Single most irritating character in RD. Ever.

Discussion in 'RED DWARF UNIVERSE' started by OurJud, Jan 31, 2016.

  1. Springyard

    Springyard Third Technician

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    I believe that some things are fated and that, despite Doug Naylor primarily wanting the return of Kryten and for David Ross to play him again, Rob Grant was entirely correct to question the wisdom of this. For me, Ross's Kryten was beautifully old fashioned English, as if playing an institutionalised butler to the very upper class. His performance was so moving, such as when he tells Lister of his dream to get a garden - not somewhere like Fiji like Lister's grand scheme - just anywhere - that he could have never lived up to the melancholy of that episode again without Red Dwarf being turned in to a drama. He could clearly do comedy too but it was in contrast to the smegginess of the rest of the crew rather than in a harmony with them. He'd stamped Kryten with such beautifully complex sincerity that he would have taken over the whole show and would have made Lister seem too noble for comedy's sake in being a true friend to him. Basically, you'd never want to see his Kryten reduced to cleaning Lister's gussets nor hosting Krytie TV - it would seem too tragic a fall. For longevity, a different, non-English, less classbound, Kryten was needed and, for that, hello Robert Llewellyn. Perhaps Ross himself, brilliant actor as he was in the episode, realised this and the play that he was about to do was a convenient reason why he'd never do it again. It just goes to show that he put in such an iconic performance ("But I was only gone two minutes". "I think I'm rebelling.."] that they could have mistaken a perfect, movie-like, performance for something that could or should be repeated each week.
    But Ross was extraordinarily good at pathos in that episode and doesn't belong in this list, in the slightest. He also voiced Talkie Toaster who I also like (who's meant to be irritating anyway).
     
  2. OurJud

    OurJud Deck Sergeant

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    Well maybe it's David Ross' overall performances that I can't take to then, as my original nomination for this thread was Talkie Toaster.

    Your post is beautifully written, Springyard, and you put up a very strong defence for Ross' Kryten, but I simply can't agree with your sentiments.

    It's the very upperclassness and Englishness of his portrayal that irritates me so. It's too old-fashioned and human to sit comfortably with the show's premise. You praise his acting ability, but it's almost as though he chose to ignore the fact that his character is meant to be a mechanoid.

    I also have to admit that while, admittedly, this is no fault of Ross', the shoddiness of his mask and the way the actor's real lips contrast against the latex is just unforgivable, and pretty much all I can concentrate on while he's on screen. They haven't even bothered to trim the flashing where the various parts are joined.
     
  3. Springyard

    Springyard Third Technician

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    Ah well, it was only originally for 1 show so I doubt that Ross or the writers planned then on his Kryten fitting in at all with the pin the pointy stick on the TV weathergirl culture. Cameo often aren't meant to. Thank you for your words and very nice to meet you Billy Casper.
     
  4. OurJud

    OurJud Deck Sergeant

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    Fido (does it have an official name?) from Parallel Universe.
     
  5. UltraDevotee

    UltraDevotee Catering Officer

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    Tbh, the characters you mention in the earlier series I thought were all really funny and effective though that is just my opinion obviously. Ruby Wax I thought delivered the news report on the "disgustingly rich" Lister hilariously (and you really appreciate how it makes Rimmer so bitter and jealous) while I thought Stan Laurel was likewise really comical too and perhaps the slight over-acting actually gave the comedy in his scenes even more oomph rather than making it annoying though as I say it is down to taste. As for the series 6 Rimmer well that was just an extremely amusing callback episode and as others have said it was "our" Rimmer in him really anyway.

    But yes I agree with a few of the series 8 ones namely the Come back mr sucks ground controller, the ridiculously performed Chocalate dispenser and especially the pathetic not fit for good Red Dwarf, Archie. As for series 9, 10 I might agree with Taiwan Tony but for me while Katerina and Noddy didn't excel they were at least okay and not really that annoying IMHO. Sim Crawford though I thought she was a less sinister, more comical take on the stimulants I thought she did alright actually.

    As for David Ross yes I agree it was right for Robert to take over as Kryten permanently - maybe Ross wouldn't have had the versatility for all the new directions/styles the show has gone in that Bobby has. But for the one episode I thought Ross was really a bit tragic and extremely comical all at the same time. That episode has some of the greatest Red Dwarf humour of all time in it - e.g. "I was only away two minutes" "whadda ya got?" "Molecule mind" etc. So for a one and only episode I thought it was an excellent performance and introduced the main android character really well.

    As for Tony Hawks, come on he is the 5th Dwarfer!;-)
     
  6. OurJud

    OurJud Deck Sergeant

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    I don't mind him. Perhaps I should have specified it's just in BTL that he annoys me. It's his crawly, grinning, sub-subservient attitude in this episode that irritates me.
     
  7. UltraDevotee

    UltraDevotee Catering Officer

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    Fair enough.:-)
     
  8. Mowgli

    Mowgli Third Technician

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    A quite lovely and really rather wonderful summary of the original Kryten appearance. Should the show ever have a proper end (which it shouldn't), a callback to that wish would be a great way to say goodbye to the character, perhaps by seeing him finally tending the garden he craved (accompanied by a zoom-out shot to reveal that this tiny plot of nature sits among the mounds of rubbish in Garbage World).

    As for the thread's topic as much as I love Llewellyn's interpretation, for the most part his characterisation in Series 7 and parts of 8 was just diabolical. Kryten went from the hilarious smart-alec (pre-accident) Holly MkIII to an utterly insufferable lovesick, doting bore. I don't think my dislike for 7 and 8 would be nearly as intense if it wasn't for this bizarre character development.
     
  9. Strat-tastic

    Strat-tastic Flight Co-Ordinator

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    Dog.
     
  10. OurJud

    OurJud Deck Sergeant

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    The only direct references to it, as I remember, are when female Lister says, "He's in for shock. His alternative isn't female - it's a dog." And when Cat passes him his glass of milk during the dance-off and says, "Hold that, Fido!"
     
  11. Strat-tastic

    Strat-tastic Flight Co-Ordinator

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    The character is down as Matthew Devitt (Dog) in the credits on this forum. Maybe Cat was just making a flippant remark? :-)
     
  12. OurJud

    OurJud Deck Sergeant

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    Ah, I see! I knew Cat's reference was just a nick, but I didn't know it had an official name. I suppose technically it has to for the sake of the credits.
     
  13. Springyard

    Springyard Third Technician

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    Thanks very much Mowgli. 'What a guy' you are. I am new here and probably know less than 5% of the main details that there is to know about Red Dwarf (far less if you take the books in to account) so I should exercise modesty mode but I appreciate it. Kryten's head was brilliant in series 5 too, pretty good in series 6, and not so good in some other series. I don't mind his whining towards Kochanski in series 7 TOO much (I like the first 4/5 episodes of that series) but I do not like the subsequent direction of the show towards 'do next to nothing plotwise like series 1, as if it actually still is 1988 again' Back to earth's alright as a one off though.
     
  14. Strat-tastic

    Strat-tastic Flight Co-Ordinator

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    The way I see it is that the cat's called Cat, so the dog must be called Dog to be true to it being in a parallel universe.
     
  15. Seb

    Seb Captain Staff Member

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    Yep, the dog is just called "Dog".

    I'd be kind of interested to know what Debs Lister named the dog she smuggled onboard Red Dwarf, though. Maybe Prometheus?
     
  16. Simonr1978

    Simonr1978 Deck Sergeant

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    I would guess whatever Frankenstein got feminised to in the parallel universe, probably something like Francescastein.
     
  17. Pembers

    Pembers Deck Sergeant

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    Well Frankenstein was a girls name in Dave Lister's mind so I imagine it would have been in Debs too. Naturally the parallel Dog would have been female as the parallel evolved dog was male.
     
  18. Simonr1978

    Simonr1978 Deck Sergeant

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    You can't really jump to that conclusion with pets, it could have been the name the cat already had or just the first one that sprung to mind. Our old dog was called Fraggle for example, not because I thought it was a particularly feminine name for her, it just seemed to suit her and an ex-work colleague had a tradition of naming his family's cats Bob regardless of gender.
     
  19. Mardroid

    Mardroid Console Officer

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    Yes, the gender thing doesn't seem to apply to the animal humanoids anyway, hence Cat's alter-ego being a male Dog.
     
  20. karnie

    karnie Supply Officer

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    Seriously, Seb? You do know your own site specifically says that Deb's dog was named "Dracula"... It's in the interviews section..:-)

    It also says that Dog's official name is "Dog Dog", for some reason.
     

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