Rik Mayall: 7 March 1958 – 9 June 2014

Posted on Jun 9, 2014



Ade Edmonson and Rik Mayall (right) in Bottom
Picture courtesy of pics2.imagezone.org

Today had started off well until I started reading Twitter, the fastest news feed there is that can make you laugh, rise to anger or cry. Sadly today it is pretty much the latter.

British comedy legend Rik Mayall known for the Comic Strip Presents, Young Ones, Bottom, the New Statesman, Blackadder, Jonathan Creek, and Drop Dead Fred to name but a few has died aged just 56. To many of my age and older, he was known as the people’s poet, actor, writer and all-round comedy legend and always came across as a really nice person in his interviews.

When I was growing up as a teenager in the eighties, Mayall, along with Adrian Edmonson, Nigel Planer, Christopher Ryan, all quickly became a huge part of my life with the Young Ones, an anarchic comedy about students living in a mad house together, geting up to all kinds of crazy things. It was both funny and surreal and sometimes I didn’t even get what was happening because I was so young I suppose. It was the craziest thing on TV and for my money has being matched in recent times except by his own work with Edmonson in Bottom in the nineties.

Who could forget him as Lord Flashheart in Blackadder too. It was comedy brilliance.

On 9 April 1998, Mayall was seriously injured after crashing a quad bike near his home in Devon at the time. He came very close to death but after a five day coma he saw life differently and lived it as we all should; with no regrets.

He was a manic ball of energy on screen and his laugh was infectious, always making me smile or laugh along with him. Many people die every day on this planet of ours, some are sad, some are deserved, some pass us by without a thought whilst others become a pert of our lives in some way even though we have never met them. Rik Mayall was the latter.

He was taken far too early and still had much to say and do in this world. He will be sorely missed by many who loved his madcap humour and anarchic way. I always wanted him to play the role of Doctor Who. He would have made a brilliant Timelord but this will sadly never be the case now.

I’m sure he’s giving a few up there a headache as well as a big smile already. Long may his comedy live on through us all and generations to come. May his family find small comfort in that he was loved by millions the world over.

RIP Rik, your like will never be seen again.

Richard Michael ‘Rik’ Mayall: 7 March 1958 – 9 June 2014