Rik Mayall dead at the age of 56

The comedy legend passed away after a heart attack on 9 June 2014.

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by Emmeline Saunders |
Published on

Comedian and star of* The Young Ones* Rik Mayall has been found dead in his London home at the age of 56.

Rik, who was one of the comedy greats of his era, died on 9 June in the morning, a representative from his management company has confirmed.

The Blackadder funnyman leaves his wife, makeup artist Barbara Robbin, and his three children - Rosie, Sidney and Bonnie.

He was once almost killed in a quad biking accident in 1998 when the vehicle he was driving crashed near his home, leaving him in a coma for several days with severe head injuries. He survived though, and even managed to joke about it years afterwards in his 2005 spoof biography, saying he "rose from the dead".

In an interview last year, he revealed Barbara was told to say her final goodbyes while he was in the coma - and doctors almost gave up hope he'd ever regain consciousness.

"They had one of those screens with a line going across showing there was nothing going on in here [points to his head]. So they say to Barbara, my wife, 'He's been dead for five days, it seems like a waste of time so if there's no sign of life, we’ll unplug him in an hour'," he explained.

"They left Barb with me and just before 5pm, the machine suddenly went beep, beep and she called the doctors and said, 'Look, he's not dead'.

"I don't know if the doctors had said it really loudly to scare the s**t out of me, but it worked."

Rik was no stranger to the stage, having trodden the boards in several plays - including the theatre version of Bottom.

Film-wise, he gave audiences an abs workout with his starring roles in both Drop Dead Fred and _Guest House Paradis_o.

Opening my very own Twitter to stop another bastard from doing it. So f**k off & don't expect to hear from me any time soon. Love Rik x— Rik Mayall (@rikmayall) April 13, 2010

One of his biggest successes was the satirical sitcom _The New Statesma_n, which poked fun at the Tory government in the late 1980s and early '90s and was basically written solely for Rik's portrayal as smoothie-chops Alan B'Stard.

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