Complete Guide

Red Dwarf: Series XII


Recorded: 12.02.2016 Broadcast: 12.10.2017


Recorded: 29.01.2016 Broadcast: 19.10.2017


Recorded: 05.02.2016 Broadcast: 26.10.2017


Recorded: 19.02.2016 Broadcast: 02.11.2017


Recorded: 26.02.2016 Broadcast: 09.11.2017


Recorded: 09.03.2016 Broadcast: 16.11.2017

Red Dwarf fans generally aren't used to getting two series of the show so close to one-another. A four-year gap between Series VI and VII was followed by a further two years before VIII, then of course the decade's off-air break before Back to Earth; then three more years for Series X, and finally another four years before Series XI hit screens.

But Red Dwarf XII hit our screens almost exactly one year after Red Dwarf XI - not quite precisely a year, with the twelfth series launching in October while the eleventh had done so in September, but still the closest two series had landed back-to-back since Series I and II aired in February and September of 1988.

Written, produced and filmed together with Series XI's six episodes, it was no surprise therefore that Series XII shared many similarities - but beyond the superficialities of having largely the same sets and costumes, it was nevertheless a distinctly different beast from its predecessor. Indeed, while the unique production circumstances may have meant that episodes from the two series could have been interchanged when it came to broadcast, in the event the two blocks did remain separate - and upon broadcast, it was clear that each series had a distinct tone and feel.

Series XII continued the "adventuring" conceit of Series XI, but while this did mean that some episodes were spent almost entirely off the ship, others returned to the small rouge one for longer stretches than much of the previous series had done - giving, if anything, a sense of blending the feel of both Series X and Series XI.

Furthermore, there were changes in behind-the-scenes personnel, including a new production design team, with the experience of already having filmed six episodes in the current setup being able to inform decisions that were then made for the next six.

Having been filmed at the beginning of 2016, Series XII was carefully packed away while the remainder of that year was spent post-producing, and then broadcasting, Series XI - but with that out of the way, the shows were then able to be picked up and finished off. In the meantime, fans had inadvertently been given a sneak preview of some of the episodes' titles by way of a printing error on the Series XI Blu-ray - but as would come to be seen, Series XII held many more surprises that were kept under wraps until broadcast.

Where Series XI had been able to remain completely standalone - with the knowledge that XII was on the way shortly afterwards - fans speculated over whether or not the twelfth series might provide some kind of resolution to the saga, whether temporary or otherwise. In the event, however, the closing episode - "Skipper" - left the premise of the show as open-ended as every series before it. With another rousing set of viewing figures and critical reviews, the world now waits to see exactly when the Red Dwarf XIII that everybody wants will become a reality...

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