Stasis Leak

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"Stasis Leak"
Red Dwarf episode
Episode no. Series 2
Episode 4
Directed by Ed Bye
Written by Rob Grant & Doug Naylor
Original air date 27 September 1988 (1988-09-27)
Guest actors

Clare Grogan as Kristine Kochanski
Mac McDonald as Captain Hollister
Mark Williams as Petersen
Morwenna Banks as Lift Hostess
Tony Hawks as Suitcase

Series 2 episodes
6 September – 11 October 1988
  1. "Kryten"
  2. "Better Than Life"
  3. "Thanks for the Memory"
  4. "Stasis Leak"
  5. "Queeg"
  6. "Parallel Universe"
List of all Red Dwarf episodes

"Stasis Leak" is the fourth episode of the science fiction sitcom Red Dwarf series two[1] and tenth in the series run.[2] It premiered on the British television channel BBC2 on 27 September 1988. Written by Rob Grant and Doug Naylor, and directed by Ed Bye, the crew travelling back in time, before the accident had wiped out the crew of Red Dwarf. The episode was re-mastered, along with the rest of the first three series, in 1998.

Plot[edit]

Holly (Norman Lovett) detects a stasis leak on Level 16. In fact it's a passageway three million years through time. Lister (Craig Charles) reads Rimmer's (Chris Barrie) diary, where it details that Rimmer had seen a hologram of himself emerge from a table and say that they had found a stasis leak. Stepping through the leak transports the gang back into the past — three weeks before the accident that wiped out the crew. They bring back a bar of soap through the stasis leak but it dissolves.[3] Lister's sure that the stasis leak is the best way for him to be with Kristine Kochanski, he's even got a wedding photo of the couple to prove it. However, Rimmer is determined to save his own past-self. If his past-self went into stasis he wouldn't die and wouldn't be a hologram. Lister has the same idea for Kochanski, but there is only room for one in the remaining stasis booth.[4]

The three of them go through the stasis leak, Lister and the Cat (Danny John-Jules) searching for Kochanski, and Rimmer searching for his past-self. When Lister tracks down Kochanski at a hotel he finds that she is already married — to himself from five years into the future. Rimmer also succeeds in tracking down his past self. However, he finds it hard to convince the past Rimmer that he's not a hallucination but a dead hologram of himself. The Captain in a chicken suit certainly doesn't help matters, and when three Rimmers, three Listers and a Cat are all in the same room at once, things get a little bit complicated.

Production[edit]

With its multiple views of the future, "Future Echoes" had been one of the better liked episodes from series I. With this in mind writers, Grant and Naylor, showed their desire to return to this story element with another sci-fi heavy story.[5]

The "Crowne Plaza Midland Holiday Inn", in Manchester, was used as "The Ganymede Holiday Inn" where Lister and the Cat search for Kochanski. Grogan was released from the production without filming the final scene which involved her character Kochanski. Assistant floor manager Dona DiStefano stepped in to double as Kochanski, wearing a large hat to disguise the fact.[6]

Returning pre-accident crew members include Mac McDonald as Captain Hollister, C. P. Grogan as Kochanski, Mark Williams as Petersen, and Sophie Doherty as Kochanski's friend.[7] Morwenna Banks appears as the on-screen Lift Hostess, while Tony Hawks makes his third Red Dwarf guest appearance as the talking suitcase.[7]

Cultural references[edit]

Felicity Kendal is referenced, by Holly, as her bottom shared similarities to a moon the ship had circled a couple of times. Rimmer references Planet of the Apes when he had mistakenly thought the captain's wife's photograph was a publicity shot from the film.[8] He also states that he was sharing a bunk with a character out of a Barbara Cartland novel and said that he would be the only person in the world to buy a Topic Bar without a single hazelnut in it.

A Marilyn Monroe poster is seen in Lister's quarters to which the dressed up Cat then puts his hand over the eyes saying don't look as it would drive her crazy.

Holly references the Sinclair ZX81, his first love, which people kept saying that she wasn't for him because she was cheap, stupid and wouldn't load. He went on to reference Olivia Newton-John when advising Lister that it's better to have loved and to have lost than to listen to an album by her.

Reception[edit]

The episode was originally broadcast on the British television channel BBC2 on 4 October 1988 in the 9:00 pm evening slot.[9] It received average television ratings.[10] Fans considered the episode to be one of the better efforts from Series II, coming at 12th place overall in a Red Dwarf Smegazine readers' poll with 3.3% of the votes.[11]

Remastering[edit]

The remastering of Series I to III was carried out during the late 1990s.[12] Changes throughout the series included replacement of the opening credits,[13] giving the picture a colour grade and filmising,[14] computer generated special effects of Red Dwarf[15] and many more visual and audio enhancements.[15]

Changes made specific to "Stasis Leak" include the caption "Three million years earlier" has been removed from the opening flashback scenes. The stasis leak sound effects have been added. The split-screen wipe — with the older Lister shutting the door on his younger self — has been re-done frame by frame to remove previous errors.[16]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ "British Sitcom Guide — Red Dwarf — Series 2". www.sitcom.co.uk. Retrieved 2008-01-24. 
  2. ^ "TV.com — Stasis Leak summary". www.tv.com. Retrieved 2008-01-24. 
  3. ^ Howarth & Lyons (1993) p. 56.
  4. ^ He doesn't understand that he would meet a parallel version of Kochanski in the episode Ouroboros where he would realize that in a parallel universe, Lister was resurrected as a hologram instead of Rimmer, and Kochanski was the one frozen instead of Lister, and then Kochanski becomes a permanent member of Starbug and then in Series VIII, a reconstructed version of Red Dwarf.
  5. ^ "Red Dwarf Series II Writing". www.reddwarf.co.uk. Archived from the original on 2008-04-08. Retrieved 2008-01-07. 
  6. ^ Howarth & Lyons (1993) p. 9.
  7. ^ a b "Stasis Leak cast and crew". www.imdb.com. Retrieved 2008-01-24. 
  8. ^ "Stasis Leak movie connections". www.imdb.com. Retrieved 2008-01-24. 
  9. ^ "BBC Programme Catalogue — RED DWARF — STASIS LEAK". BBC. Retrieved 2007-12-10. 
  10. ^ "Red Dwarf Series II Aftermath". www.reddwarf.co.uk. Archived from the original on 2008-04-08. Retrieved 2008-01-24. 
  11. ^ Readers survey results, Red Dwarf Smegazine, p. 27., issue 10, December 1992, Fleetway Editions Ltd, ISSN 0965-5603
  12. ^ "Remasters of the Universe". www.reddwarf.co.uk. Archived from the original on 2008-01-04. Retrieved 2008-01-28. 
  13. ^ "Red Dwarf Series I Remastering". www.reddwarf.co.uk. Archived from the original on 2008-01-18. Retrieved 2008-01-30. 
  14. ^ Remastering Crew (2007). The End Re-Mastered DVD Commentary (DVD). Bodysnatcher DVD Boxset Red disc: BBC. 
  15. ^ a b Remastering Crew (2007). 'Re-Dwarf' Documentary (DVD). Bodysnatcher DVD Boxset Red disc: BBC. 
  16. ^ Remastering Crew (2007). Stasis Leak text commentary (DVD). Bodysnatcher DVD Boxset, Blue disc: BBC. 

References[edit]

Howarth, Chris; Steve Lyons (1993). Red Dwarf Programme Guide. Virgin Books. ISBN 0-86369-682-1. 

External links[edit]