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Subject: British Comedy: The Young Ones FAQ (2/2) v1.43

This article was archived around: 21 May 2006 04:23:18 GMT

All FAQs in Directory: tv/british-comedy/young-ones
All FAQs posted in: rec.arts.tv.uk.comedy, alt.comedy.british
Source: Usenet Version

Archive-name: tv/british-comedy/young-ones/part2 Posting-Frequency: monthly Version: 1.43 URL: http://www.audiophile.com/BritCom/YoungOne.html -------------------------------------------------------------------------- The Young Ones FAQ (2/2) v1.43 Created by Andrew Wong (BritCom@audiophile.com) Last updated 13 September 1997
This is part 2 of the FAQ, designed for "the anal retentive" who wants to know everything there ever was to know about The Young Ones. If you need some catching up, might I kindly refer you to part one of the FAQ, which has the main information on there, such as where to see it and where to pick up video tapes... -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Contents 1. Who featured in the series ? 1. Mark Arden and Stephen Frost 2. Robbie Coltrane 3. Ben Elton 4. Dawn French 5. Gareth Hale and Norman Pace 6. Jools Holland 7. David Rappaport 8. Tony Robinson 9. Jennifer Saunders 10. Alexei Sayle 11. Special Patrol Group 12. Other people who feature occasionally 2. British slangs and -isms 1. Quick definitions 2. Cliff Richard 3. The two-fingered salute 4. TV licences 5. O-levels and A-levels 6. Felicity Kendall 3. Quotable Lines 4. Rick's (The People's Poet) Peoples' Poems 1. Cliff 2. House 3. Pollution 4. Free-Form 5. The Peoples' Poem 6. Rick's Teen Anguish Poem 7. Rick's Trotsky poem 5. Cliff Richard and The Young Ones - a bit of the script. 6. Location (Updated) 7. The strange person at the back of the house 8. Memories of the time (Updated) 9. When was it transmitted ? 10. What are these flash-frames I keep hearing about ? 11. Reactions to the Young Ones 12. Looking back on the Young Ones 13. Little bits that don't fit in anywhere else 14. Spin-offs 15. Other articles on the Internet 16. Contributors and thanks -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Who featured in the series? Mark Arden and Stephen Frost * Boring: two policemen in the front page of The Guardian * Interesting: two party crashers * Cash: two Elizabethan ghosts * Nasty: two secret agents (Sweater & Ruffles) * Sick: two muck-men, Mick & Tess Robbie Coltrane * OIL: Sully the bouncer at Mike's roller-disco * BAMBI: Dr. Carlisle who finds human beings the size of amoebas * TIME: Captain on the Pirate Radio show hosting the Dull Religious Music Show Ben Elton * DEMOLITION: the presenter of Nozin' Around * BAMBI: Kendal Mintcake, the Oxbridge oik who was given the Socialist Worker Party for his birthday * FLOOD: The blind DJ interviewing an armless female singer * SICK: The schoolboy in the Grange Hill spoof * SUMMER HOLIDAY: the guy in the advert drinking Hawk lager Please see the Ben Elton FAQ for more details... Dawn French * INTERESTING:the violent Bible-bashing preacher * NASTY: the Devil in the Pain-Away commercial * TIME: The Easter Bunny Gareth Hale (the one with the moustache) & Norman Pace * NASTY: two grave diggers * TIME: two peasants Jools Holland * CASH: part of the band * SUMMER HOLIDAY: the punk with the enormous mohawk at the bank David Rappaport (the dwarf in TIME BANDITS and LA LAW) * BORING: Ftmsch, the red dwarf from Hell * FLOOD: Shirley, the Wicked Witch's servant (He later killed himself partly due to the lack of serious roles) Tony Robinson * BAMBI: The doctor looking after the Elephant Man * NASTY: one of the criminals bound for Australia Jennifer Saunders * INTERESTING: the party-goer with lots of toy mice in her handbag * TIME: Helen Mucus, Rick's girlfriend ?!!! Alexei Sayle (The Balowski family) * DEMOLITION: Jerzei Balowski, their Polish landlord. * OIL: Alexei Yuri...Balowski, the lead singer of the band. * BORING: Billy Balovski, Jerzei's clinically insane brother, who drove in from Brazil to imitate a Dalek using a cactus pot. * BOMB: Reggie Balowski, the Cockney arms dealer. * INTERESTING: drunk party-goer who pukes all over a posh person. * FLOOD: Jerzei (the landlord), who turns into an axe-wielding homicidal maniac. * BAMBI: A train driver * CASH: A police officer who looks remarakbly similar to Mussolini and becomes a stand-up comedian at nights * NASTY: A South African Communist vampire - or is he ? * TIME: Host of "Jester Balowski's Medieval Torture Hour" * SICK: Brian Damage Balowski, an escaped murderer * SUMMER HOLIDAY: Jerzei Balowski, the dreaded landlord Special Patrol Group Vyvyan's pet, a Scottish hamster with an attitude who likes sleeping in front of Vyvyan's car, and giving Glasgow kisses to teddy bears. People who occasionally pop up * Mark Arden: BOMB as the "gay" husband on the cornflakes packet * Helen Atkinson-Wood: NASTY as the woman condemned to Hell * Chris Barrie: NASTY as Captain of the ship bound for Australia * Arthur Brown: FLOOD * Alan Freeman: CASH and SUMMER HOLIDAY as God * Stephen Fry: BAMBI as Lord Snot, a contestant on University Challenge from Footlights College, Oxbridge. * Ronnie Golden: OIL as Buddy Holly * Lenny Henry: SUMMER HOLIDAY as the Nazi postman * Terry Jones: NASTY as the drunken priest. Better known as a member of the Monty Python team. * Hugh Laurie: BAMBI as Lord Monty from Footlights College * Helen Lederer: SUMMER HOLIDAY, as the female "Good morning sir" bank teller. * Norman Lovett: SUMMER HOLIDAY - the owner of the Penny Arcade * Lise Mayer: SUMMER HOLIDAY, as the woman Ben Elton is chatting up in the Sharp advert (?) * Paul Merton: TIME, as a Yokel under his real name "Paul Martin" * Griff Rhys Jones: BAMBI as the quiz-host of University Challenge. * Roger Sloman: BOMB as the TV licence inspector * Mel Smith: BAMBI, the security guard at Granada studios. * Emma Thompson: BAMBI as Miss Money-Sterling, the Oxbridge oik who has a Porsche. -------------------------------------------------------------------------- British slangs and -isms Quick definitions * Biro: Bic / ball-point pen * Bob's your uncle: there you are etc. * Call: to visit or telephone someone (erm....) * Flares: bell-bottoms * "Number two's" (slang): faeces / poo / s**t (rhyming slang) * out on the pull: trying to find a mutual partner of the opposite sex for the evening * Pavement: Sidewalk * Ring: call on the telephone * skiving: to shirk away from doing any work * snog: any kiss that isn't platonic <;-) * Sorry?: Huh ? What ? * take the piss: to make fun of, to deflate one's Ego * ta: Thanks (informal) * wanker: derogatory term for a person who masturbates Cliff Richard ============= He is such an institution in the UK, I find it difficult to believe no-one in the US has heard of him, but anyway... Cliff started out as being Britain's answer to Elvis Presley in the 1950s, and at one stage he out-sold Elvis. Like Elvis, he starred in a few British films that involved Cliff saving Youth culture from the big square daddy-ios, films like THE YOUNG ONES, and SUMMER HOLIDAY - in which Cliff chartered a London bus to take his chums to Greece for a holiday and a quick snog... Cliff also sang the title tune to The Young Ones (film), the same tune which is used as the opening credits for The Young Ones (TV) He is still going strong today, selling out auditoriums mainly to middle-aged women. Currently starring as Heathcliff in a musical based on Wuthering Heights, he is also reknown for his Christian beliefs. For a guy who's 50 years old, it's amazing he's managed to stay so long in the business. And it cannot be denied he has a better voice than most "pop" stars today. The quality of the songs he sings are rather questionable to say the least... Basically, he's not the sort of artiste a hip, happening politically aware student like Rik would be into. It's your typical tacky pop star that British students have a unique fascination for... The two-fingered salute ======================= The UK equivalent of the middle-finger salute, though not as rude. It's like saying Piss Off or something equally strong. TV licences (BOMB) ================== The BBC does not rely on advertising for its' revenue. Instead any household that owns a TV in the United Kingdom must pay a licence fee for the privilege of owning a television. The money is then handed over to the BBC and used to fund its' programming. It's illegal to own a TV without a licence so TV detector vans periodically patrol the streets looking for TV receivers. Then the house is checked with the TV licence records, and if the house does not have a licence, the house is in biiiiiiig trouble - a fine of up to 2000 pounds (US $3000) can be charged. At the moment, a year's licence costs around 80 pounds (US $120) Students are reknown for not paying their licence. I only got away with it because I wasn't in when they came knocking at my door ! O-levels and A-levels ===================== O-levels were the exams taken by 16 year olds before they left school. A C grade was considered a pass. You needed 5 passes to be allowed to the next stage of British education, which was usually A-levels. Generally, British students take 3 A-levels, and the grades you eventually get determine which university you get to. If you get AAA, you get to go to the great universities of Oxford, Cambridge and Bradford :) If you get less than that, you are more likely to head for the "red-brick" universities or the polytechnics (vocational colleges) O-levels were eliminated in 1987 in favour of GCSEs. Many older people tend to complain that GCSEs are much easier than O-levels... Felicity Kendall (sigh) ======================= She was one of those British actresses who used to pop up on safe, middle-class British sitcoms in the 1970s like The Good Life, Good Neighbours etc. She was also voted Rear Of The Year some time in the early 1970s. It is rumoured that many teenagers growing up in the late 70s like The Young Ones developed crushes on her. It's also a sympton of the stoodent population liking things totally unyouthlike e.g. the current trend for Johnny Cash, Mr. Blobby and Are You Being Served? (by the way, she apparently appeared nude in Tom Stoppard's play Indian Ink last year...) -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Quotable Lines Demolition * Neil: "Oh wow!" * Neil: "Guys, there's some dinner on the floor if you want it" * "Wow, I hope we don't have a crash..." Oil * Rik & Vyv: "Neil, your bedroom's on fire !" * Neil: "No way man ! Everyone knows sleep gives you CANCER!" Boring * Neil: "I just looked at it and it blew up !" * Policeman: "That's white man's electricity you're using." (to be used with heavily emphasised smilies !) * Neil: "Guys, why don't we, like, try going to lectures tomorrow ?" Mike: "Neil, I know things are bad but there's no need to panic ! No, I'll just treat this problem like my mattress - and sleep on it." * Rick: "Wouldn't it be amazing if all this (Monopoly) money was real?" Vyv: "Rick, that is the single most predictable and boring thing that anyone could ever say whilst playing Monopoly." Bomb * Neil: "It's like the kettle killed itself rather than be used by me..." * Mike: "If people weren't sick, we wouldn't need penicillin" * Mike: "A social conscience is like a garden fence, you try to eat it, it'll get stuck in your throat." * Rick: "No, YOU put my address down. Rick, 15 Credibility Street" (at the Social Security office) * Rick: "Tomorrow everyone in England will be free, and there will be no more social prejudice or hatred. GET UP NEIL, I HATE YOU !!!!!!!" Interesting * Neil's hippie friend Neil: "My barely adequate psychic defences are crumbling !" * Rick: "You bought me a present! It's a telescope -- a telescope with a mouse in it!" * Professor Jim Morrison: "Wow, what is this stuff - tobacco or ...Pink Floyd ?" * Neil's hippie friend Neil: "Wow - it's so uncoool !" Flood * Rick: "God, I'm bored. Might as well be listening to Genesis" * Rick: "There's nothing poofy about a man wanting to love his fellow man- It's just when they start touching each others' bottoms...." - (to be used with heavy smilies) * Vyv: "I put it (serum that turns you into an axe-wielding homicidal maniac) in a Coke can so nobody'd drink it by mistake." Neil: "You know, I just bet that a bit later on someone does drink that and turns into an axe-wielding homocidal maniac." Rick: "Yes, I bet that as well. That's just the sort of crazy imaginative thing that happens around here." * Mr. Balowski: "Ah, Coca-Cola, symbol of free West!" * Rick: "There's no one in here, Mr. Balowski! We're all holograms !" * Neil: "Oh, well, out of one frying pan, into another frying pan." Bambi * Vyv: "You haven't got a sister, Rick! You're the classic example of an only child." * Vyv: "This calls for a very special blend of psychology and extreme violence." * Rick: "Honestly, I don't know why I bother sometimes..." Vyv: "I don't know why you bother ever." * Neil: "Socks aren't vegetables,man, they should be wiped out !" * Rick: "Hands up who likes me !" * Miss Money-Sterling: "I've got a Porsche -bwaha haha ha" (a.k.a. Emma Thompson) Cash * Vyv: "Neil, is it really necessary to nail the plates to the table? What happens when we want to play Monopoly? Go directly to plate? Do not pass plate nailed to the table by a stupid hippie?" * Neil: "Boom shanka...May the seed of your loins be fruitful in the belly of your woman." Nasty * Rick: "Oh, that's right, Vyvyan. If the mountain won't come to Muhammed, smash the drawing room to pieces. That's very Buddhist, isn't it!" * Rick: "Neil, the bathroom's free! Unlike the country under the Thatcherite junta." * Rick: "Neil, is it really necessary to have the light on when you're in the bath?" Neil: "Well, yeah." Rick: "Why, what are you planning to do - photosynthesize?" * Mike: "What's that thumping?" Vyv: "Oh, it's probably Rick doing a bit of reading." * Vyv: "YES !! WE'VE GOT A VIDEO !!!" * Mike: "I hate to say anything negative, but no." * Vyv: "Rick, shut up or I'll kill you." * Neil: "Flares are coming back in -- I read it in my horoscope!" * Rick: "Neil, how are you keeping that flowerpot up?!?" * Rick: "Oh, no. The front door's exploded." * Vyv: "'Vyvyan, Vyvyan, Vyvyan!' Honestly, whenever anything explodes in this house, it's always 'blame Vyvyan!'" * Rick: "What, me, Rick, a virgin? Try telling that to some of the foxy chicks who owe me favours." * Rick: "So in fact, all four of us have stayed up for the entire night. Now that's what I call anarchy!" Time * Neil: "Oh no, I'll die if I miss 'Scooby-Doo'!" * Rick: "And that's Vyvyan....being sick" * Mike: "Last one to find the jungle animal has to take off all their clothes. (to Helen Mucus) All right, your turn." Sick * Rick: "We never clean the toilet, Neil! That's what being a student is all about!" * Neil: "I hope Mike hurries back with the cure!" Vyv: "No Neil, it's Madness this week!" Summer Holiday * Mr. Balowski: "Aw, some sod broke your chair! That's 20 pounds you owe me." * Rick: "What's the difference ? There'll be plenty of chicks for these tigers on the road to the promised land ! Who cares about Thatcher and unemployment ? We can do just exactly whatever we want to do ! And do you know why ? Because we're Young Ones ! Bachelor Boys ! Wild eyed big bottomed anarchists ! LOOK OUT !!! CLLLLLIIIIIFFFF !!!" (which is *not* the last line in The Young Ones...) -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Rick - The Peoples' Poet and his Poems For your delectation and delight, some of Rick's superb poems... "Cliff" (DEMOLITION) Oh, Cliff Sometimes it must be difficult not to feel as if You really are a Cliff When fascists keep trying to push you over it Are they the lemmings? Or are you Cliff? Or are you, Cliff? (According to Jon Drukman, it's the second line that makes sense but Rick has to go and mess up his own poem :) "House" (DEMOLITION) House, house, house Oh, you are made of stone But you are not alone -Ly house! Pollution (BOMB) First, an extreme close-up of Rick squeezing a spot/boil/pimple Pollution All around Sometimes up And sometimes down But always around. Pollution, are you coming to my town? Or am I coming to yours? We're on different buses, pollution But we're both using petrol Bombs. Free-Form(Flood) Marrow Meringue Boomerang Long, blue boomerang... The People's Poem (FLOOD) What do you think you're doing, pig? Do you really give a fig, pig? And what's your favourite sort of gig, pig? Barry Manilow Or the black and white minstrel show? Rick's Teen Anguish Poem (from the book) oh god, why am I so much more sensitive than everybody else ? why do I feel things so much more acutely than them, and understand so much more. I bet I'm the first person who's ever felt as rotten as this. could it be that I'm going to grow up to be a great poet and thinker, and all those other wankers in my class are going to have to work in factories or go on the dole? yes, I think it could. Rick's Trotsky poem (from the book) Today, I saw a dog, Yes, a dog. Talking to a pig, Yes, a pig. They were on the pavement, Discussing Trotsky. Not brotsky or crotsky or drotsky or frotsky. But Trotsky. -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Cliff Richard and The Young Ones - Living Doll (a bit of the script) It goes something like this.... *EXPLOSION* Neil: "Look out everyone, he's coming through the doors." Vyv: "BRILLIANT ! He didn't even open them...." Neil: "He's here !!!!" Mike: "Quick Rick, do the speech." *Music starts* (Video - the Young Ones walking down a street, Rick pointing at the camera) Rick: "Hey kids, stop snogging and pay attention to me. 'Cos if you're a wild-eyed loner standing at the gates of Oblivion, hitch a ride with us. 'Cos we're on the last freedom moped out of Nowhere City, and we haven't even told our parents what time we'll be back ! So put on your dancing trousers, and get down to the utter King of Rock and Roll, CLIFF RICHARD !!!" (jumps in the air) Cliff: Got myself a crying, talking, sleeping, walking, living doll. (singing) Got to do my best to please her just 'cos she's a livin' doll. Got a roving eye and that is why she satisfies my soul, I've got the one and only walking talking livin' doll. OK guys, ready Vyv? Vyv: Completely ready when you are, Shaky! Cliff: Neil? Neil: Does anybody know where the toilets are? Cliff: Mike? Mike: Hey, does all this money really have to go to charity? Mike: Yes it does, Michael! Hi Cliff, it's me ! Cliff: Who are you? Rik: Huh he, great joke, Your Majesty! Cliff: (singing) "Got myself a crying, talking, sleeping, walking living doll" Young Ones: (singing rather badly) "Living doll" Cliff: "Got to do my best to please her, just 'cos she's a living doll" Young Ones: "Living doll" Cliff: Got a roving eye and that is why she satisfies my soul Young Ones: "'Fies my soul! Vyv: Fies my soul ?! Rik: Yes Vyvyan, it's raunchy! Mike: Shut up guys! All: (singing) I've got the one and only walking talking living doll! Rick: OK daddy-io! Lay the next funky riff on me! Mike: He means, "What happens now?" Cliff. Cliff: The instrumental break. (twangy guitars) "Great, which instruments do you want us to break?" "Guitar" (sound of guitar played very badly, followed by Vyv: smashing noises) "Piano" (same again) "Violin" (blah blah) "Didgeridoo" Rick: "Vyvian's trousers" (ripping noises) Vyv: "Rick's head" *thud* Neil: "Yeah! Ah, ah, Neil's head!" *thud* Vyv: Hey! Cliff's head! All: "No! No! NO!" Rick: (singing)Oh take a look at her hair, it's real. Neil: If you don't believe what I say ... Mike: ... just feel! Rick: Fwooaaarggh! Vyv: (loudly) GONNA LOCK HER UP IN A TRUNK! Mike: So no big hunk ... Cliff: ... can steal her away from me. (more twangy guitars) Rick: "I still think locking girls up in a trunk is politically unsound." Mike: "It's only a song, Rick." Neil: "Well, I feel sorry for the elephants." Cliff: Got myself a ... Neil: ... crying ... Vyv: ... talking ... Mike: ... sleeping ... Rick: ... walking ... Young Ones: ... livin' doll! Cliff: Livin' doll. Got to do my best to please her just cause she's a livin' doll. Young Ones: Livin' doll! Cliff: OK guys, harmony now. Young (very unharmonious) Got a rovin' eye and that is why she Ones: satisfies my soul Cliff: 'Fies my soul. All: I've got the one and only walking talking livin' doll! Rick: Oo-oo-oo-oo-ooooooh! Cliff: I've got the one and only walking talking livin' doll! (flourish, end of guitar riff) Cliff: Erm... can I go now? Rick: Er, yeah, thanks, Cliff, bye! (Vyv hits Cliff with a club, Cliff falls to floor) Rick: "Right kids, if you don't buy this record, you're an utter utter utter utter utter ..." (Meanwhile Vyv knocks out Mike and Neil, then Rick ('utter ut-*thwack*-ter...'). He then looks around the room, looks at the camera, smiles, shrugs, and then knocks himself out. The picture reverts to snow, and on the record there seems to be a scratch.) If you can remember the rest off the top of your head, let me know! -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Location Although The Young Ones was based in London (they were all supposedly at a North London polytechnic), the street scenes were filmed in Bristol, because Paul Jackson was in Bristol when he was thinking about The Young Ones... * The house is at 1 Coddrington Road, off Broadway Road, Bishopston, Bristol. * The train station in Bambi is Bristol Temple Meads. * The Kebab And Calculator (their local as seen in Boring) is actually The Cock O' The North in Henleaze, Bristol, though the landlord is reputed to be a complete b*stard. Interestingly, it's one of only two round pubs in the UK. * In Bomb, Rick walks past Coopington Road... * The police station in Cash is actually the Bristol North Swimming Baths on Gloucester Road. The army careers office he goes to first is about 50 yards down the road (and is actually an RSPCA charity shop now). Both are about 100 yards away from the shop used as a launderette in Bambi. * The Swimming Baths also conveniently doubled as the "Fascist Pig Bank" in Summer Holiday. The getaway car is parked beside a line of bollards outside what is now the Bristol Flyer pub which is next door to the baths. (Just shows the lengths to which this FAQ has been carefully researched ;) -------------------------------------------------------------------------- The strange person at the back of the house (from Simon Jansen - sjan1@cs.aukuni.ac.nz) "Haas anyone else noticed the strange person who appears to share the flat with the guys. If you look carefully in the first five episodes you can see a mysterious person with long black hair who appears sitting against walls in the background of quite a few scenes. He has his hair over his face but it looks like another hippy. Once you have noticed him he is very obvious! Places I remember seeing him are sitting to the left of the screen in INTERESTING when Vyv tries the new vacuum cleaner, behind Mike in DEMOLITION when he's reading the TV Times and in BORING, he's next to the cupboard when the old guy comes out from under the stairs. I can spot him in the first five episodes but not after that. Does anyone know who this is?" Kristen Mirenda thinks it could be the ratty human-sized stuffed animal (teddy bear?) that's usually propped up in the hall. Greg O'Beirne said "it's just meant to be a sort of surrealist sight gag. It struck me as rather weirdly funny to have what I thought was a corpse just sitting in the lounge room with nobody noticing it." Ryan Mooney commented: "The best places to see him are (in Demolition) when Rik sits down to watch Nozin' Aroun'... and (in Bomb) when Vyv hits Neil over the head with the kettle that has killed itself rather than be used by Neil. It's no teddy bear - it's another hippie! It's not a corpse either - it's in a sitting position and holding its hands. I have no explanation, but as he appears in Bomb and Demolition (the only eps I have so far examined for evidence), and these eps were made over six months apart, it's not a one-off thing - there must be a reason!" And while we're on the subject of strange things, the back of the house (behind the kitchen area) appears to have been completely re-built between Seasons 1 and 2. I guess the gang came into some money in an untelevised adventure :-) -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Memories of the time (from someone who was there!) with many thanks to Stuart Jackson "I had just started college in England (Hull) when The Young Ones first started - Autumn 1982. By the third episode, word had got round so much about how good it was, all the public TV rooms in every hall of residence and in the Students' Union were jammed to the rafters. It was a great atmosphere. In March of 1983 the Young Ones did a university tour, and Hull was one of the venues. I was lucky enough to get a ticket...it was a sell out. Only Rick, Vyv and Neil were there. Apparently, they'd killed Mike (but he was miraculously revived for the second series). Rik Mayall warmed up the crowd doing Kevin Turvey, a Brummie Investigator which he'd done on an earlier show called "A Kick Up The Eighties". Rik and Vyv then came on and did their stuff for about 15 minutes. Then Neil came on to rapturous applause - at which point Rik and Vyv told him in no uncertain terms to f*** off. They wouldn't continue the show until everyone in the audience was screaming "f*** off, Neil". The show lasted about two hours and remains the funniest live show I've been to. The second series first aired in spring 1984, and was even more popular - by this time I was living in conditions very similar to that of The Young Ones. One of my most vivid memories of the time was trying to keep warm by putting my hands in front of the open fridge. It really does work you know." Apparently, Nigel Planer also embarked on a tour in 1984 as Neil, just after the second series was aired. He charged around ?1,000 per gig... -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Transmission dates First season premiere (on BBC2, 9:00pm to 9:30pm) Tuesday 9 November 1982 Demolition Tuesday 16 November 1982 Oil Tuesday 23 November 1982 Bomb {Boring} Tuesday 30 November 1982 Boring {Bomb} Tuesday 7 December 1982 Interesting Tuesday 14 December 1982 Flood Average ratings for this series were 2,800,000 viewers. The concert tour was during Spring 1983, and hit Hull University (one of the great universities of the UK :) in March. Thursday 5 May 1983 Demolition (repeat) Thursday 12 May 1983 Oil (repeat) Thursday 19 May 1983 Bomb (repeat) Thursday 26 May 1983 Boring (repeat) Thursday 2 June 1983 Interesting Thursday 9 June 1983 Flood Second season premiere Tuesday 8 May 1984 Bambi {Sick} Tuesday 15 May 1984 Cash Tuesday 29 May 1984 Nasty Tuesday 5 June 1984 Time {Sick} Tuesday 12 June 1984 Sick {Time} Tuesday 19 June 1984 Summer Holiday The average ratings were 4,600,000. Monday 18 March 1985 Demolition (second repeat) Monday 25 March 1985 Oil (second repeat) Monday 1 April 1985 Bomb (second repeat) Monday 15 April 1985 Boring (second repeat) Monday 22 April 1985 Interesting (second repeat) Monday 29 April 1985 Flood (second repeat) Monday 13 May 1985 Bambi (first repeat) Monday 20 May 1985 Cash (first repeat) Monday 10 June 1985 Nasty (first repeat) Monday 17 June 1985 Sick (first repeat) Monday 24 June 1985 Time (first repeat) Monday 1 July 1985 Summer Holiday (first repeat) Saturday 29 April 1989 9.55pm-10.30pm Time (second repeat) Tuesday 29 August 1989 Bambi (second repeat) Tuesday 5 Sept 1989 Cash (second repeat) Tuesday 12 Sept 1989 Nasty (second repeat) Tuesday 19 Sept 1989 Sick (second repeat) Tuesday 26 Sept 1989 Summer Holiday (second repeat) (This set of repeats had 6,500,000 viewers....) The University Challenge clip from Bambi was repeated during the 1989 Comic Relief on 10 March 1989. This lead to the 2nd repeat of Time later on in the year, as part of the BBC2 Anniversary screenings. The success of this prompted the repeat of the other five episodes. The titles in brackets are those listed wrongly in the Radio Times. When SKY TV was launched, The Young Ones were regularly repeated, first on The Comedy Channel and now on UK Gold. Alas, these were heavily cut to fit within the 30 minute time-limit. The Young Ones was also shown on MTV US in 1986 (the ultimate accolade :), SuperChannel and on Dutch television. It has on occasion been repeated on Comedy Central. -------------------------------------------------------------------------- What are these flash-frames I keep hearing about ? As you may (or may not) know, the illusion of moving pictures (and hence television) is created by flashing 25 pictures per second in front of your eyes. If these pictures consecutively show someone moving, then the person appears to move before your very eyes... Of course this can be abused, as in the case of subliminal advertising (I'll get there in a second, don't worry....) It was rumoured that 1950s films and TV shows would occasionally throw up a message in just one frame saying "Drink Coke" or something like that. Thus the subconscious brain would get the message, whilst the conscious brain would remain completely unaware of this, save perhaps a surprised blink of the eye. A couple of pictures that are completely irrelevant to the plot of The Young Ones pops up every once in a while during the programme. In the second season, flash-frame images included a dove in flight, a jumping frog, a skier, a dripping tap and the "The End" caption from Carry On Cowboy. -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Reactions to the Young Ones Upon the first screening of the pilot episode to the BBC's Head of Variety, he was apparently "completely baffled..." However, the programme was given a go-ahead for its' first series since Channel 4 had just been created, and the BBC was scared that Channel 4 would end up recruiting all the raw talent. -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Looking back on the Young Ones Rik Mayall said he chose to use students because he wanted to use an excuse to have four people sitting around all day for a sitcom, and he felt it wasn't the right time to have a comedy series about people on the dole (unemployed). "I wanted them to be privileged, and for people to hate them..." Rik on his character: "Rick rants and raves, he's over-energetic, unpredictable and quick tempered. I was a bit like that when I was, say, 15. I wouldn't say he's popular though. For kids, he's just as easy to identify with. When people come up to us in the street, Neil is the one they warm to. The back away from me slightly..." He also said in a recent interview to The Observer that: "There are few women in those shows, but the reason for that is that I fulfil the woman's role. Adrian is the man and I am the woman. If you look at The Young Ones it was a nuclear family. Mike was the dad, Neil was the mum, Vyv was the little boy and Rick was the little girl, complete with pigtails." (The following taken from an interview with Geoff Posner) Though it appeared risky at the time to have Christopher Ryan as Mike, as Geoff Posner points out : "Mike was very different to the others. He was the one who always rose above the scrapes. He'd always find a way out ... In fact, the only strange thing about any of the casting was Alexei Sayle. If you look at his performances as the Balowski family they're very much of the 'I'm just dropping in to do a bit, then I'm dropping out again' variety. They're unashamed monologues which were completely unrelated to anything else. Luckily, they were also very funny." Reason for its' success : "Up until then, all sitcoms were full of nice people being nice to each other. But suddenly here were four people who were constantly arguing and hitting each other and although there was a lot of criticism about the language and the violence, deep down at the root of it all there was a basis of truth. Of course it was all exaggerated but ... if you look at recent programmes like The Living Soap (BBC2's attempt at to replicate MTV's Real World), that is the way that some people behave when they live together." Would it get made today?: "No, without a shadow of a doubt. Nowadays there's too much emphasis on cost, on being accountable for everything. People would be terrified of even trying it just in case it didn't get a favourable reaction ... These days at the BBC there is a hell of a lot of interference from people who may or may not have experience in the field but who've graduated to senior positions and feel their voice should be heard, and of course a project like this can only be won because - as in Paul Jackson's case - it was an individual vision that had been fought for." -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Little bits that don't fit in anywhere else... * Lots of bands were featured in the Young Ones. Why was this? Simply so the show came under the BBC's Entertainment budget rather than Variety, and accordingly got more money. * There is an out-take available on the first Bloopers compilation - which is available from BBC Video I think. It's a clip from the beginning of Sick, where they're all in bed and Vyvian throws a bottle of Vodka into (Neils?) bedroom. In the outtake the burning rag falls out of the bottle whilst he's holding it, and sets fire to the bed! * As part of the burping, punches and other sound effects, Ian Tomlin resorted to wiring up a microphone to his own baby's backside.... * There was a joke in BORING where a policeman thought someone was black, and subjected him to a torrent of racial abuse : "That's white man's electricity you're using, Mr Rastus Chocolate Drop" etc. Unfortuately, the production office got a letter from a teacher saying that while she understood the point of the joke, she found the one black boy in his class was having the same abuse levelled at him. * The BAMBI episode won the Golden Rose at the Montreux Television festival. * The band Primus sampled Rik saying 'You just called me a bastard, didn't you?', and Ade saying 'Shut up you bastard' on their album Sailing The Seas of Cheese, on the last track... Just in case you were interested... * Neil made a cameo appearance on the 45 minute video of the making of Band Aid's "Do They Know It's Christmas?". Quite hilarious, apparently.. * There was a Young Ones computer game that came out in the mid-1980s for the Amstrad CPC, Spectrum and Commodore 64. It was a platform-type game (quelle surprise) - and if you went through the wardrobe, you ended up in Narnia! If you have a PC-compatible machine, you might want to try downloading and playing the game yourself thanks to a C64 emulator, available at http://arnold.hiof.no - just try to smash the VCR... :-) * On a recent episode of University Challenge, a contestant, stumped for an answer, finally came up with "Toxteth O'Grady, U.S.A." for an answer. This brought the house down, apparently. * An Australian band, 'Front End Loader' released a song called 'Travel Scrabble Death', a line from Dawn French's Christian tirade in Interesting. How did you ever live without knowing that fact? -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Spin-offs While there were no official sequels, other British comedies featuring the same actors or writers, or set in a university setting include : American pilot? According to Slogan... There was a pilot episode shot and aired of an American version of the Young Ones. It was called Oh, No! Not THEM! and featured Nigel Planer as Neil, and it had a claymation opening credit sequence. Obviously FOX didn't make the series... In the pilot they were all sleeping in one bed and Rick (not Mayall) was having a dream about a hot punk girl and woke up and Neil asks him why he didn't kiss her. Weird, huh? I'm not quite sure I believe that, but I'll check my sources and get back to you all on this! :-) Filthy, Rich and Catflap Made after The Young Ones, it starred Rik Mayall, Adrian Edmondson and Nigel Planer, and was written by Ben Elton. It was intended to be its' successor, and on the video cassette it exclaims "Aaagh! The Young Ones have grown up - it's horrible!" Alas, rumour has it that it's not very good, though some might say that it improves with repeated viewing and the jokes are far more subtle in their own way than on The Young Ones. Available on BBC Video (catalogue number BBCV 4991), the video sleeve says: "Three pretty bloody fabulous and funny episodes starring showbiz superstar and sex symbol Richie Rich (Rik Mayall) along with his freeloading, parasitic minder, Eddie Catflap (Adrian Edmonson) and wino agent Ralph Filthy (Nigel Planer)." An episode guide to Filthy, Rich and Catflap is available from the TARDIS TV Database Girls On Top Produced by Central Television in the mid-1980s, this starred Dawn French, Jennifer Saunders, Ruby Wax and Tracey Ullmann as four girls sharing a flat, with Joan Greenwood as their landlady. The press labelled it a female Young Ones, though the writers tried to get away from this label. Blackadder Goes Forth - Private Plane In this episode, Rik Mayall plays Lord Flash-heart, who comes to the rescue of Edmund Blackadder, and meets Baron Von Richoften - played by Adrian Edmondson. The scene plays an awful lot like the battles between Rik and Vyvyan :) Bottom Made in the 1990s, it was written by Rik Mayall and Adrian Edmondson who also starred in the series as Richard Richard (erm...) and Eddie Hitler (now hang on!). The similarities between Richard and Rik, and Eddie and Vyvyan are rather striking... Men Behaving Badly Another sitcom made in the late 1990s and still going, it's about two "lads" and their lives. Starring Neil Morrissey and Martin Clunes, it's become a cultural phenomenon (da doo de doo doo!) in the UK, with their laddish antics and their relationship with the two women upstairs Leslie Ash and Caroline Quentin. An American version was screened on NBC in Autumn 1996. A Very Pecuilar Practice While this is NOT an out-and-out comedy like The Young Ones, I found it rather amusing. This stars Peter Davison as a innocent idealistic doctor thrust into a University medical centre complete with cynical hard-bittened characters. -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Other articles on the Net As stated at the beginning, the first part of the FAQ contains the essential basic information on the Young Ones. An edited episode guide is also available from the TARDIS TV Database The scripts for most of the episodes are now available from the FTP or WWW sites. If you can't access them, ask me or consult James Kew's alt.comedy.british FAQ. The B-side to Living Doll, (ALL THE LITTLE FLOWERS ARE) HAPPY is also available on the FTP site, transcribed by Greg O'Beirne (gobeirne@tartarus.uwa.edu.au) These files and more can be found at the TARDIS Archive, or the British Comedy Library at http://www.audiophile.com/BritCom/index.html I also compile the Rik Mayall FAQ, Adrian Edmondson FAQ, and the Ben Elton FAQ. I did have a copy of an interview I did with Christopher Ryan but that seems to have mysteriously disappeared... If you can find it, please let me know! If you have any material, please let me know so I can incorporate it here. All comments, brickbats and additions gratefully received ! -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Contributors and thanks * Paul Herzog for transcribing quite a few scripts. * Bill Houston and his friend for transcribing NASTY. * James Kew for co-ordinating most of this stuff on ze 'Net... * Alexander Lum for his valiant efforts to produce a FAQ. * Kristen Mirenda (mirenda@panix.com) for transcribing BAMBI and CASH, other items and pointing out other factual errors. * Kristin Sabo for giving me some source information. Thanks also go to Michael Barrows, Roderick Begbie, Gareth Blinkhorn, Michael Brown, Paul Burgin, Greg Cawthorn, Paul Claypole, Nick Cole, Andrew Darby, Jon Drukman, Matthew Estella, Matthew George, Graham Hawkins, Paul Herzog, Pete Houston, Stuart Jackson, Bert Keuken, James Kew, Amanda King, Paul Lee, Ryan Mooney, Rachael Munns, Greg O'Beirne, Russ Perry Jnr., James Poole, Steve Rapport, Simon Rowell, Annie Sattler, Adrian Savage, Drew Savage, Stephen Slater, Slogan, Michelle Street and Brett Wimpory. Other pieces of info were ripped off (or quoted :-) from various sources, including: * Deadline Magazine (November 1994) * Didn't You Kill Your Mother-In-Law:The story of alternative comedy * Times Educational Supplement (30 December 1983) I would like to thank all the above, and anyone else I haven't named for their help and contributions. -------------------------------------------------------------------------- That concludes the Young Ones FAQ. All opinions are mine unless otherwise stated, and I take no legal responsibility for any crossed lines that occur as a result of this document :) If you're after British books and audio books, may I recommend Bookpages, a British-based Internet bookstore at http://www.bookpages.co.uk/m/a If you want any British videos or other items, sometimes I can endeavour to get them for you, and I can accept most currencies. Let me know... If you have any queries, questions, corrections or comments, please write to me at BritCom@audiophile.com or consult my Web pages at http://www.cyberjunkie.com/andreww/index.html This FAQ is postcard-ware i.e. if you truly like it, then I would appreciate a postcard from you! My address is: 10 Gerllan, Tywyn, Gwynedd, LL36 9DE, UNITED KINGDOM. My name was Andrew Wong, thank you and goodnight ! -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Copyright ? Andrew Wong E-mail: BritCom@audiophile.com Last updated 13 September 1997