Monday, 9 June 2014

rik mayall RIP

At 4pm this afternoon it was announced Rik Mayall had died. So far there has been no additional information of the causes. Rik was 56.
He'll forever be associated with the early 80's Comic Strip alternative comedy that exploded the image and ideas of traditional stand-up and one liner comedy routines that had existed for so long on television.
Mayall and his comedy partner Ade Edmondson first came to notice at London's Comedy Strip with a completely off the wall anarchistic comedy routine called The Dangerous Brothers and from there were picked up by Channel 4 television to produce the similarly anarchic 'The Young Ones', about a group of disparate and contrasting student characters, aptly named after the very safe early 60's pop hit by Cliff Richard. The final joke on that was they later produced their own send up of the song which also became a hit. One or two of them could actually play a bit.
Then after the huge success of the Young Ones, Mayall and Edmondson et al went on to produce a series of one off Comic Strip films taking the rise out of most of the 80's establishment and culture. It was only a matter of time before their ridiculous parodies turned to rock and roll when they made 'The Bad News Tour' (picture above, Rik Mayall on far right). A completely fictitious rock band, not unlike Spinal Tap in concept but done with their usual street anarchy style. If Spinal Tap had seen and parodied the 70's American and UK rock band culture then Rik Mayall, Ade Edmondson and co hit the mark perfectly with their 1987 post punk rubbish rock band touring the country in a clapped out transit van.
Here is an extract from one of the Bad News Tour series. In it Bad News perform their version of Bohemian Rhapsody and then are filmed discussing their rubbish contract with Rik reading out the fine details to the confused band, followed by an hilarious on location promotional shoot.
RIP Rik Mayall. You'll be really missed.