Episode 5 - Dear Dave

Discussion in 'RED DWARF UNIVERSE' started by Slainmonkey, Oct 31, 2012.

  1. Angelic_Storm

    Angelic_Storm Catering Officer

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    Well, how critical is "too critical"? Or is there even such a thing? We all have our different opinions, and it would be silly to deride people just because something about Dwarf disappoints them. By the same token though, I have noticed an element here that seem to actually take relish in being critical of Dwarf, which does lead me to question how much of a fan they are. No true fan WANTS to be critical of Dwarf, true fans show sadness rather than relish when putting the show down. Also, though I myself have been a bit critical of all Dwarf to some extent post-series VI, I always offer constructive criticsm, and I think it's that key thing which seperates the genuine Dwarfers from the casual ones. We don't just criticise, we offer ideas and insight into how the flaws could be improved or got rid of, rather than just pointing out the flaws themselves.
     
  2. dodgebizkit

    dodgebizkit Deck Sergeant

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    legendary post right there! :-D
     
  3. bedfordfalls

    bedfordfalls Deck Sergeant

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    No, you've missed my point again.

    I don't know how you can continue to say that Taiwan Tony isn't racist. THAT'S THE INTENTION! YES THE INTENTION OF DOUG NAYLOR!
    Not because he is a racist or he wanted to encourage people to laugh at a stereotypical 'chinaman' voice but because he wanted to engage in ironic humour where ignorant people consult an obviously offensive racist stereotype for advice on racism in a sub-plot that directly references racism!

    THAT's the intention and the nature of the joke! Do you want me to link you to the tweet where Andrew clarifies this?

    The reason people on here got upset, as I've tried to explain to you numerous times without success (mostly because you seem intent on painting me as some blinkered PC stereotype) is that we felt that the joke was (a) out of place in Red Dwarf and (b) easily misinterpretable due to its poor execution. It seems that the intention was to go for some sort of South Park-esque/Gervais style cringe humour but the idea was certainly never that "funny chinaman voices are hilarious!"

    That you and others, apparently misinterpreted it in exactly this way and thought it was a case of "laugh at the funny voice" just goes to show that our concerns were valid. That you seem to think that kind of humour is hilarious in the first place is, of course, another argument. One that's already taken place. We can disagree about that all day but it's time you at least accepted the writer's intentions.
     
  4. BruceFivesyth

    BruceFivesyth Third Technician

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    Maybe it would have been a good idea if he did say that in those words.

    Not now though as the administrator has asked you to stop posting on this topic. It's very sad that this issue which had nothing to do with Dear Dave has waylaid this thread.
     
  5. bedfordfalls

    bedfordfalls Deck Sergeant

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    The administrator has asked people to stop discussing racism in general: which we have. If the administrator didn't want us to discuss the concept of racist vending machines...well then maybe Doug shouldn't have written scripts containing a purposely racist vending machine and scripts centring around racism which serve to encourage such debate in his own forum!

    Dodge is (naively in my view) comparing TT to the French vending machine in this very episode. Therefore its a perfectly acceptable part of the overall discussion of 'Dear Dave' and the series as a whole.

    As for Andrew's Twitter. I don't believe I'm taking him out of context. He says that "The scenes are about if a thing is racist...the joke being that the thing's a huge stereotype."

    That seems pretty clear to me. The joke is ironic, it's not meant to be about tittering at an "amusing" accent...although the French accent, (which is far more understated btw) is almost certainly employed to that kind of comic effect. But then, as I've already pointed out...the French aren't a race so the comparison is void.

    Perhaps if Dear Dave had been a better episode, we wouldn't be getting "sidetracked" so often. :?
     
  6. Goit_84

    Goit_84 First Technician

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    Think you nailed it there.

    Nothing revelatory or very insightful happened either. In Marooned you not only had the survival plot there was a nice dynamic between Rimmer and Lister and you learned something more about both of them, and more sympathy was gained for Rimmer in a way, which makes you on board for his closing line.

    I suppose the Mcguffin in Dear Dave was meaning. The search for meaning in Listers life continues to prove unsuccessful - it's a frustrating episode because it has no meaning but perhaps that is the point. Maybe with this weeks episode it will provide some contrast. Maybe Dear Dave was conceived as a downer episode designed to make it feel futile and then for the following episode to be full of action and adventure - The Beginning of a new life.
     
  7. bedfordfalls

    bedfordfalls Deck Sergeant

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    I don't think you should look for meaning in it. It was a quickly written episode written in a rush to fill in for an episode they weren't able to film. Richard Naylor has said that all involved were nervous about how it would be received, which seems to indicate that they weren't really happy with it.

    I expect that the DVD doc will reveal just how up against it Doug was in having to put this episode together.
     
  8. BruceFivesyth

    BruceFivesyth Third Technician

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    The thing that I don't really understand is that Doug obviously knew he had a very low budget to play with at the start of the series. So I would have thought that it would have been a good idea for him to have planned a character based show featuring just the 4 main cast members right from the beginning.
     
  9. Seymour_Clufley

    Seymour_Clufley First Technician

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    I think there was some kind of budget mishap wherein something previously expected to be cheap turned out to be expensive, so a whole lot of money allocated for OB had to be reallocated, meaning that those OB-reliant episodes had to be replaced with non-OB-reliant episodes.

    I wonder if those two "lost" episodes will re-surface in RDXI?
     
  10. currymonster

    currymonster First Technician

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    It's all our fault ... the audience. It's in this interview with Doug on Den of Geek today. They hadn't budgeted for an audience so had to quickly find money for it. I guess, things like the hosting area, seating, warm up acts etc all cost some money, plus paying the ticketing agent etc.

    There are some ep6 spoilers in that interview, but they are clearly marked in one section so you can skip over them if you want
     
  11. BruceFivesyth

    BruceFivesyth Third Technician

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    I wonder how much Doug paid them to use that 'recent' photograph. :-D

    Bizarre that there was such a mess-up over the budgets though.

    I don't agree with what the interviewer said about this series being about character at all though. Something like Rimmer meeting his brother could have been interesting for the characters, for example, but it was so rushed that it just felt incredibly superficial. That's how I feel about most of the series with too many plot ideas and not enough focus on the details.
     
  12. bedfordfalls

    bedfordfalls Deck Sergeant

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    From the DVD deleted scenes:

    "An entire chopped scene, as the Cat makes unconventional use of a photocopier."

    Ah, I vaguely remember seeing a picture of this. it doesn't sound very pleasant if its what I think it is...and probably best left on the cutting room floor. The 'Cat walks around looking for toilet roll' was icky enough.
    Why is Doug so fascinated by toilet humour?
    I had hoped that series 8 had gotten it out of his system (no pun intended).
     
  13. dodgebizkit

    dodgebizkit Deck Sergeant

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    I totally agree... It wasn't too bad, but it wasn't funny. I think it worked in backwards but was unnecessary in RDX...

    Though if it was cut down to you hearing cat in the background saying that he wants some paper and cant find any, then he appears with listers letter, then it gets paid off with "it wont be special in a minute" it would work so much better than seeing him walk like he has an unwiped backside, which was... unpleasant :S
     
  14. simulant37

    simulant37 Science Officer

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    "How lucky you English are to find the toilet so amusing. For us, it is a mundane and functional item. For you it is the basis of an entire culture."
     
  15. ShrunkenPixel

    ShrunkenPixel Second Technician

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    So what I'm getting from reading this is that the main point of contention with TT is not how it's used, but the simple fact it could go over people's heads, and people wind up laughing at the accent itself?

    That's totally ridiculous - what harm can that do? It's clear as day that it's not a real Chinese person doing the voice, all it is (at it's most basic) is the sort of over the top voice people would do just for a laugh in the pub or in small groups of friends. This isn't going to affect people's opinions on actual Chinese any more than Chief Wiggum alter's peoples opinions on the Police.

    There are always going to be nasty and insensitive people out there. The world is full of genuine hate, from countries declaring war with each other, to old rivalries that just never seem to get dropped, to people poking fun at age, sex, height, size of nose etc. TT isn't even in the same ballpark as those issues I just highlighted.

    I can't think of any reason why a single Chinese person's quality of life would be in any way affected by TT. If that were true, I'm rather sure that a huge list of celebrities and politicians were irreparably damaged as a result of their Spitting Image puppet's antics.

    Certain comedies from the past were (or could be taken as) genuinely offensive - Fawlty Towers (notice how Basil treats Manwell), Love Thy Neighbour, One Foot In The Grave amongst others. Each of these had the potential to desensitise people to certain forms of cruelty or bigotry, each had the potential to inadvertently send out a message that it's OK to say and do these sort of things.

    Taiwan Tony isn't a Chinese person. He's a vending machine. I'm pretty sure that vending machines with comedy accents the world over are suitably offended. Even Dear Dave plays on this, if the vending machines were intended to be taken as almost human, nearly every gag would have fallen flat. They're clearly not connected to Homo Sapiens in any way, shape or form - they just have a comical voice as their interface.
     
  16. simulant37

    simulant37 Science Officer

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    Neither my friends nor I would do that. Please don't assume we all do comedy foreign accents "in the pub" or elsewhere. :x
     
  17. ShrunkenPixel

    ShrunkenPixel Second Technician

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    Please point out where I specified that "all people" do these accents?

    I simply pointed out that it commonly happens. Hang around any playground long enough and you'll hear kids doing all sorts of funny accents and impressions. Hang around pubs long enough and you'll hear grown adults doing the same. It's part of our culture. Perhaps it shouldn't be, but the reality is that this sort of behaviour happens all the time - and nobody really gives a smeg when it does.
     
  18. Angelic_Storm

    Angelic_Storm Catering Officer

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    I swore I wouldn't get involved in this in this conversation, but... lol

    I guess the problem is, whilst that sort of behaviour does indeed happen all the time in our culture, it was never a part of the culture of Red Dwarf, or it's universe, until that episode ("Fathers And Suns"). Although I guess you could argue that the character of Olaf Petersen was an overexaggerated stereotype of Scandinavian males. Perhaps that one went over people's heads though, as bad impressions of Scandinavians are far less prevelent in our lower-level culture than bad impressions of Chinese people. I think Taiwan Tony would have worked far better had he been voiced by a real Chinese person, as that would have totally eliminated any implication of the Taiwan Tony scenes being racist, but I do think some people are over-analysing it.

    Put into context, for example, I love the episode "Are You Right There, Father Ted", (from the sitcom "Father Ted" of course!) even though it features a very bad mock Chinese impression by Father Ted, as I felt at it's core, the episode was not racist, and wasn't intended to be. The joke was on Ted, not on Chinese people. For Red Dwarf, I think the whole problem with TT could have been avoided with a real Chinese person playing the voice, but I seriously doubt Doug himself is racist because of the scenes' actual application. Ultimately, I don't think TT or the scenes he was in, are racist.
     
  19. Androidsandbeingasleep

    Androidsandbeingasleep Third Technician

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    Not a bad episode, but one of the weaker ones of series X. Better than Fathers and Suns though. Probably a 6 out of 10.
     
  20. Christmas Rubbish

    Christmas Rubbish Flight Co-Ordinator

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    Didn't like it
     

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