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Comedian and actor Rik Mayall dies aged 56

The English actor starred in shows such as The Young Ones, Blackadder and Bottom.

Rik Mayall pictured in 2004.
Rik Mayall pictured in 2004.
Image: PA Archive/Press Association Images

COMEDIAN AND ACTOR Rik Mayall has died.

Reports are just emerging about the death of the Drop Dead Fred, The Young Ones, and Bottom star, and it has not yet been announced how he died.

His management company made the announcement this afternoon, BBC News reports.

Part of Britain’s nascent and incredibly influential alternative comedy scene in the 1980s, Mayall’s best known roles include the obnoxious anarchist and terrible poet Rick in The Young Ones. He starred in the show with his longtime comedy partner Adrian Edmondson (Vyvyan Basterd), with whom he collaborated on many projects.

Mayall, who was born in Essex, and grew up in Worcestershire, met Edmondson at university in Manchester. He also met Ben Elton and Lise Mayer at the college – and went on to co-write The Young Ones with them.

He worked throughout the 80s on The Comic Strip films, as well as performing stand-up, and starring in shows like Blackadder.

In later years, Mayall starred in shows like The New Statesman, the film Drop Dead Fred (where he played an imaginary friend), and brought the show Bottom to the stage wtih Edmondson.

Source: Deeinay/YouTube

The Bottom partnership ended after their 2003 live tour, but the pair were said to remain good friends.

In 1998, Mayall was seriously injured after a quad bike crash, and remained in a coma for several days. After his recovery, his first acting role was as DI Gideon Pryke in an episode of Jonathan Creek.

The love for Mayall and his oddball, madcap comedy can be seen pouring in on Twitter, with our own Chris O’Dowd leading the many tributes:

More as we get it…

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