I know this one won’t be the portrait set a lot of you were hoping I’d do next, but given that the new series starts tomorrow, I thought it was appropriate. It’s also a set with a special place in my heart. If there was ever a TV series that informed my adolescence it was Red Dwarf. I grew up watching the early series and by the time series 6 was broadcast I was 12 and shaping up to be quite the obsessive little fanboy. Some of the first comic strips I ever wrote and drew appeared in the RD Fan Club magazine. My mam still has a little photo of me on her dressing table, where I’m wearing a RD baseball cap and doing the Rimmer salute. I broke a lot of young girls’ hearts, I can tell you.
As a result I’m thoroughly looking forward to the new series. I was cautious at first - the show still gets a bad rap due to a couple of ropey series and Back To Earth didn’t really do it for me either - but the initial word-of-mouth has been ecstatic and the little trailers have had me hooked. It really appears to be a return to form. The show might not be to everyone’s tastes, but during it’s golden years it really pushed the boundaries of combining comedy and science fiction. Sure, Douglas Adams was doing this in the 70s, but more often than not he abandoned his better ideas as throwaway gags. At it’s best Red Dwarf really took the time to explore intriguing sci-fi concepts, and - unlike it’s contemporary Star Trek TNG - mined them not just for drama, but for comedy and pathos too. I’m confident Red Dwarf X can deliver the goods.