Complete Guide

Confidence and Paranoia

Series I, Episode 5
Recorded: 25.10.1987, BBC Manchester
First Broadcast: 14.03.1988 (BBC 2)
VHS Release: 02.08.1993 (BBCV 4915)
DVD Release: 04.11.2002 (BBCDVD 1117)
Blu-ray Release: 14.01.2019 (BBCBD 0441)

Confidence & Paranoia

Written by Rob Grant & Doug Naylor
Directed by Ed Bye


Lister contracts a mutated pneumonia virus. The hallucinations of his fevered brain materialise in solid form, and suddenly the ship is beset by herring rain and exploding sixteenth century mayors of Warsaw. When his fever breaks, Lister wakes up to find he has created personifications of his Confidence and Paranoia, and a war of manipulation begins.


Chris Barrie (Rimmer), Craig Charles (Lister), Danny John-Jules (Cat), Norman Lovett (Holly), Lee Cornes (Paranoia), Craig Ferguson (Confidence)

Did You Know?

Originally intended to be the last episode of Series I, Confidence & Paranoia would have ended the series with the cliffhanger return of Kochanski as a hologram. When the episode Bodysnatcher was dropped and replaced with Me2, however, a new ending featuring the creation of a duplicate Rimmer was crafted to lead into it.

Craig Ferguson, who plays Confidence, was relatively unknown at the time of recording. He has since become significantly more successful in the US as the host of a long-running late night chat show. Both he and Lee Cornes (Paranoia) had auditioned unsuccessfully to play the two lead roles.

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