Last series by Grant & Naylor shines brightly. Hilarious!
Valnastar | Deep 13, USA | 12/20/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Red Dwarf Series 6 is the last written by both of the creators, Grant and Naylor and the humor is as sharp as ever. In this series, the ship Red Dwarf is itself missing (literally, the model had been stolen) and so the crew are living aboard Starbug searching for their home, which in the story arc of the series has been taken by parties unknown. The part of the Cat is significantly increased in this series to great effect, although the trade-off is that Holly is missed. The episodes are terrific and highly creative with new situations and dense, seemingly endless jokes. This is Red Dwarf at its apex of creativity and humor. Episodes include:
Emohawk, Polymorph II- The crew need to trade with GELFs in order to get a vital piece of equipment, but will Lister survive his wedding night?
Psirens- Like the crew in The Odyssey, the Red Dwarf crew must escape the call of "Psirens" if they are to continue on their journey. Can the crew resist the temptation of their dearest desires?
Legion- The crew meet a marvelously talented entity who is very helpful, and very dangerous as well. The writers give the character of Rimmer new possibilities and more to do when he acquires a "hard light" body, but will the crew escape their host in order to take advantage of it?
Gunmen of the Apocalypse- A great "western" episode that also explores the fun of roleplaying and virtual reality. Fantastic, innovative and funny!
Rimmerworld- Rimmer escapes a disaster and ends up stranded alone for a very long time. What will the crew find when they finally catch up to him?
Out of Time- The crew meet up with very dislikable future versions of themselves. Will they be able to escape a time paradox that will cause them to become people they despise?
The first time I saw Red Dwarf Series 6 I was truly amazed at the freshness and quality of the writing, and it still makes me laugh out loud after repeated viewings. This is great comedy as well as terrific parody of many science fiction concepts. Highly recommended.
Red Dwarf VI
MRH | Denver, CO | 05/08/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"We enjoyed all of the Red Dwarf series. This purchase was to replace a defective Series VI DVD>"
Watchable, but the quality is dropping
A. Whitehead | Colchester, Essex United Kingdom | 11/20/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Returning for its sixth season in 1993, Red Dwarf underwent the largest shake-up to its basic premise since its beginning. Writers Rob Grant and Doug Naylor decided that the crew had things a little too easy living on a five-mile-long spaceship with absolutely tons of supplies, so devised a storyline in which Red Dwarf - and thus Holly - disappears whilst the crew are on an away mission and they have to chase after it in Starbug with not much in the way of food and water.
Psirens introduces the new situation with a cold open with Lister being revived after 200 years in cryo-sleep. Since he is temporarily amnesiac, Kryten has to re-explain the show's premise to him, thus providing a handy jumping-on point for new viewers. The episode has Starbug stumbling across a graveyard of ships and asteroids infested with 'psirens', hideous insectoid creatures that lure passers-by onto the rocks and then suck out their brains ("Just like Ulysses and that ancient Turkish myth!" - Lister). It's a creepy and dark episode with some decent ideas, a few good laughs and some nice guest spots from the likes of Anita Dobson and Richard Ridings (soon to be seen in Game of Thrones), but it feels a bit off. The episode suddenly resets Lister's character back to being the undeveloped slob of earlier seasons as if the last five years never happened, which is weird. On the other hand, there is a long-awaited new job for the Cat, with his superior reflexes making him a natural pilot for Starbug, which is a welcome move.
Legion sees Starbug taken aboard a vast space station whose only inhabitant is the enigmatic, brilliant and eccentric humanoid Legion. Legion is initially friendly, solving the crew's supply problems and giving Rimmer a new 'hard light' drive allowing him to interact with solid matter again, but obviously turns out to be a bit of a mentalist nutjob (what a surprise) whom the crew have to engage in battle. This is a reasonably funny episode featuring some excellent CGI and a good hard SF idea about gestalt intelligences, but is let down by some rather over-obvious slapstick in the finale.
The Emmy Award-winning (no, seriously) Gunmen of the Apocalypse is the strongest episode of the season by far. The crew run afoul of a warship belonging to rogue simulants and engage in a pitched battle to the death (Starbug having been upgraded with laser cannons to give it a sporting chance) that ends with the ship being infested by a computer virus. The crew use a VR interface to go into the ship's systems and battle the virus, a fight embodied as a Wild West showdown. It's a pretty bizarre idea but works brilliantly, with a genuine Wild West re-enactment town in Kent providing some surprisingly authentic atmosphere. A classic.
Emohawk: Polymorph II is the sequel to Season 3's Polymorph although it also sees the return of Ace Rimmer (from Season 4's Dimension Jump) and Duane Dibley (from Season 5's Back to Reality) after the crew enrage a bunch of GELFs, who dispatch a new, more capable version of the polymorph after them in revenge. There's some funny stuff in the episode, most notably when Lister has to marry a GELF to get a vital engine part, but the latter part is less successful simply because the episode re-uses a bunch of gags from those earlier episodes. It's the first in what will later become a worrying trend, namely the recycling of old ideas rather than the pursuit of new ones.
Rimmerworld sees Rimmer forced to abandon ship in an escape pod that crash-lands on a planet 600 years away from rescue (thanks to time dilation). As the pod is equipped with emergency cloning and terraforming equipment, Rimmer is able to create his own verdant paradise world and populate it with, erm, himself. Again, this is a decent episode with some funny lines and a good central premise, but there is also a strong sense of deja vu, as this is similar ground to Season 6's Terrorform.
Out of Time ended the season on a completely jaw-dropping and shocking note back when it first aired. The crew gain control of a temporal drive which allows them to travel in time. They encounter their future selves from fifteen years hence, and discover that the ability to travel anywhere they want in time and space has given them enormous power...and power corrupts. It's an excellent idea which is genuinely unsettling and the episode has an unusually doom-laden atmosphere to it building up to a huge cliffhanger ending.
And then...nothing. Several months after filming of Season 6 was completed, lead actor Craig Charles became embroiled in a major scandal that led to police charges being filed (Red Dwarf had made Charles one of the biggest names on TV at the time, and he enjoyed the rock 'n' roll lifestyle a little too much, something that later came back to trouble him on Coronation Street as well). He was eventually fully exonerated, but it took a long time for him to clear his name. At the same time, the writing relationship between Rob Grant and Doug Naylor unfortunately broke down and their partnership split. Rob Grant left the series to start writing novels, whilst Doug Naylor became the sole writer and flag-carrier for the series.
Eventually, Red Dwarf returned for a new series in 1997, but it was a very different show to what had come before. But I'll be covering that in due course.
This season saw a marked change in the series. Still watchable and still funny with brilliant production values (for a BBC show in 1993, anyway), there was more trading on past glories than the exploration of fresh new ideas, and a much greater reliance on running gags. Lister, having been set up as a pretty canny guy over the previous five seasons, was also reset into a slightly dim slob, which wasn't really fair to the character. However, the performances remained strong, Gunmen of the Apocalypse is a classic episode and the cliffhanger ending is still startling today."
R William | Paducah, Ky USA | 08/29/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Red Dwarf VI is a MUST item for any Red Dwarf and British Comedy fan. Warning - do not purchase volume VI unless you already have and have seen Volume I or other Red Dwarf predecessor, or you may be a bit lost."
The best of both worlds.
Bruce W. Johns | Rockford Illinois USA | 07/07/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Some people will tell you to stay away from series 6,7,and 8. I will say that for the best of Sci-fi and Comedy this is by far the best season! there are "running" jokes in this season. Yes some are funny and some are tasteless but none of them take away from the series as a whole. Ayone who enjoyes a laugh or a well thought out sci-fi series will be able to jump right in with both feet in this series. You don't have to watch the first 5 series (however I highly recomend you do) to enjoy this series. It starts out very much the same way as series one, albeit not quite the same. Dave Lister wakes from a long stasis sleep to find he's forgotten who he is. The writers do an excellent job of reinventing the show via this amnesia intro. The other characters are simalarly introduced and a summary of their character types are given. So, like I said if you've never seen Red Dwarf, Don't Panic (to rip off another sci-fi/comedy great) you will be able to enjoy this classic series without doing your homework. This has just recently become my favorite series as I just watched again last week. Throughout series 6 you'll get long laughs, great sci-fi and Arnold Judas Rimmer, Rimmer to ryme with scum."