Author Topic: Red Dwarf rewatch  (Read 9099 times)

Lemming

  • Better a "lapdog to a slip of a girl" than a.. GIT
Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #60 on: September 14, 2020, 05:52:05 PM »
The thought just occurred - in "The End", Todhunter refers to the ship's full crew size as being something like 120 - 130 people. In "Justice", it goes up to like 2000 or something ridiculous. I wonder why they decided to make that change. Maybe because by that point they'd added a bunch of science rooms, advanced medical bays, research labs, hangars and other shit to the ship which made it increasingly odd that the crew size was so small.

Speaking of which, I like that the ship is kind of shitty in the first two series. No real scientific equipment as far as I remember, no cool advanced tech, no Starbug (only the far crappier Blue Midgets), just a naff mining ship with a bit of asteroid stuck to its hull. Pretty sure they even refer to the "scoop" at some point in the first series when they're bringing something aboard, maybe the garbage pod in "Waiting for God".

Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #61 on: September 14, 2020, 06:02:49 PM »
One of the many things they changed in the novels and carried over into the show.

The crew size was changed as they didn't feel 169 felt like the right crew size for a ship 5 miles wide so they added an extra 1 to it.

They also change Lister's relationship with Kochanski as they felt him pining for a woman he had hardly even spoken to felt too immature for Lister by that point. Which is funny really because in III through VI she is hardly mentioned aside from the Psirens appearance.

Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #62 on: September 14, 2020, 06:05:34 PM »
The increased crew number also hammered home just how lowly Rimmer and Lister’s roles in the ranks were. Didn’t matter to Lister - he was just in it for the pay cheque, but his role defined Rimmer.

BeardFaceMan

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Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #63 on: September 14, 2020, 06:17:53 PM »
That's one of the major things that annoyed me about Red Dwarf was the disregard for continuity. They'd write themselves into a corner and then just say "fuck it" and write something contradictory. The size of the ship, the number of crew, Lister s double appendix, the year theyre from, it was a bit crap that they didnt care enough to stick to their own universe lore. One of the reasons why new Partridge is so good, theres a lot of history there and they try to pay attention to it.

Lemming

  • Better a "lapdog to a slip of a girl" than a.. GIT
Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #64 on: September 14, 2020, 10:07:51 PM »
As long as we're going balls-deep into Red Dwarf lore, what happened to George McIntyre? He was the active hologram at the time of the disaster, and presumably he was unaffected by the Cadmium-2 explosion. Did Holly just shut him off straight away? Did he stay on the ship alone for 3 million years before being replaced by Rimmer (assuming Rimmer was activated very shortly before Lister was released from stasis)? You'd assume that procedure in the event of the entire crew being killed would be for Holly to activate Hollister's hologram. Maybe he deactivated George and activated Hollister immediately, and Hollister just gave Holly the order to take the ship out of the solar system since the radiation levels were too dangerous to attempt a salvage of the ship, or a rescue of Lister? And then ordered that his own hologram be shut off, leaving Holly alone for millions of years? Welcome to the RED DWARF OVER-ANALYSIS ZONE.

S01E02 Future Echoes

One of my favourites and a rewatch has only reinforced that view. The early Rimmer-Lister dynamic is front and centre, and there's a wealth of great stuff coming from it. Barrie's performance in the first series is outstanding and there's so much funny shit just in the first few minutes - the rant at Lister followed by "clock stop! not a bad little time for the mile - pity I was only doing the 300 meters", then the deluded attempt to cut his time down, the argument with Holly, the line about his dad's suicide (which absolutely fucking floors me every time) and the hair situation had me laughing the whole way through even though I more or less knew every line in advance. "THIS IS A HAIRCUT DESIGNED FOR ACTION, NOT FOR PONCING AROUND IN."

The science fiction isn't bad here either. A cool idea and the kind of thing that would easily and effortlessly fit into a deadly-serious TNG episode. Most importantly, the comedy and sci-fi blend together perfectly, which is what's so great about Red Dwarf at its best. The future echoes are unironically unnerving and spooky and yet they're also used almost entirely as fuel for laughs, like the Drive Room "deja vu" conversation and future-Lister managing to fuck with Rimmer from a century away. The comedy doesn't compromise the sci-fi and the sci-fi doesn't compromise the comedy, instead they work to uplift each other.

The low-key nature of the bickering between Rimmer and Lister is ace, I love this exchange in particular:
Quote
LISTER: It must be something to do with lightspeed.
RIMMER: Holly, what's going on?
LISTER: It's lightspeed, I bet you.
RIMMER: Is your name Holly?
LISTER: (Mocking RIMMER) Is your name Holly?

Wonderfully petty from both of them, and it's delivered in such a believable and understated way.

Only continuity/logic fuckup in this episode is... since Lister and Cat were getting ready to go into stasis at the start, why do they completely abandon that plan from this point onwards? I guess Lister wants to stick around to have Jim and Bexley, but since the future echoes seem to be guaranteed to happen, he'd end up with them even if he did go into stasis.

Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #65 on: September 14, 2020, 10:16:31 PM »
I fucking love ME2 as well as Queeg. it's perfect how a copy of Rimmer ends up being a complete dickhead to Rimmer. it's wonderfully written how the two are the exactly same person but act with different motivations

The Mollusk

  • The answer my friend is blowing in the mind
Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #66 on: September 14, 2020, 10:38:50 PM »
As long as we're going balls-deep into Red Dwarf lore, what happened to George McIntyre? He was the active hologram at the time of the disaster, and presumably he was unaffected by the Cadmium-2 explosion. Did Holly just shut him off straight away? Did he stay on the ship alone for 3 million years before being replaced by Rimmer (assuming Rimmer was activated very shortly before Lister was released from stasis)? You'd assume that procedure in the event of the entire crew being killed would be for Holly to activate Hollister's hologram. Maybe he deactivated George and activated Hollister immediately, and Hollister just gave Holly the order to take the ship out of the solar system since the radiation levels were too dangerous to attempt a salvage of the ship, or a rescue of Lister? And then ordered that his own hologram be shut off, leaving Holly alone for millions of years? Welcome to the RED DWARF OVER-ANALYSIS ZONE.

I'd be more interested in a George McIntyre revival special than the guff we got with Promised Land. Remember he did vow to KILL anyone who took his place as ship hologram! Two hours of terror in deep space being chased round the ship by the memory of a dorky Welshman.

I've just read that in the novels it's revealed that George actually killed himself to escape loan sharks and a space mafia. Sounds pretty wack to me.

Anyway, doesn't Holly state at some point early on that he's been on his own for 3 million years and it's "sent [him] a bit peculiar"? So whatever happened to George's hologram is unknown (you could probably play that off as being a temporary power outage during the blast or something), as is whatever happened in the interim, but Holly would appear to have been on his own right until Lister came out of stasis.

Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #67 on: September 14, 2020, 10:40:27 PM »
Yeah the George McIntyre expansion is really quite funny. He's ecstatic about being dead. Honestly the first two books are the best.

Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #68 on: September 14, 2020, 10:52:43 PM »
That's one of the major things that annoyed me about Red Dwarf was the disregard for continuity. They'd write themselves into a corner and then just say "fuck it" and write something contradictory. The size of the ship, the number of crew, Lister s double appendix, the year theyre from, it was a bit crap that they didnt care enough to stick to their own universe lore. One of the reasons why new Partridge is so good, theres a lot of history there and they try to pay attention to it.

I think in terms of inconsistent continuity, you could definitely say Series 3 qualifies as a "soft reboot", where they effectively rewrote parts of the backstory to accommodate the changes in the show, with only a brief throwaway explanation as to why everything is suddenly completely different. But at least they bothered to try and explain it back then, post Series 6 if feels like Doug just isn't arsed about any inconsistencies.

Captain Z

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Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #69 on: September 14, 2020, 11:43:42 PM »
Expanding on lemming's point, is there an explanation in the books (or in the show that I've missed) why Red Dwarf is floating around lost in deep space? Holly must have planned to release Lister from stasis once the radiation levels were safe from an early stage, and therefore should have planned to keep the ship in a location near the solar system?

Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #70 on: September 15, 2020, 12:13:24 AM »
Expanding on lemming's point, is there an explanation in the books (or in the show that I've missed) why Red Dwarf is floating around lost in deep space? Holly must have planned to release Lister from stasis once the radiation levels were safe from an early stage, and therefore should have planned to keep the ship in a location near the solar system?

Had to become as remote as possible to present no danger to any passing ships or habitable planets.

Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #71 on: September 15, 2020, 12:16:08 AM »
"three million years??!?!


I've still got that library book"

such perfect bathos delivery

BeardFaceMan

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Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #72 on: September 15, 2020, 12:46:20 AM »
Welcome to the RED DWARF OVER-ANALYSIS ZONE.

Some say "over analysis", some say "basic storytelling errors and conversations that the authors really should have done themselves". Potayto, potahto...

Quote

Only continuity/logic fuckup in this episode is... since Lister and Cat were getting ready to go into stasis at the start, why do they completely abandon that plan from this point onwards? I guess Lister wants to stick around to have Jim and Bexley, but since the future echoes seem to be guaranteed to happen, he'd end up with them even if he did go into stasis.

Yeah its annoying when they have a major plot point like Lister going back into stasis and then completely ignore it. Would it be a so hard to have a few lines of dialogue from Lister in another episode giving a reason why he didnt want to go back into stasis? He'd grown attatched to Rimmer and Cat and didnt want to leave them, he was afraid something would happen to the ship and he wouldnt come back out, anything, just make a bit of an effort at keeping track of what youve written.

They also wrote themselves into a corner with the future version of Lister, basically saying in the 2nd show of the series that they never get back to Earth. Although they've ignored that, obviously.

I think in terms of inconsistent continuity, you could definitely say Series 3 qualifies as a "soft reboot", where they effectively rewrote parts of the backstory to accommodate the changes in the show, with only a brief throwaway explanation as to why everything is suddenly completely different. But at least they bothered to try and explain it back then, post Series 6 if feels like Doug just isn't arsed about any inconsistencies.

I can overlook some of the inconsistencies in the first 2 series as they're finding their feet as sitcom writers and probably didn't realize the show was going to run for so long so didn't give much forward thought to things, it's pretty inexcusable in the later series though, it's just lazy writing from Doug.


phes

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Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #73 on: September 15, 2020, 07:04:32 AM »
I fucking love ME2 as well as Queeg. it's perfect how a copy of Rimmer ends up being a complete dickhead to Rimmer. it's wonderfully written how the two are the exactly same person but act with different motivations

It's great and rimmer is gold for that kind of episode because of his internal conflict. Either he genuinely wants success, status, to be an officer, or he's been conditioned to think he should by his parents and the success of his brother/s. And it's probably not his ability that stops him, it's either that he doesn't really want it, or his crippling neuroses and fear of failure stops him ever achieving that (see how his exam failure always stems from terrible procrastination - something that's suggested in the series with the exam timetable he compiled that took up the majority of the time he had to revise for exams. And if memory serves me right they elaborate further on that in the books. In fact Rimmer probably despises Lister so much partly because Lister embraces his relative lack of ambition and gets to enjoy the upside of that, without suffering same mental torture Rimmer puts himself through. Rimmer constantly subjects himself to the worst of both worlds and that's Me^2 and later to some extent Dimension Jump, one side of him rounding on the other

Lemming

  • Better a "lapdog to a slip of a girl" than a.. GIT
Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #74 on: September 15, 2020, 07:37:47 AM »
Can't remember whether or not the episode makes it explicit, but another great thing about Me2 is the possibility that the reason Rimmer2 is so hostile is because he was created from a disk that, presumably, contained a copy of Rimmer's mind at the time of the disaster. In other words, Rimmer2 didn't have the experience of being alone with Lister for several months that "our" Rimmer had.

It's a great way to show that Rimmer is starting to soften a little and take on some of Lister's characteristics, and gives him a rare feeling of what it was like to be in Lister's position in the earliest days after the disaster - having a demented Rimmer screaming in your ear about "ambition" and "drive" and ordering you to wake up at insane hours.

Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #75 on: September 15, 2020, 08:48:23 AM »
A little more is in the original assembly (made up of the original recording night without the extensive reshoots) which is on the Blu-Ray and can also be found here.

You could gaslight someone really hard with that footage. Announce a Dwarf night then casually slip it on without further explanation, make a big speech about fragile memories and how things never seem the same. You could do it with everything that has a pilot. They'd go insane.

Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #76 on: September 15, 2020, 09:37:51 AM »
I think in terms of inconsistent continuity, you could definitely say Series 3 qualifies as a "soft reboot", where they effectively rewrote parts of the backstory to accommodate the changes in the show, with only a brief throwaway explanation as to why everything is suddenly completely different. But at least they bothered to try and explain it back then, post Series 6 if feels like Doug just isn't arsed about any inconsistencies.

I'm quite confused how you can describe solo Doug Dwarf as being loose with continuity. I can only think of changing Kochanski's backstory (which had already been done anyway) and changing the time machine to travel in space as well as time (explained with the line "dimensions have merged to cope with the paradox"). Doug's solo stuff, particularly the recent couple of series, have leant heavily on continuity references.

Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #77 on: September 15, 2020, 09:57:46 AM »
"three million years??!?!


I've still got that library book"

such perfect bathos delivery

Entirely ruined in the US version; "my baseball cards must be worth a FORTUNE!"

The joke was in the very mundane worry. They RUINED it.

Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #78 on: September 15, 2020, 10:01:06 AM »
The first US pilot did have one really great line. Lister and Rimmer walk into Kryten's head which had been left on a shelf and they ask him "what have you been doing for three million years" and he replies "I've been reading that fire exit sign".

Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #79 on: September 15, 2020, 10:01:36 AM »
I'm quite confused how you can describe solo Doug Dwarf as being loose with continuity. I can only think of changing Kochanski's backstory (which had already been done anyway) and changing the time machine to travel in space as well as time (explained with the line "dimensions have merged to cope with the paradox"). Doug's solo stuff, particularly the recent couple of series, have leant heavily on continuity references.

I think having Baby Cow on board for the last couple of series and the specials really helped Doug out. Instead of having to be on top of every single element of the show, he got to primarily be the writer and director.

It's still astonishing just how close Red Dwarf 10 was to being entirely junked and unfinished.

Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #80 on: September 15, 2020, 10:04:20 AM »
The first US pilot did have one really great line. Lister and Rimmer walk into Kryten's head which had been left on a shelf and they ask him "what have you been doing for three million years" and he replies "I've been reading that fire exit sign".

There's a couple of different edits of the "first" pilot, which are different in many ways. Neither are entirely awful. Jane Leeves and thingy playing Lister are terrific. With a bit more work, it could've...worked.

The second pilot (such as it is) also has good moments, though marred by the 50p budget meaning it's just the cast reading UK scripts in front of rags and pallets.

Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #81 on: September 15, 2020, 10:06:12 AM »
The US Red Dwarf pilot is such a wonderful oddity. I'm so glad it exists as it should act as the dictionary definition for shitty US remakes that utterly misunderstood what made the original work.

"David Lister, a chiseled, 7-foot, tanned hunk of a loser strode confidently down the corridor of the mining ship Red Dwarf" - Right, let me stop you there.

Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #82 on: September 15, 2020, 10:17:29 AM »
Craig Bierko was great as Lister, I thought. They just didn't re-write the part for him.

When Craig Charles was cast they had to change the part to be much younger than intended. It was Alfred Molina in line for the part of Lister before Charles got it.

Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #83 on: September 15, 2020, 10:26:24 AM »
Yeah true, it wasn't Bierko's fault at all. Just fault like the showrunners had immediately missed the mark.

Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #84 on: September 15, 2020, 02:48:24 PM »
Craig Bierko was great as Lister, I thought. They just didn't re-write the part for him.

When Craig Charles was cast they had to change the part to be much younger than intended. It was Alfred Molina in line for the part of Lister before Charles got it.

I've only seen Bierko as a sleazy TV exec in UnReal, I can;t imagine him playing Lister...even a version that's not allowed to be as much of a loser.

rue the polywhirl

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Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #85 on: September 15, 2020, 05:38:27 PM »
Watched all of S2 and it’s put me right in the mood to watch the show from the beginning. Love the bleaker feel of the first couple of seasons. First 3 episodes very good. Ep4. Waiting For God not near as much a classic. Ep5. Confidence and Paranoia. Rimmer calls Lister a monkey and then does monkey impressions of him...

Ladies and Gentlemen, we regret to inform you Red Dwarf rewatch is cancelled.

Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #86 on: September 15, 2020, 05:46:50 PM »
Watched all of S2 and it’s put me right in the mood to watch the show from the beginning. Love the bleaker feel of the first couple of seasons. First 3 episodes very good. Ep4. Waiting For God not near as much a classic. Ep5. Confidence and Paranoia. Rimmer calls Lister a monkey and then does monkey impressions of him...

Ladies and Gentlemen, we regret to inform you Red Dwarf rewatch is cancelled.

That does remind me of somebody who was a fan of the show but said that they were not sure about the first couple of series due to Rimmer occasionally being racist towards Lister by referring to him as "mulatto". They were mishearing "m'laddio".

the

Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #87 on: September 15, 2020, 06:02:05 PM »
Watched all of S2 and it’s put me right in the mood to watch the show from the beginning. Love the bleaker feel of the first couple of seasons. First 3 episodes very good. Ep4. Waiting For God not near as much a classic. Ep5. Confidence and Paranoia. Rimmer calls Lister a monkey and then does monkey impressions of him...

Rimmer refers to Lister as a monkey to the Cat, in reference to human beings being evolutionarily earlier than Felis sapiens.


      CAT: Hey, you monkeys eat off the floor?!

Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #88 on: September 15, 2020, 07:15:07 PM »
It seems a bit weird in retrospect that Robert Llewellyn was the only UK cast member to be in the US pilot, did they think he was really American or something?

Re: Red Dwarf rewatch
« Reply #89 on: September 15, 2020, 07:20:35 PM »
It seems a bit weird in retrospect that Robert Llewellyn was the only UK cast member to be in the US pilot, did they think he was really American or something?

They wanted Chris Barrie for the second US pilot, but he refused.

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