With the new series came a new set of names. Finding Ed Bye committed to a project with wife Ruby Wax, Red Dwarf V needed bums to fill both the director and producer chairs while Rob and Doug executive produced. Hilary Bevan-Jones took over as producer and BBC up-and-comer Juliet May to directing duties.
Unfortunately, the complexities of Red Dwarf - possibly the hardest directing job on TV - proved too much for Juliet and she left before the season was complete. The director never quite saw eye-to-eye with the writers, and yet didn't want to admit defeat when the show proved too tricky, so soldiered on as long as possible without asking for help. Nevertheless, Juliet remains credited on four episodes and her style informed the entire season.
With the crew returning to G stage, Juliet elected to shoot the overtly complex Demons and Angels first (mainly because Holoship's Jane Horrocks was not available until later in the schedule). The Inquisitor would have been the simplest choice, but the director was apparently still trying to wrap her head around the twists of the script.
Demons and Angels proved to be a huge problem with its split-screens and body-doubles. The footage viewed in the edit was, it was decided, in part entirely unusable. To everyone's chagrin, the day after the wrap party was used to pick up as many scenes as possible - almost half the episode! - while the entire cast and crew nursed their hangovers from the night before.
Rob and Doug directed these pieces, as they did the last two episodes recorded (Quarantine and Back to Reality) - with Rob sat literally in the director's chair, Doug hurriedly rewriting, and both directing the scenes. Doug would do the pages, give them to Rob, then run them down to the cast - there wasn't even time to make copies! With such time pressures, the writers maintain that the evil crew were doing a lot of funny things that they never even got the chance to record.
Quarantine was supposed to be the simple 'dialogue' episode for the season - but by the end of the night the team must have wished they'd done a big laser battle instead! The main scene of the Cat, Lister and Kryten arguing in the quarantine bay took a grand total 57 minutes to record, the cast either breaking up with laughter or else having trouble with dialogue that had only recently been delivered.
Holoship meanwhile became famous for it's massive running time. Red Dwarf scripts had always been written long - the argument being that what was left after the edit would be the cream of the crop - but by the time it hit the edit suite, Holoship was around 12 minutes too long, requiring a quarter of the material to be removed!
A huge amount of dialogue was trimmed down - Rimmer's hilarious attempt to avoid (!) having sex, his later pillow talk and many of the holocrew's lines were truncated, as was further discussion of the mind patch - but perhaps the saddest loss was the series' only major Holly scene. As Rimmer returned following the mind patch failure, Holly proved deliberately unhelpful to him for his abruptness. But pacing's the thing, and something had to go. (Including some lengthy shots of the fabulous Holoship model effect.) One line that did stay was Rimmer's "I've come to think of you all as... people I met" farewell speech - a line that apparently came from Chris Barrie himself.
Chris was less lucky in Terrorform. While the body-oiling might have seemed an enjoyable idea, the reality was less so. The set was strewn with wood shavings which, during the shoot, made their way into the oil - and therefore onto Chris' helpless body. Despite this, Craig was continually moaning that Chris got the girl two weeks on the trot (Holoship and Terrorform) and the writers teased him with the idea that Rimmer and Lister had a major snog together in a forthcoming episode!
With yet more problems in the edit, a large amount of Terrorform's climactic dialogue scene - where the crew tell Rimmer they love him - was excised. The scene, it was decided, just didn't work in the way they had hoped.
For the live studio audience days, there was, as ever, a warm up act in attendance. Nelson David, Leo Chester, Lee Hurst and Alistair McGowan all did their bit to keep the waiting throng entertained.
Finally, the series was ready to air - complete with a new design for the original DeWinters logo. The Times-style font was somewhat more modern and streamlined than the original blocky lettering - Red Dwarf was never one to rest on its laurels.