yoyoangel said: I'd like to know about your thoughts about Red Dwarf! It was important enough in my pre/early teens that my sisters and I still send each other "Happy Gazpacho Soup Day" messages, so I'm interested in your take.
Ah, Red Dwarf. Discovered when I was a young teenager on PBS in the States, back when the episodes were only played once a year* during the fund-raising telethon. I would spend the whole day in front of our tiny, crappy television, only getting up to make a fresh cup of tea or bowl of popcorn. Each time the broadcaster could afford a new season (a whole six episodes), I would spend a week in ecstatic anticipation.
I loved the losers-and-misfits-in-space concept. I loved the dialogue. I loved that a white guy and a black guy and an android and a creature evolved from a domestic house cat were best frenemies. I loved that they were all kind of terrible at everything but bimbled along regardless. I loved Holly (both incarnations). I turned a blind eye to the gaping plot holes and the flagrant disregard for anything resembling continuity.
I learned about modern British culture. I learned what a Liverpudlian accent sounded like (Lister), and about Cockney rhyming slang (Holly). I learned about the abiding love for ale and extremely hot curries, the strange fondness for rubbish heroes, the wistful yearning for a better reality that is only a minor improvement on the current one, because actually things aren’t that bad when you’re stranded in deep space, but can still have beer, vindaloos and some mates to slag off.
I’ve seen the episodes so many times now that I can quote sections of them verbatim.I find myself quoting them both purposefully and unintentionally (not realising it until much later).
When I need a comforting escape, I turn to them. Sometimes I put them on in the background when I’m working because they can’t distract me, I know them so well. They were a strong influence on my formative years. I might even credit them with spawning a certain unacknowledged anglophilia that drew me to move to England in the first instance.
* I find it curmudgeon-making that we can now watch just about anything any time we want, due to streaming services. Back in my day…!
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