Rik Mayall

Where to begin? His Lord Flashheart was the nemesis of Blackadder, his Vogon-class poetry was the yin to fellow Young One Vyvyan’s flatulent yang, he drank at The Slaughtered Lamb, caused chaos as a Dangerous Brother and was a lynch pin of the ‘comedy as the new rock’n’roll’ boom of the early 1980s. The news that Rik Mayall has died at the stupidly young age of 56 caught everyone by surprise and now Twitter is a flood of tributes to a genuine comedy genius.

To many of us here in the UK he was a stalwart of the very best television comedy. His partnership with Ade Edmonson spawned numerous nasty and subversive offspring and playgrounds rang to the lewd quoting of Bottom, The Young Ones, The New Statesman and so on. His Alan B’Stard is still a fierce political animal with an endless stream of politicians unable to avoid his leering shadow. Likewise he and his fellow Comic Strippers changed the landscape of comedy, and the endless stream of YouTube clips now being shared are testament to the variety and the endurance of his talent.

He elevated everything he was in, including the world of social media. His first, and only tweet was typically brilliant.


The world is far, far less funny today. He will be missed.