I didn't like BTE, but I still want more. Do u?

Discussion in 'RED DWARF UNIVERSE' started by donnahanlon, Apr 16, 2009.

  1. donnahanlon

    donnahanlon Skutter

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    There were some positives about Back to Earth that made me want more. Let me elaborate...

    Firstly, the cast were brilliant and just as I remembered them. It would only take a decent script to restore those characters to their former glory. The acting ability of Charles in particular is actually better than it was before. Barrie is still funny (dancing scene) the cat is still... well "The Cat" and Kryten is still loveably uptight.

    Secondly the first episode, despite the glaring need for a laughter track, was pretty funny. A mere inch or two from the Red Dwarf we remember. I am just pretending the subsequent episodes did not occur. Its better for my healing process to put my head in the sand I think. I could lay into them for hours but I am not going to. We all know why putting Red Dwarf onto Coronation Street and dressing up a smart Car to look like starbug was about the absolute worst idea Naylor could have had. So I'm putting it to bed right here - Despair/hope squid or no despair/hope squid - it sucked (for want of a better word).

    We all know whats needed - Naylor, while a phenomenal Creator and writer for Dwarf since 1987, needs to let his baby go. Its a hard thing to do, but fresh blood is needed here. Some new younger writers neeed to watch the old tapes and get to work. Either that or does someone have Richard Curtis number??! I am not saying Naylor should not be a producer/creative consultant, but his ideas for plot/comedy direction are just not right for a future direction.

    When I heard the title "Back To Earth" It fired ny imagination. I tried to think of all the possibilties for an earth 3 million years into the future. Would it be a place where Lister would want to stay? Would it be a paradise? A hell hole?? Would we recognise the human race? Would anyone be left alive? I realise that shooting concepts like these can seem expensive but there are ways of keeping the costs minimal in Sci-fi. We have all seen 1966 star trek - yes?? It was all about the characters relationships and reaction to their surroundings that tell us how they look - it doesn't matter whether it is merely pink styrofoam or not. So cost is not an excuse for the "Lets just put them in a shopping centre in the 21st century" attitude here. Its pure lack of imagination.

    All the above having been said, I do want more Dwarf. New writers, a laughter track and a return to the bleak isolation of the first VII series is all that's needed to re-ignite the show. The actors look raring to go to me.

    Does anyone agree?????

    (P.S - I know I made this comment as part of a previous thread - but I want to hear what others would have wanted from BTE and from those who maybe did not like it in the main - but still see potential. I thought it deserved a new topic!!:P)
     
  2. drumjay

    drumjay Catering Officer Fan Club Team

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    But this from a negative line to Back to Earth. I want more because it was clever writing and good quality British comedy drama. I'm quite happy for Doug to keep writing until he runs out of words.
     
  3. donnahanlon

    donnahanlon Skutter

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    Is that just your understandable loyalty to Doug talking though? I know that what I am saying is a little harsh on him, but many great shows have benefitted in the past from a fresh perspective.

    Do you feel that the "Back To Earth" title was a little misleading? That has been lister's guiding light for years and then we get a "dream sequence" where they are fictional characters in the earth we know. It feels like a bit of a cop out to me. I felt that "Back to Reality" was a vastly superior attempt at the same thing.
     
  4. bedfordfalls

    bedfordfalls Deck Sergeant

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    While I'm glad you want more you have to realise that many of your criticisms don't stand up. Your constant use of "We all know..." is irritating as its your opinion not "everyones". I didn't like the Corrie stuff (except Craig's "priory" line) but the carbug has been very popular and would have been a lot funnier if it hadn't been spoiled to death (I take this from the reaction of people who I saw laughing having been previously unaware of what was under the sheet).

    You complain that the Earth they visited wasn't some sort of fantastical sci-fi set even making a ludicrous comparison to Star Trek. Star Trek even in the 1960's had an enourmous budget. Red Dwarf's budget couldn't even afford Carbug (Doug had to buy it himself!) or to pay Norman Lovett to deliver a few one liners and many of the crew involved worked purely out of love for the show.
    Setting it on Earth in the present day then was the only realistic way to get it made, without having to build sets (which cost money whether made of Pink Styrofome or not) and the story would have made no sense otherwise. As for lack of imagination, try reading Doug's book Last Human for his vision of a future earth and you'll see how wrong you are.

    Finally your point about bringing in other writers. Did you actually watch Series 7 and 8? I suggest you do and make careful note of the episodes where Doug brought in other writers to "help", they're usually the worst the show has to offer and feature gags recycled frm Jasper flippin Carrot stand up!
     
  5. drumjay

    drumjay Catering Officer Fan Club Team

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    I have a loyalty to the Fan Club, but even that in no way alerters my opinions to something I say. I watched, I enjoyed. If I didn't like what I saw, I would have a different view.

    Was this in anyway different to Backwards? He got home didn't he? Back to Earth did exactly what it said in the title, just because you feel it's a cop out doesn't mean it actually is. The show was Back to Reality part 2 if you like, that was the point. You're taking your own perspective on the show, I'm taking mine. Everyone has a choice, and view. It doesn't mean it is right or wrong.
     
  6. donnahanlon

    donnahanlon Skutter

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    Thanks for your reply "bedford falls" - perhaps a wee bit less hostility would be nice... just a thought.

    That aside, I was not comparing red dwarf to star trek - of course that would be silly. I was merely trying to get across the fact that fantastical imaginations can be played out for very low budgets. Red Dwarf itself has done it a million times.

    Perhaps the answer here is that there should have been no attempt to go back to earth for a storyline. Then we would not have ended up with Red Dwarf meets Coronation street/a shopping centre at all!! I'm afraid I just didn't enjoy the premise. Just my opinion. I therefore stand-by my assertion that new writers should take the reigns. I know they tried it before but hopefully lessons have been learned, and different writers will be tried. The ideal would be to get Rob Grant back but presumably that is not a go-er. I didn't like the whole premise for series VIII and that had nothing to do with new writers though. I am not sure which other eps contained new writers form other seasons - not arguing about that - I just wasn't aware. What episodes were they? However, even if those other writers did do a bad job (and I'm not saying they did), it doesn't mean that there aren't others out there with a better creative vision and love for the show.

    On a different note, I have been looking at the viewing figures though and they are very positive. Surely enough to warrant some more investment by Dave, or even the BBC?

    Doug said he was "waiting too see the reaction" to test whether more Dwarf is coming. How will he gauge that I wonder?
     
  7. bedfordfalls

    bedfordfalls Deck Sergeant

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    Right now he's probably feeling a bit miffed and wondering whether to carry on. It mustn't be nice for him to read people launching "no more Red Dwarf" petitions.

    If these people don't want anymore Red Dwarf then there's an easy way for them to achieve their dream: Its called switching off their television. They don't have to ruin it for the rest of us by coming on Red Dwarf forums and spouting off about how they hope there's never another episode because there wasn't a laughter track or their wern't enough scenes of Rimmer getting hit by a frying pan.

    Constructive criticism is one thing but some of the posts I've read since BTE premiered makes me question what Red Dwarf these people do remember. Perhaps the problem is that the show has varied so much over the year from the bleak lonely humour of series 1&2 to the raucous energy of series 4 and 5 through the monster of the week of 6 and the experimental filmic "drama" of series 7 to the bottomesque gutter humour of 8 that so many people have so many different memories of the show its been impossible to please everyone.

    That's why I think its best if Doug listens to himself. I think he did that with BTE and I enjoyed it for it and will always be grateful that even if we never get another series (which I hope we do) at least now Red Dwarf has something approximating an "End".
     
  8. lob337

    lob337 Third Technician

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    i sent a suggestion to robert that he get doug to do an episode of carpool.. dont like the chances but i'd love to hear dougs opinions. thats also the great thing about roberts carpool idea..because its set in a car the convo is a lot more open and relaxed. doug does not seem the kind of person to me at all to look at forums and let it bother him as you suggested - besides if it was me i could always console myself by going to one of the hundreds of "i loved it" threads - or just browse over to the older episodes threads and basque in my greatness
     
  9. jaybo1973

    jaybo1973 Catering Officer

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    I would love to see more dwarf, but more like it used to be. I for one was not a massive fan of the new shows. If you look back at the series 1 and 2 stuff; a bunk room and a few corridors in the tv studio and they were some of the best episodes writen. this was the era of low budget. I think as a re-indroduction, an old style bunk episode with lister and rimmer would be an ideal start. No matter how many new series they make, it wont be like series 1-6 again :-( I think when Rob Grant left the show, the show lost something
     
  10. Jamie555

    Jamie555 Skutter

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    No, I don't want more.

    In my opinion, this show didn´t know when to quit at its peak and the show is not a shadow of its former self.

    I´m not saying it´s bad, but relative to before, it seems a shame.

    In retrospect it would have been better if the 2 writers had got together and finished it off in one last series, which would have been 7.
     
  11. bedfordfalls

    bedfordfalls Deck Sergeant

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    Well, I've seen him personally respond to a BBC Ceefax television forum to rail against people who claimed the laughter track in series 7 was canned. I also remember a member of his family coming on the red Dwarf newsgroup many years ago around the same time to complain that people were upsetting Doug with their comments (which were way over the top).
    As someone who has been criticised in the media I can say it is quite dispiriting, especially if you are only doing a project out of love for it.

    Anyway series 7 was a long time ago so hopefully Doug won't take the criticism to heart and will as you say see that this is something many people loved.
     
  12. Mardroid

    Mardroid Console Officer

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    From what I've heard, Rob is or was planning to do one with him anyway. Whether or not it happens... who nose*!

    *Swallow does. See what I did there? Oh never mind.
     
  13. lob337

    lob337 Third Technician

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    bobbyllew@LOB337 Doug has agreed to do one, but I know it's going to be a struggle
     
  14. donnahanlon

    donnahanlon Skutter

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    Hmm... the idea of Rob and Doug sort of working on the same thing again is encouraging... fingers crossed that will sow a seed for a return to the dwarf together.

    As for the "Does doug care about forums or not" debate, I hope that he ignores the crazies (there's always a few) enjoys the praise, and takes in the constructive critisism where that critism is consistent from a large number of fans e.g lack of a laughter track, that would be a basic one to fix. I'm not saying that everyone wants a laughter track, but it does seem to be a very common theme running through all the critiques of BTE. Its a critique that I certainly agreed with. Of course I totally understand the desire not to leak the plot via a studio audience but even canned laughter would have been better I feel.

    At the end of the day, if Doug does feel attcked by any critism he can console himself with the thought that the people doing the critisising (including me) have probably enjoyed at least 6 seasons of his incredible writing talent without saying a bad word.

    But still... CORONATION STREET - SERIOUSLY????!!!! noooooo..... NOT THE SAME FANBASE DUDE!!!!

    Sorry. I just had to get that out.:P
     
  15. garfie

    garfie Catering Officer

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    I think canned laughter would be a really bad idea. Series 7 is the closest to having canned laughter (episode shown to an audience after recording to get the laugh track) and I think it showed. The reason I want an audience is not so much the laugh track but more the fact I think the cast respond well to the audience and it raises their game. I would prefer there to be no laugh track to there being canned laughter.
     
  16. johna1905

    johna1905 Second Technician

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    I agree 110%
     
  17. 2x4b523q

    2x4b523q Second Technician

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    Definatly. I am second generation viewer (eleventh class fan), but I think that they need it reintroducing to the second generation.
    Like:

    • Herbie
      Doctor Who
      Batman
      Superman
      Star Wars
      Watchmen

    Red Dwarf needs adding to that list.
     
  18. paddy_dwarfer

    paddy_dwarfer Third Technician

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    this brings up an interesting question . should red dwarf have been revived at all . the repsonses above this comment have shown the potential problems in reviving an old show . there seems to have been massive cry of not as good as previous seasons . the more bte is copmapred to older seasons the more it seems to be found lacking .

    i have also seen some pretty heavy abuse thrown at doug naylor on a tv site i go to . ok if people don;t like it , everyone will have thier own opinion but at the end of the day remeber red dwarf is a tv show not a cure for cancer .


    by the way my own opinion in a nut shell is episode 1 was a bit weak but the show was resuced by episode 2 and 3 . as usualy i seem to like the bits a lot of ther people hated ! it was still better then a lot of the dross that passes for comedy on tv theese days !
     
  19. 2x4b523q

    2x4b523q Second Technician

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    Part I was pretty terrible. I totally agree with you.:-)8:-(wink:
     
  20. Fairfax

    Fairfax Catering Officer

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    Are you not getting mixed up between Robert Llewellyn and Rob Grant there?
     

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