Tuesday, June 10, 2014

The inspirational Rik Mayall

By +Ian C

By now, some of you will have heard the sad news of the death of comedian and actor Rik Mayall. For the 80% of our readers who live in the US, a British comedian who was in a movie that you might have seen, dropped dead yesterday.

Rik Mayall in Bottom
Rik Mayall dressed as the virgin Mary
As a young boy, I was around to witness the dawn of Alternative Comedy in the UK, and Rik Mayall played a leading role in this new comedic style. The comedy was edgy and irreverent (by early 80's standards) and it was funny. Rik Mayall and his comedy partner, Ade Edmundson, were a huge inspiration to me during my formative years. From the Dangerous Brothers, to The Young Ones, from The Comic Strip to Bottom with various guest appearances in Blackadder. The New Statesman was a standout solo effort from Mayall and he even guested on SpongeBob SquarePants. His Hollywood career peaked with Drop Dead Fred, one of only three movies that made me cry, and probably Americas best chance to know Rik Mayall, since his brief appearance in the first Harry Potter movie was edited out.

Phoebe Cates and Rik Mayall in Drop Dead Fred
His most prophetic movie role...
There is no shortage of eulogies on the web right now for Rik Mayall, and a quick G**gle Search of his name will yield enough YouTube clips to keep you laughing for an entire weekend, but his longtime comedy cohort and good friend said it best.
"There were times when Rik and I were writing together when we almost died laughing. They were some of the most carefree stupid days I ever had, and I feel privileged to have shared them with him. And now he's died for real. Without me. Selfish bastard." - Ade Edmondson
Yes the P may have been silent, but the genius wasn't. Thanks for being Rik Mayall, you were probably the only person who could have pulled it off.

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