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Rick (The Young Ones)

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Shut up! I'm trying to stir my coffee!
~ Rick, to Vyvyan.
Hands up, who likes me?
~ Rick volenteers to them.

Rick is the secondary antagonist of The Young Ones.

He was portrayed by the late Rik Mayall, who also played Richie Rich, Richard Richard and Prince Froglip.


Rick is a hypocritical, tantrum-throwing, attention-seeking Cliff Richard fan, or, as Vyvyan describes him, "The classic example of an only child!" He tries to impress the others using wit and humour, despite not having any discernable talent. He insults Neil at every opportunity, fights and bickers with Vyvyan, and attempts to impress Mike. He is portrayed as being so self-absorbed that he believes he is the "most popular member of the flat", despite being disliked by virtually everyone he knows; even though his housemates hate him, he says that they "really are terrific friends". This is further emphasized in the episode "Bambi" when Neil reads graffiti aloud from Rick's History 'O' Level text book - "Prick is a wonker - signed, the rest of the class" which Rick dismisses as banter until Neil further reads "I agree with the rest of the class - signed teacher" which triggers a signature tantrum from Rick.

Rick is vegetarian, agnostic, and wishes all men to love each other like brothers, except for Neil, whom he hates (repeatedly calling him a "bloody hippy"). Nonetheless, nearly everything he does is hypocritical and self-serving.

He can't say the "R" sound correctly and instead enunciates a mixture of a "W" and a "V" sound. In the episode "Bomb", he dictates his name to a woman who looks up in confusion and repeats it back as "Wick?". Vyvyan describes Rick's name as being spelled "with a silent P", as it is written on Rick's name card during the University Challenge against Footlights College in the episode "Bambi".

Rick exaggerates or lies about his political activism and class background, which is exposed in the final episode, "Summer Holiday", when it is suggested he comes from a well-off, Conservative background. He is a closet-transvestite; as during "Nasty", Neil finds a dress in Rick's wardrobe with his name stitched in it. In the episode "Cash", Rick admits to Mike that he is unable to tell time, a trait that both he and Vyvyan share.

Political views

Rick's political beliefs vary, depending on how they benefit his particular situation, but can usually be categorized as radical. While Rick sees himself as both a revolutionary and follower of Vladimir Lenin and Leon Trotsky, he actually has little understanding of the political ideals he purports to follow. During "Cash" he is shown with a copy of Marx's Das Capital, seemingly having fallen asleep while trying to read it.

He claims to dislike Margaret Thatcher, as is noted by his threatening to blow up England with an atomic bomb in the episode "Bomb" if she "doesn't do something to help the kids, by this afternoon", and from negative references to Thatcher and the Conservative Party mentioned in the series' companion book Bachelor Boys. However, Rick sometimes displays a markedly conservative mindset—contrary to the image he has adopted—as, again in "Bomb", while talking to an old man at the DHSS office (which he has mistaken for a post office).

Villainous Acts

Season 1

  • Demolition - He angrily abusing Neil. He kicks the TV angrily.
  • Oil - He quarrelled Vyvyan for their bedroom.
  • Interesting - He pushes the hippie into the fridge and shuts the door on him and abuses Neil again. He was rude to Christian if she arrived.
  • The Flood - He kidnaps (along with Vyvyan and bullies Neil. He quarrelling with Vyvyan again.

Season 2

  • Bambi - Raging against Neil on the train, and switching the cards during University Challenge so the flatmates had the advantage.
  • Time - He fights against Vyvyan.
  • Sick - He angrily shouts at Neil and strictly abuses Vyvyan and Neil. He then ends up "killing" Neil, or so he thought - as it turns out Neil survived.
  • Summer Holiday - He robs the bank and steals the bus (along with Vyvyan, Mike and Neil).



  • I suppose you think it's pretty weird, don't you Mike? Well, you'd be right. 'Cause THAT'S the kind of guy I am, right? WEIRD. Which is why I go over people's heads. A bit like an aeroplane! You think I'm an aeroplane, don't you, Mike? Well, I'm not. - Demolition
  • Five pounds to get in my own bedroom?! Hah! What have you done, turned it into a roller disco? - Oil
  • Pollution, all around. Sometimes up, sometimes down. But always around. Pollution are you coming to my town? Or am I coming to yours? Ha! We're on different buses, pollution, but we're both using petrol... bombs. - Bomb
  • That's just typical. Five minutes before the most important party of my life and the house is destroyed by a giant sandwich. - Interesting
  • I feel sorry for you, you zeros! You nobodies! What's going to live on after you die? I'll tell you - nothing! That's what! - Bambi
  • Me, a virgin? Ha! Just try telling that to some of the foxy chicks who owe me favours! - Nasty
  • Well you can shut up now, Vyvyan. You can just about blummin' well shut up! Because if you've got anything horrid to say about Felicity Kendal, then you can just about blummin' well say it to me first! - Sick
  • I can't believe it. My parents... are dead. - Summer Holiday

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