20-odd years after it first debuted, Red Dwarf is still far from dead. The 11th series is set to debut on Dave on 22nd September, and the first episode is already available for you to stream online. It's always a treat to get more action from the Boys from the Dwarf, and here are some bits you should get your hands on to celebrate.
Just the Shows I-VIII, £34
Obviously the latest series is Red Dwarf XI, which means there are 10 other series to get through if you want to be all caught up. You can buy the first eight series in a box set, though since this is 'just the shows' there are many special features for you to enjoy. Obviously you can buy all eight series separately, if you have room on your shelves. You can also get some of the special features separately by laying your hands on 'Just the Smegs'. [Buy it here]
Back to Earth and Series X
There was a pretty big hiatus after Red Dwarf VIII, 10 years in fact. The BBC had no interest in making more episodes, but Dave came along to make things right by commissioning Back to Earth - the de-facto ninth series. It wasn't great (a Coronation Street crossover? Really?), but it meant that the series was far from dead. The tenth series brought the series back to form, for some episodes at least, even if there was a long gap. It's the final piece you need to be totally caught up. [Buy Back to Earth here | Buy Series X here]
Beat the Geek, £12
10 years is a long time to wait for anything, but there was a little ray of hope for manic Dwarf fans out there. Beat the Geek was an interactive trivia game hosted by both Hollies, testing players on their general knowledge as they traverse the length and breadth of Red Dwarf. There are three difficulty levels to choose from, and could be the start of you and your friends' new favourite drinking game. [Buy it here]
Mr Flibble, £15
There are no shortage of batshit-crazy scenes in Red Dwarf, and the one featuring Rimmer's seemingly-sentient penguin hand puppet it probably the nuttiest of them all. There is an official replica of Mr Flibble, but they stopped selling that many years ago. Thankfully there are people working hard to make some sort of alternative. This one isn't quite as good as the fuzzy hez-blasting bird featured on-screen, but it's not that far off. [Buy it here]
Red Dwarf wasn't just on TV. Creators Rob Grant and Doug Naylor also collaborated on four different novels that expand upon the greater Red Dwarf universe. There's Infinity Welcomes Careful Drivers and Better than Life (adapting the first series and the episode of the same name), along with two separate alternate sequels Last Human and Backwards.
The Man in the Rubber Mask, £10
So watching and reading Red Dwarf is all well and good, but have you ever wondered about all the tortuous things the cast have to go through behind the scenes? The Man in the Rubber Mask is the memoir of Robert Llewellyn, better known as the mechanoid Kryten, and it takes a look at what he's gone through on set covered in hot, uncomfortable rubber.
This book's been published quite a few times over the years, covering the newer series of Red Dwarf as and when they happen. This one takes readers all the way up to Series X. [Buy it here]
Give Quiche a Chance, £10
If you've been deprived of your anger in a Polymorph attack, there's only one type of food you should be considering. Quiche isn't all bad, and you should definitely give it a chance. While you're at it, throw on this t-shirt and make sure everyone around you knows that as well. [Buy it here]
Smeg Head T-Shirt, £15
It's the most obvious Dwarf-themed t-shirt out there, but who is it calling the smeghead? You, or the person reading it? That's for them to know and you to find out. Naturally if you don't want to be quite so vulgar, you can always get yourself the Kryten edition instead. [Buy it here]
Shockingly there isn't much in the way of physical Red Dwarf merchandise, and the stuff that is available has been out of production for a few years. Still, back in the day there were a few bits and pieces you could put on display. Corgi made models of Starbug and the Ship as seen in Series VIII. You can also get a miniature toy Skutter that originally came with the eight series on DVD. All three can be found in plentiful numbers on eBay, but they're not what you'd consider to be cheap.
Honourable Mention: The Lego Set
So this one doesn't actually exist as a thing you can buy, but there is a Red Dwarf-themed set up for consideration on Lego Ideas. It's still needs a bit more support, if it has any chance of being made, so if you want to own it you'll need to register and vote. The sooner it reaches 10,000 votes, the sooner we can get an answer from Lego.