When I heard that Red Dwarf was coming back, I was slightly dubious, not sure I wanted to head back to the world of holograms and androids. Red Dwarf is for me, one of those very few television programmes which has an emotional connection. I first watched an episode round a school friend's house during a 'sleepover' it was then, slightly risqué and for a 14 year old, it felt like a very adult comedy. I remember I took it home and introduced my Dad to the programme, and so from then on we would sit and watch every week, with my Mum disapproving the jokes and just not getting it, while my Dad and I would sit and absolutely roar. But by the time the last series aired, I was far more grown-up, and the demise of Red Dwarf wasn’t really greeted with much in the way of regret.
Of course since the TV channel Dave sprung up, extolling itself as “The Home of Witty Banter”, (but initially just proving to be the home of every cheap repeat going)! Red Dwarf repeats have been doing the rounds, and by that I mean round and round and round, and I have, when I can find absolutely nothing better to do, sat and watched a few and I haven’t really laughed, or found that they captured any of their former glory – I wasn’t transported at any time back to the sofa of my teenage years sitting with my old man, cracking our ribs laughing – they seem old and rather corny.
When I heard that Dave (obviously now doing a little better for itself – making their own TV series'!) were making another series with allthe original cast, I wasn’t terribly excited and had pretty much ignored any of the advertising or the hype, not really having any great plans to watch it.
But, when a friend suggested we should sit and watch it, and I should then review it – I admit, I was easily swayed, and happily sat down to watch the first episode, without much in the way of expectation or anticipation of anything too special.
It is initially amusing seeing the cast, all obviously rather older and wider (Kryten being the most amusingly chubbier, one would assume androids didn’t age!). The writing is very much the same, the jokes as unsophisticated and the story-lines as silly.
I LOVED IT, both my friend and I sat chuckling most of the way through, it doesn’t try to be anything it wasn’t before, its ludicrously silly, the sets are slightly better – although, there is a lot of cardboard obviously still used! And I realised, what I hadn’t taken into account in my malaise at the new series was that despite the fact its Red Dwarf, with the same people, and almost the same stories and jokes, they ARE in fact new stories and jokes, and they are funny! There has to be room still for such silliness and pointlessness!
I have now watched the first two episodes, and whilst I enjoyed the first – it set up again for us the Red Dwarf premise and story – so I will most definitely be watching the rest of the series, I am not sure if I will be too grief stricken if they don't make any more, but its good, its fun, its watch-able and I am sure had me and my Dad sat down to watch it together we would have both been chortling away happily like we always did.
The next episide of Red Dwarf can will be on Dave @ 9pm on 18 October ! – if you miss you can catch up on UKTV for a limited time after each episode.