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The Hammersmith Hardmen.

Richie: Why can't we ever bloody win anything?
Eddie: Oh, don't be stupid, Richie. People like us aren't meant to win things.
Richie: Well, what are we meant to do, then?
Eddie: Look, you get born, you keep your head down, and then you die — if you're lucky.
Richie: Oh, come on. There must be more to it than that.
Eddie: [Beat] Well, there's the telly.
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The Brit Com, stripped down to its absolute minimum requirements: two idiots, sharing living space, passing the Idiot Ball back and forth so fast that you can't distinguish between the two.

Richard "Richie" Richard [sic] (Rik Mayall) - a sex-starved, sadistic, physically repugnant loser with delusions of sophistication - takes out his frustrations at life upon Edward "Eddie" Elizabeth Hitler (Adrian Edmondson), his boozy, slightly more intelligent, but equally perverted and sadistic flatmate. Frequently, this involves over-the-top violence that would make Itchy and Scratchy wince. Eddie, for his part, is quite willing to respond in kind.

The Spiritual Successor to The Young Ones and Filthy Rich & Catflap, inspired loosely by Waiting for Godot. It ran for three series on BBC2 from 1991 to 1995 before transferring to Theatre as a series of two-man shows, as well as the feature film adaptation Guest House Paradiso.

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On 23rd August 2012, the BBC announced that after an eighteen-year absence from TV screens, Richie and Eddie would be returning in 2013 for a new six-part series under the Hooligans' Island title used for one of their stage shows. Alas, just two months later, it was announced that the series was not going ahead after all. The only explanation forthcoming was from Adrian Edmondson, who said "We started working on something and we realised why we stopped working together (with the BBC)."

Sadly a year later Rik Mayall died aged 56, thus putting an end to any thoughts of a revival for good and leading to a great What Might Have Been moment in British comedy.

Came forty-fifth in Britain's Best Sitcom. No relation to the donkey-headed character in Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream.


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Provides examples of:

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     A to M 
  • Abnormal Ammo: Spudgun was named for his ability to fire potatoes out of a certain part of his anatomy.
    Richie: Why do they call you Spudgun?
    Spudgun: Give me a potato and I'll show you why.
    Eddie: No-no, you don't want to see that, Rich!
    Richie: And why do they call you Hedgehog?
    Dave Hedgehog: Give me a hedgehog and I'll show you why!
  • Added Alliterative Appeal: In "Smells," Richie cooks "Friday night fry-ups."
  • Affectionate Nickname: Parodied in "Finger."
    Richie: You can have the bed, darling.
    Eddie: Why, thank you, tulip.
    Richie: Oh, and – daffodil?
    Eddie: Yes, carnation?
    Richie: Get this!
    [*crunch*]
    • A nervous Eddie calls Richie "dreamboat" when the gas man shows up in "Gas".
  • Alcohol Hic: Eddie has a few after a drink, or ten.
    Richie: Why'd it take so long? The bus station's only two streets away!
    Eddie: Yeah, well - hic - the wind was against me.
  • The Alleged Steed: "Parade" revolves around A Simple Plan to raise £500 to place a bet at long odds on a three-legged blind horse called Sad Ken, after the bookie tricks them into thinking it's a dead cert. His performance is about as good as you'd expect, and the commentator informs us that they've had to shoot him (and his jockey).
  • Amusing Injuries: Played up immensely. The main characters are thrown around and tormented with cartoon levels of injury with no major consequences except when it is required for the plot. For example in the first episode, Eddie tries to yank out one of Richie's nostril hairs with a pair of pliers, throwing him around the room before dislodging them from his nose. Richie retaliated by ripping a cabinet off the wall and smashing it over Eddie's head. He barely flinches before hitting Richie right through the door.
    • One of the most far-fetched is definitely in "Gas" where they hit the gas-man over the head repeatedly with a frying pan and punch him, then (when they think he is dead) proceed to punch him some more, inflate him with a bicycle pump ("How does he look?" "Fatter."), electrocute him with wires, stick a fork in his groin after deciding to try eating him, jump up and down on top of him to flatten him down underneath the carpet and are then about to toss him out of the window on top of a bus when he wakes up, alive and well.
    • One of the most cartoonish no-long-term-consequences moments is when Richie cuts both Eddie's legs off with a chainsaw. Eddie then sews them back on with an ordinary needle and thread, but gets them back to front. Richie then cuts them off with the chainsaw again and sews them back on the right way round himself. Apart from walking strangely for a few moments Eddie is unaffected.
  • Analogy Backfire: When Richie and Eddie are on a camping holiday, and Richie is bemoaning the difficulties they're facing:
    Richie: Honestly! Alexander the Great never had this trouble!
    Eddie: Yeah, well, he wasn't a complete dickhead, was he?
    • Also in "Contest":
    Richie: Eleven pounds eighty was all we had to survive on for the next two months! What am I going to feed the children on now?
    Eddie: We haven't got any children.
    Richie: Yes, I know, I know. I was talking metaphorically.
    Eddie: You're talking bollocks!
  • Anti-Humor: Happens in "Accident."
    Spudgun: My wife's gone to the West Indies.
    Eddie: I didn't know that.
    Spudgun: Yeah, she went on Tuesday. [Beat] It was funnier in the pub.
  • Anything That Moves: Richie is this by the last couple Bottom Live shows, having reached the end of his rope and desperate to shag anything, female or not. The seed of this character turn was planted back in the second series; specifically in "Parade."
    Richie: I'm not a homosexual, if that's what you think.
    Eddie: Yeah, but you're not strictly heterosexual, are you?
    Richie: Judas! I've never done it with a bloke!
    Eddie: Yeah, but you've never done it with a bird either.
    Richie: Well, I'm heterosexual in intent.
    Eddie: The nearest you've come to being heterosexual is barricading yourself in a bedroom with a copy of Amateur Photographer and a jar of hand cream.
    Richie: Well, I've done it mentally. Boy, have I done it mentally.
    • Eddie insinuates it more than once. In "Smells," he suggests Richie's personals ad read "Ugly virgin desperately seeks sex of any description," and in "Contest," he says that even putting a wig on a Speak Your Weight machine would do.
    • Also briefly happens to Eddie at the end of "Smells." He tries to put the moves on Richie while in a state of complete delirium, after inhaling pheromone spray on top of his typically generous alcohol consumption. Richie rejects his advances, but does accept Eddie's invitation to "plant a big one right on me kisser."
    • Also shown in "Accident", when Richie explains the rules of Sardines:
    Richie: But if they find him, they hide with him! And they snog him! [sees the uncomfortable looks of Eddie, Hedgehog and Spudgun] ...if they're a bird. Which we're not, so we probably won't. Well, why not give it a try... Ahem, no! We won't give it a try!
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: When the duo are imprisoned in The Big Number 2:
    Richie: What were the charges again?
    Eddie: Attempted asphyxiation of the population of West London, detonating 400lbs of Semtex in contravention of the Anti-Terrorist act. Attempted regicide, Arson, causing an affray and wiggling our todgers at the Queen.
  • Artistic License – Economics: In keeping with comedic tradition, the plot lines and characters on Bottom usually deal with absurdly small amounts of money, especially for The '90s, when the series is set.
    • In "Contest," Eddie gets kicked off the dole because his life savings of £11.80 is deemed enough to sustain him for "at least two months."
    • In "Gas," Richie and Eddie are caught up in a game of high-stakes poker. Eddie pushes the tension towards the breaking point, when he bets 3p in real money. Richie wipes the sweat from his cheeks as he eyes the pot.
  • Aside Glance: Frequently used: Richie occasionally blurts out something so awkward that Eddie will shoot one at the camera. Granted, this is one of their more subtle instances of Breaking the Fourth Wall, but still.
  • Ass Shove: Happens very frequently. Items include a pencil, a policeman's baton (complete with side-handle), barbed wire, a stick of dynamite and the entire contents of next-door's flat. Not to mention the entire contents of Richie's bowels (held in for two weeks) first vacuum-sucked out, then re-inserted in Weapons Grade Y-Fronts.
  • Ate the Spoon: In "Terror," Eddie whips up a "home brew" that dissolves all the cups, forcing him and his friends to use metal containers to drink it with (It is also said to have taken the enamel off of the bath tub it was mixed in).
  • Attack! Attack! Attack!: Richie tries this method during a game of chess, much to Eddie's amusement.
  • Attention Whore: Both, although Richie's far more insecure and therefore more insistent about it.
  • Audience Participation:
    • "Have a wank!"
    • "Fuck him!"
    • Made even funnier in Weapons Grade Y-Fronts, where Eddie encourages the whole audience to shout "have a wank" while Richie powers up the TURDIS (a time-travelling toilet) batteries.
  • Away in a Manger: Parodied in "Holy", when Richie finds a baby left on the doorstep of the flat during their Christmas party. True to form, following a few similarities to the Nativity story he lets this go completely to his head. Convinced that he's the "Mother of God" and has maintained his virginity because he's "better than everyone else in the world," he threatens that the other characters will be sent to Hell by his 'husband-in-law'. It turns out it's the grandson of their landlord, who left him on the step because he couldn't be bothered dealing with the kid himself.
    • Spudgun, Dave Hedgehog and Eddie are wearing paper crowns from Christmas crackers and give the baby presents with names similar to the gifts the Magi gave Jesus.
  • Bad is Good and Good is Bad: In The Big Number 2, Richie insults a fellow inmate while in prison, and the inmate becomes smitten with him, because it was the sweetest thing anyone ever said to him.
  • Batter Up!: The duo beat each other with a cricket bat on several occasions.
    • In The Big Number 2, Eddie explicitly asks a prison guard for one so he can continue hitting an unconscious Richie in the knackers.
    • In Weapons Grade Y-Fronts, Eddie freezes Richie in time moments before he drinks a violent poison and to stop him he smacks Richie in the face with a cricket bat.
    • Often averted in the series. It is used only to prop up a trapdoor in "'s Up" despite the violence that ensues, and in "Gas" Eddie wields it more than once but eventually uses a frying pan.
    Richie: Bloody... good shot!. Eddie you've just saved my life!
    Eddie: Have I? [Beat] Oh shit.
  • Bawdy Song: Richie sings this version of The Sailor's Hornpipe:
    Do your balls hang low?
    Can you swing 'em to and fro?
    Can you tie 'em in a knot?
    Can you tie 'em in a bow?
    Do you get a funny feeling when they're hanging from the ceiling?
    Oh you'll never be a sailor if your balls hang low!
    • Averted when he tries to sing a dirty rugby song in "'S Out" and can only manage Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.
  • Berserk Button: Be careful what you say about QPR in front of Eddie.
  • Big "NO!": Eddie after finding out Richie's decided not to commit suicide.
    Richie: I think I ought to call this suicide off until I've sired an heir.
    Eddie: No! NOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!! (nervous laughter)
    • Eddie in "Hole" when Richie demands his emergency bitter to put out the fire on the Ferris wheel.
  • Bilingual Bonus: When Eddie sets up their stolen VCR he reads the German installation instructions out loud. The first step he reads is "Stecken dein Kopf in deine Arsch," which roughly translates as "Stick your head up your arse".
    • The chant Richie uses to for his rain dance ( Well... Summoning bird shit!) is him saying, over and over, "Man with the Butterfly" in French!
  • Boisterous Weakling: Richie plays this pretty straight. Despite eventually convincing Spudgun and Dave Hedgehog that he's a dangerous wild card who's not to be tangled with, most other characters on Bottom are able to see Richie as the pushover he really is.
  • Bolivian Army Ending: The series habitually goes one step further — the punch is thrown, connects, freeze frame, roll credits. In the finale of the TV series, this is turned Up to Eleven by the pair being surrounded by an SAS squad in their flat who start start firing, bullets connect, blood pops, freeze frame, roll credits.
  • Born in the Wrong Century: Richie's common lament, which his cultural illiteracy fails to back up. He thinks Shakespeare and the French Revolution were in the same century - the 13th.
  • Bottle Episode: Bottom is fond of these, and the concept fits right in with the series' core premise of two insufferable losers, stuck in a dreadful, boring life, each unable to escape the other's company. "Contest" and "Culture" are strictly this, and solely feature Richie and Eddie in their flat. "Hole" also has no supporting characters and just one setting, but takes place on a Ferris wheel instead of in the flat.
    • "Break," "Carnival" and "'s Out" are technically not Bottle Episodes, but are near as makes no difference. All three take place in a single setting. One-off characters make appearances in these episodes, but they have only a few seconds of screen time each. ("Carnival" does not even list the actors in the end credits.)
    • "Accident" and "Holy" do prominently feature other characters, but both are still set entirely in the flat.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: Mostly takes the form of Eddie's Aside Glance.
    • In "Terror," Eddie makes an aside comment directly to the audience.
    Eddie: And it's only half past eight in the morning.
    • At the end of "Culture," Eddie and Richie both address the audience.
    Eddie: You know, it's funny. They say that television encourages violence. But I'm smashing his face in, and we haven't got one!
    Richie: That's where he's wrong, listeners, because in fact we do have a television. And here it is!
  • Bring Me My Brown Pants: Eddie in "Carnival" when they get a call from the police. Twice.
  • British Brevity: The show ran for 18 episodes, though there were also several recorded stage shows and a movie.
  • Brits Love Tea: A Running Gag with several disgusting variations, such as coagulated three-month-old tea, or elm tea.
    Richie: The gypsies swear by it.
    Eddie: I bet they do; I bet they say "What the bloody hell is this?"
    • Another when the gas man comes to read their meter, which is empty since they've been stealing their gas from the neighbours:
      Richie: You must! You must! You must drink our tea! It's the best tea in London! Sit down and drink it! For about twelve minutes.
    • Having returned from the annual Hammersmith riot the pair sit down with tea and slip into the mannerisms of Northern nannies, complete with biscuit guilt and complaints about shopping. Then it turns out the tea is several months old and solidified in the cups.
    • In Bottom Live, Eddie tries to kill Richie with a concoction of tea and goat poison.
  • Butt-Monkey: Both of them, but especially Richie, to cartoonishly extreme levels. At various times, Richie has managed to inadvertently drink urine, break both his legs during the same episode (to the point that both are bent the wrong way at about 90º), fall down the stairs and end up with his head jammed in their disgusting toilet, drink tea with pig semen in it, inhale a dart and get it stuck in the back of his head, hand and bottom, get a tent pole stuck in his eye socket, suffer the most extreme and prolonged projectile vomiting ever seen on stage.
  • Calvinball: Eddie's version is the card game 'One Card Slam' in which Eddie turns over a single card and demands twelve quid from Richie. Since Richie knows nothing about card games (to the extent of not spotting Eddie's five king poker hand) this works very well for Eddie.
    • Richie's game 'Birthday Charades'. The only thing revealed about this game is that it requires the women present to undress.
  • Cannot Talk to Women: Richie, who always gives it a try anyway. Eddie is little better most of the time.
    Richie: [increasingly nervous] I say, what a lovely blouse. That's very special, isn't it? Do you often wear blouses? Or sometimes do you wear a jumper? I suppose it depends on the weather, really, doesn't it? I—I sometimes wear a jumper. There again, sometimes I wear a cardie. [Beat] Tell me — do you like to take people's underpants off with your teeth?
  • Can't Hold His Liquor: Richie needs only one sip of scotch to either become drunk or begin thinking that he's drunk (which amounts to the same thing).
    • In 2001: An Arse Oddity, he doesn't even take a sip, but still believes he is drunk.
    • One's tempted to conclude that it's all in his head. On one occasion, when he needed a stiff drink to settle his nerves, Eddie offered him a shot of Tizer (a soft drink, for non-Brits), which did the trick anyway.
    • In another episode, Richie tries to take a swig from an empty bottle Eddie already filled himself with and suddenly believes he's fallen into a drunken stupor, though it doesn't last.
  • The Casanova: Subverted by Eddie in "Smells."
    Eddie: Let me at 'em — I'm a sex typhoon!
  • Casanova Wannabe: Both characters. The only difference is that at least Eddie gets some tail once in a while. It was confirmed in "'s Up" that Eddie has had sex, and with someone Richie was trying to propose to.
  • Chainsaw Good: Richie reacts poorly to Eddie's reassurance that "all the birds love a scar," and cuts him down to size (literally) by chainsawing his legs off at the knee.
  • Characterization Marches On: Richie's penis size, and his resulting insecurity, are given scant mention in the TV show. The stage shows formally measured it at a ¼ inch and applied the relevant jokes.
  • The Charmer: Subverted by Eddie in "Smells."
    Eddie: Have me. Have me! I'm a love albatross!
  • Chess with Death: Parodied when Eddie — as part of a ploy to trick Richie into letting him back into the flat after being kicked out — plays on Richie's recent fortune-teller inspired paranoia about dying by dressing up as Death. Richie challenges him to the standard game of chess, which hits a snag when 'Death' admits he doesn't know the rules. Richie then suggests Cluedo, which hits a snag when 'Death' reveals that he knows perfectly well that Richie always cheats by looking at the mystery cards. They settle on I-Spy, which hits yet another snag when 'Death' betrays an inability to spell.
  • Christmas Episode: "Holy." Bizarrely though, this was actually originally broadcast in October.
  • City Shout Outs: Subverted. In one of the Live stage shows, taped in Southampton, Eddie claims to have been born in Southampton. "Why did you ever leave?" cries Richie. "I found the railway station," replies Eddie. Later on during an ad-lib storm, Richie drops out of character to say something along the lines of, "Let's hurry up and get back to the script or we'll never get out of South-fucking-ampton!"
    • In a later show being performed in Nottingham, the duo suddenly realise that they are on stage at the mercy of a feral Nottingham audience. Richie assures Eddie that he 'speaks the lingo' of the audience and will soon have them eating out of his hand... And then launches into a series of barely unintelligible grunts and every other syllable is 'fuck'.
  • Clap Your Hands If You Believe: In "Hole," Richie and Eddie are saved from a Ferris Wheel by the hand of God. When they remember that they don't believe in God, the hand vanishes and they fall to their doom.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: All of the recurring cast to some degree, though Dave Hedgehog seems to be a nose in front of the rest.
    • Subverted with Dick Head, the proprietor of the Lamb & Flag, who appears to be normal at first but eventually turns out to be as bonkers as everyone else. Revealed in "Dough," when Richie and Eddie walk into his completely empty pub.
    Dick: Come on, I'm very busy!
    Eddie: [Beat] No, you're not.
    Dick: I know, but I've been on a publican's refresher course in customer relations. So, come on, hurry up and order, you bunch of time-wasting parasites, or I'll set the dogs on ya!
  • Comedic Sociopathy: Probably the single best example since The Young Ones.
  • Comically Missing the Point:
    • "'s Up" has Richie and Eddie's landlord rope them into to minding his shop while he goes to a funeral, which naturally goes straight to Richie's head. He starts proudly going on about how England is "a nation of shopkeepers" and how that makes them better than countries like France and Italy, no doubt unaware that the saying was prominently used by Emperor Napoleon I. And he meant it derisively. While the phrase has been taken as Insult Backfire by Britons smarter than Richie since then, the original meaning is referred to when Eddie skeptically demands to know exactly what's so great about being a nation of shopkeepers in the first place:
    Richie: It's what makes us better than everyone else! Because we know how to run a corner shop.
    • It's fair to say that whenever Richie claims expertise in a subject, applies his mental faculties to anything or infers some kind of noble role he has fulfilled in the past, he'll either get it completely wrong, fail miserably or be lying so feebly that practically nobody could buy his bullshit.
    • This quote:
    (doorbell rings insistently)
    Richie: All right, all right! Take it easy, you bitch! I mean, Your Bitchness, I mean Lady Bi- (groans in frustration) Eddie, what do you call them?
    Eddie: Jugs. What do you call 'em?
    • Eddie and Richie talk about church in "'s Up":
    Eddie: When did you last go to church?
    Richie: Well I don't have to go, I'm Church of England. What are you, Eddie?
    Eddie: I don't know.
    Richie: Well, what was your mother?
    Eddie: A wrestler.
    Richie: Well, maybe that's enough general knowledge for one day.
    • Another quote from "'s Up":
    Richie: (to his landlord) Oh, great. Come in, sit down. Eddie, a cup of tea!
    Eddie: Oh, yes please.
    Eddie: [A]t least we got the duck.
    (Holds up a rubber duck)
    Richie: The duck?
    Eddie: Yeah, it's made out of plastic!
    Richie: Eddie, what in the name of Greek buggery is the use of a plastic duck?
    Eddie: It floats in the bath. ("Floats" duck in Richie's face) "Hello!"
    Richie: Why?
    Eddie: It's hollow!
    Richie: (exasperated) Why the duck?!
    Eddie: It came free with the telly.
    Richie: Eddie, everything came free with the telly, we were looting! Why didn't you get a free telly with the telly?!
    Eddie: Well, then it would sink in the bath!
  • Continuity Nod: There are a couple:
  • Corpsing: Rik Mayall and Ade Edmonson were infamous for their corpsing in the Bottom Live shows. From Hooligan's Island:
    Richie: Eddie! What on Earth is that?!
    Eddie: It's a Japanese army Second World War medical kit, in mint condition!
    Richie: Wow! But Eddie, where on Earth did you—(turns back to see a door was left swinging open, sporting a Japanese WWII war flag)
    (They both stammer, and after being prompted by Richie, Eddie runs over and slams the door shut while the crowd laughs and cheers. You can actually see tears on Rik's cheeks as he curls into a ball to cover his laughter.)
    Eddie: (flipping off the crowd while Rik stammers over his next words) There was a little mistake there, wasn't there? Did you spot it? Fucking bastards...
    • In Bottom Live, Richie reveals that he has decided to commit suicide, but due to the expression on Eddie's face he loses it immediately.
    Richie: Eddie, now look here! I have some sad and tragic ne-pftftft!!!
    Eddie: You've got what!?!
    Richie: (In pain, trying not to laugh) ...Sad... and.. tragic... news...
    Eddie: I have to say, you were a lot more broken up about it in rehearsal!
    Richie: (Bright pink in the face, but attempts to turn back to the audience to continue)
    Eddie: (To the audience) You know, he even made *me* cry!
    Richie: (Curls up into a ball, tears streaming down his face)
  • Counterfeit Cash: This doesn't work too well, since Eddie winds up creating triangular fake banknotes (he claims they're supposed to be Welsh), and others with pornographically detailed portraits. In a brief moment of lucidity (or further insanity) Eddie does mention that the pornographic notes are so barmen will be entranced with them long enough for him to get plastered. In fact it briefly works on Dick, until he comes to his senses and gets on the phone to Skullcrusher, London's most prolific forger. His counterfeits are nearly as bad as Eddie's, but it's not the quality of his counterfeits that makes him the biggest forger in London - more the fact that he crushes the skulls of any competing forger.
  • Crapsack World: Practically everyone in Richie and Eddie's universe seems to be an unspeakably violent sociopath and/or completely insane. Their alternate Hammersmith is full of kebab shops serving dog and human meat, nude vicars running around with guns, an annual riot replete with looters and arsonistsnote , deathtrap Ferris wheels, travel agents who'll kill you horribly for not paying for your holiday promptly, and ambulances taking up five hours to turn up (even in the event of an emergency). And everywhere we see them go is dirty, grimy, run-down and miserable.
  • Crossword Puzzle: At the beginning of "Culture," Eddie tries to bluff his way through one of these, fails, and then gives up out of frustration.
  • Cryptic Background Reference: In "Accident," Spudgun and Dave Hedgehog (in their first appearance) show up at the front door of the flat, and ask Richie if they can see "Chopper" Hitler.
  • Culture Blind: Somehow, Eddie has never heard of kids trick-or-treating on Halloween.
    Eddie: What kind of setup is this? I can't give you sweets; I'll get arrested! Where's the camera?
  • Dancing Theme: The ending credits have silhouettes of Richie and Eddie dancing. Inevitably, violence ensues.
  • Darker and Edgier: "Contest" is definitely this, compared to the rest of the series. This episode, long suspected to be the pilot (though never confirmed as such), has a distinctly bleaker tone than all other episodes of Bottom.
  • A Date with Rosie Palms: There are constant jokes at Richie's expense to show how pathetic he is (he is, in fact, a wanker). He even titled his autobiography Richard Richard: I Did It My Way. On My Own. Quite a Lot. Now I've Got a Sore Hand.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Both of them, but Eddie seems to do this a bit more than Richie.
    Richie: A helicopter! Shout for help!
    Eddie: Is this "help, help, I'm trapped on a Ferris wheel," or "help, help, I'm burning to death"?
  • Deus ex Machina: When they're trapped on a disintegrating Ferris wheel, the hand of God comes down to save them. Then Eddie issues a disclaimer on behalf of The BBC before pointing out:
    Eddie: ...we don't actually believe in God, do we?
    Richie: (disappointed) Tch. No.
    Richie & Eddie: (to the camera) Shit.
    (hand disappears)
  • Disposing of a Body: In "Gas," Richie and Eddie believe they've managed to kill the Gas inspector when they knocked him out with a frying pan (and hit him a few more times after he hit the floor for good measure). They decide to add an extra entry to his diary ("Left in high spirits, to indulge in my hobby of Bus surfing.") and post his body out of the window onto the roof of a double-decker bus.
  • The Ditz: Both of them.
  • Divine Intervention: Parodied in "Hole." Richie and Eddie end up trapped on a condemned ferris wheel and end up hanging by their fingers as their car slowly disintegrates. They pray for a miracle; God's hand appears miraculously. However, once safely on the divine hand, then they both start commenting how they don't actually want to cause offense or anything, but they don't believe in God. Accordingly, the hand disappears.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: Eddie and Richie are referred to as being a married couple; Hedgehog refers to Richie as Eddie's 'wife', they call each other 'darling' and 'dreamboat' in front of strangers, and they are keeping some liqueur chocolates for their anniversary. In Bottom Live, Eddie becomes Richie's legally adopted son and wife (the lawyer ran out of adoption papers) to get at £15,000, which turns out to be a debt from Richie's great uncle Norman.
  • Do You Want to Haggle?: In "Parade," Eddie ends up neck-deep in another Get-Rich-Quick Scheme and needs instant cash in order to place a bet. He finds himself in a pawn shop, trying to hock a hand-carved wooden leg worth £2,500.
    Pawnbroker: Now there's a nice bit of objet d'art. Must be worth at least two and a half grand. [Beat] I'll give you £1.50 for it.
    Eddie: [smiles weakly] Let's haggle.
    Pawnbroker: Alright; a quid.
    Eddie: Let's haggle upward.
    Pawnbroker: Alright; 50p!
    Eddie: Blimey! They don't call you "Harry the Bastard" for nothing, do they?
  • Doorstop Baby: Eddie claims to have been left on a doorstep by his mother with her old service revolver and a note saying "Please look after my baby. I can't be bothered."
  • Double Entendre:
    • Frequently, in every episode.
    Richie: [at camp site] Now, can we just get our equipment out? I mean get our tackle out? No, I mean, get our gear out. Oh God! You can't say anything without some dreadful double-entendre lurking around the corner!
    • Richie frequently misunderstands innocent questions like "How's your sausage?" and "May I drink your juice?", and Eddie lampshades in the last episode.
    Richie: Let's get the shopping list done. I'll just grab hold of my ballpoint.
    Both: Oo-er!
    Eddie: [explosion off screen] Oh no, Richie. No time for crap double-entendres now!
    • Eddie has a similar problem. Innocent questions from Richie are repeatedly interpreted as references to ill-fitting underpants or something similar.
    Eddie: Have you got the crackers?
    Richie: No, it's just the way my trousers hang.
  • Double Take: Eddie's Reaction Shot is just ten seconds of him flicking his eyes up at Richie and down at Richie's new swimming trunks, trying to reconcile what he's seeing with the person it's attached to.
    Eddie: ...Well, where are they?
    Richie: That's the thing! They're so tight you can't actually see them... Why did you make me buy a thong, Eddie?!
  • Dramatic Drop: Eddie, with a frying pan, after he thinks he's killed the gasman with it in "Gas."
  • The Dreaded: Invoked a few times as the series went on.
    • "Skullcrusher" Henderson, in "Dough."
    • "Cannonball" Taffy O'Jones, in "Finger."
    • By the series' end, Richie himself is this to Spudgun and Dave Hedgehog, who've both become rattled by Richie's abrasive personality and erratic behavior. In "Holy," Dave calls Richie a "psycho," and by their final appearance in "Dough," the two of them nervously scurry away from Richie after he lets them into the flat.
    Spudgun: [panicked] Eddie! Eddie! It's talking at us again!
  • Dreaming of a White Christmas: Happens in "Holy."
    Richie: Why doesn't it ever snow? You can't build a drizzle man, can you? Or play drizzle balls?
  • Drives Like Crazy: Both Richie and Eddie. The Special Brew doesn't help.
  • Drunk on Milk: In "Digger," Richie needs a quick shot of booze to settle his nerves. Eddie gives him Tizer (a soft drink).
    Richie: Well, it does the trick!
  • Drunk with Power:
    • "'s Up" sees Eddie and Richie put in charge of running their landlord's shop when he has to go to a funeral. Naturally, this goes straight to Richie's head, and as soon as he gets the white coat on he's threatening to punch old ladies, shouting abuse at a man who's just trying to buy champagne for his daughter's birthday and making Eddie wear his suit jacket back-to-front.
    • "Burglary" shows the two catching a burglar in their flat, who they sit on, tie to chair with Sellotape and try to poison. It completely backfires.
  • Evil Plan:
    • Dick Head is fond of these. In "Parade," he teams up with the local bookmaker and pawn merchant to scam the locals out of their cash and valuables. Then, in "Dough," he rats out Richie and Eddie's forgery operation to London's biggest forger, "Skullcrusher" Henderson, who demands a £5,000 tribute in order to avoid having to crush Richie and Eddie's skulls. Fortunately, Dick is running a pub quiz with the requisite £5,000 as a prize. Unfortunately, it happens to be £5,000 of Skullcrusher's own forged cash, which turns out to be useless for paying off their debt. And they don't discover this until they've already given Dick £1,000 worth of gold teeth for their entry fee.
    • Richie often thinks he's come up with these, but few of them actually work because his own innate stupidity and inability to predict what people will do usually scuttle them.
  • Expy: Of the characters they played in Filthy Rich & Catflap. Also pretty similar to the characters they played in The Comic Strip Presents: Mr. Jolly Lives Next Door, The Young Ones and their "Dangerous Brothers" stage act. Lampshaded in Weapons Grade Y-Fronts.
    Richie: You, er.... haven't changed your material much, have you, Eddie?
    Eddie: (Brief struggle to avoid laughing) Stick with what works, that's my motto!
  • Extreme Omnivore: Eddie has eaten lard, straight from the pack, and washed it down with cooking oil, as well as yoghurt that was so old it sprouted grass.
    Eddie: Who left this pot of cress in the fridge?
    Richie: That's not cress, that's that yoghurt you started during the Gulf War.
    Eddie: [eats it anyway] ...Doesn't taste like banana and peach.
  • Female Groin Invincibility: Lampshaded in "Finger," when Eddie, in drag, gets a firm kick in the crotch from Richie.
    Eddie: It's lucky I am a girl, otherwise that would have really hurt!
  • Fire-Breathing Diner: They turn this trope into Fire Farting Diner thanks to Richie's "Sprouts (of evil) Mexicain."
  • Flat-Earth Atheist: Eddie and Richie state their disbelief in God even when standing on His giant hand which materialised in response to their prayers. This, naturally, causes said hand to disappear in a Puff of Logic.
  • Football Hooligans: Eddie is one of these. The inside of his bedroom, as seen in "Dough," is covered in Queens Park Rangers F.C. memorabilia. He also has to be restrained by Spudgun and Dave Hedgehog after Richie insults QPR in "Terror."
  • Forged Message: Richie receives birthday cards from himself every year - only he claims they are from grateful Soviet citizens, Sue Carpenter and the crew of the Ark Royal. Eddie barely manages to play along with the joke with his usual dripping sarcasm:
    Eddie: ...and this one's from "The people of the Soviet Union, in grateful thanks to Comrade Richie."
    Richie: It's in Russian.
    Eddie: You just put the Rs the wrong way round.
    Richie: That's what Russian is!
  • Forgot to Pay the Bill:
    • In "Culture," the TV rental money got spent elsewhere and Richie and Eddie resorted to playing "put a piece of Sellotape on the fridge," "see how much custard you hold in your pants," and a rather violent game of chess.
    • Subverted in "Gas." Richie and Eddie have not forgotten to pay their gas bill; instead, they've been stealing from the neighbour's gas line so that they don't need to pay the bill.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: Richie (sanguine), Eddie (choleric), Spudgun (melancholic), and Dave Hedgehog (phlegmatic). Alternatively, Eddie could be seen as sanguine/choleric and Dave could be seen as phlegmatic/sanguine.
  • Fridge Logic: In-universe – Halfway through Contest Richie realises that… ₤11·80note  - ₤1·50note  ≠ 30pnote 
  • "Friends" Rent Control: Despite having lived on the dole since 1978, they're in no danger of being kicked out for non-payment. Even a flat as God-awful as theirs wouldn't drop the rent that low. Of course, Richie's Auntie Mabel is the one who pays the rent (quick, hide the fags).
  • Gainax Ending: Surprisingly this is how the "canon" ended in Weapons Grade Y-Fronts. After traipsing through (an extremely minimalistic depiction of) history in Eddie's time travelling toilet (The TURDIS) for half the show, the boys are trapped at the dawn of creation itself, where they are beholden unto a colossal pair of Y-fronts which Richie claims are the origin point of existence. Eddie declares he's too confused to even start processing what is occurring. They then break into a reiteration of the previous show's Pants song, close curtain.
  • Gargle Blaster:
    • Eddie's concoction of brandy, meths (methylated spirit or denatured alcohol), Pernod, paint stripper, Mr Sheen, brake fluid and Drambuie.
    • Weapons Grade Lager, which is made of industrial strength cleaners and the entire contents of the medical cabinet.
    • In "Culture" they attempt to make a vodka Martini without having any of the necessary ingredients on hand; they end up combining Pernod and ouzo with a spoonful of marmalade (since they don't have any glacé cherries) and salt on the rim of each glass. Eddie suggests naming it the Bloody Awful, or perhaps the Esther Rantzen because "it pulls your gums back over your teeth".
    • In "Terror," Eddie creates some homebrew which has the appearance and consistency of roofing tar, and has a habit of dissolving enamel and porcelain, requiring them to drink it out of steel pans.
  • Giant Medical Syringe: In Hooligan's Island, Eddie tries to cure Richie of poison from a dart fired by the natives using a medical kit from a Japanese bunker housed on the island. Said kit includes a syringe which is over a foot long (which Richie is naturally none too pleased at the prospect of being jabbed with).
  • A God Am I: Richie has on occasion managed to convince himself that the fact that he's still a virgin means he's the new Messiah, because he's being kept 'pure' due to being 'better than everyone in the entire universe'. As opposed to the rather more likely explanation that he's just a completely repugnant and unlikable creep who no one in their right mind would ever want to sleep with.
  • Got Me Doing It: In "Carnival," Eddie imitates a Dutch accent during an unusually jovial moment with Richie, who responds in kind, realises what's just happened, and smacks Eddie across the face:
    Richie: If that doesn't get me sauced to Singapore and back then I'm a Dutchman!
    Eddie: Hello, Jakob!
    Richie: Hello! Oranjeboom, clog, dyke, windmill...[realises] SHIT!
  • Goshdang It To Heck: Despite regularly swearing like a trooper, Richie sporadically uses polite alternatives, presumably because he thinks it sounds posher.
  • Gratuitous Foreign Language: Often as a source of humour, like Got Me Doing It above.
  • Groin Attack: Inevitably shows up during the knock-down-drag-out fistfights.
  • Halloween Episode: "Terror." And fitting in with the unusual scheduling of their Christmas episode, this one was originally broadcast in January.
  • Hammerspace: As revealed in "Hole," Eddie keeps an "emergency bitter" in his overcoat at all times, which turns out to be an uncovered pint glass filled to the brim with fresh bitter.
  • The Hand Is God: In "Hole," Richie and Eddie are saved from falling off a Ferris wheel by God, depicted as a giant hand. (Which then vanishes when they realise they don't actually believe in Him).
  • Happy Ending: The series makes it a point to avert this trope at the end of each show, with but a single exception—"Holy." Every other episode of Bottom ends with Richie and/or Eddie getting beaten up, blown up, shot to death, and so on.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: Richie and Eddie. Oh, so much (except that Richie is arguably suicidally desperate). And they've been at it for decades, too.
  • Hidden Depths: In the third series, Richie and Eddie are shown to have a knack for building over-the-top gadgets and traps, like Richie's exercise machine, and Eddie's electric cattle prod (which doesn't quite work properly, but still a good effort). Some of their other talents shown throughout the episodes:
    • Richie has read War and Peace more than once (it's the only novel he owns). He also knows a bit about art, and at one point mentions Toulouse-Lautrec.
    • Eddie can play the piano, and recognises Vivaldi at one point when Richie sings it. He's also a crack shot with an air rifle, and capable of taking out a carny's eye at ten paces.
  • Hideous Hangover Cure: Made from seven raw eggs, washing-up liquid, Domestos and ant spray, and apparently intended to be ingested through the nose.
  • Hilarious Outtakes: "Fluff," a sub-series of three compilations of outtakes (one for each series of Bottom).
  • Horrible Camping Trip: "'s Out," where Eddie remembers to bring the can opener but Richie forgets the canned food; they attempt to go blowpipe hunting with a tentpole and darts, and Richie is repeatedly injured; Eddie almost burns his own face off while trying to light the gas stove (he forgot to put the valve in); and since Wimbledon Common is technically just a giant public park, they're harassed in the middle of the night by a flasher. Also, they appear to have set up camp in an area labelled 'dog toilet,' meaning there's dogshit all over the place.
  • Horrible Housing: Subverted. Though at first glance their two-bedroom home (at 11 Mafeking Parade, Hammersmith) is rather unsightly and run-down, it's actually quite spacious (occupying two stories above a newsagent) and in reasonable shape, complete with a greenhouse-style kitchen enclosed in glass. (Only in one episode, "Apocalypse," does the flat show any real sign of dilapidation.) Most of the apartment's ugliness and filth is a byproduct of Richie and Eddie themselves.
  • I Just Want to Have Friends: Richie. Several episodes show him bemoaning his lonely life, and he does try to be sociable at times... however, his repugnant personality always drives people away.
  • I Lied: The missing ₤10 in "Contest" went on Eddie’s having tea elsewhere after noticing Richie foraging through the window box.note 
  • I Want You to Meet an Old Friend of Mine: Christopher Ryan — who played the suave Mike alongside Adrian Edmondson and Rik Mayall in The Young Ones — occasionally shows up as Dave Hedgehog. Sadly, Nigel Planer turned down the role of Spudgun, thus denying us a whole cast reunion. (Not to mention reuniting the cast of Filthy Rich & Catflap).
    • Invoked at least half a dozen more times over the course of the whole series. Many minor characters on Bottom are portrayed by actors who were also bit players on Filthy Rich & Catflap.
  • Immune to Drugs: Or alcohol, in Eddie's case. Technically, he's only been drunk once - for about 17 years and counting. Then again, Eddie does imply he might already be dead, and thus, unable to get drunk.
  • Informed Ability: We never see the thing that Spudgun can do with a potato which gave him his nickname.
  • Intentionally Awkward Title: Obviously, the creators wanted to force people to talk about seeing Bottom on the telly. Would have been even worse if the BBC had allowed them to go with their original idea and call it Your Bottom.
  • Is That What They're Calling It Now?: There's a joke like this in practically every episode.
  • It's All About Me: Dear lord, Richie will turn ANY situation into something about him, be it his inheritance from his recently-deceased aunt, or being more concerned about his safety than the poor sod he (albeit accidentally) pushed down an open elevator shaft.
  • Jerkass: Richie and Eddie.
  • Joke of the Butt: The title was specifically chosen to invoke this.
  • Large Ham: Richie.
  • Lazy Alias: Eddie uses this to Richie's great frustration in 'Carnival':
    Richie: [on the phone] Hello! Get me the Prime Minister! ... Because I want to blackmail him! ... Richard Richard! Oh shit! [hangs up] Accidentally gave my name away. You'll have to phone Eddie, and use an assumed name.
    Eddie: Right you are. [on the phone] Yes, hello, I'd like to blackmail the Prime Minister... Uhm, Richard Richard!
    Richie: [grabs the receiver and slams it down] You stupid idiot, Eddie! You bloody fool!
    • To avert the wrath of "Skullcrucher" Henderson, the Hammersmith Hardmen all call themselves "Deirdre Barlow."
  • Lethal Chef:
    • Just to show that there is no start to Richie's talents, he cooked Christmas dinner. His roast potatoes were carbonised, and broke the plate when he served them; the sprouts were closer to mash and he cremated the turkey. And the less said about his 'slap-up grill for two' (with all the ingredients grown, found or foraged), the better. And whatever you do, don't try his sprouts Mexicain, a mix of sprouts, various spices and gunpowder.
    • Eddie isn't much better. Unable to prepare brandy butter for the Christmas pudding, he instead concocts vodka margarine with a couple of cans of hairspray for extra flammability.
  • Lethally Stupid: Especially Eddie to Richie.
  • Like an Old Married Couple: The core of Richie and Eddie's relationship revolves around a massive subversion of this trope. Eddie is the "husband," who supposedly goes off to work every day – except he doesn't work; he's usually drinking. Richie is the "wife," who supposedly looks after their home – except he's not cleaning (and he certainly can't cook); he's usually wanking.
  • "L" Is for "Dyslexia": Eddie's lack of reading and writing ability is often alluded to throughout the series. Unlike Richie (who, despite being a total idiot, eventually forces himself all the way through War and Peace), Eddie's literacy is questionable at best. This is most vividly illustrated in "'s Up," when Eddie excitedly presents Richie with his latest video rental: Swedish Lesbians in Blackcurrant Jam. On closer inspection, Richie realizes that Eddie has actually rented Swedish Legends in Blackcurrant Jam-Making.
  • Lost in Character: In "Digger," Eddie is so committed to pretending to be Richie's butler, he curls up on the floor in the fetal position and allows Richie to beat him savagely with an umbrella.
  • The Mad Hatter: Richie, who tends to play this trope rather darkly. Lampshaded in "Culture."
    Eddie: That's what I love about you, Richie.
    Richie: What?
    Eddie: You're completely insane!
    Richie: [hysterical cackling]
  • Master Forger: Parodied in "Dough," when Eddie starts churning out large quantities of extremely unconvincing fake banknotes, with all of them being triangle-shaped and/or pornographic. This results in Eddie (and by proxy, Richie) running afoul of "Skullcrusher" Henderson, Hammersmith's counterfeit money kingpin. Eddie's product is equally as good (incompetent) as Skullcrusher's,note  and therefore, he quite reasonably considers Eddie a serious threat to his business.
  • Meaningful Name:
    • In The Big Number 2, Eddie pretends to be looking after a tortoise for Geoffrey Nasty. To make things worse for Richie who had presumably killed the tortoise, he points out that Geoffrey is a psychopathic penis remover and his nickname is simply "Ooh Fuck". He later admits he was joking to make Richie shit himself, which worked. Also it wasn't a tortoise at all.
    • Another in The Big Number 2 is Mr Big, whom Eddie believes should be called "Mr Absolutely Fucking Enormous, Violent, Ugly Psychopath and Surrounded by the Dead and Dying."
    • "Skullcrusher" Henderson, named after his favourite way of dealing with those who irk him.
    • Spudgun claims to have one. Give him a potato and he'll show you.
  • Messy Hair: Richie, obviously, but also Mr Harrison (the landlord), who has a ridiculous and overgrown comb-over.
  • Mood Whiplash: At the end of Bottom Live, Richie thanks Eddie for being his friend. Eddie looks at the audience with a touched expression on his face but then immediately brushes it off.
  • The Movie: The two main characters were transplanted into Guest House Paradiso, slapstick, simple plans and all. When it came out on DVD it was advertised as "The Bottom Movie," just to drive the point home.
  • My Local: In Bottom's alternate Hammersmith, the local pub is the Lamb & Flag, run by Dick Head. As revealed in "Dough," their rival pub is the Dog & Handgun.

     N to Z 
  • Name That Unfolds Like Lotus Blossom: Subverted with Harry the Bastard, owner of the local pawn shop. His real name is Ted, but is apparently unaware that nobody actually refers to him by that name.
    Punter: 7p on Sad Ken, please.
    Clerk: 7p?
    Punter: Yeah. That's all Harry the Bastard would give me for my house.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: "Skullcrusher" Henderson in "Dough."
  • Never Gets Drunk: Subverted by Eddie, who never gets drunk because he is already is drunk, to some degree, at all times. At no point during the series or stage shows is he ever totally sober.
  • Nobody Poops: Averted numerous times, not least in Hooligan's Island, where Richie manages to have the "jappy-crappies" for three years and spends a good portion of the show with his back from knees to shoulders covered in explosive diarrhoea.
    Richie: Is my skid mark showing?
    Eddie: Not so much a skid mark, more a half-mile stretch of the Maginot Line. Alright: an emergency runway. In Bosnia. In winter. That's covered in shit.
  • No Communities Were Harmed: An unusual subversion, since Richie and Eddie are mentioned several times as living in the Hammersmith district of London. However, the district is constantly implied to be extremely run-down and violent, whereas the real-life Hammersmith is actually one of London's more affluent areas. Which is probably the reason Richie thinks he's part of the middle class. (Their road, sometimes called Mafeking Terrace and sometimes Mafeking Parade, doesn't exist in Hammersmith, London. There are a couple of Mafeking Terraces elsewhere in the country.)
  • No Fourth Wall: Depends on whether you're watching the television series, or the five Bottom Live shows.
    • In stark contrast to The Young Ones and Filthy Rich & Catflap, this trope is largely averted in the TV series, and it's a rare and notable occasion when a character on Bottom breaks the fourth wall outright.
    • It's a different story in the live shows. Richie and Eddie are completely aware that they're fictional characters on a stage, and have no problem insulting the audience's hometowns, threatening to fire crew members, and complaining that all their troubles are the fault of those fat ugly bastards who play them.
  • Non Sequitur, *Thud*: Eddie, in "Burglary."
    Eddie: Taxi! The Copacabana!
  • Noodle Incident: Constantly.
  • Of Course I'm Not a Virgin: Lampshaded in "Digger."
    Natasha: This is a very sexy room. I bet you've been naughty in here a few times.
    Richie: Oh, you're not wrong there. You name it. Swearing. Doodling on the walls. Flicked the V's out of that window more times than I care to remember.
  • Once an Episode: Planned, but not carried out. The original plan was for every episode of the third series to end with Richie and/or Eddie loudly exclaiming "SHIT!!" - for whatever reason this only ended up being done in two out of the six episodes, but the setups for the gag are still there in the remaining episodes (Richie standing next right next to a box of highly explosive carrots as it detonates; Richie and Eddie being confronted by "Skullcrusher" Henderson and unable to pay him; Richie and Eddie being knocked out by the crazy Welsh cricketer whose honeymoon they've stolen).
  • Only Sane Man: In as much as this show can be said to have one, it's Spudgun, oddly enough; he's an idiot, but he's also often the only one who ever points out that some of the insane things that Richie has them do (such as drinking gravy instead of sherry for Christmas, using bleach to clean a baby, and wearing inside-out dressing gowns when summoning the Devil) are, in fact, quite stupid. Eddie's too used to Richie's eccentricities, and Dave Hedgehog is usually too intoxicated to object to anything.
  • Ontological Mystery: The second half of one Live show involves the characters suddenly finding themselves inside a mostly featureless steel dome. Neither of them can quite recall how they got there, as they were trying trying to beat the audience to the bar before interval.
  • Overdrawn at the Blood Bank: Subverted in "Terror," when Eddie passes out after nicking an artery in his wrist and coating himself in his blood, and in "Holy," when Richie loses a finger. It takes longer for him to pass out despite the fountain of blood from the stump, though.
  • Overly Long Name: A major supporting character in "Digger" is Lady Natasha Leticia Sarah Jane Wellesley Estronski Ponsonski Smythe Smythe Smythe Smythe Smythe Oblomov Boblomov Dob (third viscountess of Moldavia).
  • Patriotic Fervor: Richie is prone to these. In "Carnival," he rises to his feet and applauds respectfully upon seeing the Prime Minister's nipples on television.
  • Perpetual Poverty: Neither of the characters has a steady income. In fact, they're only allowed to buy anything when there's a punchline to be had in it. Their poverty is rather strange, Richie particularly because it seems he comes from a somewhat aristocratic, or at least a bit rich, family, since one aunt pays the rent and the other leaves them £600 in her will. Though given that Richie is, well, Richie, it can be assumed that this is the bare minimum that his family is willing to support or generally interact with him.
  • Phony Veteran: Richie frequently tries to pass himself off as a war veteran, but is inevitably undone by his own stupidity and Eddie.
    • In "Apocalypse," he claims to have "hurt [his] leg in the Falklands Conflict."
      Man: Did he?
      Eddie: Oh yeah, he tripped over the coffee table trying to switch channels.
    • In "Parade," his attempt to cop off with a barmaid by using his Falklands story is ruined by Eddie ("This is all a load of bollocks") and an I Am One of Those, Too encounter with a real disabled Falklands veteran ("I don't believe a word of this. In fact I don't believe it so much I'm gonna smash your face in!")
    • In the second Bottom Live stage show, he claims in a letter to the Queen to be an "Old soldier who, during the war, fought a desperate rearguard action in Burma." Though in this instance, Richie tries to save face.
      Eddie: Ah, yes by 'war' I assume you mean Operation Desert Storm, by 'Burma', the Star of Burma kebab and peep show on the Uxbridge Road in which you spent the entire conflict, and by 'desperate rearguard action' I take it you are referring to the time you accidentally went into the same cubicle as Mad Quentin Trousers-Down Pervy O'Blimey.
      Richie: I was doing my bit, Eddie. I was doing my bit.
  • Poke the Poodle: Richie, despite being capable of acts of considerable sadism, in "Finger."
    Richie: We're gonna take these keys, right?
    Eddie: Yeah.
    Richie: We're gonna get inside Taffy O'Bastard's car.
    Eddie: Right.
    Richie: And you know that little light, next to the rearview mirror?
    Eddie: Yeah.
    Richie: Gonna switch that on. And when no one's looking, we're gonna scarper. And within a couple of weeks, I think that guy's probably gonna have a pretty flat battery.
    Eddie: [Beat] Scary-darey.
  • Politically Incorrect Hero: Richie and Eddie's hopeless attitudes towards women are lampshaded throughout "Smells," with the standout moment occurring when they approach two ladies in the Lamb & Flag, and Eddie points at one of them like he's selecting a cut of meat in a butcher's shop.
    Eddie: Is that one mine?
    Richie: Yeah, that's your bird.
  • Puff of Logic: In "Hole," they're trapped on a Ferris wheel that's due to be demolished. The Hand of God Himself appears to offer them a lift, but disappears when they realise they're both atheists and must therefore be hallucinating.
  • Punny Name: At least three in The Big Number 2: Michael McHooligan, Patricia O'Violence and Pat O'Cake.
  • Rage Breaking Point: Comes out of nowhere in "Hole," after Eddie picks on Richie's laundry regimen.
    Richie: [hissing] Well, if you had the common decency to go out and get yourself a proper job, and not hang around the flat all day like some vast slug, then perhaps I would have the opportunity to take my top off and wash it without the risk of you seeing my nipples!
  • Rapid-Fire "Yes!": Subverted. Richie does this in "Break," but as a bizarre one-off verbal tic, not as an exclamation.
  • Razor Apples: Richie and Eddie receive some of these from an old lady in "Terror" while out trick or treating. When Eddie questions the presence of razor blades, Richie claims it's a "Halloween tradition."
  • Reality Is Unrealistic: An Englishman named Hitler, and related to the infamous German Chancellor? Not just a piece of tasteless comedy. Adolf's older half-brother Alois Hitler Jr. actually emigrated to Liverpool, where he married a local woman named Bridget Dowling and had one child, William Patrick Hitler. William emigrated to the US (he and his mother were doing a lecture tour and were stranded when the war broke out), changed his last name and had no children, but the idea of a Hitler running around the UK is not outside the realm of probability.
  • Repetitive Name: Technically a Running Gag; this is not the only time Rik Mayall has played a character named Richard Richard.
  • Rhetorical Question Blunder: When Richie asks Eddie where his romance and sense of adventure is, Eddie replies that they work in Sketchleys and live in Chiswick respectively.
  • Roadside Surgery: In "Apocalypse," Richie gets into an argument in a hospital waiting room with a doctor who is inexplicably performing surgery in the waiting room.
  • Running Gag: More often than not, whenever Richie encounters a woman during the series, he trots out the same tired pickup line that never fails to fail.
    Richie: What a smashing blouse you've got on!
  • Seinfeldian Conversation: Plenty of these throughout the series, including quite a long deleted scene that originally opened "Digger." Ultimately, though, Richie and Eddie's pointless small talk is nothing compared to Spudgun and Dave Hedgehog's.
    Spudgun: I see they've changed the title to Emmerdale Farm. It's just called Emmerdale now. Doesn't take so long to read. Gives them a lot more time to do other things. Pack a lot more story in. (from "Holy")
    Dave: I see they've put up the new "Give Way" sign at the junction, then. (from "Accident")
  • Self-Plagiarism:
    • In "Gas," Richie objects to Eddie cutting up the gasman with cutlery, because they have to eat off them. The same joke appeared in The Young Ones episode "Sick," where Rik objected to Vyvyan using cutlery to perform acupuncture on Neil to stop his sneezing.
    • The overall plot of "Culture" veers awfully close to a long sequence in Episode Five of Filthy Rich & Catflap, involving two characters also named Richie and Eddie (and portrayed by the same actors) desperately trying to pass the time with board games. Just as in "Culture," Richie throws himself into playing, whereas Eddie just wants to be left alone.
  • Shout-Out:
    • A lot of guest characters and minor characters share names with various well-known footballers of the day (Lineker, Grobbelaar, etc). The references are not always flattering.
    • Richie and Eddie sometimes watch Emmerdale and mention the series in their conversations.
    • Richie reads War and Peace in "Apocalypse" and finishes it in "Dough". Eddie, Spudgun and Hedgehog watch the film version in "Accident".
    • Edward Elizabeth Hitler is a reference to the more infamous one's full name in The Producers.
  • Signature Headgear: Whenever he leaves the flat, Eddie puts on a distinctive brown trilby to go with his brown suit. It never comes off, even if he is plastered or getting smacked around.
  • A Simple Plan: A great deal of Bottom episodes are plotted around this trope. Richie and Eddie tend to set their sights on either money, women, or both money and women.
    • Example from "Gas": Richie and Eddie have been stealing from the neighbour's gas line; now they have to come up with a way to disconnect it without getting caught - the kitchen explodes into a fireball in the process.
    Richie: What the bloody hell are you doing!?
    Eddie: Just thought I'd burn it off.
    Richie: What, your face?
    • Another in "Parade" when they try to steal a Falklands War veteran's leg to put the money on a three-legged, blind race horse whose jockey gets shot. The following plan of mugging people in the toilets to buy the leg back is foiled by the first victim - a police officer.
    • Averted in "Apocalypse" when Richie gets an apparent death curse from a fortune teller, which he believes was a plot by Eddie to steal the other half of his inheritance from auntie Olga.
    • In general, Richie and Eddie will inevitably let their fundamental stupidity, lack of foresight and inability to solve problems without violence bollocks up any kind of plan they make, no matter how seemingly straightforward and simple it should be.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Richie. He's convinced he's better than everyone else, and on one occasion, he almost deluded himself into thinking he was "the new Messiah."
  • Smoking Is Not Cool: Zig-zagged. Richie is never seen smoking a cigarette, and Eddie does so only once, outdoors, in "Terror." However, it's implied in "Contest" that they both smoke in their home, and indeed, the walls of their disgusting flat are covered in what looks like decades' worth of cigarette smoke stains.
  • The Sociopath: Both protagonists:
    • Apart from being very quick to anger and violent, Richie is also a compulsive liar who makes up stories about himself whenever there's a chance that he could stand to benefit from it (most notably in "Digger" and "Parade" where he claims to be the Duke of Kidderminster and a Falklands war veteran, both times so that he could convince a woman to have sex with him), engages in various criminal acts such as stealing gas from his nextdoor neighbour, has seemingly no empathy for anyone at all and never accepts any responsibility for his mistakes.
    • The only thing that really makes Eddie more stable than Richie is that he actually has friends, other than that he ticks pretty much all of the same boxes. One thing that does make him worse than Richie, however, is how he seemingly takes pleasure in causing pain to others such as in "Culture" where he looks completely content while smashing Richie's head with the fridge door. He also says that he continued hitting the gas man with a frying in "Gas" "for fun."
  • Spiritual Successor: To The Young Ones and Filthy Rich & Catflap. It was also inspired by their West End production of Waiting for Godot.
  • Spit Take: In "Dough" when Richie tries a pint of Pernod.
  • Stock "Yuck!": The traditional British joke about Brussels Sprouts for Christmas. Now the trope page quote.
    Eddie: Oh not sprouts! I hate sprouts.
    Richie: Oh will you stop whinging, Eddie. Nobody likes sprouts.
    Eddie: Why are we having them, then?
    Richie: Because it's Christmas!
    • Made worse by the fact that the sprouts in question are being served in October. The following October.
      Richie: Yes, they were a bit... frisky.
    • And the aforementioned hangover cure made of seven raw eggs, washing up liquid, Domestos, Jif, and ant spray.
    • In Hooligan's Island, Richie offers Eddie some cocktails made of the most disgusting ingredients.
      1. Gin, blood and porcupine shit (without the gin).
      2. Coconut milk and napalm.
      3. Tree bark, sea water and porcupine urine.
      Richie: How about a nice, slow, comfortable....fist up the arse?
  • Strange Minds Think Alike:
    Eddie: All right, two down. "Fish," four letters, now begins with X.
    Richie: X? Xylophone. Xylophone fish. (Beat)
    Both simultaneously: Nah, it'd sink, wouldn't it.
  • Stylistic Suck: The stage shows feature deliberately terrible plots, stages and props, with both actors often (apparently) forgetting their cues and lines, Corpsing and Breaking the Fourth Wall to insult each other and the audience. These often form some of the funniest moments in the production. Though reportedly the suck wasn't always stylised; in later interviews Edmondson admitted that one of the reasons they eventually stopped during the shows was that Mayall's ability to remember his lines was gradually getting worse, especially after his infamous quad bike accident which resulted in a severe head injury, and this became quite frustrating for both.
  • Tae Kwon Door: During one of the many violent altercations between Richie and Eddie, Eddie repeatedly slams a refrigerator door against Richie's head to an accompanying Laugh Track.
    Eddie: You know, it's funny; they say television encourages violence. I'm smashing his face in, and we haven't got one!
    • In "Holy," Mr Harrison the landlord does this inadvertently to Richie when he storms into the flat.
  • Take That!:
    • In "Holy," Richie tells Eddie that he's funnier than Jonathan Ross.
    Eddie: But he's not funny.
    Richie: Exactly.
    • In "Dough," Richie explains to Spudgun that there is no Welsh money.
    Spudgun: No wonder they all vote Labour.
    • From Bottom Live:
    Richie: Eddie, I bring good news and bad. There is some yoghurt, but if you want to eat it you're gonna have to shave it first. Er, there's also a sausage, but it appears to have already been digested... twice. And there's also a rather unpleasant and completely useless piece of human excrement in there, but I think it might just be Graham Taylor.
    • Several of the stage shows include rather pointed digs at Stephen Fry and the infamous time he fled from the play Cell Mates. Rik Mayall was Fry's co-star in the production and, as it was essentially a two-man play, was understandably less-than-pleased at being left holding the bag, which led to a rift between the two.
    • One of Bottom's dated pop-culture references (a very rare occurrence) occurs in "Digger," when a dating agency tries to set Eddie up with Sarah, Duchess of York.
    Eddie: Do you mind? I'm a respectable man!
    • From "Carnival":
    Eddie: Right. That's it. I'm gonna write to my MP.
    Richie: Why?
    Eddie: Because I love her.
    Richie: Eddie... Tony Blair is a man!
    Eddie: She's not! She's not!
    Richie: She is!
    Eddie: [tearfully] She's not! She's not!
    • From "Hole":
    Richie: They can't treat me like this! My mother used to make sandwiches for the Hammersmith Conservative Association!
    Eddie: Yeah, but no one ever used to eat them, did they?
    Richie: They did! They did! What about that bloke who got the convulsions and the permanent brain damage?
    Eddie: He's president of The Board of Trade now, isn't he?note 
    • From "Dough":
    Richie: I'm so bored, I could watch a whole episode of The Bill without vomiting blood. [Beat] No, no, I mustn't. I owe it to myself.
  • Take That Me: They both do this in 2001: An Arse Oddity.
    Richie: No, I don't get paid. It's not me, it's that wretch of an actor who plays me. What's his name? You know, that tosser who fell off the quad bike?
    Eddie: If only I'd fixed those brakes properly.
    Richie: What did you say?
    Eddie: I know the one. He's... sort of balding and getting a tummy?
    Richie: Yeah, he's getting far too old to play me. Who's that awful actor who plays you?
    Eddie: Oh, erm, he's got a girl's name. is it Julie Goodyear?
  • Take You Aside Talk: Richie wishes Eddie to join him in the pub toilets to purchase condoms. Eddie doesn't immediately follow along. So Richie's brilliant idea for alerting him is to shout "Edward Hitler, will you please join me in the lavatory this instant!" in front of everyone in the pub. Naturally, this has got everyone's attention, so Richie's brilliant excuse to explain his eagerness to see Eddie in the toilets? "We're toilet inspectors."
  • Talkative Loon: Richie.
  • Teeny Weenie: Richie is infamously under-endowed. His junk actually purportedly got smaller as the show went on, with the live shows repeatedly suggesting that he had to use a magnifying glass to find it.
  • Terrible Pickup Lines: Naturally, the only ones in Richie and Eddie's repertoire. (Also see Running Gag.)
    Eddie: Right. So what's it to be, then? Mild or bitter?
  • That Came Out Wrong: A lot of the jokes are the result of this.
  • There Was a Door: In "Break," Richie takes off through the back wall of the flat upon learning that Eddie has made off with the holiday money.
  • Those Two Guys: Spudgun and Dave Hedgehog.
  • Those Wacky Nazis: Played with. Eddie doesn't seem to see anything unusual in having the surname Hitler.
    Lily: Hello, gentlemen, sorry to have kept you waiting. Which one of you is Mr. Hitler?
    Eddie: Oh, that'll be me.
    Lily: Ooh. Any relation?
    Eddie: [puzzled] Well... I've got a mother.
    Lily: No, no no no, I meant to Adolf Hitler.
    Eddie: Yes! That's her!
    • Richie's father, Oswald (as in Oswald Moseley) Richard, is all but stated to have been a Nazi sympathizer and traitor to Britain. Richie is, of course, far too stupid to realise this.
    Eddie: (reading from a Luftwaffe exercise book owned by Richie's father.) For all ze good vork you are doing for ze cause. Keep it up, Mum's ze vord. -Adolf.
  • Tim Taylor Technology: If you compare a real-life cattle prod to Richie and Eddie's cattle prod from "Terror" (which is about four feet long, has to be carried via a shoulder strap and has enough batteries and wiring to power a medium-sized street), it's no wonder Richie keeps crapping his pants whenever he tries turning the thing on.
  • Time Skip: Lampshaded in "Carnival." Eddie proudly tells Richie that he knows how to hook up the VCR he stole that morning. Cut to a week later, and Eddie has nearly finished unwrapping the components. Cut to the following Christmas, and Eddie is ready to open the instruction manual. Cut to Richie returning from his holiday the following summer, and Eddie is finally ready to fire up the VCR, except it doesn't so much fire up as blow up. At long last, after 364 days of effort, it's time for Richie and Eddie to watch a video.
    Eddie: She's ready – inside a year!
  • Toilet Humour:
    • There's a Running Gag in the series that Richie and Eddie shit themselves when they get in trouble.
    • In "Dough," Richie hides some encyclopaedias in a toilet cubicle and puts an "Out of Order" sign on the door. When he comes back, somebody is occupying the cubicle. Richie asks him if he didn't see the sign, and the man in the cubicle says he did but is out of order as well. This is followed by a series of loud fart and diarrhoea sounds. The man also thinks the books are, in fact, "posh loo paper."
    • In "Carnival," Richie trips on stairs and falls head first into the toilet. When he gets out, his head and face have brown stains everywhere.
    Richie: You bastard, Eddie! Why do you never flush the toilet?
    • Hooligan's Island's first act has Richie fall into a latrine and spends the entire show with a skid-mark all the way up his back.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Obviously.
  • Trademark Favorite Drink: Eddie's drink of choice is Malibu, a brand of coconut-flavoured rum. Though never depicted actually holding a bottle of it (probably due to the BBC's strict rules about advertising), the drink is mentioned regularly throughout the series, and Eddie gets anxious if he doesn't have at least a few dozen cases on hand.
    • Richie is an aversion of this – he's strictly a social drinker. Richie is prone to either getting Drunk on Milk, or ending up with glasses of more unusual drinks like absinthe, homemade atrocities like the "Esther Rantzen," or Spudgun's urine.
  • Trouser Space: In "Carnival," Richie manages to steal a shoulder-mount BBC video camera thanks to this.
    Richie: Well, there's plenty of room in my trousers! Sadly.
  • The Unseen:
    • All of Richie's relatives, including at least two aunties, and a sister who is "just like [him], only with smaller jugs."
    • Ethel Cardew, a woman whom Eddie ostensibly stole away from Richienote , but who hasn't spoken to Eddie (or anyone else) since the "superglue incident."
    • There's also Fatty Amal who owns the kebab shop across the street, Slick Digby the organist, the Hussein brothers, Cannonball Taffy O'Jones, Skullcrusher Henderson the forger, Doctor Wildthroat, Dodgy Mad Bob McMayday the violent travel agent, Keith and Deirdre from the Lamb & Flag mixed doubles nudie tag mud wrestling team, Ted Unlucky 'Suicide' McGloomy, and Harold the ironmonger.
  • Unexplained Recovery: Given the extreme slapstick violence nature of the show, nearly any brutality the characters suffer in one episode will be forgotten about in the next. The stage shows and movie in particular make little acknowledgement to the two being brutally gunned down in the series finale (allegedly if the show had continued, it would have done the same).
  • Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonist: Both of them. The fact that Eddie, a deranged hyper-violent lecherous alcoholic known to drink brake fluid and Domestos, is actually the (marginally) less unsympathetic one gives you an idea what Richie is like.
  • Upper-Class Twit: Richie falsely claims to be an "eccentric millionaire" nobleman in "Digger," in a desperate attempt to kickstart his dating life. Eddie mercifully goes along with it, setting up the premise for the entire episode.
    • Artistic Licence, as Kidderminster does not have its own member of the Peerage. The closest would be the Duke of Beaufort, who also holds the title of Earl of Worcester (the main town of the county Kidderminster is in). However, Richie probably decided inventing a fake title was a safer bet than impersonating a real peer.
  • Vague Age: Richie and Eddie's exact ages are never revealed, though the series occasionally telegraphs clues that suggest they are roughly a decade older than Mayall and Edmondson themselves. Eddie once makes a passing comment that they're middle-aged. Richie and Eddie have been stuck together since at least the early 1970s, and they've apparently known each other since The '60s. Their apartment bears the hallmarks of having been lived-in for decades, with every visible surface seemingly covered in grime, and features anachronistic touches like an electric organ with a framed photo of Elvis on top.
    • They comment about new and old money - the pound was decimalised in 1971 (twenty years before Bottom began) so the change must've happened late enough in their lives for it to still be how they think in terms of cash.
    • In "Break," Richie insinuates that he was conceived during The Blitz in 1940 or 1941, implying that he's in his fifties.
  • Vehicle-Roof Body Disposal: In "Gas," Richie and Eddie believe they've managed to kill the gas inspector when they knocked him out with a frying pan (and hit him a few more times after he hit the floor for good measure). They decide to add an extra entry to his diary ("Left in high spirits, to indulge in my hobby of bus surfing.") and post his body out of the window onto the roof of a double-decker bus.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: At a glance, Bottom appears to be playing this trope straight. When the series is at its best, however, Bottom is able to subvert this trope repeatedly in spectacular fashion, extracting its humour from the darkest depths of human nature. Richie and Eddie don't spend their entire lives together out of choice––they need each other, and not only are they both aware of their symbiosis, their mutual resentment of it is always bubbling just beneath the surface. Richie and Eddie truly despise each other, and they delight in causing each other all kinds of pain, anguish, hardship, and trauma––both physical and emotional––at every chance they get. Not only is this the only way they know how to function, the series makes it very clear that this is the life Richie and Eddie both deserve, and quite rightly so.
  • Vomit Indiscretion Shot: The Movie Guest House Paradiso has one of the most revolting examples in the history of cinema.
  • With Friends Like These...: The Series.
  • Wire Dilemma (variant):
    Q: Which mug has the poison in?
    A: The yellow one!
  • Worst Aid: In "Holy," Richie accidentally chops his own finger off. Eddie's solution? Stapling it back on. When that fails, Richie bandages it back together off-screen, the tip of his finger sitting at 45 degree angle from the rest of it.
  • Would Hit a Girl: Eddie, at least, doesn't seem to have any qualms about hitting women. An example of this is when Eddie lashes at a woman who turns out to be someone collecting money for a charity against domestic violence. He also blew up the owner of a B&B on their last holiday.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Subverted. In "Terror," Richie and Eddie pick a fight with three small boys, and lose.

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