Rotten to the Core (1965)

This crime comedy begins with three small time criminals – Lenny the Dip (Kenneth Griffith), Scapa Flood (James Beckett) and Jelly Knight (Dudley Sutton) – about to be released from Wormwood Scrubs prison. Their gang’s mastermind is Randolph Berkeley-Greene, nicknamed “The Duke” (Anton Rodgers). But he is still on the outside, having provided himself with a cast iron alibi for their last job. Read more …

Classic TV: Red Dwarf VII

The sci-fi comedy series Red Dwarf hit a peak with its new format from the third season onwards. That season saw the series action move from its former base on the mining ship Red Dwarf itself to the smaller shuttle craft Starbug. It retained the three main characters of Rimmer (Chris Barrie), Lister (Craig Charles) and the Cat (Danny John-Jules), but replaced Norman Lovett as the ship’s computer Holly with Hattie Hayridge in the same role, and introduced a significant new crew member in the android Kryten (Robert Llewellyn). While Holly disappeared after Red Dwarf V in 1992, the rest of the cast was unchanged until the seventh season in 1997. Read More …

Classic TV: Red Dwarf VI

The sixth season of sci-fi comedy Red Dwarf appeared in October 1993 as Red Dwarf VI. A new director was brought in for this series, Andy de Emmony, and this would be the last BBC series based around the established foursome of Rimmer (Chris Barrie), Lister (Craig Charles), Cat (Danny John-Jules) and Kryten (Robert Llewellyn), before a fifth character joined the ship’s crew in series 7. Read more …

Classic TV: Red Dwarf V

The fifth series of the sci-fi comedy Red Dwarf was first broadcast on BBC2 in February 1992. Rimmer (Chris Barrie), Lister (Craig Charles), Cat (Danny John-Jules), Kryten (Robert Llewellyn) and the ship’s computer Holly (Hattie Hayridge) all returned for this season and there were no significant changes to the series format. 

Red Dwarf V begins with a story showing Rimmer in an unusually sympathetic light. In “Holoship”, Rimmer is disgusted by the plot of a romantic film, unable to accept the premise that someone would give up their deepest desires in life because of their love for someone they will never even see again. Read more …

Classic TV: Red Dwarf IV (1991)

Seasons 4-6 of the sci-fi comedy Red Dwarf saw the series at its peak, having firmly found its feet with the new line up of Rimmer (Chris Barrie), Lister (Craig Charles), Cat (Danny John-Jules), the android Kryten (Robert Llewellyn) and the female version of the ship’s computer Holly (Hattie Hayridge). Read more …

Classic TV: Red Dwarf III

Despite its unusual premise, the first two series of the BBC sci-fi comedy Red Dwarf were ratings successes. The second season built incrementally on the success of the first, developing its characters, strengthening its writing and exploring some of the possibilities of its setting. 

But the series’ peak years began with the arrival of the new-look Red Dwarf III in 1989, Red Dwarf’s first season to be a numbered sequel. At the time, it must have come as a shock to its regular audience. The titles were different, the theme music was different, the sets were different, the look was different and even the characters were different. Read more …

Red Dwarf: The Early Years (Series I & II)

The adventures of a man, a cat and a hologram (and later on an android), Red Dwarf is one of the world’s longest-running sitcoms and the world’s second longest-running sci-fi series, after the BBC’s venerable Doctor Who. It’s also a series with a strong cult following and a legion of fans who have stuck with it through its many ups and downs over the decades. Although based on a small cast of (usually) four characters, the show has undergone many changes and much evolution – a lot of it positive, although not all of it – since it was first broadcast in 1988. Read more …

The Assassination Bureau Limited (1968)

This black comedy from the 1960s stars Oliver Reed and Diana Rigg, the latter in her first film starring role. Rigg plays Sonya Winter, an aspiring journalist in Edwardian England, who has uncovered the existence of a secret criminal organisation, The Assassination Bureau.  Read more …

Two Cheers for St. Trinian’s: School’s Out!

So we’ve reached the end of our odyssey through the St. Trinian’s films. And what have we learned? 
Well, if a new teacher arrives at St. Trinian’s School and she looks like Joyce Grenfell, then she’s definitely a police spy. Also, never go on a foreign holiday or a “cultural tour” if it’s organised by Cecil Parker – especially if Sid James is involved. Will they never learn?  Read more …

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