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Kryten - A befuddled, insecure mechanoid featured on the British sci-fi comedy RED DWARF/BBC/1989-99.

Robert Llewellyn as Kryten the Robot - RED DWARF

Kryten (Robert Llewellyn) wandered the universe in the spacecraft Red Dwarf with crew members:

  • Dave Lister (Craig Charles), a beer guzzling slob who woke from stasis after three million years to find the rest of the ship's crew long since destroyed by a radiation leak.
  • Arnold Rimmer (Chris Barrie), an annoying hologram of a former crewman;
  • Cat (Danny John-Jules), a cat-like humanoid that had evolved from the original ship's cat who now dressed in stylish clothing and gorged itself on fish;
  • Holly, the ship's computer which communicated through a human face displayed on TV monitors throughout the ship (played by John Lovett and later Hattie Hayridge).

Kryten, Cat, Lister and Rimmer - the crew of RED DWARF
Kryten, Cat, Lister and Rimmer - the crew of Red Dwarf

The Kryten character first appeared on the episode "Kryten" (broadcast September 6, 1988) where we find that Kryten as a robotic butler serving the crew of women aboard the spaceship Nova 5.

But when the crew of the Red Dwarf answer the shops distress call, they discover that Kryten (played by David Ross) had been performing domestic duties for a dead crew (skeleton's sitting around a table) ever since the ship crashed. Feeling sorry for Kryten, ("I serve, therefore I am") the crew of the Red Dwarf adopt the robot and make him a member of their whacky little crew.

Kyten the Butler as played by David Ross on episode 'Kryten'
Kryten as a mechanical butler

At first, Rimmer (Chris Barrie) takes advantage of Kryten by giving him a continuous flow of work to perform., but soon the rebellious, irreverent Lister (Craig Charles) intervenes and teaches Kryten to shake off the shackles of domesticity and servitude. Kryten soon became a wild and crazy robot.

Some Kryten Quotes

"I owe Mr.Lister everything sir, if it wasn't for him, I'd be normal."

"Frankenstein was the creator, not the monster. It's a common misconception, held by all truly stupid people."
"We could go to Dallas in November, 1963, stand on the grassy knoll and shout "Duck!" ... I'm sorry; I must have bypassed my Good Taste Chip."
"It's the old, old story: Droid meets Droid, Droid becomes Chameleon, Droid loses Chameleon, Chameleon turns into Blob, Droid gets Blob back again, Blob meets Blob, Blob goes off with Blob, and Droid loses Blob, Chameleon, and Droid. How many times have we seen that story?"
"There's an old android saying which I feel is particularly relevant to this situation. It goes: '0010101011010010
1101001111001010101001011011000101010' which, roughly translated, means 'Don't stand around jabbering when your life is in dang...hey, wait for me, you guys!"

[When Kryten changed from a mech-anoid to a human]

Lister: Any problems?
Kryten: Well, just one or two. In fact I've compiled a little list if you'll indulge me. Now then, uh, my optical system doesn't appear to have a zoom function.
Lister: No, human eyes don't have a zoom.
Kryten: Well then, how do you bring a small object into sharp focus?
Lister: Well, you just move your head closer to the object.
Kryten: I see. Move your head ... closer, hmm, to the object. All right, okay. Well, what about other optical effects, like split screen, slow motion ?
Lister: No. We don't have them.
Kryten: You don't have them -- just the zoom? Hmm. Well, no, that's fine, that's great, no, no, that's really great, that's great. Now then, my nipples don't work.
Lister:  Er, in what way `don't work'?
Kryten: Well, uh, when I was a mechanoid, the right nipple-nut was used to, uh, regulate body temperature, while the left nipple-nut was used mainly to, uh, pick up shortwave radio transmissions. Now, what I'm saying is, no matter how hard I twiddle it, I can't seem to pick up Jazz FM.
Lister: Human nipples don't do that, Kryten.
Kryten: I see. Fine. Ah: recharging. Now, I presume that, uh, when a human wants to recharge they do it much the same way mechanoids do. Indeed, I have located what I presume to be the recharging socket, but for some strange reason it doesn't appear to have the standard three-pin adaption. Now, do I have to use some kind of special adaptor? because, no matter what do, the lead just keeps falling out.
Lister: Kryten, we eat and sleep: that's our way of recharging.
Kryten: Hmm. Ah yes, now, I wanted to talk to you about something. Something about, um, well, something I know we humans get a little embarrassed about. It's a bit of a taboo subject – not the sort of thing we like to sit around and chat about in polite conversation.
Lister: Kryten, I'm an enlightened twenty-third century guy. Spit it out, man.
Kryten: Well, I want to talk to you about my penis. I knew it, you've gone straight into smirk mode. Aren't we both two human adults? Can't we discuss our reproductive system without adolescent sniggering?
Lister: Yeah, of course we can.
Kryten: Thank you. [hands Lister Polaroid] Well?
Lister: `Well' what?
Kryten: Well, what do you think?
Lister:  I'm not quite with you here, Kryten. What am I supposed to say?
Kryten: I want to know: is that normal?
Lister: What? Taking photographs of it and showing it to your mates? No, it's not!
Kryten: Well, but is it supposed to look like that?
Lister: Well, yeah.
Kryten: It's hideous! That's the best design they could come up with? Are you seriously telling me there were choices, and someone said "Ah, there, that's it. That's the shape we're looking for: The last-chicken-in-the-shop look"? Shakespeare had one? Einstein? Perry Como sang `Memories are Made of This' with one of those stashed in his slacks?
Lister: Well, yeah.
Kryten: No wonder humans don't have a zoom mode! Ugh. Now, take a look at this [hands Lister Polaroid. Lister rotates it several times, perplexed] and this. [hands Lister second Polaroid. Lister holds them side-by-side, then top to bottom. Sudden shock] Now why do you suppose that happened?
Lister: W-w-w-w-what were you thinking of at the time?
Kryten: Well, nothing in particular, sir. I was just idly flicking through an electrical-appliance catalogue. I came across the section on super-deluxe vacuum cleaners and suddenly my underpants elastic was catapulted across the medical bay.
Lister: You see, man, you're neither one thing or the other. You shouldn't be getting erotic thoughts about electrical appliances.
Kryten: It was a triple-bag easy-glide vac with turbo-suction and a self-emptying dust bag.
Lister: Kryten, I don't care what model it was. No vacuum cleaner should give a human being a double Polaroid. Do yourself a favor, man, change back.

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