Back to Earth: The Whole Thing

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

  1. molfluon

    molfluon Skutter

    Messages:
    1
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    I can't remember myself whether Rimmer said he knew about or remembered the original Squid. Assuming the former Rimmer could have been told about the original adventure with the despair squid. In fact boredom being such a factor in the Dwarfers lives I think it's highly unlikely that he never heard the tale. After all story telling is a great pastime.

    I'm a little intrigued by Kochanski's transport problem too. Shuttle craft are as we've seen an indispensable part of RD life. It's likely the Dwarfers repaired a couple of them that were broken down at the time of the evacuation. Or found one or more in a part of the ship that nether the full crew or the Dwarfers had explored before. Perhaps put there by the Cat Race and reproduced in the same position when the nanobots reconstituted the ship. It's a big ship and has been around for a long time and lots of things have happened to it. Other than that I'm stumped.

    The Squid I dunno.
     
  2. SammyL

    SammyL Skutter

    Messages:
    4
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    Location:
    Kent
    Personally, I loved it. It was so good to see something new after such a long time and I was joyfully surprised that the cast seemed to have hardly changed at all, both in terms of appearance and ability.

    The second episode left me a bit disappointed with where the story was going, but like most others I felt totally different by the end of the third. I'd love if it there was more Red Dwarf in the future, in the meantime I'll try and get the new DVD as soon as possible, to add to the eight series that I already have (and must have watched all the way through about 10 times now).

    Btw, for the person asking where the squid came from, Cat says near the end of episode three that he took one from their previous encounter with the despair squid and kept it in the water tank hoping later to have it as a snack.
     
  3. generic

    generic Skutter

    Messages:
    1
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    I can think of a few more. Most notably "He made your brain too. It was a Friday." and the you-know-what's-coming shoving of the Russian hologram into oncoming traffic.

    I loved RD the first time around. Out of nostalgia I rewatched it all just a couple of years ago. I stuck through, even though at times the genius was embedded in a lot of filler. Wading through to find the gems really was worth it though so I was disproportionately excited by the hype about Dave's revival project.

    So, having watched it now, I just wanted to find somewhere to add my voice to the "Thank you!" crowd and this forum seemed a good a place as any. It turns out that I'd really missed Red Dwarf and it's damn near impossible to do what they did successfully. Prior this weekend I had been a little worried that this might become a bit of a disappointing mess. But in my humble opinion the special was bloody brilliant and a fitting tribute to the series. It was exactly what Red Dwarf should be: funny, self-aware and based on moody hyperbolic sci-fi fantasy. The pathos works. 8)

    Kudos to everyone involved that chances by this post. Really, thank you. I shall buy your smeg. :-)

    Anyone that reads this from UKTV/Dave, know that I shall even try to mute/hop less during your ad slots. ;-)

    To the existing community here, please excuse my lack of an introduction and thank you for letting me use your forum.
     
  4. lob337

    lob337 Third Technician

    Messages:
    41
    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2009
    "Garbled, confusing and quite frankly duller than an in-flight magazine produced by Air Belgium!"
     
  5. hubbard

    hubbard Deck Sergeant

    Messages:
    1,994
    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2009
    Location:
    UK
    Right Im back feelin good..feed me.


    Okey dokey the whole thing, hmmmm, so basically stop me if Im wrong here, the Cat took a female despair squid (somehow) from the ocean planet where they encountered the original despair squid from Back to Reality. He then lost it and it grew up, somehow getting into the water tank. This female squid then educed the current lame story we have had to endure, so basically as I said in the episode 2 thread....this IS just another hallucination from the despair squid and hence a complete waste of time and poor choice in plot.

    I go back to my original post when I suggested more adventures from Jake Bullet and the boys in their hallucinagenic state, this would have been much better than the plot they chose here and still being along the same lines.

    Overall I feel disappointed still, the plot was more from the despair squid premise which is good but they totally chose the wrong hallucination to go with for me.
    The Blade Runner rip felt like a spoof and wasnt done well, sure it looked ok but it just wasnt needed, it felt cheap and simply put in to gather more interest in what was obviously a lagging plot. It wasnt needed. Plus the way they shoe horned the despair squid back into the series was pretty feeble, a rather large stretch.

    Im glad Grant/Naylor wasnt in it after all as that would really have been lame.

    In the end its not good, part 1 was ok, looked good and had promise. Part 2 was terrible, not funny and I hated the line it went down with the real world, part 3 was better, it looked good, was alittle funnier and tied up loose strings.

    The overall problem which now shines through is the lack of originality here, the plot was a rerun of an old story (and not a good extension was chosen here), rips from a big movie were needed to boost the whole thing (not original), old jokes were squeezed in badly, same with old routines and the mistake of no laughter track still hits home.
    The return of RD has been a big let down due to a bad script choice which has really come through stinking of 'a red nose day special' or something that was made for a spoof or joke, not serious RD.

    If there is a new series it HAS to continue from series 8 and go back to the old format or continue series 8 format.
    eg. laughter track in, original plots, keep the plots to one episode in length or two at a push and no more messing with old stories, lets move forward.
     
  6. Oroboros

    Oroboros Skutter

    Messages:
    4
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    I would like to start by thanking everyone who gave up so much of their time to create the Red Dwarf special, Thank you, all of you!

    I would also like to thank everyone who helped encourage Dave to be so brave and commission the special, I would however suspect when the cash is calculated, the specials will have more than paid for themselves. I would be very interested in the viewing figures.

    I remember when Red Dwarf first came about; some of the filming, effects and camera work tested new ground, well-done for giving it a go again.

    I am always surprised when I talk to people about Red Dwarf; I have not yet come across anyone who doesn’t at least know of some one who is a fan.

    Given the income Red Dwarf has generated I still can’t understand why it hasn’t been taken up long term.

    I very much enjoyed the CGI, carbug was just great, I want one, SMART really dropped the ball not sponsoring that one.

    I thought the story was fun, the gags made me laugh, I enjoyed the interaction of the cast.

    It will probably take me a few views to get all the messages; I still watch all the series, read the books and pick up on something new each time.
     
  7. Philthehippy

    Philthehippy Skutter

    Messages:
    3
    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2009
    Well I am amazed how many people didnt like it. I thought is great personally.

    Love the new look, and agree with alot of you about the sound.

    To all the people wingeing about Blade Runner and the fact it meant nothing
    because they have not seen it, go and watch it before you dare to claim it had
    no need to be there.

    Im very greatful for what they did and hope for more.

    Comments about series 8 being crap, I thought it was a return to form.

    If you really dont like Red Dwarf after series 6 then dont watch it.

    Oh and dont insult Doug Naylor with these comments about Grant, if he had his
    way Red Dwarf would have been dead long ago. He showed little or no loyalty to
    the fans.
     
  8. sandybeach

    sandybeach Skutter

    Messages:
    5
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    Location:
    London
    I think you guys (actors, writers directors) everyone did an amazing job, i thought you would have bad cgi like series 8 but thankfully you changed it and i thought the computer graphics were quite good, plus most 3 part shows i have seen of programmes i like are quite rubbish and boring after part 2, but back to earth... what a surprise i was hooked all the way.

    I have been waiting many many years for some new Red Dwarf and i am very pleased with what i saw, you had me laughing so much i had tears and nearly spat water everywhere lol.

    I think what you did was awesome, and i would love to see more red dwarf series, plus the whole "characters from tv" lol what a weird and wonderful storyline.

    I loved every moment of back to earth and i will be watching it again tonight and in the future, you had the characters all being a little older and wiser which was great and the little clips of the "red dwarf directives" lol i always loved those parts great memories and done very well, not tacky at all.

    I hope there is more but if there is no more i think this would be a very well tribute, keep up the great work
     
  9. sdrawnaM

    sdrawnaM Third Technician

    Messages:
    10
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    Location:
    Leicester
    I'm not really a fan of forums, but I thought I'd throw my opinion into the ring along with everybody else's.

    Really enjoyed "Back to Earth". For a little backstory - we like that, don't we? - I've been a fan of Red Dwarf for as long as I can remember. I recall few things vividly from childhood, but I do recall seeing the opening of "Parallel Universe" during its original run and being delighted by "Tongue Tied". My younger sister and I eventually learned the entire dance. Then there was the first airing of "Polymorph", and my mother sending my sister out of the room, not understanding the warning at the start of the episode was a joke. After that came the videos, watching every episode over and over, not just learning the lines but absorbing them, to the extent that Red Dwarf was as instrumental in forming my future personality, my interests and certainly my sense of humour, as any other external factor.

    The long-winded point I'm trying to make here is that I love Red Dwarf, and I like to think I understand it. And, as I said, I really did enjoy "Back to Earth". I thought it looked great. It was wonderful seeing the cast back in costume and playing the parts as if they'd never stopped. I legitimately laughed out loud a great number of times. And the story itself, with its metafictional aspects and its overall metaphor, its blend of the old and the new, impressed me a great deal.

    I won't bother listing the scenes that made me laugh. Something is either funny, or it isn't, and being told which is which doesn't change that. I didn't mind the lack of a laugh track for just that reason. Red Dwarf is better before an audience. That's a fact, one stated by the cast themselves. However, "Back to Earth" couldn't have been done before an audience, due to the effects and the amount of location shooting. The only "solution" there is to add canned laughter, and I just can't get behind that. It's empty. It's artificial. The energy of a live audience is one thing. A post-production sound effect added to the end of every joke to inform people of when to laugh? Pavlov would be proud. No, it didn't need canned laughter, the same way that, say, Spaced didn't.

    The story, then. I thought it was fantastic. Growing up with Red Dwarf introduced me to a lot of complex sci-fi concepts early on in life. Even intentionally complex time travel stories do little to confuse me now, and much to thrill me. Concepts from Red Dwarf have allowed me to understand the world a little more, to meet friends, to discover new interests. I'm an aspiring writer myself, and my current project is a long-winded vanity piece of sorts, combining the kind of time travel logic seen in "Future Echoes" with elements of other genres I enjoy. "Back to Earth" feels like the reverse. Rather than introducing me to a complex concept - namely, metafiction - it's taken a concept I already enjoy and ran with it. It's been done before, sure, but then everything has been done before in some form. Struggling to change a future that has already been written? It's classic Red Dwarf. It's just that in this case, it has literally been written.

    I haven't seen Blade Runner in a long time, so while I recognised that the overall concept was the same, I didn't notice most of the explicit references. Didn't hamper my enjoyment. I hadn't seen Alien when I first saw "Polymorph". I still haven't seen Casablanca, but it doesn't stop me enjoying "Camille". Still, the concept was a perfect fit. The metaphor of them tracking down their creator and pleading for more life. For the first show in ten years, a show that is both celebrating the past and attempting to garner interest for a full revival, there couldn't be a more perfect story. A lot of people are upset by the metafictional aspect, saying it was a step too far, but then you have the joy squid, which, as well as being a direct link to "Back to Reality", also evokes "Better Than Life". There it is again, the mix of the old and the new, looking forward while looking back. You've got Lister meeting Craig Charles. How many times has Lister met an alternate version of himself? That was just a new twist on it.

    Loved the number of classic references in there, too. The Rimmer munchkins being a double reference, to "Blue" and to Blade Runner. There was the picture of the dog on the wall of the department store ("He's your father?!"). A whole laundry list of loving references to the past. Yet, to my great relief, they didn't waste half an episode trying to tie up Series VIII. I know it's upset a lot of people, although I'm not sure why, but I hoped from the start they wouldn't even mention it. I didn't mind when Kryten reappeared with a new personality, when Lister's twins disappeared, when they "forgot" about Rimmer not being able to leave Red Dwarf without a bulky cage, when they revised Lister and Kochanski's backstory to tie in to the novels, when Lister had his appendix removed twice, or when he remembered playing pool with planets... and so on.

    Red Dwarf isn't a show about continuity. It's just a TV show, one with a great cast and some great ideas and a lot of laughs, meant to be enjoyed. Get upset about the logic or continuity, and you're probably taking it far too seriously. While I've yet to have anything published, and therefore can't claim to be a "real" writer, I have learned a few things about structure, and pacing, and keeping things clear for the audience. For them to have dedicated even just one scene in "Back to Earth" to tying up Series VIII would have been silly. I'd warrant a good deal of this weekend's audience wouldn't have even seen it. It was ten years ago, and "Back to Earth" was about moving forwards, about heading towards a new show. Personally, the "NINE YEARS LATER" title card cleared up all the questions I had. Think about the stuff the crew went through every week. In nine years' time, they've probably jumped dimensions a hundred times. Of course, the real reason for all the unexplained changes is that they simply work better. Why has Rimmer reverted to his Series VI form? Because it's the best version of him. Why does the ship look different? Because it looks cool. While I don't intend to turn this (already dangerously long) post into an attack on people who disliked the specials - it's your prerogative, and I'm secure enough in my opinion to not need it validated by others' agreement - I do think that if not knowing exactly how they escaped from a mirror universe ten years ago ruined your enjoyment of "Back to Earth", then I'm not sure how you became a fan of Red Dwarf in the first place.

    I'll wrap this up, then. Yes, I liked it. I liked the story, I liked the structure, I liked the new twists on classic ideas. It's exactly the kind of attitude a special of this nature should have had. The first two episodes made me laugh out loud several times, and the drama in the third episode had me on the edge of my seat. The novels introduced me to the idea that Red Dwarf could be dramatic a long time ago, and their pleading for more episodes, for closure, to continue to entertain the fans that rooted for them, spoke straight to my heart. The appearance of Chloe as Kochanski at the end was a wonderful surprise, and Lister's final words to her reaffirm the original premise of the show. He's alone on Red Dwarf, but she's out there, somewhere, always just out of reach. He'll probably never find her, but he has to try.

    In concept alone, "Back to Earth" had a lot to accomplish. It had to reintroduce the setting and the characters to people who might not have seen them in ten years, or might not have seen them at all. It had to reach back into the past while pushing forward into the future. It had to reset things, to a certain degree, to trim away all the excess that crowded the later series'. I'd say it succeeded. As "Back to Earth" ends, we have the original foursome, alone on Red Dwarf, newly resolved to find home. That's the perfect place from which to launch a new series.

    Sorry for the autobiography. Still, I'm not as fond of forums as I used to be, so this may be the only post I make. Whatever the case, I wanted to get my opinion off my chest and extend my thanks to Dave, the cast and the crew for this revival, and to wish them the best of luck in any future endeavours. And hey, at least I didn't try to prove my fandom by shoehorning the word "smeg" in there, eh?

    Ah, smeg.
     
  10. hubbard

    hubbard Deck Sergeant

    Messages:
    1,994
    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2009
    Location:
    UK
    I think you guys are praising 'Dave' waaaay too much, they probably had a large hand in this being so lame :-(
    Bring back the BBC.
     
  11. richisawesome

    richisawesome Second Technician

    Messages:
    55
    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2009
    Dave were the ones who commissioned the return of Red Dwarf. The BBC would never have done that.

    I don't think we're praising Dave too much at all. And personally, I thought it was far from lame.
     
  12. hubbard

    hubbard Deck Sergeant

    Messages:
    1,994
    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2009
    Location:
    UK
    ^ I know that, hence the input Dave had over the show :-(
    I dont understand why the BBC hasnt offered RD to come back, its a mystery seeing as its so huge. Probably no room anymore due to all these fudging DIY, cooking, soaps and reality nonsense that TV is engrossed in these days :?
     
  13. Malcolm_Milne

    Malcolm_Milne Skutter

    Messages:
    7
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    :lol:whos post slim? you have quoted three peoples there:lol:

    Hasnt Back to Earth brought out a good debate?? some people love it others hate it.

    I will probably buy it, if it comes out on DVD like I bought series 7 and 8 and hopefully I will appreciate it more with time.
     
  14. RedDwarf09

    RedDwarf09 Second Technician

    Messages:
    57
    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2009
    Location:
    Starbug 1
    100% great. To be honest I don't have any Red Dwarf DVD's, but when my birthday comes I'll just get BTE and any others I can get :-)
     
  15. hubbard

    hubbard Deck Sergeant

    Messages:
    1,994
    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2009
    Location:
    UK
    I may buy it depending on extras, I would be very interested to hear a cast commentry, love them commentries hehe. Bloopers and extra scenes would be good too, wether I would keep it after seeing the extras is another matter haha
     
  16. Fraher

    Fraher Skutter

    Messages:
    1
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    I have worn my DVD's down so much over the years that I am in need of new copies of a couple of discs. I took the consideration of making sure I understood what was going through the Dwarfer's minds before watching. I knew time would have passed and they of course would grow weary of the same ol' same ol'. The first episode seemed to provide this feel, whereas the second and third allowed for a rejuvenation of the characters themselves.

    I would have to say this was a perfect design for a return to television if (and when hopefully) a new series comes about. Traveling through deep space would be come dull and boring if no curve balls are thrown, which is why they shined through the second and third episodes giving us smegin' awesome vid.

    These guys are great for more than a few reasons, they love their fans, they continue to travel around doing follow up Dwarf work. They have admitted to the amount of fun Red Dwarf brought to their lives, and we reply "ours too". I sure hope this is not the last we see of the Boys from the Dwarf, I am hoping this was a generalized "Smoke me a kipper, I'll be back for breakfast."
     
  17. lob337

    lob337 Third Technician

    Messages:
    41
    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2009
    couldnt agree more. for anybody who hasnt given the commentaries a chance..do it! i found listening to danny constantly moan about all the extras going on to become superstars...and chris' apparent lack of memory of seemingly every episode almost as hilarious as the shows themselves..

    for a little insight if you havent checked out roberts little carpool internet show (llewtube.com) - you may want to.. last week was chris and they talked about how it felt to be back etc.. previous episodes also had craig and danny - make sure you also check out the one with ed bye - for some reason it had me in stiches - there is just something about ed's facial expressions that i find hilarious
     
  18. alexpryce

    alexpryce Skutter

    Messages:
    1
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    I joined up a while ago, but lost my login details lol! I don't think I posted before anyway so not too much of a problem.

    I felt the need (Like many one time posters) to join in and put in my two penny-cents.

    Overall I think it worked well. As has been stated, no one slated Polymorph 2 for borrowing a previous idea. These new episodes as a whole worked quite well. Individually they may have fell flat at times and I understand why Doug felt everyone would hate him Saturday, but the whole is greater than the sum of its parts in this instance. As a whole episode it works well.

    So maybe it doesn't wreak of old Dwarf, but as has been said, humour changes. Ricky Gervais would have fell flat on his face making the Office 20 years ago, but in todays society it works. Red Dwarf HAD to change and evolve in order to fit in with the 21st century. If it had stayed the same it would stagnate and die. I think Doug has done an amzing job of keeping some of the classic elements in tact- an impressive job seeing as how much comedy ahs changed in 21 years.

    I didn't get the Blade Running references as I've never seen the film (Though I've not seen Casablanca and "got" Camille) Maybe its a case of there being too many references. I also think the time and budgetory constraints played a big part in why people feel let down.

    COnsidering the shows been gone for ten years we really are lucky we got new episodes. Without Dave there would be no new Dwarf, and the only thing worse than a bad movie, is a movie that was never made (Or Red Dwraf eps in this case). I loved the episodes when viewed all in one, but individually it left me feeling cold and it didn't work as well (mainly as the flow was interupted and the first cliff hanger felt more like someone pressing the pause button then an actual "Oh my God I have to watch the next part" moment).

    As to viewing figures, I think Dave and all involved must admit that there is a problem with Part one- maybe there wasn't enough build up, maybe it wastoo rushed, maybe it wasn;t a strong enough opener, whatever the reason there were problems with the relaunch- look at the viewing figures for episodes 1 & 2. Episode 1 received just over 2 Million viewers- for a small cable channel that is beyond amazing and should be enough to justify a new series. Problem was, episode 2s viewing figures were around the 900,000 mark, so just under a million. Thats more than HALF the viewers nto returning for part two. Now maybe Saturday is not the best night to have new eps on as a lot of people do go out, but that cannot account for loosing half your audience in just 24 hours. This is something that needs to be addressed and I think it was simply because Part 1 was not strong enough by itself (Indeed I don't think any of these eipsode were overly strong by themselves, but viewed together were fantastic).

    Generally speaking it was great and I actually have only one main issue- continuity. My girlfriend has already told me off about being such a geek on this point but it is important. The continuity gaps between the end of Series 8 and BTE were too great. There are too many unanswered questions. All I ever wanted was series 8 resolved as leaving a show on a cliffhanger is dangerous if there is no garuntee of a conclusion. I'm glad the issue of Kochanskis departure from the show was cleared up as was Holly's absence, so no continuity issues there. but there are still a few.

    This said there are ways to decrease the continuity issues to just one point. Here show we'll do it:

    Continueity problems:
    1. Why is Rimmer now a hologram AND Hard light
    2. Where are the rest of the crew?
    3. How did the ship survive the virus?
    4. How did the guys get back from the mirror universe?
    5. what happened to Rimmer after fighting Death?

    Problem solved:
    Continuity issues 2-5 can easily be fixed. There are several deleted scenes on the series 8 DVD which someone has kindly spliced together and uploaded onto Youtube. These scenes when taken as the ACTUAL ending of "Only the good..." finish the story up nicely and resolve most of the above continuity issues. I say we campaign to have this alternate ending declared the official one. That gets rid of the continuity issues and can make BTE offically Canon without any problems. Except for one:

    Why is Rimmer now a hologram AND Hard light?

    Well, as its 9 years passed, I am quite happy to assume that the gimboid accidently killed himself in some Rimmer induced accident. That kills him, that then allows him to come back as a Hologram. But why hard light when Red Dwarf had no Hard Light capability? Simple, between "Legion" and now Kryten or Holly has been able to recreate the Hard Light drive using Legions one as a blueprint. That solves the problem nicely and means we don't have to start playing aorund with parallel universes and Ace Rimmer.

    So if we accept the alternate ending to series 8 (Check it out on Youtube) and assume Rimmer is stupid enough to kill himself then BTE flows on VERY well from the end of series 8, no gaps in continuity and the episodes as a whole work well and are an amzing way to welcome the small Rouge one back!

    We need more episodes, we need a series and we need to accept the alternate ending to series 8!

    Just my rather long and rambling two penny- cents.

    Alex :-D
     
  19. sterod1971

    sterod1971 Skutter

    Messages:
    1
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    In all I thought BTE was great in some areas and typically Red Dwarf bad in others, Over all a good effort and I hope it leads to more episodes being made. Whilst I am a Bladerunner Fan, and as an Android I do dream of electric sheep, some might not be and so the references to Bladerunner would have been lost. I also started to doubt my sanity when references to seasons 9 and 10 were made and had to have a quick look online to check I hadnt fallen into a different reality stream!

    I think a great opertunity was missed by not including Holly, How would the crew have reacted to meeting the ship's AI in the flesh????

    Thanks to Doug and all the team for the effort and to Dave for commissoning it!
     
  20. banksrob

    banksrob Third Technician

    Messages:
    21
    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2009
    Loved it - Part 2 + 3 especially Thanks for bringing it back. Continue it please :P
     

Share This Page