Tongue Tied

Dad is the title of a so-called "lost episode" of the Red Dwarf television series. It was scripted and story-boarded, but never filmed.

"Dad" was intended to bridge the last episode of Series II and the first episode of Series III, expanding on the events happening in-between that were only otherwise briefly mentioned in the show, and detailed in a very fast, Star Wars-like opening scrawl at the beginning of the first episode of Series III.

These events would have included what happened with Lister's pregnancy; how former guest star Kryten had now permanently joined the Boys from the Dwarf (Kryten's rebuilding after crashing the space bike would have explained the change in actor from David Ross to Robert Llewellyn); and why Holly now resembled Hilly (explaining the change in actor from Norman Lovett to Hattie Hayridge) .

Some reconstructed scenes from "Dad", using the original storyboards and the voice talents of Chris Barrie, are available in The Bodysnatcher Collection.

Circumstantial Changes

"Dad" was the planned first episode of the Series III, but was never filmed or even fully scripted. Writers Rob Grant and Doug Naylor abandoned it halfway through writing it for various reasons. Instead, most of the jokes were worked into later episodes of Series III, along with some plot points. The basic events would have explained the numerous changes to the show's setting. This would have included:

  • Why former guest character Kryten had reappeared from Series II and become a regular member of the cast in Series III, and what had happened to Kryten in-between. It would have transpired that Kryten had crashed the space bike, with which he left Red Dwarf, into an asteroid. A heavily pregnant Lister had picked up the wreckage and rebuilt Kryten - actually the second time Kryten had been rescued by the gang. Therefore, Kryten's "second" and most frequently-seen head was likely a Spare Head. This would have occurred towards the beginning of the episode, since Kryten is present through most of "Dad". This also would have explained the change in actor from guest actor David Ross to full-time actor Robert Llewellyn.
  • The gang relocate from their original, Z Shift sleeping quarters to the much more up-market Officer's Quarters - logical since the ship was empty, and also the gang needed additional living space with the addition of Kryten. This would likely have occurred, or already have occurred, at the beginning of the episode.
  • Why Holly's image had changed from a male to a female, explaining the change in actor from Norman Lovett to Hattie Hayridge. In "Dad", Holly had done this because he had fallen in love with his Parallel Universe female counterpart from the previous episode, Hilly (who had been portrayed by Hayridge). In the real world, it was due to Norman Lovett not wanting to return for Series III. It is unclear at what point in the episode this would have occurred, but likely at the beginning.
  • Extensions to Lister's male pregnancy, and Kryten performing a C-section to deliver the baby with the skutters, since the Medi-Bot was still not repaired (after the events of "Confidence and Paranoia"). It is interesting to note that Lister would not have given birth to twins, as in the continuity of the show, but instead a single baby boy.
  • Meeting with the Infinity Patrol, and returning Lister's rapidly-aging boy child boy to the Parallel Universe where his mother came from.
  • Lister goes back in time to Earth and meets his real, biological father in the Aigburth Arms, Liverpool. This does not fit in with the later continuity of the show, since in the Series VII episode "Ouroboros" Lister finds out he is his own father, and essentially a clone of himself, having had no real biological father.

The explanations for these changes were written into a pre-title Star Wars-like scroll sequence of the episode "Backwards", which became the new Series III premiere. Jokes from the script were also worked into other episodes: for example, Lister's revealing that he was abandoned at birth and Rimmer's subsequent speculation that Lister was the product of brother-sister incest was written into the episode "The Last Day".

A Lost Episode

"Dad" would have been the opening episode to Series III of the show. In plot, it was to be a direct continuation of the preceding episode, "Parallel Universe", the final episode of Series II. In that last episode, Lister had slept with a female version of himself in a parallel dimension, before finding out that he was pregnant, as in that particular dimension it is the men who get pregnant.

The following "Dad" episode was to cover a number of numerous points in the show, but was to primarily deal with Lister's pregnancy. The idea was ultimately rejected by the show's writers and producers, Rob Grant and Doug Naylor, who felt that the script was not as funny as previous episodes. Grant found the angle of Lister having a baby more funny, not being a parent himself, but Naylor had recently become a father himself, and didn't think it was as funny. Another reason it was rejected was because deemed potentially sexist.

The released script extract shows that "Dad" would not have followed the pre-credits sequence of "Backwards" to the letter. For example, Lister would not have been pregnant with twins: instead he would give birth to a single son. Also, apparently Lister would have rebuilt Kryten while "heavily pregnant", and not "shortly afterwards" as the pre-title "Backwards" scroll suggests. Additionally, unless male Holly actor Norman Lovett was to make a guest appearance in the episode, it's likely that Holly would have first appeared as a female at the very beginning of the episode.

The Pre-title Sequence of "Backwards"

The opening crawl of Series III

Some of the events were referenced in the pre-title sequence of the episode "Backwards". The text explains the changes that were made going from Series II to III; however, the scrolling was intentionally sped up faster than viewers could actually read for the purposes of comedy. This was the first Red Dwarf episode to parody the Star Wars opening crawl -- it was also done at the end of "Dimension Jump" in Series IV of the show, and at the beginning of the first Red Dwarf USA pilot. Prior to the release of the script extract on The Bodysnatcher Collection, the general assumption by fans was that "Dad" would have followed the scrolling text more or less exactly -- this turned out to be false.

Here is the text Red Dwarf "Backwards":




Three million years in the future, Dave Lister, the last human being alive discovers he is pregnant after a liaison with his female self in a Parallel Universe. His pregnancy concludes with the successful delivery of twin boys, Jim and Bexley. However, because the twins were conceived in another universe, with different physical laws, they suffer from highly accelerated growth rates, and are both eighteen years old within three days of being born. In order to save their lives, Lister returns them to the universe of their origin, where they are reunited with their father (a woman), and are able to lead comparatively normal lives. Well, as normal as you can be if you've been born in a parallel universe and your father's a woman and your mother's a man and you're eighteen years three days after your birth.

Shortly afterwards, Kryten, the service mechanoid who had left the ship after being rescued from his own crashed vessel, the Nova 5, is found in pieces after his space bike crash lands onto an asteroid. Lister rebuilds the 'noid, but is unable to recapture his former personality.

Meanwhile, Holly, the increasingly erratic Red Dwarf computer, performs a head sex change operation on himself. He bases his new face on Hilly, a female computer with whom he'd once fallen madly in love.

And now the saga continuum's

AND NOW THE SAGA CONTINUUMS... (According to the Series III DVD release, it went unnoticed that this line was repeated twice until it was too late)




Reconstructed Extracts

A reconstructed scene of "Dad" in The Bodysnatcher Collection

Several scenes from the unfinished script of "Dad" were included on the DVD release Red Dwarf: The Bodysnatcher Collection. These were made from the original storyboards, and the voice talents of Chris Barrie (who, being a skilled impressionist, supplied the voices of all the characters), in the same manner of some other "lost episodes" of the franchise (such as Series I's "Bodysnatcher" and Series VII's "Identity Within").

The scenes which were recreated mostly revolve around Lister and his pregnancy; scenes not recreated include Lister's offspring being returned to the parallel Universe, Kryten's second rescue and reconstruction, the gang moving from the original sleeping quarters to the officer's quarters, and Holly performing his head swap from male to female. These latter events would have transpired at the beginning of the episode, whilst Lister was still pregnant, since Kryten is present through most of "Dad".

Pregnant Lister

A pregnant Lister

Arnold Rimmer is laid out on his bunk in the Officer's Quarters, reading a hologrammatic book, Biggles Learns to Fly. Lister enters, after having a check-up with the recently-rescued Kryten (rescued for the second time, in fact) since the Medi-comp had been smashed up (see the events of "Confidence and Paranoia"). Lister is around nine months into his male pregnancy, and bemoans the fact he looks "like a darts player". Lister tells how his belly button popped out, flinging a blue ball of fluff across the room. Rimmer is horrified when Lister tries showing him his "engorged nipples". Rimmer tells Lister that he is a rough-and-tumble, hardened "lock-up-your-daughters"-type astro who had no interest in pregnancy.

With Lister snacking out on raw liver and banana pizzas and getting increasingly emotional, Rimmer asks Lister if Arnold Schwarzenegger would cry all the time if he was pregnant (ironically, this script was written five years before the 1994 film Junior, where Schwarzenegger does get pregnant). Rimmer tells Lister that he should be "a bit more manly about the whole thing", especially since male baboons have given birth plenty of times. Kryten has been practicing to perform a C-section on mangos.


Rushing Lister to give birth in the Science Room

Kryten and the skutters perform the C-Section on Lister in the Science Room, whilst Rimmer and Cat pace around outside for two hours. Kryten eventually emerges, happy to report that he hasn't killed Mr. Lister. Rimmer asks him what the baby is, and Kryten replies that it is a human. When Rimmer asks if it a boy or a girl, Kryten says that he didn't realise that there were two sexes, and that we all look the same to him. Rimmer asks what it has between it's legs, and Kryten says "space". Rimmer says no, what is at the top. Kryten finally wiggles his finger, indicating that the baby is a boy.

Six Weeks Later

Lister, Rimmer and Lister's baby

"Arnold Barry Baz Blister Smeg Lister"

Lister is finding parenthood difficult, with the baby keeping him up all night. He has bags around his eyes, having slept for 33 minutes in the past six weeks. Lister hasn't even chosen a name for the baby boy yet, although he had thought of some swear words for the baby in the night.

Rimmer, however, is having a whale of a time, since he has none of the responsibility. Rimmer marvels at how wonderful fatherhood must be for Lister, not listening to a word Lister is saying. Unexpectedly, Rimmer is finding the baby adorable through the day, and wants to name him "Arnold Lister" - his own name - a name filled with "substance" and "ruggedness", Rimmer says. If he is named Arnold, Rimmer says, he could go to become both a President and a movie star at the same time. Lister is having none of it, wanting to call the baby "Barry" or "Baz". Rimmer notes that this make his name "B. Lister" and his nickname "Blister".

Rimmer says that they should compromise, and name the baby after Lister's father. Lister says they can't because he never knew who his father was, since Lister was an orphan raised by an adoptive family. He had been found as a six-week-old baby in a cardboard box, under a "Gravity-Pool" table in a public house. There was five DollarPounds strapped to his romper suit, which Rimmer suggests was for him to get his first round of drinks in. Rimmer also suggests that Lister is probably the unwanted offspring of incest, saying that it isn't a mystery on par with the Marie Celeste (ironically, they will come across the Deep Space namesake of this mystery ship in a later series).

Lister's Father

Lister's father in the Flag and Lettuce

Sometime after Lister has returned his baby to the Parallel Universe with the help of the Infinity Patrol, Lister decides to seek out his own father using Timeslides. Lister goes back in time three million years to The Flag and Lettuce on Earth, to seek out his real, biological father.

Lister finds his father sat at the bar drinking bitter, but the older man is at first terrified that Dave is a collection agent for the Liverpool mob, sent to "cut" him. Lister tells him that he is the son he abandoned as a baby, and want to know why. His father tells him that his mother was royalty, but Lister doesn't believe it, and so he confesses that she worked at Tesco's. He didn't have the money to do the right thing and pay for an abortion.

N.B. This scene has been rendered obsolete by the events of the episode "Ouroboros". In the "canon" continuity of the series, Lister discovers that he has no biological father, but is in fact a clone of himself.

Infinity Patrol

Rimmer encounters two agents of the Infinity Patrol

Rimmer's initial meeting with the Infinity Patrol aboard Red Dwarf. Rimmer is shocked and surprised when, completely unexpectedly, two men walk into the room, looking identical; with identical jumpsuits, visor glasses and haircuts.

Speaking in a strange accent, one of the mystery men ask Rimmer: "What is the time period of your origin?". Rimmer replies the 22nd century, and the man goes silent and mulls it over for a few moments, then says "hmmm, 22nd century" repeatedly. Rimmer is now looking bemused, and a little irritated.

The agent then asks Rimmer: "Do you know Bill? He was from the 22nd century." Rimmer relies in the negative and asks what Bill's surname was, but the agent can't remember Bill's second name. "Bill, short guy with red hair. He came from the 22nd century too. Bill. You must have bumped into him. Bill. Always wore a sports jacket. His name was Bill." Rimmer repeatedly denies knowing Bill.

Annoyed, Rimmer demands to know who the agents are. They reply: "We are from your extreme future. We are The Infinity Patrol. It is our task to safeguard the continuation of the human race. We travel through time, repairing paradoxes. We have done many things; prevented World Wars by removing Presidents. At various points in history, we have given mankind technology far in advance of his knowledge. Penicillin, the silicon chip, the Theory of Relativity." They also claim invention of deely bobbers.

N.B. The "Bill" joke is a re-hash of the writers' earlier "Jan Vogels" joke in Son of Cliché, where the same dialogue transpires between Earth astro Dave Hollins and some aliens.

Rimmer's Dummy

Rimmer's dummy

At the end of the episode, Lister finds a mannequin in Rimmer's locker, which is wearing numerous sets of bras. Lister takes it out and confronts Rimmer with it. Presuming that Rimmer is cheating on Rachael, Lister asks what it is for, mockingly. Rimmer replies that he has no shame in admitting it is his "practice dummy" for taking bras off one-handed. "One should feel no shame in showing professionalism in all areas of life..."