Red Dwarf Review: “Twentica” (Series XI, Episode 1)

 

screen-shot-2016-11-25-at-12-39-55-pm
This is first degree toastercide!

 

“If that’s the penalty for toast, what the hell do you get for pizza?” – The Cat.

Airdate: 22 September 2016

Written By: Doug Naylor

Plot: In the depths of uncharted space, Starbug gets intercepted by a ship of Expanoids – a subset of Simulants. They pull a trick on the Dwarfers to obtain an artifact – the Casket of Cronos – that allows them to travel back in time to 20th-century America. There, technology beyond the Gilded Ages are prohibited, and scientists are driven underground to speakeasies. In order to free themselves, they must find a use of a machine part that was given to them by a doomed scientist.

Review:

Before I begin, I just want to say that there’s this incredible feeling I have in reviewing Red Dwarf as it comes out (in America, at least) for the first time. This, again, was the very first show I decided to blog about. As the years have gone by, I have come to admire the show more. And even though I wouldn’t place it at the top of my all time favorites (The Simpsons, Steven Universe, and Gravity Falls are a holy trinity of awesome animation), I still think it is one of the most overlooked sci-fi shows out there.

To get (virtually) brand new episodes for the first time in my fandom (Red Dwarf X came out just before I became a full-blown fan of the show) was something quite indescribable. I watched them all in a day.

With that said…  I begin my (silly) analysis of Series XI. Continue reading

Steven Universe Review: "Future Vision" (Season 1B, Episode 13)

NO! NO, NOT THE BEES! NOT THE BEES! AAAAHHHH!!!!

“You could just be going on about your business, eating your fry bits, and then suddenly you choke to death!” – Garnet. Hey, dying eating fries ain’t a clean way to go, but it could be worse. Far worse.

Airdate: January 29th, 2015
Written By: Lamar Abrams and Hellen Jo
Plot: After saving Steven from an object on the stairs, Garnet informs the kid about her “future vision” – one that allows her to see the paths that the world can take. At first, Steven uses Garnet’s power to decipher what path his life will take. Unfortunately, Garnet also notes that he can see possibilities for a more permanent end for our little Stew-ball. Kid goes paranoid, and even contemplates suicide just to fulfill Garnet’s predictions.

This airs on a network aimed towards children. Just putting it out there.

Review:

Should we have access to what could happen in the future? Can we change the concepts of causality, or does our knowledge of the future only damn us to it with an increased sense of fear? These concepts have been explored in various science fiction shows and books. Hell, it actually provided the plot of Red Dwarf‘s second episode – “Future Echoes”. In that episode, the Red Dwarf crew (or what’s now left of it) experience the titular phenomenon – events in the future that are seen in the present. Lister slowly becomes paranoid after seeing a vision of his death and tries to prevent the future, but when events shown in the echoes start occurring, he prepares himself for the end. (When all is said and done, the only thing that they find out is that Lister will wind up with twins – and that doesn’t happen until series 2, thanks to Lister having a drunken one-night stand with a woman who happens to be himself. He has to have a caesarean. Yes. He.)

As you can tell, it’s a very fun topic to send up – allowing for cool comedy and delicious drama. Steven Universe adds its own twist to the equation by having a character experience these future echoes all of the time.

So, what about Garnet’s third eye? Yeah, we don’t see it that often because she has those shades (which are, quite frankly, freaking awesome), but she does have it. We saw it in “Arcade Mania”, as a way for Garnet to succeed at the Meat Beat Mania game. How did she do it? Well, one could argue that Garnet is focused on whatever task she has in front of her, and uses that third eye to that advantage. This episode proposes option B – that she saw what was going on in the future, and used insane dexterity to reach that goal.
Continue reading

That’s About Average for Second Class Post! (Red Dwarf Reviews: Series XI Preview)

 

“Well, gentlemen, congratulations. Scrambling in a red alert situation, a new record time – one hour, seventeen minutes, thirty-nine seconds!”

After a wait of a month and a half since its premiere in Britain, Red Dwarf XI has made its debut on America’s iTunes.

I’m assuming they saved the iTunes release until today in order to keep the DVD sales at least somewhat respectable. Then again, given that the show debut a week before it’s TV release on UKTVPlay, one has to wonder what Dave was thinking.

Nonetheless, I’m glad the show is out stateside, and that I can review it without dealing with viruses from a Torrent. (Yes, I’m a dork.) It’s the first Red Dwarf since 2012. In that time frame, there have been an entire series of Olympics, four Super Bowls, a change in the British Premiership and it’s relationship with Europe, and America is torn between the two least liked presidential candidates since the 19th century.

Yeah, this show will provide a bit of an escape. Continue reading

"Like The Cleaning of a House…" – The Simpsons Renewed Through Season 30

...it never ends.
Taken from frinkiac.com

FOX has given The Simpsons another stay of execution – keeping it on the air until Season 30.

The big news out of this is that The Simpsons will beat Gunsmoke in terms of it’s how many episodes it has aired. This makes it, simply put, the longest running primetime scripted show in American history.

My thoughts on the show’s quality have been relatively clear, but just in case you need a refresher, it’s time to bring the curtain down on America’s Favorite Family. The reasons have been listed time and again by fans across the internet, and I agree with at least 90% of them. In fact, animation critic PieGuyRulz actually created a video that sums up the central problem with the show – it’s story engine and time within that have effectively damned it to mediocrity.

Thankfully, I have a hunch that this could be the last time the show gets renewed. Continue reading