In Memoriam: Rik Mayall

I know it’s late, but I think I need to address this. For once, I’m not being sarcastic, snarky or cynical. I’m not going to crack a joke, or poke fun at anything. I’m just going to pay my respects.

10 days ago, on June 9’th, Rik Mayall died of a heart attack. With that, we lost one of the greatest comedians of the last century.

I’m a big fan of comedy, especially when it comes to british comedy, and I consider the duo of Rik Mayall and Adrian Edmondson to be just as important to the history of comedy as Laurel and Hardy, Monty Python or Abbot and Costello.

When I was a kid, I came across an old VHS tape of “The Young Ones” we had lying around in a drawer. For years, I thought it was just some boring soap opera. I mean, this was a movie belonging to my parents. The only other movies I remember them owning was a documentary about sharks. The only movies I remember them renting for themselves was “Jean du Fleurette” and “The Godfather” trilogy. How good could this be?

Then one day I was bored, popped the tape in and pressed play.

For the next hour and a half, I was treated to absolute, chaotic, comedic anarchy, slapstick and dirty jokes, mixed in with the childish, surreal or downright disgusting.

I was hooked. I was ecstatic at the amazing treasure i’d found, and furious at myself for not having found it earlier.

Bottom, Guest House Paradiso, The Dangerous Brothers, The New Statesman. All of them I’ve watched, all of them I’ve loved.

And now Rik Mayall, one of the most influential and important comedians of the 20’th century is dead.

And I think the world is a slightly less happy place for it.

1958 – 2014

Rest in Peace, Rik Mayall. Thank you for all the laughs. We needed them.


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