Show: Red Dwarf
Episode: Backwards, first episode of season three. (3.1)
First Aired: November 14, 1989
Written by Rob Grant and Doug Naylor, directed by Ed Bye
The episode opens with text scrolling up screen, a la Star Wars, yet far too fast to read. For your enjoyment, complete text:
RED DWARF III
THE SAGA CONTINUUMS
The Story So Far...
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 Baxley. However, because they 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 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 continuums.
AND NOW THE SAGA CONTINUUMS...
RED DWARF III
THE SAME GENERATION
Synopsis: Rimmer takes Kryten on a Starbug piloting lesson outside the Red Dwarf where they are sucked into a time hole, transporting them into another point in space and time. They find themselves on Earth, specifically London, circa 1993. However, due to the contraction of the universe as a result of the Big Crunch (they went that far forward in time), time is moving backwards. Everybody and everything appears to be going backwards to Rimmer and Kryten, while Rimmer and Kryten appear to be going backwards to residents of Earth.
Lister and Cat search for their missing crewmates, and eventually find and enter the time hole, traveling to bass-ackwards London. However, they don't catch on to the whole "reverse-time" deal, and assume they are in Bulgaria. They end up at a bar, where Kryten and Rimmer have started a club act, dubbing themselves the Reverse Brothers. It's all very funny to the Earthlings, how he can speak backwards with such fluency, but to Rimmer and Cat they are just speaking normally, and they assume all the people are morons. Throughout the episode, eating and drinking becomes a running gag, and we are treated to watching food appear out from mouths and becoming whole again. Rimmer and Kryten want to stay on Earth, saying that they've got it made. But, they all get into a barfight (consisting of shattered chairs and windows reverting to their natural state), and they lose their jobs. They decide to go back to Red Dwarf by the end, and Cat makes a pit stop to "spend some time in the bushes" with horrifying results.
Additional: Season three was originally going to open with a continuation of Parallel Universe, the last episode of season two, and Lister's pregnancy; but Grant Naylor were unsatisfied with the script so they left it to the above text to explain things. Yes, the text that nobody could actually read without recording the episode and playing it back frame by frame. Deal with it.
As for the the replacement of Norman Lovett (Holly), there was a dispute over rehearsal hours and salary. It was decided that it would be simpler just to get a new Holly, and Hattie Hayridge (who played Hilly in Parallel Universe) got the role.
However, if you want to know the funniest part of the episode, go to this node