Kryten is the first episode of Series II of Red Dwarf, and seventh episode overall.


A distress signal is received from a crashed space vessel and the Boys from the Dwarf go to investigate.



Kryten's S.O.S. message leads the Dwarfers to believe he has women aboard the Nova 5...

Holly, the computer of Red Dwarf, receives a distress call from a crashed vessel. Lister, Rimmer and the Cat gather in the Drive Room of Red Dwarf, where they make grainy video contact with the Nova 5. On board the Nova 5, the service mechanoid, named Kryten, asks for their help. Rimmer initially believes Kryten to be an alien before he realises Kryten is a mechanoid.

Kryten tells them that the surviving three human crew of the Nova 5 are female, and so the boys, faced with the first prospect of real, live human women for the first time in three million years, prepare to rescue them and impress. The Cat dresses in a gold spacesuit, whilst Rimmer reinvents himself as a dashing space adventurer captain, wearing an Admiral's uniform. Lister puts on his least smeggy socks, and his Mugs Murphy t-shirt with only two curry stains, and paints over the hole in the rear of his trousers with black spray-paint. Still, not wanting Lister to take the lime-light, Rimmer asks him Lister to call him "Ace" and not put him down like he has done in the past,, and also suggests Lister wears his favourite moon boots, which are sure to further disgust the girls.

They fly down to the Nova 5 in Blue Midget (the first time the boys actually leave Red Dwarf, and the first appearance of one of the Red Dwarf shuttles). Rimmer tries to flatter Kryten on his ship and tries to converse in Esperanto, but stops when Kryten is fluent in the language. However, the boys are disappointed and stunned to find that Kryten is still attending to officers who have long since passed away. Rimmer, who dubs Kryten the "android version of Norman Bates" has great trouble convincing Kryten that the crew are dead. Eventually Kryten concedes but mournfully asks what he is to do, as he is programmed to serve. Nonetheless, the crew takes Kryten back aboard Red Dwarf where Rimmer puts him to work cleaning, cooking, ironing, and so on, since Kryten is programmed to obey any orders. Rimmer relishes in the opportunity to boss somebody about.

Lister walks into his quarters and finds Kryten has cleaned up everywhere. Lister, never one for authority figures, tries to convince Kryten that he doesn't have to do any of his service duties anymore and can do his own thing. Kryten finds it difficult, because the only thing he enjoys is cleaning and the mechanoid soap opera Androids. Kryten tells him of his dream of growing a garden and looking after it, which Lister encourages him to do. He fails until, while Kryten is painting a portrait of Rimmer, his rebellious side opens up, and he paints Rimmer sitting on the toilet, and then insulting him before jumping on a space bike wearing a leather jacket, à la Marlon Brando in The Wild One, which Lister had shown Kryten in the cinema.

Deleted scenesEdit

Kryten space bike

Kryten leaves Red Dwarf on the space bike after being taught to be a rebel by Lister

As available for viewing on the Series II DVD:

  • The full, uncut credits to Kryten's favorite show Androids, including the entire theme tune to the show - a mock-up of the theme tune to the real-world, long-running Australian soap opera Neighbours. The lyrics to the Androids theme song discusses how mechanicals can develop feelings - foreshadowing what does eventually occur with Kryten when he later becomes one of the boys. The full Androids scene was trimmed for the broadcast episode, for time.
  • The Cat performs a disastrous musical duet with Talkie Toaster with the skutters in the disco on keyboard. Whilst the Cat screeches and wails, Cat complains of Talkie Toaster's musical ineptitude and tone deafness, with Talkie Toaster saying that he "doesn't understand Cat music". This was cut for time.
  • Kryten leaves Red Dwarf on the flying space bike. It causes an explosion of sparks as it rides out of the airlock, and is seen flying off into nebulae in space. This was cut for timing reasons. Partly re-instated for the Red Dwarf Remastered version of the episode. Available for viewing, in full, on the Series II making-of documentary, "It's Cold Outside" on The Bodysnatcher Collection.


  • Kryten returns in the Series III opener "Backwards" after apparently crashing Lister's space bike into an asteroid. Between Series II and III, Lister rescues and rebuilds Kryten (see also "Dad"), and Kryten becomes a permanent main character thereafter.
  • David Ross played Kryten only in this episode (he was later replaced by Robert Llewellyn). Ross later returned to voice Talkie Toaster in Series IV's "White Hole".
  • Red Dwarf's second series introduces the small ship-to-surface vessel Blue Midget. The creation of the transport vehicle was to enable the Dwarfers to leave the ship and explore space, leading them to meet Kryten and party away Rimmer's death on a moon. The larger Starbug will be created for Series III and beyond, it becoming a major part of the 6th and 7th seasons.
  • In a deleted scene, the Cat is shown singing a duet with Talkie Toaster. The idea that Cat sees himself as a great performer is also explored in Parallel Universe where he watches himself on the Dream Recorder singing Tongue Tied, with the rest of the Dwarfers as back-up dancers.
  • This episode sees Rimmer's first disastrous attempt at learning Esperanto, the language which much of Red Dwarf is signed in.
  • This episode is believed to show a first in science fiction, where an automaton gives a human the finger.
  • Lister says it's been 3,000,002 years since any of them have seen a woman, indicating it's been at least two years since Lister was revived from stasis.
  • When Kryten first contacts Red Dwarf he claims that the male officers of the Nova 5 all died on impact. He then sends the medical details of the three "surviving" female crewmembers (who are actually skeletons too but Kryten has convinced himself they are still alive). The medical cards are shown on screen, but go by very fast and so are easily missed. Their pictures reveal attractive women, and the information reveals their names are Anne Gill, Tracey Johns, and Jane Air. All three are "mapping officers", in their early-to-mid twenties.
  • Kryten's departure is not exactly clear in the episode as broadcast, with only the start of Series III indicating that he actually left Red Dwarf in a space bike. Up to this point in the series there has been no indication that Lister's bike was capable of flying in space, and a scene showing Kryten actually leaving was cut from the final episode.
  • This is the first episode in which the passage of time since Lister was put into stasis begins to be bent a little. Kryten views weekly broadcasts of an apparent Earth-made soap opera called Androids - which Lister is familiar with - even though 3 million years into the future there should be no such broadcasts. It's also suggested that the Nova 5 crash occurred within the last few centuries, suggesting human life still existed relatively recently, contrary to statements made so far indicating Lister is the last human being alive. (It's possible Kryten is watching Androids on reruns, and Infinity Welcomes Careful Drivers says he has them all on disc).
  • The episode does not explain how it's possible for Rimmer to exist outside both Red Dwarf and Blue Midget. Although based on later episodes we can assume it's because of his light bee.

Background InformationEdit

  • The producer and director of "Androids", Kylie Gwenlyn, is named after the former head of the BBC, Gareth Gwenlan. The term "Gwenlan" was also used occasionally by Rimmer in the earlier series of the the show as a mild insult.
  • At the beginning, Kryten is watching his favourite television show Androids. The theme song for the program is a spoof of the long-running Australian soap opera Neighbours, a big hit in Britain.
  • In all releases of this episode, the "Mc" in "McNugget" is edited out of the dialogue.

Noteworthy DialogueEdit

  • Holly: We're getting a signal. It's probably nothing but I just thought I'd mention it.
    Rimmer: Aliens.
    Lister: Oh God, aliens... Your explanation for anything slightly peculiar is aliens, isn't it? You lose your keys - it's aliens. A picture falls off the wall - it's aliens. That time we used up a whole bog roll in a day, you thought that was aliens as well!
    Rimmer: Well, we didn't use it all, Lister. Who did?
    Lister: Rimmer, aliens used our bog roll?
    Rimmer: Just 'cos they're aliens, doesn't mean they don't have to visit the little boys' room. Although they probably do something weird and alien-esque, like it comes out of the top of their heads or something.
    Lister: Well, I wouldn't like to be stuck behind one in a cinema!
  • Holly: They're from Earth. Hope they've got a few odds and sods aboard. We're a bit short on a few supplies.
    Lister: Like what?
    Holly: Cow's milk. Ran out of that yonks ago. Fresh and dehydrated.
    Lister: What kind of milk are we using now?
    Holly: Emergency back-up supply. We're on the dog's milk.
    Lister: Dog's milk?!
    Holly: Nothing wrong with dog's milk. Full of goodness, full of vitamins, full of marrowbone jelly. Lasts longer than any other type of milk, dog's milk.
    Lister: Why?
    Holly: No bugger'll drink it. Plus, of course, the advantage of dog's milk is that when it goes off, it tastes exactly the same as when it's fresh.
    Lister: Why didn't you tell me, Holly?
    Holly: What, and spoil your tea?
  • Rimmer: How did you get into Art College?
    Lister: The normal way you get into Art College. The same old, usual, normal, boring way you get in: Failed me exams and applied. They snatched me right up.
  • Rimmer: Well, for starters don't call me Rimmer.
    Lister: Why not?
    Rimmer: You always put the emphasis on "Rim" in Rimmer. Makes me sound like a lavatory disinfectant.
    Lister: Well what do you want me to call you? Rim-MER?
    Rimmer: What about the nickname I had at school?
    Lister: What, bonehead?
    Rimmer: How did you know my nickname was bonehead?
    Lister: I was only guessing.
    Rimmer: Well I meant the other one: Ace.
    Lister: Get outta town. Your nickname was never Ace. Maybe Ace-hole.
Kryten (Red Dwarf)

The boy's dates revealed...

  • Lister: [The girls Kryten is waiting on are revealed to be skeletons] I don't know if this is the right time to say this, girls, but my mate Ace here is incredibly, incredibly brave!
    Rimmer: Smeg off, Dog food face!
  • Rimmer: Anything the matter? They're dead!
    Kryten: Who's dead?
    Rimmer: THEY are dead!
    Kryten: Oh my god ... but I was only away two minutes!
  • Rimmer: You only have to look at them! They've got less meat on them than a Chicken McNugget!"
  • Cat: You'd never get a cat to be a servant. You ever see a cat return a stick? (To an imaginary stick-thrower) Hey, man! You threw the stick -- you go get it, yourself! I'm busy! If you wanted the stick so bad, why'd you throw it away in the first place?

Kryten spruces up the sleeping quarters

  • [Lister finds Kryten ironing in the sleeping quarters, now decorated like something from Pride & Prejudice]
    Lister: What the smeggin' hell is going on?
    Kryten: Good afternoon, Mister David, sir.
    Lister: [Holds up a pair of boxer shorts] What are these?
    'Kryten: Your boxer shorts, Mister David, sir.
    Lister: No way are these my boxer shorts, these bend! What have you done to the place?
    Kryten: I've done a spot of tidying up.
    Lister: But where is everything? Where's me coffee cup with the mould in it?
    Kryten: I threw it away, sir.
    Lister: But I was breeding that mould! His name was Albert! I was trying to get him two foot high!
    Kryten: Why, sir?
    Lister: Because it drives Rimmer nuts! And driving Rimmer nuts is what keeps me going.
  • Lister: [To Kryten] Mr Arnold isn't his name. His name's Rimmer, or 'smeghead', or 'dinosaur-breath', or 'molecule-mind', or on rare occasions when you wanna be really mega-polite to him, and we're talking mega polite here, on those exceptional circumstances you can call him... arsehole.
  • Kryten: I have strange thoughts when I am asleep.
    Lister: Yeah, they're called dreams. [After Kryten tells him dream of growing a garden] So find an S3 Planet and do it.

Kryten's portrait of Rimmer

  • Rimmer: [After seeing that Kryten has drawn his portrait - on the toilet] WHAT are you rebelling against?
    Kryten: Whadd'ya got? [throws gazpacho soup all over Rimmer's bunk] Dinosaur-breath! Molecule-mind!
    Kryten: [To Lister] Need to borrow your bike.
    Lister: You got it!


  • The way that the female officers of the Nova 5 were arranged by Kryten and the way that he interacts with them is most likely a reference to the movie "Psycho", this is reinforced by Rimmer's observation that Kryten is "the android equivalent of Norman Bates".
  • The music playing during the montage of Kryten doing Rimmer's chores in the Series II episode "Kryten", is the same music as the one when the Dwarfers are constructing the Rejuvenation Shower in the Red Dwarf Series X episode "Lemons".

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