Community Service Announcement: Don't read Rik Mayall's book “Bigger than Hitler, Better than Christ“. It's a piece of puerile, boring, badly written shite.

Yes, I will substantiate this.

Anyone who's seen Rik perform more than once will be aware that pretty much ever character he's ever brought to life is more or less identical in mannerism – Rick (The Young Ones), Richard Dangerous, Richard Richard (Bottom), Richard Rich (Filthy, Rich & Catflap), Lord Flashheart (Blackadder), Alan B'Stard (The New Statesman)… the list goes on, and I'm not saying that this is a bad thing. I quite like all of these, and the character works well within all of these settings.

However… he only goes on to write this book – purportedly a biography – in the same bloody style. Can you imagine having to read 300+ pages of nothing but Rik wittering on in his ego-centric, factually scattered and perpetually diverting way ? I couldn't, and I can usually convince myself to keep ploughing on in the hope it'll all get better… hell, I sat through an entire Marillion gig last year (although this too proved ill-advised). I just don't see the point of a biography written in persona where the stories told are only a rough outline of the actual events as they happened, and typically glossed over in favour of tawdry punchlines & nob gags to the extent that you feel like you're being rushed around what could potentially be an interesting topic.

The book's also peppered with letters that Rik supposedly wrote to various people throughout his life, again, all in the same tone. I can't even give examples because I couldn't be bothered carrying the thing around any more.

It's just awful, and a waste of time.

The character's violent, rude and ignorant, and when he's got someone to be violent, rude & ignorant to the results are often spectacular. As a reader though you're the target, and that just doesn't work.

In picture, a great performer. In print, dire.

2006-08-22 : Rick, spelt with the silent P.
🌳 Buy me a Tree