Holly in XIII??? (or the special)

Discussion in 'RED DWARF: THE PROMISED LAND' started by Asclepius, May 17, 2018.

  1. Aractus

    Aractus Third Technician

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    So I'm probably in the minority, but I think Lovett should replace Llewellyn. I'm not saying get rid of Kryten entirely, just make him a much more minor character. The humour with his character in recent series has been so repetitious that much of the time it's pointless. Don't get me wrong, Llewellyn is very good, but his material hasn't been strong. We don't need the same jokes regarding sanitation brought up in every single episode.

    Hattie's Holly was never a "main character". She was a minor character, a supporting character. Llewellyn's Kryten took Norman's Holly's place in the series (this by the way is specifically mentioned in the S03 documentary "All Change" by Craig Charles). This was the problem with Norman in series 8 - he wanted to be a main character again, and have his original role. That would have worked much better than how he was actually used in the story - he was used instead as Hattie's Holly was, as a minor supporting character not essential to the plot. Norman's scene in S08E03 that starts in response to Rimmer's criticism with "if I'm so stupid, if I'm computer senile explain this then." and he reveals he got a separate set of nanobots to resurrect the crew is one of the funniest and best executed scenes in the whole of season 8.

    Exactly right. Holly's major purpose in Seasons 1 and 2 is to explain the episode's plot and setting. Lovett was able to bring an amazing comedic quality to this. From season 3 on that purpose was given to Kryten. So in most of seasons 3-5, and 8, Holly barely interacts with the plot.

    More to the point though, Lovett can write his own lines. He can improve the material he's given many times over. This is a quality most of the other dwarf actors, except perhaps Barrie, lack. His guest role in Keeping up Appearances S01E04 I think shows what a fantastic comedic actor he is, his lines are just delivered so well. "You know how it is, you forget things".

    Why should he share his role with another actor? None of the others have to.

    Norman was justifiably upset at them. They promised not to duplicate his character, to make Holly different, but Hattie just played the same Holly - his character - that's what made him angry. Llewellyn didn't duplicate David Ross's Kryten, he re-imagined the character. That's what Grant and Naylor and the producers assured Norman would be done with Holly. The other part of his dispute, which is why he quit season 3, was that he didn't want to do rehearsals because he had other acting commitments. That was negotiated but the producer cut his pay in-line with him working less. This by the way is talked about in one of the DVD extras (I can't remember which one, maybe "All Change") where the producer says that Norman's demands were reasonable and they could have compromised and if he had it to do over there's no way he would have let Norman quit over it.

    People have bashed Norman over the years, but the facts are the facts and the producer himself admitted they were the ones unreasonable with him.

    So yes he should absolutely be back, he's a better comedic actor than the rest of the dwarfers. And frankly the weakest actor in the past three series in my opinion has been Craig Charles. But short of re-casting Kris Marshall as Lister, it's an issue that has to be worked with.
     
  2. talkie3000

    talkie3000 Deck Sergeant

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    But Robert is playing the same Kryten as in series 2. technically anyway. yeah the performance is different but its the same character. and when Hattie replaced Norman. well instantly there was a huge difference for an obvious reason. Hattie wasn't doing an impersination of Norman. she was just being Holly, the same way Robert was being Kryten.

    It was said Norman had moved to Glasgow and did not wanna come down to do rehearsals, assuming he was just a head on a screen that it wouldn't matter. but the writers needed Norman at rehearsals to see whether Jokes worked or not before filming day. i guess Norman continued to argue about that and they agreed but only if they give him a pay cut. Norman did not like that either and presumably just kinda gave up trying with him.

    Which seems to be the way with Norman it seems. even after he left in 2009 and said he was never returning to the show again. maybe he expected Fans to be up in arms about him not being in the show. but he continued to talk about the book he was releasing that talked about how unfairly he was treated by the producers... the book that never came it seems. then come 2016 he apparently contacted Doug asking if he is in the new show or not. Doug said hey Norman i thought you didn't wanna be part of the show anymore? Norman added he was being stupid, and now he is back in the show again.

    Hattie is very much apart of the shows main guard. she was in 3 series and 1 episode. She is just as much a main character as Norman was. and thats a result of Norman making things difficult and leaving the show. so to say why should he share the role? because Hattie already took over that role for 3 seasons. she continued the Role and made it her own. infact the fact Doug hasn't brought hattie back after Norman left a 2nd time is probably far more respect for Norman then he probably deserves in the role.
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2019
  3. Aractus

    Aractus Third Technician

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    We'll have to agree to disagree here. Robert is playing "the same character" only insomuch that he's a rebuilt Kryten that we were introduced to in season 2. But the character made up of his personality, tropes, behaviours, and voice is completely different, he didn't just duplicate the existing character at all.

    Hattie played a witty but computer senile Holly, exactly the same as Norman.

    It may not have been fair to the other actors, their original argument, but in fairness to Norman he'd have been able to nail his performance take after take anyway. From the description the producer gave, the pay cut came after Doug or Grant (or both) had negotiated his schedule. It was very much that he'd agreed, IIRC, to come in for 2 days a week of rehearsals (not 5) and then after that the producer cut his pay, and he refused to work unless they paid his full pay.

    I think what a lot of people don't realise is that actors are often not treated well. They often have to fight tooth and nail for their pay and conditions.

    She was in just as many episodes, but most of them as a supporting character.

    Again, I'll have to check the documentary on it, but the producer that made Norman quit season 3 said he was the unreasonable one and Norman's demands should have been met in hindsight. This is an admission that Hattie was in no way comparable in quality to Norman. Barrie quit as well you know, do you want to see his role split 50:50 with Chloƫ Annett?

    If you have too many actors in a sitcom you end up with a large ensemble cast and the problem that all of them demand equal screen time episode-by-episode in their contracts, this is precisely what happened with the Big Bang Theory.
     
  4. talkie3000

    talkie3000 Deck Sergeant

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    The producer you mean is probably Paul jackson. but i don't think he ever said Normans demands should have been met. its not like Norman was this big superstar. its basically down to Norman wanted to either not come to rehearsals or have less days in rehearsals compared to the other cast and the fallback to those was that his pay would be reduced.

    And Chris Barrie left the show for totally different reasons. whether kochanski would have been part of the show if he had not left. who knows. but we already seen the 50:50 split for series 8

    Well if you create demands then yeah expect to have a tooth and nail situation. this isn't a case of the producers cutting normans fee unfairly, Norman wanted something, the producers were probably felt he was making the whole creative process harder and there being an expectation to meet his condition probably wasn't fair on anyone.
     

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