What’s wrong with... Beyond a Joke?

Discussion in 'RED DWARF UNIVERSE' started by Chris D, Oct 22, 2017.

  1. Chris D

    Chris D Engineer

    Messages:
    246
    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2015
    Location:
    Leicestershire, UK
    Unlike most people, I am fond of most of Red Dwarf. There are few episodes that detract from the series as a whole for me and I generally see the positives in most episodes.

    I tend to be particularly fond of series VII and although it’s not my favourite, I always enjoy Beyond a Joke whereas I gather for most, this was the series howler.

    I’m interested in hearing what doesn’t work for people about Beyond a Joke, and also what does work for them.

    As a side note, I know that Robert played a part of the writing on this episode, though as I understand it he originally intended it to have a lesser role for Kryten yet effectively ended up with twice as much. Any info as to what the original concept of the episode would have been like? How much of Robert’s writing actually survived subsequent rewrites and editing? Any comments from Robert or Doug on this episode in particular?
     
  2. Radio Pluto

    Radio Pluto First Technician

    Messages:
    162
    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2017
    Great episode, it's the last hurrah before the offensive dirges of Epideme and Nanarchy.
     
  3. Bluey

    Bluey Science Officer

    Messages:
    12,861
    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2001
    After initially hating season VII I'm now a big fan of it, and this is one of my favourite episodes from the season. In fact, of all time. It's difficult to say exactly why I like it so much. There's something captivating about the storyline I suppose. I also think Abel is a great guest character, and Don Henderson as the crazy simulant deserves a mention. It's one of those episodes I like to watch when in the mood for watching a random episode.
     
    Ant E and Chris D like this.
  4. BigOleDummy

    BigOleDummy Deck Sergeant

    Messages:
    1,300
    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2017
    Location:
    Planet Express Hdg, N. America , Earth, Sol System
    Of the "Kochanski" arc , :mad:, this is one of my favorites also. "Perhaps I didn't make myself clear, SUPPER IS SERVED" slays me every time. Along with "Ketchup, you want Ketchup?!" I don't find the Austen girls very funny, a little irritating in fact but of the Rimmerless episodes this one stands out for me.
     
    Chris D likes this.
  5. Bluey

    Bluey Science Officer

    Messages:
    12,861
    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2001
    Yes, you can't beat a head explosion.
     
    BigOleDummy likes this.
  6. Radio Pluto

    Radio Pluto First Technician

    Messages:
    162
    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2017
  7. Mardroid

    Mardroid Console Officer

    Messages:
    2,930
    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2004
    Beyond a Joke is possibly my favourite episode of series 7 with the possible exception of Tikka to Ride. (I like them both in different ways.) It's a lovely Kryten character episode, and the plot feels very Series 6 style Red Dwarf, starting on one thing, then going somewhere else when a threat arises.

    Okay, it has Kochanksi in it instead of Rimmer, but she is also at her best in this episode, as if she has settled in somewhat with the lads. She is also very proactive in getting them out of a pickle, and the fact the guys don't quite understand it leads them to a nice comedy scene.

    Mind you, I've always rather liked Chloe Annett's Kochanski anyway, so I might be biased. I do understand why many do not, however (her moaning in earlier episodes can grate, although I thought it understandable, when considering her circumstances) but I've never thought her the horrible person many people tend to see her as being. I think it's a case that, she is a replacement of a beloved character who has departed, and so there's a tendency to blow her less positive characteristics out of proportion.

    People have used words like 'snobby' and 'arrogant' when describing the character*. Interestingly, these words could also be used for the beloved Rimmer. Don't get me wrong, I'm glad he's back!

    *Not without some justification, I guess, but not as much as people might make out. Her negative reaction is mostly being stranded away from her lover and her crew, so largely understandable. She is a posh girl, for sure, but that's no bad thing and she'll muck in when she needs to, as demonstrated in Beyond a Joke.
     
  8. Paul Taylor

    Paul Taylor Console Officer

    Messages:
    4,307
    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Location:
    Peterborough UK
    I've got no particular issue with the episode. I was not a fan of series VII, but I've warmed to it, and I like 'Beyond a Joke'. People complain about Kryten's whining but I think it was a positive step in the character's development.
     
  9. UltraDevotee

    UltraDevotee Catering Officer

    Messages:
    303
    Joined:
    May 11, 2013
    Location:
    Formby, United Kingdom
    I used to think Beyond a Joke was the weakest episode of series 7 actually, but now I think Ouroboros should have that dishonour. Beyond a Joke is one of the better of the not great but good and solid ones in the 1997 run IMHO. Like others have said it has got not just some fairly decent humour, but also a good and quite captivating story line. So yes while not a vintage RD episode it is at least a good one so well done Doug and Robert.
     
    FeeBee likes this.
  10. bedfordfalls

    bedfordfalls Deck Sergeant

    Messages:
    1,876
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    The Gelf costumes magically appearing from Kochanski's bag of hidden items (Mirror Universe machines are also available) was odd.

    However it all pales in comparison to the fact that in this episode Lister roundhouse kicks a simulant in the face.

    Lister.

    Roundhouse kicks.

    A simulant.

    Nothing Red Dwarf has done before or since has led to such a failure of suspension of disbelief from me.
     
    FeeBee and SweatyChimpBoy like this.
  11. Pembers

    Pembers Deck Sergeant

    Messages:
    2,449
    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2013
    Location:
    London
    Ahhhhhhh ya see this was explained in 'Gunmen of the Apocalypse' where Lister tells Rimmer that he has been playing Zero G Kickboxing and even does a move to demonstrate, similar to the one what he used on the Simulant.
     
  12. bedfordfalls

    bedfordfalls Deck Sergeant

    Messages:
    1,876
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    the same simulants that can easily withstand a round of bazookoid fire at close range with minimal damage? Not to mention what should have happened to Lister's lower intestines right after...
     
    FeeBee, Pembers and SweatyChimpBoy like this.
  13. SweatyChimpBoy

    SweatyChimpBoy Second Technician

    Messages:
    83
    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2016
    Location:
    Wales
  14. Pembers

    Pembers Deck Sergeant

    Messages:
    2,449
    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2013
    Location:
    London
    Oh there’s a perfectly good explanation for that.....isn’t there @jmc2000 <Pushes JMC forward then runs away>
     
  15. Mardroid

    Mardroid Console Officer

    Messages:
    2,930
    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2004
    That doesn't mean they can't be knocked over, just that they're made of tough material. We saw no indication that the simulant was badly damaged after. Imagine something like a metal step ladder. If you kicked it you would likely do it very little damage (although soft aluminium might dent or bend with sufficient force, but imagine it's tougher material). But with enough effort the force could cause it to topple over. And the simulant was taken by surprise.
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2017
  16. Slainmonkey

    Slainmonkey Deck Sergeant

    Messages:
    1,477
    Joined:
    May 8, 2012
    Location:
    Australia
    For what it's worth I don't mind Beyond a Joke, there are a few things in that episode that really don't land for me, the final scene back in Jane Austin World was very very poor.....but yeah, it's not anywhere as bad of an episode then people claim.
     
    FeeBee likes this.
  17. Kittypaws

    Kittypaws Flight Co-Ordinator

    Messages:
    8,235
    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2013
    Location:
    Wherever the catnip is
    Kryten's "Supper is ready", "ketchup" and his exploding head does it for me everytime. His exploding head especially. :lol:
     
    FeeBee likes this.

Share This Page