Rik Mayall was a bit of a teenage comedy hero of mine. A comedy genius.
After a childhood of situation comedies that were dodgy to say the least, and sixties hangover, sexist nonsense from various comedians and double acts, The Dangerous Brothers were, well, dangerous, anarchic and coincided well with my own rebellion.
My comedy rebellion years were populated by Not the Nine O'Clock News, followed by The ComedyStrip Presents and The Young Ones.
Kicking out at the establishment. The punk and post punk of comedy. Satire and just mayhem; adults behaving badly; breaking the rules of what we were fed via the tube, along with The Tube, Morrissey, The Cure, Souxsie and Jools groovy fuckers, Rik and Ade slew the sexist, racist, scapegoating comedy and Sun culture that surrounded us. Thatcher and Major's downfall was partly due to them, every bit as much as the rubber Spitting Image puppets.
Where are the Riks, Ades and Fluck and Law's today? Where is the satire that will save us from the increasingly B'Stard-ised Westminster main parties? B'Stard- the satire Farage modelled himself on.
I wasn't a fan of Bottom etc, but Rik's other, studenty, nerdy but totally dangerous, bordering on insane characters were 'bwilliant,' as one of his best known characters was prone to say. His characters in Blackadder were typically over the top, but genius, and Alan B'stard was surely based on quite a few of the shady Thatcherite, Tory characters who used Scotland's oil in the pretence of promoting their dreadful, community and industry wrecking policies as somehow "successful."
Genius, lefty, alternative, political and yet he managed to wind up all of those who would have lefty pretensions. I'm sorry to see him go. RIP, Wwrick...