels a bit like the Simulant is just something they had to deal with because they did the gag in the intro about thinking it’s Barbara Bellini or whoever. The episode forgets about him, as if the writers had.

    I always felt like the whole point is that they get sidetracked and the viewer is encouraged to forget about the simulant so that it can be a surprise when he suddenly turns up.

    #259763
    Dax101
    Participant

    I don’t think the simulant was done away with too quickly. we knew in the pod that was set up at the start that was either a killing machine or Barbra Bellini. it turned out to be the killing machine. and then we moved into the Justice field phase where they then had to deal with the killing machine that was after them.

    I think he was on screen for about the right amount really. i don’t really know what else you could have done with him.

    Structurally the only reason why they went to Justice world was to find out who was in the pod safely. but i guess they didn’t realize they would be judged themselves in doing so. then obviously they set up the justice field effect where everything you do comes back to bite you. so it all kinda comes together.

    #259764
    RunawayTrain
    Participant

    Do people like Lister really pronounce Michigan with a hard CH sound?

    I’m very much not a person like Lister, but not having heard ‘Michigan’ pronounced until my 20s, before that I thought it had a hard CH. I don’t know whether Lister as a character would have had that reason though (nor Craig Charles as an actor – if he didn’t initially know, plenty of people around him for rehearsals and whilst recording would have known). Maybe a flub – just like I think “a whole lease of line” was – and for whatever reason just wasn’t picked up, or at least not picked up in time to do anything about it.

    #259769
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    I’m just going to be serious for a moment and explain my favourite aspect of Stoke Me A Clipper: for once, Lister grows up a little, and plays along, letting Rimmer have his sendoff. He momentarily tosses aside all the animosity, all the jokes, and gives Rimmer a true, heartfelt goodbye. It’s incredibly touching, and one of the most genuine expressions of emotion between the two we’ve had in the show’s entire run. He’s actively nice to Rimmer, for one of only a few times.

    VII is great on the character front, I love how the Lister/Rimmer relationship develops even into Series VIII. In Series VIII, Lister is older, wiser, and more fond of Rimmer, you can tell he’s really relishing being back with his old “buddy”, pulling pranks on him and making him flip his lid again. He’s even willing to help Rimmer by giving him access to Starbug’s files and the positive viruses. Of course, Rimmer then fucks it all up, and Lister gets Rimmer raped. But, uh. Yeah.

    I just love how much Lister is clearly relishing being able to make fun of Rimmer again, like old times
    Imagine it, for him, it pretty much is reliving the past, something most people can never do
    The absolute abandon with which Lister just tells Rimmer the most ridiculous stories and tries to get him to snap
    Genuinely a great character moment, coming from VII where he was so sad to see him go, and missed him so much

    #259771
    Dave
    Member

    I’m just going to be serious for a moment and explain my favourite aspect of Stoke Me A Clipper: for once, Lister grows up a little, and plays along, letting Rimmer have his sendoff. He momentarily tosses aside all the animosity, all the jokes, and gives Rimmer a true, heartfelt goodbye. It’s incredibly touching, and one of the most genuine expressions of emotion between the two we’ve had in the show’s entire run. He’s actively nice to Rimmer, for one of only a few times.

    I rewatched this episode just yesterday and this stood out for me too. It reminded me a little of the ‘moonlight’ moment from Promised Land.

    If Doug genuinely thought Chris might not ever be returning to the show again, and wanted to write the final ever exchanges between Lister and Rimmer, that episode does it quite well I think. Including the lovely touch of giving Rimmer a post-posthumous honor and making him an officer.

    #259773
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    Absolutely, yeah, I agree. I was going to say it’s THE most genuine moment of friendship between Lister and Rimmer in the show, but then I remembered The Promised Land. And possibly Thank for the Memories, too.

    #259774
    GlenTokyo
    Member

    I would agree that there’s a lot to like about Duct Soup, the swirling windy/ whooshy watery noises etc stuff is good fun, as is the visual stuff of them being blown around and washed out.

    I just think the writing lets it down when it tries to expand on backstory, it’s very 90’s too, Lister’s bollock naked story is alright but a bit off, might be the performance too, and the “gay fear” that was about and crept into other shows too, can think of examples in Friends and The Simpsons so at least Red Dwarf is in esteemed company, but if I could I would delete the whole Bent Bob shit from existence.

    I can believe that Lister would be claustrophobic, why not? People have claustrophobia? But when you have a character that’s spent years stuck in a) outer space, and b) a small craft in outer space, it’s a bit out of the blue.

    #259775

    Although I don’t like the superhero Ace idea in general, I do agree that Stoke is a lovely episode for Rimmer in general. It’s very flawed, in a VII way, but I’ve warmed to it a lot over the years and, for the most part, definitely enjoy it these days.

    Duct Soup is a wonderful episode for the Cat. Roaring noise, boy is it cramped in here, coming down in the wardrobe… he has plenty of great moments. Not sure anybody else does, though.

    #259776
    Dave
    Member

    I can believe that Lister would be claustrophobic, why not? People have claustrophobia? But when you have a character that’s spent years stuck in a) outer space, and b) a small craft in outer space, it’s a bit out of the blue.

    Especially given that in the novels he lives in a small luggage locker.

    #259777
    Renegade Rob
    Participant

    I agree about Stoke Me a Clipper showing Lister’s maturation and being legitimately touching. It was a very good sendoff overall and the coffin sequence still holds up pretty well even with the subpar VII-era CGI, and I’m glad to see others enjoy it too, as it’s held up as a classic among my circle of friends (in isolation, the Ace opener with the smash cut to the rock theme song is a fuck yeah moment). It’s interesting to think of Lister and Rimmer’s relationship in VIII as Lister relishing in it. I think that’s spot on, but when Rimmer taunts him when he first shows up again, it’s the last thing Lister needs. The scene where Lister explains how much he’s matured to the old Rimmer is one of the few VIII scenes I legitimately like, where you see the glimpse of what could have been if the idea was better-executed.

    Another Unpopular Opinion: When people cite the “first 10 minutes of Legion” as being classic, does that include the peanuts/dancing moose bit? Because while the “red alert” sequence is classic, the changeover stuff before that is only very good and not classic. There. I said it.

    #259854

    I think my unpopular opinion is that Red Dwarf needs jokes and a studio audience (just not shit jokes or the laughter from the audience too loud in the mix). There, I said it. Phew! This bravery thing is hard work.

    #259861
    bloodteller
    Member

    my unpopular opinion is the “red alert” stuff isn’t funny at all…i’ve never got why that’s one of the most often mentioned scenes, when there’s so much stuff that’s way way better

    #259874
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    It’s well-delivered, and the idea of having to change the bulb on the alert sign is not only ridiculous, but also indicative of how low-tech and shambolic Starbug is, and it provides a bit of gritty realism to the scenario.

    The red alert gag is one of the most accessible and yet fundamentally “Red Dwarf” gags. It’s a gag you’d only really hear in Red Dwarf, it is VERY Red Dwarf, and it takes little to no setup or explanation of the show to understand. There are other, funnier gags which are 1) longer, 2) require more setup, 3) require greater knowledge of the characters and their situation, 4) just aren’t as snappy, 5) are more generic “gags” that could come from any show, etc, etc. Red Alert is quickfire, easy to digest, encompasses the show, and delivered well, which makes it very clippable, a very easy thing to show your mate, or put in a documentary/clip show, to get people laughing quickly and getting what it’s all about.

    These days I use the opening to Stoke, or explain the Sensational Reverse Brothers bit if I want to get somebody interested. Neither are particularly indicative of the show, but they’re funny and absurd, high concept etc, the kind of thing that would make somebody go “oh that sounds like an interesting, non-typical show.”

    #259875
    Dave
    Member

    These days I use the opening to Stoke

    Also known as the M6 Junction 15.

    #259876

    One thing I can say in defence of the red alert joke is, to this day, I can still remember the first time I saw it. I don’t remember much of my pre-teen Red Dwarf viewings, but I will always recall laughing so hard at that. It might be overplayed, but as a gag it’s just superb. Brilliantly written, nicely surprising, and perfectly performed.

    #259877
    si
    Participant

    These days I use the opening to Stoke

    Also known as the M6 Junction 15.

    • applauds *
    #259878
    Ben Saunders
    Member

    I’m applauding both Dave’s gag and si’s proper use of doublequotes

    #259881
    Ian Symes
    Keymaster

    I’ve just seen a guy on Twitter ranking all the series/specials of Red Dwarf, and he put Series VIII one ahead of Series V. It takes all sorts.

    #259886
    si
    Participant

    If its the same as I saw, he put The Promised Land bottom, one behind Back To Earth.

    #259887
    Dave
    Member

    We need a new G&T poll now to see where Promised Land falls.

    #259889
    Ian Symes
    Keymaster

    You’ll find out on February 15th 2023.

    #259890
    bloodteller
    Member

    in response to the above about using the “Red Alert” gag to introduce somebody to Red Dwarf, i can honestly say if that was the first Red Dwarf thing i saw, i’d never have watched the show at all. it’s not like i don’t get the joke or anything, i just think it’s really not funny and a particularly poor example to introduce someone to the show.

    when i started watching Red Dwarf with my boyfriend a while ago, we started on The End and that got him pretty into the show. surely that’s a good place to start, the opening of that is a good scene with some jokes and stuff

    #259892
    Ian Symes
    Keymaster

    I don’t agree with the dislike for the light bulb gag, but I will say that it’s not even the best light fitting based joke in that episode.

    #259893
    quinn_drummer
    Participant

    You’ll find out on February 15th 2023.

    We might not all live that long. YOU might not live that long. Is it really worth the risk?

    #259896
    Pete Part Three
    Participant

    I don’t agree with the dislike for the light bulb gag, but I will say that it’s not even the best light fitting based joke in that episode.

    I mostly agree, but the other one is more about the delivery of it than the (rather silly) construction.

    #259897
    Renegade Rob
    Participant

    To me the actual “red alert” bulb gag isn’t even as funny as when they first turn on the blue alert and Kryten just sort of points at it. It’s all in service to the characters, with Rimmer insisting on the formalism and Kryten’s bemused pointing at the alert bringing it home. The “red alert” follow-up is just the icing on the cake.

    #259898
    tombow
    Member

    Well, “it does mean changing the bulb” is one of my all time RD moments. I always chuckle just thinking about it.

Viewing 368 posts - 1 through 368 (of 368 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.