Red Dwarf XI : Samsara

Red Dwarf returned last week with a bang and here we go once more with more laughs with the Boys from the Dwarf.

Samsara was a small little masterpiece. Whilst Twentica saw the boys altogether we got the best of different pairings in this episode.

It starts with Lister and Rimmer playing Mineopoly, all Rimmer had to do was avoid rolling a 2 and a 1 and he’d be fine but suddenly all he can roll is a 2 and a 1. I’m pretty sure we’ve heard Rimmer go on about a game of risk where he kept going on about a 2 and a 1. Rimmer and Lister have always been so wonderful together and its nice to get some one-on-one time with the two of them. Rimmer’s reaction to absolutely every bad thing that happens to him is the best and Lister is just so used to it by now that he just sits there and lets Rimmer self destruct.

We have the Cat and Kryten being the first to meet the two surviving members of the Samsara, Cat getting annoyed with Kryten talking about things he didn’t understand was great.

On the Samsara we then have Kyrten and Rimmer go off as Lister and the Cat get stuck together. Rimmer trying to be nice to Kryten whilst Lister has to hear a lesson in history by the Cat are moments that will never be bettered. They were pure classic Red Dwarf comedy and prove that the show is so strong because of the cast and their relationships.

So what was the Samsara?

It was a ship, two employees onboard were having a affair. They didn’t know the Samsara had a Karma drive installed so every time they “sinned” they got punished in little ways as well as the lies, cheating and everything else being recorded. They then decided to flip the Karma drive so that they could have a night without being judged before breaking it off, just the ship went crazy and killed everyone. The two got away but were killed when trying to save the Dwarfers from the fate that awaited them.

Thankfully no one on Red Dwarf is always innocent and wholesome. Lister cheating at Mineopoly meant that Rimmer just lost it, no one is particularly nice to each other and the only real bad thing that happened was Lister getting his hair trapped in a food disposal system after returning money the Cat won after stealing from a charity tin. By being their normal cheating, selfish, egocentric and annoying selves they were able to leave without too much harm.

I didn’t like the switching between the present and the past of the Samsara, whilst I guess it was funny and we got to see the story in action I wouldn’t have minded the crew just figuring it out. That isn’t to say Maggie Service and Dan Tetsell didn’t do a good job, their characters of Brown and Green were thoroughly unlikable which they needed to be. Their reaction to being found out as well as to their bad luck was great but they never really tried to be likable. Just two people having a affair. Usually I’d really enjoy it but I really did love the interactions between the normal foursome that I felt that the love story just got in the way.

Other then that it was all pure Red Dwarf goodness.

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