Back to Earth: The Whole Thing

Discussion in 'RED DWARF UNIVERSE' started by Andrew, Apr 12, 2009.

  1. Ronstar

    Ronstar Third Technician

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    Well, while I've posted afew times in the threads for this three part special, but I have only discussed speculation and plot rather than give an opinion. So now it's opinion time:

    As an enjoyable Red Dwarf adventure romp, "Back To Earth" ticked most boxes, though was a little slow in places. I enjoyed it a lot, though, and at the moment I'd say it ranks about midway up my mental rankings of the 55 episodes.

    I thought the plot was a little lacking in imagination, though, and while the appearance of Kochanski was extremely unexpected (even after they'd worked out that it was Kochanski who was approaching, I expected it to turn out to be someone / something else), there seemed to be a lot of loose elements that could have been removed to speed the story up without damaging the plot. The resolution of the plot felt a bit flat to me, and even in those final scenes back on Red Dwarf I was waiting for some special twist (an overused technique, I grant you - almost every horror movie has a false ending before the baddy finally gets defeated).

    I found the humour sometimes a bit hit and miss, but the funniest moments in the specials were genuinely hillarious for me, while other gags seemed to drag a bit (the sneeze ironing, and the slapstic with Lister at the typewriter).

    Only two things actually annoy me about the specials. The first is the title sequence. It just seemed a little lack-lustre and for some reason which I don't even understand, I didn't like having the actors' names in the titles, nor the episode title... Or the Red Dwarf logo being on them twice. However, the titles are a minor quibble which I'll get over after a bit of councelling.

    However, what I do find a little unforgiveable is the Katerina character. In the end, she had no real function in the story at all, just there as a little red herring. Her high prominence in part one seemed to be setting her up to be doing something big and sinister, but in the end she barely appeared in part two and was a distant memory by part three. Everything she did to move the plot along could have been done by a different character. An established character. An established character who was painfully absent from these specials. Holly.

    The reasons we were given for the lack of Holly in the specials was that there simply wasn't enough money to bring everyone back. And yet at the same time they introduced a new character who served no function. Would it have been TOO difficult to give Sophie Winkleman's pay cheque to either Norman Lovett or Hattie Hayridge instead?! For a 21st anniversary special, it would have been pleasing to have a full reunion and it would have given Holly a chance to actually be involved in the plot in a way the character hasn't been since 'White Hole'. A missed opportunity I think. :/

    But overall - Back To Earth: B+. :-)

    Ronnie
     
  2. nitefly

    nitefly Third Technician

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    I liked it.

    It definately shouldn't have been split up though.
     
  3. deepSnoozer

    deepSnoozer Third Technician

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    Def. one of my top 10 Red Dwarf Epsiodes

    somewhere along:

    Back to Reality
    Quarentine
    Time Slides
    MeltDown
    Back to Earth
    Stroke me a Keeper
     
  4. EternusNex

    EternusNex Third Technician

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    Well i said i wanted to wait until i saw them all before i judged.

    And i agree with the majority that ive seen on the boards, i liked it.
    It wasn't what i expected but after watching it all it makes sense and is a perfect lead into series IX if there will be one
    It would have been better as a full lump of Dwarf in one night but thats what tomorrow is for.

    Personally i'm hoping for a series IX and a X at the very latest and not because they were referenced in the specials.

    Series IX - the hunt for Kochanski would be similar to series VI and VII but the dynamic would be different as they would be on the crimson short one instead of starbug.
    Series X would be the real return to earth simply because its always knowen the planned ending to be getting back to earth but crashing through well known landmarks and end up swapping insurance details with whoever inhabits the planet.
    Now if the series is picked up again we know Lister wont go home without Kochanski and she already has a big head start so two more series are needed to give it a proper finish.
     
  5. murdybhoy

    murdybhoy Skutter

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    loved it

    really hope its went well and more come out, roll on series 9
     
  6. Wuggyboobeaufuf

    Wuggyboobeaufuf Third Technician

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    Since when?
     
  7. EternusNex

    EternusNex Third Technician

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    didnt doug say that was the way he wanted to finish the series if he ever had the chance. im sure thats what it was. smeg im gonna go check now
     
  8. garfie

    garfie Catering Officer

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    I wasn't particularly keen on it. I didn't hate it but I did spend far too much time wincing rather than laughing. There were some jokes that just seemed to be crying out for a different take (The space corps directive - as someone said in a different topic, Rimmer should have got it right. The landing sequence in carbug - it just felt like someone should have ending by saying something like "hang on - what the hell was that for when we were just parking a car".)

    It seemed a lot like Back to Reality 2 - Back to Earth rather than a new episode. Doug has had some fantastic ideas for series 7 (and one or two for series 8) but this one didn't seem as good.

    The whole thing seemed like an idea that needed a couple more re-writes to get it sorted and to put some jokes in. The only decent joke I can think of is the 'in my country we have several' one. Most of the others were just kind of painful. And it is one thing making in jokes about films but this seemed to be more copying wholesale (granted I haven't seen Bladerunner so I could be wrong - but the stuff I do know and have read on here makes it sound that way)

    I miss having the audience. Not because as some people have put it 'I need them to tell me when to laugh' but because it seems to raise the actors game so much. They play off the audience so well - I was watching the Smeg Ups and there is a joke where Chris Barrie mucks up a line and just kinda stops looking slightly down and then at the perfect moment when the audience stops laughing, looks guiltily at the camera generating an even bigger laugh. And that is just an outtake.

    I still can't decide if Rimmer pushing whats-her-name under the bus is funny or not. The bullets with their names on was just corny and the Ommpa Loompa Rimmers were worrying.

    By the way - Drumjay - how much did they base the head of the fanclub on you?
     
  9. dwafer

    dwafer Skutter

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    My whole family have watched Red Dwarf since we were young. The actors are all VERY tallented. We were all looking forward to see the new episodes for ages. I'm sorry to say we were very disapointed, this was no fault of the actors, the script let it down and the guys did the best they could. The BBC low budget feel to the lived in sets was also missing. I hope there will be more to it as it should finish on a high. :crying:
     
  10. SilverBlade

    SilverBlade Skutter

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    MOAR!

    I thoroughly enjoyed these new episodes, even if it did parody/spoof Blade Runner and had some corny moments, and reused the "despair squid".

    The hologram being pushed into the road made me seriously laugh out loud, as did Rimmer bashing his crotch into the corner of the desk in part 3.

    It's certainly different to the older episodes, a little eerie in some ways, but I hope that this is at the very least a way to seed future episodes. I'll be getting the DVD when its out.
     
  11. Giant

    Giant Skutter

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    Thank you guys. I was so much looking forward to this and when i heard that classy red dwarf jokes again i felt my heart warm and giggle at once. You did brilliant job and just at the time i thought it's going to hell (you know which scene i mean) you've saved it and totally blown my head off.
    From 1 to 10 where 10 is the best i give 9 to Back to Earth trilogy.
    So once again thank you Red Dwarf team and next time use some of Holly in there :-)
     
  12. beesbees

    beesbees Skutter

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    It would've worked so much better not split into parts; when seen as one episode it follows the classic formula: Ship -> Adventure/Event -> Ship. Normally this is all compressed into half an hour - which is probabaly why people criticised the first episode for dragging.

    As a whole, I think it was pretty damn good... but split in parts, maybe not.
     
  13. ST4RBUG1

    ST4RBUG1 Third Technician

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    as a whole Back to Earth was amazing: funny, emotional and now thanks to Dave, its been given a proper ending if no more series are made. if more were to be made of similar quality though im sure Red Dwarf could go on for many more years yet.

    Thankyou to everyone who took part.
     
  14. josefk

    josefk Skutter

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    Reasonably successful. enjoyable. Overall, it felt more "mature" and reflective... especially Lister. It's nearly a decade since the last episodes, so perhaps it's unrealistic to expect the writing and acting not to have changed? The lack of laugh track altered the feel too. Don't know - I'm not sure I would want a straight recreation of the old RD after so long; I think I prefer the different tack - change - not radical change - but more richness; although it might alienate many... and could be heretical, me being a more casual RD fan. Of course it could fall flat in a new series; I hope it just needs time to develop and find it's new path...

    I heard that Lovett and Hayridge and others turned down the opportunity to return?

    I'm also surprised how many RD fans here have not seen Bladerunner...
     
  15. Ronstar

    Ronstar Third Technician

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    Just for those who are curious, the length if viewed as a movie is:

    1:08:17.

    ...Taking into account the extended reprisals at the beginning of parts 2 and 3, as well as including only one set of titles and one set of credits.

    Ronnie
     
  16. Strael

    Strael Skutter

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    Hi guys. First off, I've been a Red Dwarf fan since the tender age of 4; I got hooked on Show Case reruns. When I heard the series was to be resurrected, I was thrilled. With the first installment, my expectations were exceeded. I loved the dark, bleak feel of the ship, and the return to odd couple humour. The second episode was a nightmare - metahumour is NOT funny, it's just too nerdy. The third wasn't much better, re-using plot devices (despair squid).
    If there is a chance that the series might get picked up, I'm all for it. My only requests: 1) give Rob Grant some flowers and make up, you need him, and 2) be original again.
    Love the show.
     
  17. caveman12345

    caveman12345 Skutter

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    I have a mabye situation running through my head at the minute.
    Is it possible, that doug, having been writing Red Dwarf for many years, absolutly hates it now.
    He has been hassled with letters and e-mail to write more for ten years.
    I think he wrote this as badly as possible to make the fans not want any more, and so theyd stop hassling him.
    That sounds like the mind of the creator of characters like Rimmer and The Cat.

    Mabye im looking too deeply into something thats as thick as the Cat on a hangover, but here we go. In episode 3,
    when the crew meet their creator, he states he grows weiry of them. He lists several reassons why the show shouldnt be made any more. Its possible that this is actually how Doug feels about it since the character is essentially him. Then afterwards, the sequence where they get shot. They break through glass way too many times, and there are way too many shots of them running, which might be Doug suggesting that only so much can be done with these characters. By that i mean, breaking through glass looks great on film the first few times, but after a while it gets old. In the end its not as good as it was to start with, and eventually ruins the sequence and is overdone. Mabye this is a representation of Red Dwarf as a whole. I may be wrong with this but i definatly think Dougs trying to say something with the character of Red Dwarfs creator, who is essentially Doug himself. It is possible however that what i just wrote is a load of smeg and it is just what it is.

    I would like to state though, i did quite like these episodes. It was, in contrast to what a lot of people say, original. The writing style, the filming style, the acting style. Which i think is a good thing. Nobody ever got anywhere without trial and error. I much prefer it without the laughter track, however, i think having a live audience helps the actors shine. The first time i saw them as single episodes it didnt make much sense, and i was generally confused. Once i watched them all in one go however, it was much better. To anyone who has only watched them one at a time, i suggest watching them altogether before you make your final judgement.

    I say a warm welcome back to the everyone involved in Red Dwarf, and keep them coming. Theres definatly a big enough fanbase. (hint hint Dave owners!)
     
  18. IFW_2009

    IFW_2009 Skutter

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    Two word review : REALLY Crap

    Red dwarf is dead to me, obvious now that without rob grant - this'll never be great.
     
  19. MefuneAkira

    MefuneAkira Skutter

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    Loved it Loved it Loved it

    Ok look, I'm a dwarfer and like all true dwarfers, any new RD is good. Im utterly grateful that we were thrown this three parter bone. I feel they did it for the fans and that just makes it all the more lovely ya? So believe me when I say this truly made my year.

    Now on to the criticism....No holy? No clear explanation bridge from the end of VIII to this? A mere glimpse of Kochanski? No audience? Ok ok honestly, who gives a smeg. What we all really want...no...lust to know is, is this the beginning to season IX? The ending tonight was no ending and I cant see the guys (cast and crew) all feeling "THIS is how we should end it". No sir, not buying it. So if it is the start of season IX, why not just announce it?

    Anyway, this is me saying thank you so very much for making my year with this three parter. Me and my family are all smiles.
     
  20. MagicMonkey77

    MagicMonkey77 Third Technician

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    Right first off I should say I'm sitting here with my laptop and the 8 Red Dwarf DvDs are sitting (in order) on my shelf, I AM A FAN.

    And after watching this 3 part special I'm an even bigger fan. :-)

    These episodes (minus the bad advert editing by DAVE) were superb in my opinion. Great looks great story and has anyone mentioned the sound design? it was excellent, pumping rousing bass in the action sequences really got the pulse racing (props to sound design).

    I thought the production of these episodes was top class, I admit I had my doubts when they moved into our reality but I always new when it comes to sci-fi and especially Red Dwarf all is never what it seems. The references to BladeRunner was inspired if you didn't find the toy Rimmers funny, and a little bit creepy lol well I can't help you your already dead :-).

    Thank you Red Dwarf pose and thank you Dave for realizing the Dwarf wasn't dead. Roll on season 9 er 10 I mean 9 lol

    Cheers.

    P.S

    Dave if you could turn your sights on funding a second Firefly season I'll love you forever lol.
     

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