The Young Ones is viewed by many as perhaps one of the greatest, if not the greatest, sitcoms of all time, and here are just some examples of why:
- The fact that Vyvyan is a medical student. Better yet, the fact that we meet his classmates during "Interesting", and they're all punks like him.
- Random inanimate objects coming to life for no reason.
- Vyvyan's first entrance is priceless - he smashes through the kitchen wall carrying a severed leg as the other three are eating dinner. Rick shouts, "Vyvyan, you might have washed your hands!", prompting Vyv to walk over to the kitchen sink, kick it so that it falls off the wall, and wash his hands in the water flowing through where the tap used to be.
- Neil has outlined his plans to hang himself on a gallows that lights joss sticks and plays "Rock Around the Clock" when the trapdoor opens... except that the trapdoor is only a few inches above the floor, so that he doesn't fall far enough to pull the rope taut. Rick's reaction when "Rock Around the Clock" begins playing? An annoyed "Well, that's put the rent up by a third!"
- Mike opens the TV Times and loads of random fruit and other objects just fall out onto his lap. He then looks at the camera and says, "I never knew there was so much in it!"
- One of the teenagers being interviewed for Nozin' Aroun' complains about not being treated like an adult because he can't drink in pubs right after he sniffs some glue onscreen. His constant bulging eyes makes him look psychotic, adding to the hilarity. Made even better by said teenager expressing his annoyance that people think "young adults are violent, right," and lunging at the camera like he's spoiling for a fight as he does.
- Later in the episode, Vyvyan is carrying out his brilliant plan to destroy the house before the Council can demolish it for being a health hazard. This includes kicking a hole in the toilet bowl while Neil is sitting on it.Neil: Wet feet. Nice one, Vyv.
Vyvyan: [opening bathroom door] I thought you were dead!
Neil: Well, that's no reason to hassle me on the toilet!
- "Some of these bricks explode! That's good, innit?!"
- The lads are none too impressed by their new house:Vyvyan: We had a front door at the old house!
Rick: Yes, Vyvyan, but it was nailed to the ceiling in the living room!
- Vyvyan and Rick fight over the bedroom Rick has attempted to claim:Rick: (trying to close the door on Vyvyan) Vyvyan, this is my bedroom!
Vyvyan: Oh yeah!?
Rick: Yes, I was here first!
Vyvyan: (forces his way in) You got any witnesses?
Rick: Look, I don't need witnesses, just get off my property!
Rick: Get out! (pinches Vyvyan's arm; Vyvyan doesn't even flinch, and instead punches Rick to the floor. Rick responds by throwing a length of pipe at Vyvyan, but it misses and crashes through the window)
Vyvyan: (emptying out his clothes bag) Look, this must be my bedroom, all my clothes are in it!
Rick: (runs over, grabs Vyvyan's clothes, kicks out the window glass, and throws the clothes out) No they're not, Vyvyan!
(Vyvyan casually lights a match and sets the bed on fire)
Rick: ... all right then, have the bedroom!
Vyvyan: I don't want it. It's not mine.
Rick: Yes, it is!
Vyvyan: No, it isn't.
Rick: You said it was yours just now!
Vyvyan: (*Beat*) So did you!
Rick: No, I didn't!
Rick: (putting his fingers in his ears and closing his eyes) DIDN'T DIDN'T DIDN'T DIDN'T!!!
(they both get an idea, and run to the stairwell to shout over the banister)
Vyvyan, Rick: Neil! Your bedroom's on fire!
Neil: (coming out of the room across the landing) But this is my bedroom... (sees the burning bed) Oh, no.
(Rick and Vyvyan immediately fight over what was previously Neil's room)
- Mike's new room has Buddy Holly in it, trapped in the ceiling by his parachute. Mike plans to get rich off of the songs Holly's written based off his new insect diet, only for Holly's parachute to break, causing Holly to plummet to the floor. Mike, unfazed, grabs his guitar, thinking he can make a few quid off of it.
- Neil sees Mike carrying a bag to the cellar, which he thinks is full of washing, and reminds him of the house's People's Charter: "None of the guys, right, no matter what, like, not even if they've been eaten by wild dogs...note shall go to the laundrette without first collecting all the other guys' dirty gear." Mike reminds him of Clause 83: "Except for Mike."
- Rick, Vyvyan, and Neil apparently find the television more interesting when it isn't broadcasting a programme:(the only picture is a small white dot in the centre of the screen)
Rick: What is that little white dot?
Neil: It's a little white dot.
Rick: Oh, very clever.
Neil: It must be a really old telly.
Rick: What, hippie!?
Neil: Look, there's a sign in that little white dot. It means something really heavy. It means...there's no more telly. Time to go to bed. (stands up) I'm going upstairs now to finish painting my astrological star chart, all right? (heads upstairs)
Rick: (after a pause, shouts after Neil) Do you really think that anyone has ever been the slightest bit interested in anything you say or do ever, Neil?! (sigh) God, fascist. (stands up) Are you going to bed, Vyvyan?
Vyvyan: No. I'm going to watch the dot for a bit longer.
Rick: Wish we had a video. Then I could tape it and watch it in the morning.
- When Mike tells Rick he can't go into his own bedroom:Rick: Five Pounds to get into my own bedroom?! HA! What have you done, turned it into a Roller Disco?! [walks past Mike into his bedroom]
Mike: [Glances at the camera] Uncanny!
[cut to Rick's room, which is now... a roller disco]
- As he is getting changed for bed in Neil's room, into which he has been forced to move by Mike's conversion of his bedroom, Rick declares that he tossed a coin to see which of them gets the bed, and Neil lost. A confused Neil mutters, "Oh, er, okay, Rick," to which Rick responds by rounding on Neil and snarling, "You just called me a bastard, didn't you?"
- After Mike has used Vyvyan's (fictitious) discovery of oil to declare himself president of the house as an oil republic, with Vyvyan as his military, Vyvyan hits Rick and Neil with a cricket bat to bring them into line. Cue Rick shouting, "Ha! Missed both my legs!"
- Neil accidentally stabs Vyvyan in the head with a pick. Vyvyan then stands up and says in a completely calm and polite voice "That's okay, Neil. It was bound to happen sooner or later."
- This joke based off camera-shaking Time Skips:(the whole basement is wrecked)Rick: I wish they'd stop doing that.Neil: It's to show the passage of time, Rick.(Vyvyan gets up and vomits)
- This exchange when Vyvyan decides to enter a cereal box contest where you write down ten words to describe your feelings about cornflakes:Vyvyan: My entry is: Cornflakes, cornflakes, cornflakes, cornflakes, cornflakes, cornflakes, cornflakes, cornflakes, cornflakes!Rick: Pathetic! You'll never win, Vyvyan!Vyvyan: Why not?Rick: It's only nine words!Vyvyan: Oh yeah! (writing down) Cornflakes!
- The Monopoly game. Someone made an Ed, Edd n Eddy version here.[Mike rolls the dice and moves his token]
Rick: Ha ha, Mike! Landed on the Old Kent Road, that's mine! Rent, come on, pay up, now!
Mike: [counting out the money] Yeah, all right, all right, I think the Mike Exchequer can handle a debt of four pounds.
[Vyvyan rolls the dice and moves his token to a Community Chest space as Rick grabs the money from Mike]
Rick: Hey, wouldn't it be a-maz-ing if all this money was real?
Vyvyan: That is the single most predictable and boring thing that anybody could ever say whilst playing Monopoly!
Rick: Well, what about "Vyvyan"? I could say "Vyvyan", couldn't I, that'd be pretty boring!
Vyvyan: [taking Community Chest card] Ah. "You have won second prize in a beauty contest." [Rick laughs derisively and picks up the dice] "Smash Rick over the head with the bank."
[confused, Rick puts the dice down and reaches for the card as Vyvyan smashes him over the head with the bank]
Rick: Waagh! It did not say that! Michael, Vyvyan is cheating!
Vyvyan: Mike? [hands Mike the card]
Mike: No, he's right, Rick, that's exactly what it says.
Rick: In biro, Mike, in biro, over the top of the print!
Vyvyan: But we had to change the rules because Monopoly's so boring!
Rick: [picking up another card] "Congratulations, it is your birthday, you may set fire to Rick's bed!"
Vyvyan: [proudly] Good one!
Rick: [picking up another card] "Get out of jail free. You may keep this card, sell it, or stick it up Rick's bottom!" Vyvyan, you've ruined the game!
Vyvyan: I was bored!!
Mike: Yeah, well, that's nothing! Neil got so bored he's gone down the garden to kill himself! And it's his go!
- Sure enough, Neil is in the garden, digging a grave for himself. He delivers a Literal Metaphor version of the familiar proverb about what to call a spade:Neil: [to the spade] You're a spade. [to the fourth wall] I always call him that.
- Unbeknownst to the lads, there's a kingdom of marvels and wonders just below the surface of their garden, with a time traveller who has just returned with a video of the birth of Christ, The Rolling Stones cutting a new album, two hippos making love, assorted jugglers and fire eaters and other entertainers, a group of cackling Mad Scientists rushing past with a body on a gurney... but the king and queen of this kingdom (who look as though they walked out of a pack of playing cards) are burned out on interesting things and would love nothing more than to meet someone "totally and utterly mind-numbingly boring". "But I suppose I never will," sighs the king, unaware that a person matching that very description has come within seconds of falling through his ceiling.
- The Balowski of the Week (clinically insane Billy Balowski) knocks at the lads' front door, but no-one can be bothered to answer it:Mike: There's someone at the door, Rick.
Rick: Someone at the door, Vyvyan.
Vyvyan: There's someone at the door, Neil.
Neil: There's someone at the door, Mike.
Mike: I know! [more knocking, louder this time] There's someone at the door, Rick!
Rick: There's someone at the door, Vyvyan!
Vyvyan: There's someone at the door, Mike!
Neil: There's someone at the door... Neil...
Mike: Well, don't look at me, I'm in Paris.
Vyvyan: You haven't left the house all day!
Mike: Vyvyan, you ever heard of cloning?
Vyvyan: [thinks for a moment] No!
Mike: Oh, that's good! Would you swear to that?
Vyvyan: Certainly, if that's what you want! [jumps over the back of the sofa and leans across the kitchen table toward Mike] Big - jobs! [he sits down on the kitchen chair on which Rick is resting his feet]
Rick: OWWWW! [he moves his feet to the floor and glowers at Vyvyan; the knocking at the door becomes louder]
Neil: Hey! Hey, guys! Great idea, listen. Listen. Why don't we, right, decide who's gonna answer the door, right, and then- and then that person could, like, go and answer it, right, and then- [Vyvyan begins yawning] and then, find out who it is and who they want to see, right, and then, like, come back in here, [Rick begins sobbing, literally bored to tears] and tell whoever it is that there's somebody who wants to see them! Yeah?
Mike: [shaking his head in exasperation] Neil, do me a favour.
- As Neil goes to answer the door, Billy Balowski has already let himself in. Neil comes back a minute later and says "There's no one there!"
- Alexei Sayle's monologue at the end of the scene with Billy Balowski. "I ain't always been mad, ya know, I was actually driven mad by the indifference of council planners and architects..."
- The lads complaining about the boring coverage of a siege against some terrorists taking place, unaware that it's happening in their own house.
- After going to the pub to find that Madness have just finished their set:Rick: Any of you know "Summer Holiday" by Cliff Richard?
Suggs: You hum it, I'll smash your face in.
Rick: ... I'll just go and sit over there.
- The lentils scene. Neil is reluctant to move the huge pile of "teetering crockery" in front of the lentils, so he asks Vyvyan to break into the cupboards from behind by gouging out the wall with a crowbar. It takes several holes before they finally break through to the lentils, only for the box to break and spill lentils everywhere. Neil asks Vyvyan to get a bowl to catch them in, and calls him back for a moment to ask if he could hurry. Vyvyan goes into the kitchen and opens the cupboard... causing the pile of crockery to fall out and smash, just as Neil feared. He then passes a bowl through the hole in the back of the cupboard.
- Neil only succeeds in catching two or three lentils in the bowl, and suggests cornflakes as an alternative.Vyvyan: Cornflakes for breakfast? That's disgusting, Neil!
- Rick getting his anarchist credentials by not paying his TV licence.Rick: Yeah, this will shake them up at the Anarchists' Society! Occupying the refectories! So what? This is the real stuff! I'm a fugitive! A desperado! I'm going to form a new union society, right? With me as president! "People Who Don't Pay Their TV Licences Against the Nazis!" (takes out pad and pen and starts writing) This is only the beginning!
Vyvyan: (unimpressed) What are you going to do, Rick? Burn your bra?
Rick: (glares at Vyvyan) Well, someone's got to do it, Vyvyan! It's very easy to sit on your backside, isn't it?
Vyvyan: Not if you haven't got a bottom.
- And even better is his sudden ego deflation immediately afterwards.Neil: [Offscreen] Oh no, it's the TV Detector Van!
Rick: [Suddenly distraught and in utter panic] MIKE, YOU BASTARD! Why didn't you pay our licence?! I can't go to Prison! I'm too pwetty! I'll get waped!
- When the TV licence man shows up on their doorstep, Neil yells back that he has asked if they have a television, and adds "I'm gonna have to lie!"
- The attempts to get rid of the television. Dismissing Rick's plan to distract the TV licence man by saying "Look at that incredibly interesting thing!" while smuggling the television out dressed as an old lady, Mike tells Vyvyan to try throwing the television through the window - and it simply bounces off the glass. He then tells Vyvyan to eat the telly, which Vyv has always wanted to do.
Vyvyan: [shaking his head and pointing to the electric cord hanging out of his mouth] It's a toaster.
- Even better? According to the inspector, people have tried this trick before to get out of paying their licenses.
TV licence man: It's a telly, you yobbo! [grabs cord and pulls] Give it to me, I wanna nick yer!
- The TV licence man decides to lie in wait until Vyvyan passes the television. He asks where the bathroom is and is told "Upstairs, just follow your nose." Which segues neatly into the musical number, as Mike had apparently told Dexy's Midnight Runners to set up in the lads' lavatory, where they perform their cover of Van Morrison's "Jackie Wilson Said (I'm in Heaven When You Smile)".Vyvyan: It's alright, lads, I always poo before I get up.
- Neil prepares for the explosion of the bomb by reading the "incredibly helpful and informative Protect and Survive manual" and building a shelter under the kitchen table.note Rick: (finding Neil painting himself white with a paintbrush) Neil, what are you doing?
Neil: Oh, painting myself white to deflect the blast.note
Rick: That's great, isn't it? Racial discrimination, even in death? (indicates a few small paper bags on the table) What are these?
Neil: Oh, sandbags.
Mike: Neil, where's the table?Neil: Oh, good! You got the provisions. You know, John Lennon once said "A man with a handful of takeaways is either very hungry, or knows someone that's very hungry".Mike: Yeah, Mike says, "A man with a handful of takeaways has got warm grease running up both sleeves"! Now, I've been trying to sell our bomb to all the undercover agents in town. Now the CIA's interested (shows Wimpy bags) the Mafia's interested (shows pizza box), and the Chinese are falling all over themselves! (shows boxes of Chinese food, as he puts each thing on the table)Neil: No, not on the roof, man! Put it in the food zone! Anyway, it's got to be tinned if it's going to survive ten years of fallout.
- While making his shelter, composed of their kitchen table with a crudely spray-painted tablecloth and sand-filled paper bags on top, Neil sends Mike out to get food supplies for it while he tries to sell the bomb to foreign dictators. What he comes back with — an entire armful of takeaways — isn't exactly what Neil had in mind:
- Vyvyan REALLY wants that bomb to go off. After smashing a bottle against the side of it and unsuccessfully attempting to hit it with a demolition ball (from outside), he laments...Vyvyan: Why won't it go off, Mike?Vyvyan: Who can tell?Mike: I can tell! And I'm tellin' you to stop!
- Vyvyan thinks the vacuum cleaner is lacking something, so he modifies it. It's now so powerful that it rips up the floorboards, flies out the window and sucks up one of Neil's hippie friends in the process. Luckily, the bag fills quickly, so the damage it does is limited.Mike: Vyvyan, that thing is the domestic equivalent of a black hole. You are not to use it.
Vyvyan: But Michael....
Mike: You are not to use it.
Vyvyan: (*Beat*) Poof.
- "The BBC would like to warn all small children that pushing people inside old fridges is a bloody stupid thing to do".
- The Fundamentalist Christian door knocker (Dawn French) being flattened by a giant falling sandwich, then Neil and Rick's reaction to the sandwich.
- "Ah! The beast!"Rick: That's just typical! Five minutes to go before the most important party of my life, and half the house is destroyed by a giant sandwich!
- Rick reveals his total ignorance of anything to do with women when he finds a tampon in one of the party guests' purses... and believes "it's a telescope! A telescope with a mouse in it!"
- Vyv drinking his latest concoction which makes him go bald and his very... questionable looking press ups.
- Vyvyan yelling at one of his punk friends to give him a scalpel, who responds by stabbing it into Vyvyan's hand.
- The ending where Neil's dream about being beaten at the party and him waking up in his room is subverted when that turns out to be a dream and Vyv's friends kick him in the head.
- Vyvyan's secret potion, stored in a can of Coca-Cola.Vyvyan: It's basically a cure...for not bein' an axe-wieldin' homicidal maniac! The potential market's enormous!
Neil: (takes can out of fridge) What, is this it?
Vyvyan: Yeah! Yeah, I put it in a Coke can so nobody'd drink it by mistake.
Neil: (sets can on top of fridge) You know, I just bet a bit later on somebody does drink that and turns into an axe-wielding homicidal maniac.
Rick: Yes, I bet that as well. That's just the sort of crazy, imaginative thing that happens around here, isn't it? (no response) ISN'T IT!? (still no response; Rick sulks)
- The two incompetent spies (also played by Rik Mayall and Adrian Edmondson) who believe the lads are aliens and are staking them out from over the road.Ade: This may sound like a stupid question: Lip, nip, nip, nip, bip?
Rik: Yes, it does.
Ade: (nodding) I thought so.
- With nothing to do because of the rain, the lads resort to playing hide-and-seek. Vyvyan climbs into the wardrobe... and somehow ends up in Narnia.
- Sure enough, as Neil predicted, Jerzi Balowski ends up drinking Vyv's potion and turning into an axe-wielding homicidal maniac, of course. And while pursuing the lads in his homicidal rage, he also manages to end up in Narnia.Jerzi: Ah! Coca-Cola! Symbol of free West! [begins drinking it]
- The radio interview between a blind DJ and a punk musician who has amputated her arms to improve her image ends prematurely as the floodwaters begin pouring out of the A/C vent. Cut to the lads' house, and water is pouring out of the speaker on their radio as Rick turns it off.
- Vyvyan, after getting violently attacked by SPG, promptly hits him with a hammer and throws him outside. A shark then tries to eat SPG, who distracts it by asking for his autograph.Shark: Hello, are you lunch?
SPG: Is that you, Jaws? I think you're great! I've seen all your films! Can I have your autograph?
Shark: (theatrical sigh) It's a bore, I know, but, you know, I'd miss it if they didn't ask.
- As the water rises higher and higher, Neil considers a possible worst-case scenario:Neil: Hey, wouldn't it be terrible if we ended up having to eat each other? Like those sailors did in that film, erm... We Ended Up Having To Eat Each Other.
- The lads, getting ever hungrier, decide to draw straws to see who is the first to be eaten. Neil draws the short straw... or so he assumes, as the others don't show him theirs. Mike and Rick hold Neil down on his bed as Vyvyan fires up a hedge-trimmer...Mike: (frantic) Hold it! Hold it! HOLD IT! (Vyvyan turns off the hedge-trimmer) Hold it like that. (motions with his hands) Then you get a nice clean cut, and there's no mess. (Vyvyan shifts his hands and fires up the trimmer again)
Neil: (sitting up) Vyvyan! Vyvyan, could I have an anaesthetic?
Vyvyan: 'Course you can! (grabs a hammer and hits Neil over the head; he only passes out for a second)
Neil: Oh no, wait, wait, wait, wait! Er... er, look, er, Mike, er, is there time for a last cigarette?
Mike: I don't see why not, yeah. (takes a cigarette from behind his ear and puts it in his own mouth; Rick lights it, and then Mike takes a drag from the cigarette, throws it to the floor, and steps on it) All right.
- Jerzi Balowski starts breaking into the room, and Neil suggests that they could, maybe, consider eating him instead.
- When the axe-wielding Jerzi catches up with them, Rick panics:Rick: Don't come in here, Mr. Balowski! We're all holograms!
- Neil doesn't agree with Rick's suggestion for keeping Jerzi out of the bedroom:Jerzi: Let me in, boys! Jerzi wants to finger your entrails!
Rick: I know! Let's put Neil's speaker in front of the door!
Speaker: I don't want to go in front of the door.
Neil: (standing in front of the speaker) Oh, not that speaker, Jimi Hendrix once pissed on that!
- Rick's "Hands up who likes me" bet, immediately followed by his hilariously botched attempt to commit suicide.Neil: Vyv, is it, like, actually possible to kill yourself with laxative pills?
Vyvyan: I dunno, Neil. But I'm gonna stay and find out.
- Neil breaks the news that one of Vyvyan's socks has escaped. We then close up on a matchbox, complete with dramatic music. Then the matchbox says:Don't look at me. I'm irrelevant.
- The character-swap scene. Just switching their clothes (especially with the shortest actor, Christopher Ryan, taking the role of Neil, usually played by the tallest actor, Nigel Planer) would have been funny in itself, but the fact that they deliberately play their new characters piss-poorly takes the gag up to hilarious. The scene also doubles as a Casting Gag.Rik!Vyv: Wow, morning! Completely brilliant! Lets go to the laundrette.
Nigel!Rick: Oh! Oh, so it's completely brilliant! And now we've all got to go to the laundrette just because Vyvyan says so! It's like we're living in Nazi Germany. Neil, I hate you.
Chris!Neil: Oh, wow, dont bring me down and hassle me, Rick. I'm really confused. (to camera) Im just not feeling myself today.
Nigel!Rick: Mike, you could do a really good joke, couldnt you, about feeling yourself?
Rik!Vyv: (grabs Nigel!Rick by the collar) Shut up or I'll kill you!
Ade!Mike: Okay, guys, come on. As the one guy said to the other guy when he was getting fed up, I'm getting fed up. I want to wash my smalls, and I dont mean dip my tiddlies in a glass of water. Let's go.
Rik!Vyv: Right! (points to Nigel!Rick's hat) And take that stuuuuuuuuupid girly bonnet off!
(Nigel!Rick takes off his hat; his long hippie hair tumbles down)
- Vyvyan using a blend of "psychology and extreme violence" by tricking the washing machine into accepting the boy's dirty clothes by pretending they have "all of Felicity Kendal's underwear!"
- The boys scrambling for the train in a parody of the opening sequence of A Hard Day's Night, especially Vyvyan stuffing an entire doughnut into his mouth and flicking the Vs at the woman behind the counter (who promptly starts Corpsing), and Rick trying to steal a newspaper, only to run back to pay for it when the camera catches him doing it. The whole sequence doubles as an awesome moment due to being soundtracked by Motörhead's immortal "Ace of Spades".
- Rick and Neil's argument on the train:Neil: (sulkily) Alright, Rick, but verbatim regurgitation is against my principles.
Rick: I'm asking you to read it, not throw up on it!
Neil: But you told me not to tell you the answer!
Rick: Yes, well, I only meant for a minute!
Neil: A minute from then or a minute from now?
Rick: Just shut up and tell me the answer!
Neil: Shut up and tell you the answer?
- "Crop-rotation in the 14th Century was considerably more widespread after...John." "...Lloyd invented the patent crop-rotator." Rick's previous attempt to complete this sentence from memory was "after... 1172". Which isn't even in the 14th Century.
- Vyv accidentally beheading himself after wondering aloud why there is a sign on the train warning passengers not to stick their heads out of the window, then chasing his head down the train tracks, accidentally kicking it all the way.
- The University Challenge sequence, perhaps the best-remembered scene in the series, sees the lads representing Scumbag College against a team from Footlights College, Oxbridge consisting of four Upper Class Twits (played by Ben Elton and three soon-to-be-famous alums of Cambridge Footlights: Stephen Fry, Hugh Laurie, and Emma Thompson). The laughs start with Vyv writing a P on Rick's nameplate and Bambi (Griff Rhys-Jones) actually calling him Prick.
- Bambi gets the quiz under way:Bambi: So your starter for ten, no conferring. Born in 1311 of Manchurian stock, he came to- [buzz]
Announcer: Scumbag, Neil!
Neil: Er... can I go to the toilet, please?
- To help Neil deal with his Potty Emergency, Mike dumps the Scumbag team's water jug over Lord Snot's head - then drops it on him.
- Miss Money-Sterling (Emma Thompson) answers a question asking about a chemical formula:Miss Money-Sterling: I've got a Porsche! (giggle)
Bambi: Yes, well, that's not exactly what I've got written on the card, but I knew your father, so Footlights leads by 25 points.
Miss Money-Sterling: Daddy sends hugs! (giggle)
- A frustrated Vyvyan kills the Footlights College, Oxbridge team with a German Stick Grenade. Miss Money-Sterling is Killed Mid-Sentence as this happens, continuing her conversation about her Porsche.Miss Money-Sterling: It's not an automatic.
- The fact that, when you total the points, they won University Challenge ... but only because Rick replaced Bambi's question-cards with Call Backs to a previous joke, then confessed to doing so on live television.
- The very start of the episode, where Neil puts some plates out on the table, having taken them out of the cupboard. He goes to get some cutlery, and when he turns round, the plates are gone. When he turns back around, the entire cupboard is gone!
- A little later, Neil tries to nail the plates to the tabletop to prevent them from vanishing, but succeeds only in breaking them. Mike later succeeds in driving nails through a couple of plates and into the table without breaking them ... but also into his own legs under the table.
- Neil explaining why he thinks there is a "Poltergoost", as well as inviting Rick and Vyvyan to "squat down" (since they burnt all their chairs) to tell them the scary story.
- The truly hilarious parody of the old 'Think Bike' PIFs.(the guy in the PIF has put a cream-filled meringue, an overripe tomato, and a plastic bag of mashed bananas and jam on a table to represent three people on a pavement, and produces a cricket bat with a breeze block nailed to it as "your car")
Guy on PIF: Now what happens when your car mounts the pavement? (proceeds to completely destroy everything on the table with the bat) Think once! Think twice! Think don't drive your car on the pavement!
- Neil's letter (written by committee) to his bank manager. Vyvyan explains that "dear" sounds too much like "Will you go to bed with me?", and "love" means "Come get it like a bitch funky sex machine!" With further input from Mike and Rick, the letter manages to be both straight to the point and completely roundabout at the same time. Just to cap off the joke, they then toss the letter into the fire because they need the fuel, which amusingly is a better use than actually mailing it.Neil: "Darlingnote Fascist bully boy:note Give me some more money,note you bastard.note May the seed of your loin be fruitful in the belly of your woman,note Neil."
- "Codpiece face!" "What did you say??" "I said codpiece face!"
- Rick's argument with Neil as the ghosts walk by-Ghost: There's no need to get aggressive.
Rick: [Hysterically screaming in Neil's face] I AM NOT! GETTING! AGGRESSIIIIIIIIIVE!
Neil: [Unflinching] You are, Rick. I can sense it.
Rick: I! AM! NOT! I just don't see why it has to be me who gets a job!
Neil: Well, it can't be me — I lead an alternative lifestyle.
Rick: ALTERNATIVE LIFESTYLE?! HA! You're about as "alternative" as Channel Four!
- Mike ending the above argument by suddenly firing a gun at the roof.
- Following on from the argument over which of them needs to get a job to solve their cashflow problem, the lads consult the "Situations vacant" pages in the newspaper... which are all blank except for a single Armed Forces recruitment advert (misspellings theirs):Join the Profeshionels. It's graet! You can have a gun if you want! And there's money in it (not the gun)
- After Rick claims to have a perforated ear drum, Mike claims to have flat feet, and Vyvyan claims to be pregnant, Neil is nominated to join the Army. He is dressed in one of Mike's suits (which is several sizes too small) and has his hair cut (on one side only - made additionally funny because it's exactly the haircut that Phil Oakey from The Human League sported at the time), then he is literally thrown into the recruitment office... and immediately thrown out again.Neil: I only said I was a pacifist!note
- Fortunately, a police recruitment office is just over the road; this time, Neil passes the interview (conducted by Alexei Sayle as "Mussolini")... as the only requirement is being able to make a "Kkh!" sound over the police radio.
- Neil is sent on his way as a policeman:Mussolini: As you go out, watch out for the Special Branch.
(Neil exits the station and hits his head on a tree branch; he looks back at it)
Neil: I don't see what's so special about that.
Tree Branch: I've got a degree in computer science. That's what!
Neil: (impressed) Oh. Yeah, that is quite special.
- His first assignment is to bust a wild party held by some of his fellow hippies. He starts by knocking at the door and shouting "Open up, it's the pigs!" The other hippies assume he has come as a guest and shrug off his claim that he has come to arrest them, until one of them discovers Neil's police radio:Warlock: [into radio] Hello Earth, can you read me? This is Starship Captain Warlock from the planet Freakout, broadcasting to you on the interlectrogalactic airwaves! Can you read me, Earth?
Policeman: [over radio] We receive you! Do you require assistance?
Warlock: [amazed] Far out, man! Er, yeah, we require ten assistants! Preferably Swedish!
[screeching tyres, followed by a horde of policemen smashing the door down and attacking the partygoers with truncheons]
Warlock: [eating his stash] Oh no! I knew I should have stuck to rum punch!
- After a massive lorry full of cash and luxury goods crashes into the house, the lads live like kings for a while, but, in typical Nouveau Riche style, they have no clue how to behave properly, as we are treated to Vyvyan eating ketchup with caviar and Rick trying to smoke several cigars at once.
- The lads are not the most reverent of pallbearers in the opening funeral scene:(each of the lads is holding up a corner of the coffin except Mike, who is pretending to hold up a corner but is actually holding his hand about twelve inches below the coffin)
Vyvyan: I still don't see why we have to dig the grave, carry the coffin, and... everything else.
Neil: Well, we are sort of responsible for his being in this position in the first place.
Rick: You should have heard me at the undertakers, Mike! (snorts) I made all these fabulous jokes about the undertaker coming 'round to measure my stiffy! (snorts)note
Neil: I thought maybe we should have some, like, floral tribute, but all I could find was this carrot. (holds up a carrot) So I borrowed Rick's biro-
Rick: You rented it, Neil, you rented it! And you still haven't paid!
Neil: ...yeah, and I wrote on it, "Sorry about everything being a bit of a bummer, you know, what with you dying and everything, but still, things could have been worse. You could have been me and ended up having a really bad time all of the time. Signed, Neil."
Mike: That's very touching, Neil.
Vyvyan: When my hamster finds out you've nicked his carrot, he's gonna kill you, Neil.
Neil: Was it SPG's? I didn't know he ate carrots.
Vyvyan: He doesn't eat carrots, Neil! He sticks them down his underpants to impress the girls! (to himself) Eat them...
- One of the funnier bits of wordplay in the series:(the lads are standing by the grave they have dug for their as yet unnamed dead companion; Neil is holding a spade as a woman walks up pushing a wheelbarrow containing her dead husband's body)
Woman: Excuse me... do you dig graves?
Neil: Er... yeah, they're all right, yeah.
Woman: (smiling) I'm so glad! I think they're wonderful! (walks off pushing her wheelbarrow)
- When the drunken vicar (played by Monty Python's Terry Jones) turns up, we get this gem:Vicar: Ashes to ashes-
Rick: [singing] Funk to funky, we know Major Tom's a junkie...
Vicar: [grabs Rick by the lapels of his blazer and head butts him, knocking him into the open grave] Shut up!
Rick: Help! I've fallen into a grave!
Vyvyan: Brilliant! Let's fill it in!
Neil: No, we can't just bury Rick alive.
Vyvyan: That's absolutely correct, Neil. [*Beat*] We better kill him first!
- During the flashback:Rick: Neil, the bathroom's free, unlike the country under the Thatcherite junta!
- Vyvyan setting up a sawblade to slice Rick's bed in half, which Rick somehow didn't anticipate despite being certain Vyvyan has rigged his room somehow.
- The first appearance of the "Have we got a video?" Running Gag:(the sound of thumping comes from upstairs as Rick nails boards over what he thinks is Vyvyan's bedroom)
Mike: What's that thumping?
Vyvyan: That's probably Rick doing a bit of reading. (gets bottle out of fridge) Maybe a bit of oil will do the trick?
Mike: What, for the video or Rick's bedspread?
SPG: (perched on top of the fridge) Oh! Have we got a video?
Vyvyan: (impatiently) Yes, we've got a video!
- Rick's discovery of the video is preceded by a misunderstanding between himself and Vyvyan:Rick: VYVYAN! YOU UTTER BASTARD! WHY AREN'T YOU IN YOUR BED!?
Vyvyan: 'Cos I'm not going to bed tonight!
Rick: What do you mean you're not going to bed tonight!? How dare you not go to bed tonight! I go to all this trouble of boarding you up in your bedroom, and you don't even have the common decency to be in there!
Vyvyan: Don't worry, Rick, it wouldn't have worked anyway!
Rick: (sarcastically) And why not, pray?
Vyvyan: I swapped rooms with Neil!
Vyvyan: Well, I had to! I was sick all over my bed.
Rick: You listen here, young man. You're going straight up to Neil's room, you're gonna pull the planks off the door, go into your bedroom, and nail yourself in! And... (anger gives way to confusion) What do you mean you're not going to bed tonight?
Vyvyan: Michael and I are going to indulge in an all-night orgy of sex and violence!
Rick: (disgusted) What, in the drawing room??
Vyvyan: Yeah! First we're gonna have Sex with the Headless Corpse of the Virgin Astronaut.
Rick: ... won't the carpet get awfully sticky?
Vyvyan: (rolls eyes) It's a video nasty!
Rick: It's a carpet, farty!
Mike: The only trouble is, we can't get the bastard to work!
Rick: Well, I'm not surprised, if he's dead!
Mike: Not the astronaut, the video!
Rick: (excited) Oh! Have we got a video?
Vyvyan: (rolls his eyes) YES - WE'VE - GOT - A - VID-E-O!
- Neil has just had a bath and is covering his crotch area with a flower pot. When Rick annoys Neil and Vyv eggs Neil on to the point where Neil is about to attack Rick, he holds a frying pan and lifts it up with both of his hands. Then Rick questions how the flowerpot is staying up.
- The front door exploding, and Vyv's denial of responsibility.Vyvyan: Why won't this sodding video work!? (hits it with hammer)
Rick: Hey! I've just had a revolutionary idea!
Rick: Let's rouse a People's Army and seize control of the State!
(suddenly, the front door explodes noisily)
Rick: (as though this is more of an inconvenience than a shock) Oh, no! The front door's exploded! Vyvyan!
Vyvyan: (angrily) "Vyvyan, Vyvyan, Vyvyan!" Honestly! Whenever anything explodes in this house, it's always "Blame Vyvyan"!
Mike: Well, who d'you suggest we blame!?
Vyvyan: No! Blame whoever rang the doorbell, 'cos they obviously triggered off the bomb I set up!
Mike: ... what bomb?!
Vyvyan: Well, I was worried that we wouldn't be able to hear the front doorbell, so I thought I'd pep it up a bit!
Rick: Well, I call it totally irresponsible! Fancy coming 'round and ringing the doorbell at this time of night!
- The cutaway scene to an 18th-century convict ship.Captain: Aged, toothless, and bent old crone!
Crone: 'Ow'd yer know me name?
Captain: We wish to engage you as ship's cook and concubine.
Crone: Oh yeah? What's a concubine then?
Captain: It's a small, spiky mammal.
Crone: [shakes head] No, that's a hedgehog.
Captain: Oh. Well in that case, we wish to engage you as ship's cook and hedgehog.
- The Running Gag reaches its peak when Neil shows up wearing a dress he found in Rick's room, complete with Rick's name sewn into it, and Neil and Vyvyan decide to call the police.Mike: Guys, guys, I hate to say anything negative, but no. If the police come 'round, they'll grab hold of our nasties!
Neil: Ooh! (covers his crotch)
Mike: The videos!
Neil: Oh! Have we got a video?
Vyvyan: (to camera) If anyone else asks that question, I'm going to stick their head through the window.
Neil: Vyv? Have we got a video?
Vyvyan: Right. Come this way, Neil! (he walks across the kitchen, rips the window out of the wall, and carries it over to Neil) Sideways on! (Neil obliges, and Vyvyan smashes the window over his head)
Neil: I still don't understand, does that mean we've got one or not?
- When Alexei Sayle breaks character in this episode, he insists that, contrary to the accusations of his fellow Communists, he remains true to the Party's principles... until...Alexei: I'd just like to take this opportunity, on national television, to assure you all, comrades, that honest to God, I have NOT sold out! Anyway, round about now, I usually have a Pot Noodle! [produces a tub of said snack]
- Mike, upon learning they have a vampire trapped in the bathroom, comments, "This is actually very serious!" Mike, Rick and Neil all stare right at the camera...then Vyvyan photobombs the shot making a goofy face.
- Rick deduces that, as the most attractive, he will be the vampire's first target, and tries to dissuade it:Rick: Mr. Vampire! Don't bite me, I'm horrid, I'm covered in acne! Eat Neil, he's strawberry flavoured!
- The boys trapping the vampire in the sofa, leading Mike to quip, "Thank goodness for Habitat sofa coffins!"
- As the flashback ends, the Running Gag finds time for one final appearance:Vyvyan: (ruefully) We never did get to watch the video.
Gravedigger: Have you got a video?
Vyvyan: (sick to death of the question) YES... WE'VE GOT A VID-E-O!
Gravedigger: (offended) I only asked!
- Rick's Double Take at seeing Helen (Jennifer Saunders) in his bed.
- While the lads are talking, the Easter Bunny (Dawn French) merrily hops in and gives out Easter Eggs...only to be told that it's June 12th. She then leaves embarrassed. Then the lads carry on as if nothing happened.
- When Helen finally wakes up and comes down to the kitchen, Rick points at her and makes suggestive motions behind her back. When she turns around and sees him, he tries to cover by pretending to dance, saying, "Get down and groove! We dance all day in this house!" He quickly switches on the radio... which is playing a Gregorian chant.Rick: Hey Vyv, you dancing?
Vyvyan: You asking?
Rick: Im asking!
Vyvyan: Well piss off.
- The first radio broadcast that there is an escaped murderess comes from the radio station broadcasting the Gregorian chant, Captain Blood Radio (in the middle of the "Dull Religious Music Programme"). We cut away to the DJ, Billy Blood, a cyclops with a patch over his eye broadcasting from a ship on the high seas:Blood: Yo ho ho, my arse. That it should come to this! (drinks from a shotglass; there is a knock at the door) Enter! (the Afro-Caribbean bo'sun enters) Ah, Fletcher!
Smythe: Er, no, sir. Smythe, the bo'sun, sir.
Blood: Ah, you're right. Can't see a thing with this damn patch on. (lifts it to reveal his single eye) Ah, you're a strapping young lad. Why don't you come and sit on your Uncle Billy's knee?
Smythe: (removing his hat) Aye aye, sir.
Blood: (angrily) "Eye, eye, sir"!? What the devil d'you mean by that? Was that some kind of joke to my ocular capacity?
Smythe: No, Captain!...
Blood: (marches to door) Well, I'll show you what we do with insubordination on my ship! (calls into corridor) Bo'sun!
Smythe: (pretending to have just entered) Yes, sir!
Blood: Ah, there you are. Take this man out and flog him!
Smythe: Very good, Captain. (replaces his hat and goes into the corridor, closing the door behind him; we hear him cracking a whip and pretending to yelp in pain for a moment, then he returns)
Smythe: I flogged him, sir.
Blood: How much did you get? (chuckles)
Smythe: (also chuckling) He'll rue the day he came to sea, sir!
Blood: (suddenly angry) "See"!? See what? Eh? Was he blind?
Smythe: No, Captain, I meant to say-
Parrot: He don't see nothin', you fat old cyclops!
Blood: Who said that?!
Smythe: That wasn't me, that was your parrot!
Blood: Parrot!? I don't have a parrot, why, I hate the creatures! Horrible, small, flying things, hopping around, breeding and eating carrots! (chases Smythe around the room, dragging the parrot along at the end of a rope and swinging it at Smythe) Next you'll be telling me I've got a talking dog! (suddenly, the ship shakes violently) Ahh! We've been scuppered!
(cut to Neil shaking the radio)
Neil: No, it's definitely knackered. I can hear something rattling around inside.
Helen: Oh dear, I am sorry. I don't know how I managed to spill tea on it from this distance.
Neil: Yeah! It was weird! You just seemed to, like, pick up the cup and violently throw it at the radio!
Helen: I am sorry, I really must apologise.
Mike: Oh, don't worry, Neil does it all the time.
Helen: Throws cups?
Mike: No, he apologises.
- The BBC World Service announcer tries to warn the lads that Helen is a murderess, but as Neil has been knocked unconscious (by Helen, of course), Rick and Vyvyan are busy fighting over whether or not Rick is still a virgin, and Mike is trying to seduce Helen (who is trying to kill him), no-one is paying attention...Announcer: You stupid bastards, I've been trying to tell you for the last ten minutes, that girl with her hands over Mike's ears is a dangerous murderer!
[Helen covers Mike's ears, leads him over to the sofa, and begins smothering him with a cushion]
Mike: That's it, baby! Treat me rough!
Announcer: No, no, a murderer! [Vyvyan picks up the radio and throws it at Rick] That's better. Now will you listen- [Rick picks up the radio] No no, you idiot, I'm your last hope- [Rick throws the radio at Vyvyan; he misses, and the radio crashes through the window]
Vyvyan: [giving Rick the two-fingered salute] Missed me, virgin!
- Eventually, the fight between Rick and Vyvyan escalates to dangerous levels...Rick: Vyv! Where did you get that Howitzer?!
Vyvyan: Found it!
Rick: Well, you can just about bloomin' well put it back this instant, young man!
Vyvyan: I will, I will, just as soon as I've blown you to pieces! [fires a round as Rick dives for cover]
Rick: No, Vyvyan! No! You were wight and I was wrong! I am a virgin!
Vyvyan: Not for long, matey! [fires another round; Rick dives for cover again]
- Meanwhile, the reason the episode is called "Time" has finally become clear as Neil is carted off to a mediaeval peasant village... and happens to point at the huts just as the shells from Vyv's Howitzer land on them, convincing the peasants he is an evil sorcerer.Neil: Barricade the door! Lock the windows! Pretend to be invisible! I've just committed, erm, a bit of a faux pas.
Mike: Neil, have you upset the neighbours?
Neil: No Mike, I've blown them up!
Rick: Phew! And who said Sunday was a day of rest?
Vyvyan: God did!
Rick: That's right! I knew it was some old Tory!
- When the lads realise that, now that they've gone back to the Middle ages, there is no television, they decide there's only one thing to do: panic. A sped-up version of the closing credits theme plays (the series subverts our expectations that the film would be sped up to match by instead continuing at normal speed) as Mike, Rick, and Vyvyan put a noose around Neil's neck, throw it over a ceiling beam, and stand him on a chair before sitting down to watch television.Neil: (sulkily) When you said "panic", I didn't think you meant "hang me".
Vyvyan: Rick, get the telly.
Rick: Right. (turns on telly to Jester Balowski presenting Did Ye See?, a parody version of TV discussion series Did You See...?)
Vyvyan: You're very lucky, Neil. (kicks chair away; as the other end of the noose is not tied to anything, Neil simply falls to the floor)
- Eventually, the peasants surround the house:[an arrow parts Rick's hair down the centre as it hits the telly]
Rick: Oh no! The whole house has been surrounded by angry mediaeval peasants!
Mike: They think we're witches and they're gonna burn us!
Vyvyan: We're completely trapped! The outlook is bleak!
Neil: Oh, what are we gonna do, what are we gonna do??
Vyvyan: ... [rolls eyes] Oh, who cares.
[they sit down and start playing cards, ignoring the peasants as they charge through the door and begin rummaging through the lads' belongings]
- Vyvyan lighting a Molotov cocktail (having ripped off the sleeve of his pyjamas and stuffed into a bottle to make it), commenting, "It's funny, but being ill makes me lose my usual tolerant and easy-going approach to communal living!" before lobbing it into Rick's bedroom. Made funnier by how he later regrets throwing the Molotov...because it was a waste of almost an entire bottle of vodka.
- Mike comes into Neil's bedroom where the others have gathered holding a fish. He asks "What's this?" to which Vyvyan replies "A fish, Mike!" He leaves, satisfied. He then comes back soon after and finishes the question "What's this fish doing in my bed?" Vyvyan replies, "It's not in your bed, Mike." He then leaves and comes back without the fish. "What's this fish doing in my bed?" The others reply, in unison "WHAT FISH?"
- Yet another moment of Literal Mindedness from Neil:Neil's Mother: Neil, did you make your bed?
Neil: No, no, I bought it!
- Vyvyan's rant against The Good Life. What makes it funnier? He begins to describe to Mike an episode he actually enjoyed before complaining that "it was gone all so BLOODY nicely!", even complaining how the policeman was nice. Cue a policeman bursting through the front door.Vyvyan: No! No! NO! We're not watching the bloody Good Life! Bloody bloody bloody! I hate it! It's so bloody nice! Felicity "Treacle" Kendal and Richard "Sugar-Flavored-Snot" Briers! What do they do now? Chocolate bloody Button ads, that's what! They're nothing but a couple of reactionary stereotypes, confirming the myth that everyone in Britain is a loveable, middle-class eccentric - and I - HATE - THEM!
Mike: That was a highly articulate outburst, Vyvyan.
- When Neil's dad defends The Good Life and says he wants to protect Felicity Kendal, Vyvyan scoffs, "It's the first time I've ever heard it called that!"Neil's Mum: Neil! Say something!
Neil: (mumbling) Shut-up-Vyvyan-that's-my-Dad-you're-talking-to.
- Rick argues with his conscience after believing himself to have accidentally killed Neil:Vyvyan: RICK! WILL YOU TELL YOUR CONSCIENCE TO KEEP HIS VOICE DOWN! I'M TRYING TO GET SOME SLEEP!
- Neil, however, was only stunned... and, having been knocked out in the lads' vegetable garden, he has been the seed for a whole crop of Neils.Neil: (as a second Neil sits up next to him) Anybody watching this must have thought that was a negative reality inversion.
(cut to a nearby bush where a couple are kissing; they look over at the garden)
Woman: Cor, that looked just like a negative reality inversion, didn't it?
Man: Yes, it did a bit.
- Rick's My God, What Have I Done? moment, expressed as only Rick can: "Oh Neil, Neil! Owange Peel! If only I could see you again!"
- After Neil's Imagine Spot in which he Hulks out after one insult too many from the other three, he returns to reality and finds his clothes really have been torn to shreds (but everything else was just his imagination). As he leaves in embarrassment, this exchange takes place:Rick: God, I hate him! He's a bore, he's a dwip, he's a sneak, and he's a bloody eavesdropper!
Neil: (sticking his head through the window) I heard that, Rick!
- Rick suggests a game to relieve boredom:Rick: What about Botticelli, where you've got to guess the identity of a famous person?
Vyvyan: What about Jelly-botty, where you have to eat eighteen curries?
- Eventually, the game deteriorates:Vyvyan: Do you make an enormous amount of money by sticking your fist up a duck's bottom?
Rick: (rolls his eyes) No, I'm not Keith Harris!note
- The cricket game, where Vyv throws the ball to Mike, who swings and hits Neil in the face, and then again when Vyv never throws the ball and just bonks Rick on the head with it. Especially since Mike asks if that counts as six, to which Vyvyan responds, "Six? It would have been six if you'd killed him, Mike!"
- Vyvyan, having won the cricket game and hence the Ashes, setting Rick's overalls (as Rick was the stumps) on fire, and Rick and Mike's very nonchalant reaction.Neil: (running in holding a sad-looking birthday cake for the second time) Surprise!
Rick: (crawling from behind the sofa on his hands and knees, overalls on fire) More of a shock, really, Neil, when somebody sets fire to you during a cricket match.
Mike: (blasts out the fire with an extinguisher) Shut up, Rick, no-one's on fire.
- And the third time when Neil comes in with his increasingly pathetic cake.Neil: It's my birthday...
Mike: Now you knew that anyway, and we don't care, so what's the surprise? ("Awww" from the audience)
- When Mike gives the boys ladies' tights to put over their heads:
- The clueless bank robbery by the lads, which ends up working as Rick inadvertently foils a real robbery and gets the money using a water pistol. The tone is set when Mike distributes the "guns" and suggests the lads don't ask questions about them:Mike: Let's just say I didn't get them at Tesco's, okay?
Neil: I didn't get them at Tesco's, okay?