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Speculative Fiction, Intersectional Feminism, and Dirty Jokes
Shana and I are back after a couple of weeks away from podcasting together to chat about Red Dwarf: Me2. I want to mostly avoid talking about the relationship between the two Rimmers (mostly because it’s covered in much more depth in Infinity Welcomes Careful Drivers) but there’s plenty of meat in this episode besides. As the title implies, we mostly look at the gazpacho soup incident as a Rosebud-like lens through which to view Rimmer’s life, or at least his conception of it. What is really important to Rimmer, and how does that inform how we see him? Also, we chat about interstellar wars fought over electric bills and what is probably Danny John-Jules’ greatest performance to date.
Check it out here.
In this episode, Shana and I finally get back to Red Dwarf and chat about the fourth episode of Series One, “Waiting For God.” It’s essentially an episode about the search for meaning in a cold and unfeeling universe, which is the kind of thing that sitcoms do all the time, right?
Main Topic: Waiting For God. Delays. Column. Polycule. Religion. Beckett. Toaster. Garbage. Priest. Troughton. Feline. Typical. Spot. Production. Colors. Characters. Files. Eleven. Surreal. Existential. Aliens. Imperialist. Fucking. Contrast. Indigenous. Odor. Interpretation. Pictograms. Sniff. Illustrations. Curry. Apostate. Shiny. Underwritten. Budget. Unexamined? Underappreciated. Archetype. Ability. Enjoyable. Meta. Tonto. Underestimated. Continuity. Suicide. Parents. Empathy. Cult. Faith. Trash. Hat. Last. Weak. Green. Manufactured. Nature. Wrong. Hamfisted. Anthropology. Switched. Rastabilly. Worthwhile. Fuchal. Limitations. Jokes. Scrumptuous. Spoon. Shirt. Infected. Punctuation. Comma. Chicken. Acting. Quarantine. Doubt. Funny. McCoy. Next time: Confidence and Paranoia.
(If I’m going to pay for a website, I really need to remember to actually post my fucking content here.)
So here it is, in case you missed it on the original Libsyn feed, the second episode of our Red Dwarf podcast (on “Future Echoes”) for your entertainment and (maybe) enlightenment. Rewatching Future Echoes made me think about just how much the episode is fundamentally about our cultural fear of death, and there are some really interesting parallels between the way that Lister and Rimmer deal with their own mortality along the way.
One gag that I forgot to mention in the episode (it was in my notes but I got distracted by my own format and missed coming back to it at the end) comes during the sequence where Lister is convincing Rimmer that there are a ton of people who died and have gone on to do great things. Lister mentions the newsreader on Channel 27, and Rimmer pooh-poohs the idea with a derisive “..groovy, funky Channel 27…”
The treatment of the hologrammatic members of the Dwarf-iverse outside the confines of the Dwarf itself is a topic barely considered by the series itself, but Infinity Welcomes Careful Drivers includes a childhood memory of Rimmer’s in which there is a protest march of the dead at which Rimmer throws a rock through the head of one of the “Deadies.” It seems that in the mind of the creators the dead are a despised class, struggling for their right to survive in a hostile society. (Although one would presume that the status that comes with the wealth to afford the energy and processing requirements of hologrammatic reconstitution of personality would provide at least some comfort….)
Channel 27, then, is probably intended to be a bit of a counterculture station, television for those interested in representation, in voicing the concerns of the marginalized, in trying to confront the squares of proper society with the things they’d rather not think about. Oi! Spaceman’s spiritual bedfellows, if you will. Any station sneered at by early-series Rimmer is probably a station worth paying attention to, anyway.
It’s been long-awaited, at least for me, but finally Shana and I have gotten around to starting up the new long-term project: an episode-by-episode podcast about Red Dwarf called “Searching For Fuchal.”
In episode one, we chat about the pilot episode, “The End,” existential dread, bro-like behavior, racial and gender politics, and speculate about what it might mean to “interfere with a woman sexually.” I hope you’ll come along this journey with us.
In the next couple of days, expect this blog to become a lot more active. I’ve got a blog post simmering about how the use of the cuckold fetish as a meme is indicative of the deepest problems with the alt right, and in the next week or so we should start putting out episodes of our new Firefly podcast, which at the moment looks to be called Big Damn Heroes.