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"Oh Gott, wir werden alle sterben!" [1]
Captain Langer

Raumschiff GameStar (RSGS for short) [2] was a German Gag Series produced by the staff of PC gaming magazine GameStar between 1997 and 2004 and released on CDs (later, DVDs) that came with each issue. The magazine editors and layout designers were cast as either the heroic crew of Cool Starship Gamestar (e.g. with the editor-in-chief playing The Captain) or the villainous adepts of The Dark Side commanded by The Emperor. They travel the universe and fight each other for no apparent reason.

The series was first and foremost a continuous parody of classic and contemporary Video Games, TV Series, Films, and Science Fiction literature, with the most noticeable pastiches being of Star Trek (the goodies) and Star Wars (the baddies). RSGS ran for five seasons or 58 episodes, each some six minutes long on average, and was discontinued when the original editor-in-chief left the magazine. It was released completely on DVDs twice but never translated from German.

In June 2009, the series was seemingly Uncanceled, with the release of a trailer (watch it with English subs here) parodying the Star Trek's. However, as of December 2009 issue, this proved to be a Real Trailer, Fake Movie: instead, the third season of the Spiritual Successor to RSGS, Die Redaktion, started "airing".


Tropes found in the series:

  • All Just a Dream: Episode 49.
  • Anti-Hero: Charles "Grim" Grimm in the first season was the best example, though most of the so-called heroes on the GameStar count.
  • Anti-Villain: The so-called villains never really do anything particularly evil.
  • Boot Camp Episode: Episode 39, aptly titled "Drill Sergeant".
  • Bunny Ears Lawyer: For all his quirks, Captain Langer is quite a commander.
  • The Captain: Deconstructed to hell and back by Captain Langer.
  • Catch Phrase: See opening quote.
  • Cool and Unusual Punishment: Upon capturing GS communications officer Mikkl, Darth Lott plans to torture him by making him listen to techno music until his brain turns into "watery broth".
  • Cool Starship: The Gamestar. Especially the last two.
  • The Dark Side: E.g. Darth Lott goes over to the baddies after an encounter with Darth Vader.
  • Doomed Hometown: The Game Reviewers' Planet, destroyed by the Death Star just before the first season, to most of the Gamestar crew.
  • Drill Sergeant Nasty: First Mate Stangl is a bit more benign than most examples but still gives his crew some tough training times.
  • The Emperor: Deconstructed to hell and back by Emperor Reindl.
  • Enemy Without: The Emperor's evil persona.
  • Ensign Newbie: Cadet Klinge, though he doesn't get to command anyone.
  • Evil Counterpart: Inverted, the original Gamestar looked like a softer and fluffier version of Death Star (which it was built to fight), complete with a giant CND sign instead of Death Star's Wave Motion Gun. Also, their names, though it's probably more of a coincidence.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: Pretty much all of the Emperor's cronies. Darth Lott was a low-profile Ghostbusters in the first season, Darth Mopp was a janitor on the Death Star in the second, Darth Schmitz was a computer store owner, and Darth Vader provides the picture on the trope page. The Emperor himself, however, averts this, as nothing is known about his origin at all.
  • German Humour: Lots and lots.
  • Gilligan Cut: When the new First Mate Stangl learns about the overalls, he is certain he is exempt from having to wear them. Next scene is him grumbling and putting one on.
  • Hermit Guru: The Wise Man from the Mountains.
  • Hilarious Outtakes: After every episode.
  • I'm a Doctor, Not a Placeholder: When Martin is dying, Captain Langer demands from Dr. Chris to do something, to which he can only reply "I am a doctor, not a maintenance technician!"
  • Just a Stupid Accent: Communications Officer Frank's "Chekov accent".
  • Killed Off for Real: Despite the series' comedic approach, several characters (most prominently, Martin and Darth Lott, though the latter makes a guest appearance in the fifth season) do get killed off for real... which usually has to do with their respective actors leaving the magazine.
  • Kill'Em All: The ending of the fifth (and final) season saw the Gamestar and the Death Star colliding with each other and exploding, presumably killing everyone on board.
  • Mad Doctor & Mad Scientist: Dr. Chris Schmidt.
  • The Mafia: Don Michelangelo's organization in episode 40.
  • My Future Self and Me: Dr. Chris in the new RSGS.
  • Number Two: On the Gamestar, we had Martin in the first three seasons, then Stangl after his death. On the Death Star, the closest the Emperor had to an aide was Darth Lott, then Darth Schmitz after Lott's fall, which, curiously, happened just one episode after Martin's.
  • The Other Darrin: In the 2009 trailer, Captain Jorg Langer (who was named after the GameStar's ex-editor-in-chief who played him in The Original Series) is played by Michael Graf; First Mate Martin Deppe (also named after the actor who played him), by Cedric Borsche; and only Dr. Chris Schmidt reprises his role as himself. Twice.
  • Properly Paranoid: Security Officer Peter, who starts off as a TIE Fighter pilot on the first Death Star and eventually strikes Darth Vader down twice.
  • Putting the Band Back Together: The first season opens this way, mirroring the real-life search of the editor-in-chief of the newly started GameStar magazine for his former colleagues from PC Player (a major German gaming magazine at the time).
    • Also, the second season, after the first season crew is trapped in a Stable Time Loop.
  • Rank Up: Played for Laughs: After securing the Golden Commodore64, Cadet Klinge is "promoted" from a simple Cadet to an "Acting Commanding Cadet". His position on the RSGS stays exactly the same.
  • Real Life Writes the Plot: Specifically, the introduction and deaths of many major characters coincided with their respective actors joining and leaving the editorial staff of the magazine.
  • Real Trailer, Fake Movie: The 2009 trailer.
  • Reset Button: Invoked in a fifth season episode, when the GS crew end up in an ancient Gaul settlement. When Cadet Klinge asks how are they ever gonna get back to their ship, the Captain reassures him that everything will be back to normal by the next episode.
  • Robotic Reveal:
    • The original First Mate Martin discovers that he is a robot (more accurately, a cyborg, since he was able to partly mutate in the first season) after he withstands Darth Vader's evil presence, which no human theoretically could. After the Captain confirms that, Martin self-terminates since he can't live with "no heart, just a puny Pentium CPU", prompting the Captain to hire a new First Mate for the next season.
    • Also, in the first season, Terminator!Mick (after getting shot by Charles).
  • Running Gag: The same as the Catch Phrase above. The Captain even lampshades it in a bonus episode.
  • Shout-Out: The series runs on them.
  • Somebody Set Up Us the Bomb: Darth Lott is particularly fond of planting bombs via different means onto the Gamestar.
  • Stable Time Loop: The entire first season. It starts with Captain Langer assembling the crew from the survivors of the Game Reviewers' Planet gone Alderaan, and ends with him traveling back in time to help said survivors (including his younger self) escape from the planet before the Empire destroys it and disappearing.
  • Uncanceled: Subverted with the 2009 announcement.
  • Visual Pun: The series runs on them, too. One particularly subtle example is that Captain Langer is one of the shortest characters of the show... while one of the meanings of "Langer" in German is "a tall person". Michael Graf, who played him in the 2009 trailer, had to lower his relative height to other actors artificially (usually by standing on his knees).
  • You Wouldn't Like Me When I'm Angry: Captain Langer. After a Shout-Out to the line, he mutated into a monster in his fury right afterwards. Or just tried to strangle Dr. Chris to death when he woke up.

Notes

  1. "Oh God, we are all going to die!"
  2. "Raumschiff" means "Spaceship".
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