Tongue Tied

"Oh Rimmer, you are a smeghead"
- Officer Todhunter ("The End")

Frank Todhunter was an officer of the Jupiter Mining Corporation, or JMC.

Todhunter's final posting was that of the Second Officer aboard the JMC freighter spaceship Red Dwarf, under the authority of Captain Frank Hollister and Executive Officer Carol Brown. Todhunter was apparently in charge of the personnel and/or human resources during the final voyage of Red Dwarf.

Begrudgingly, Todhunter had to deal with the hundreds of petty complaints from Second Technician Arnold Rimmer about Third Technician Dave Lister, regarding Rimmer and Lister's shared bunk room and shared graveyard shift. Todhunter showed mild annoyance at the juvenile and slovenly behaviour of Lister, but off duty seemed to like him, as he called him Dave and showed reluctance to sending him to stasis. He held a special dislike for the anally-retentive Rimmer, whom he openly referred to as a "smeg-head". Todhunter also presided over Rimmer's dozens of failed officer exams.

Todhunter died in the radiation leak which killed the crew of Red Dwarf, all except for Lister, who was in suspended animation at the time. ("The End")



Officer Todhunter as he appears in the Red Dwarf Smegazine

Officer Todhunter appeared in the Red Dwarf Smegazine, where he fulfills a role much similar to that of the Todhunter in the television series. Like in the television series, Todhunter accosts Lister and Rimmer outside the entrance to the botanical gardens where they were going on a job.

Television Series

Officer Todhunter stood in front of a sign for the Botanical Gardens
("The End")

Todhunter's only appearance in the show occurred in the Series I opening episode "The End" (portrayed by Robert Bathurst), in which he discussed Rimmer's multiple complaints against Lister as the pair cleaned gunk from the vending machines, and confirmed Lister's observation of Rimmer as a 'smeghead'.

Todhunter later invigilated at Rimmer's engineering exam, barely noticing when Rimmer fainted, since Rimmer always fainted during his exams.

Todhunter escorted Lister to the stasis booth where Lister was to spend eighteen months as punishment for breaking quarantine law, and Todhunter explained how stasis worked in meticulous detail. He was killed along with the rest of the crew when the drive plate gave way. ("The End")

According to Lister, Todhunter was married with children, but was adulterous, and fooled around with women behind his wife's back. Kristine Kochanski claimed that in her parallel universe, Todhunter was gay. This however turned out to be a ruse to distract Lister who was suffering from claustrophobia in Starbug's pipes. ("Duct Soup", Series VII)

When Rimmer used a Quantum Skipper to explore different dimensions, he came across a dimension where the Cadmium II radiation leak had not occurred, and the crew of Red Dwarf were still alive. Rimmer repeatedly asked Holly if "everybody was still alive", in a mirror of the scene where Lister comes out of stasis in the pilot episode, repeatedly asking Holly is "everybody is dead". One of the crew who Rimmer asked if still alive was Todhunter, who Holly confirmed was. However, the first crew (and superior) Rimmer met was Bradley, who ordered Rimmer to stop slacking and get back to work. ("Skipper", Series XII)


Much of Todhunter's TV storyline was transferred to Petrovich, a First Technician and Rimmer's rival to promotion in the first Red Dwarf novel Infinity Welcomes Careful Drivers. However Todhunter himself was still mentioned, and so was apparently still a member of the Red Dwarf crew in the continuity of the novels.

In the novel, Todhunter's first name is given incorrectly as "Christopher Todhunter" by Rimmer, perhaps accidentally or as a deliberate in-joke to Rimmer's ignorance. Rimmer pretends to be "Officer Christopher Todhunter" to Lister when the pair first meet, as Lister picks up Rimmer in a hopper taxi during Rimmer's planetary shore-leave on Mimas. "Christopher Todhunter" asks Lister to take him to a Mimian android brothel. (Infinity Welcomes Careful Drivers)

Behind the Scenes

  • Danny John-Jules described Todhunter in his DVD commentary as looking like "a boy's own hero, a man who had a Spitfire parked outside."
  • Todhunter's actor Robert Bathurst found the scene where he explains how stasis works in the pilot episode to be extremely difficult. The scene was written as being deliberately rambling and complicated for the purposes of a joke, and Bathhurst found remembering it near impossible, resulting in numerous re-shoots in front of the live audience. This resulted in one of the more notable sections of the bloopers in the Series I "smeg ups" tapes.