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Red Dwarf: Discovering the TV Series (Hardback)

Volume I: 1988-1993

Colour Books Hobbies & Lifestyle > Film, Media & Television P&S History > Social History

By Tom Salinsky
Imprint: White Owl
Pages: 192
Illustrations: 32 colour illustrations
ISBN: 9781399034944
Published: 30th August 2024


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Red Dwarf is virtually unique among British sitcoms. It began in 1988 and was still releasing new episodes in 2020, making it one of the longest running sitcoms of all time, but the core cast has remained largely unchanged. And its science fiction flavour contrasts strongly with the drawing rooms and sofas which were the norm when it launched, and the fast-cut mockumentary style which is popular today. And yet, this is a show which nobody wanted to make, and which only barely made it to our screens at all. In this work, Tom Salinsky will look at exactly how it came to be; who was considered for the cast but didn’t make it; how it was radically reinvented for the third, sixth, seventh, ninth and tenth seasons; how it survived the breakup of its key creative partnership, the loss of the original spaceship models, BBC strikes, the departure of a major cast member, and the seemingly self-defeating rules which the writers imposed on themselves. But this isn’t just a behind-the-scenes account. It’s also a detailed critical analysis, examining why the best episodes succeed and why the less impressive episodes struggle, while also finding time to ask just how a hologram made of light can smell burning camphor wood, why a creature evolved from a cat is familiar with Wilma Flintstone, or just how long Lister and Kochanski were dating for. How can all this possibly be contained in one book? It can’t! Volume I will cover the first six series and Volume II will conclude the story of Red Dwarf on television as well as looking at the novels, comic strips, computer games and more.

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About Tom Salinsky

Tom Salinsky is a writer, podcaster and corporate coach living in London with his wife and too many cats. With Deborah Frances-White, he is the author of The Improv Handbook (Methuen Drama, 2008). With Robert Khan he is the author of five plays and many audio dramas for Big Finish. With his podcast colleagues John Dorney and Jessica Regan he is the author of Best Pick: A Journey Through Film History and the Academy Awards (Rowman & Littlefield, 2022). Star Trek: Discovering the TV Series is his first solo book.

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