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The Young Ones unseen footage to be released for BBC sitcom’s 40th anniversary


The Young Ones.

The Young Ones is getting a special boxset for its 40th anniversary (Picture: PA/BBC)

Unseen footage of The Young Ones is set to be released for the first time to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the classic BBC sitcom.

The TV show first aired on BBC Two in 1982 and ran until 1984, bringing with it the energy and irreverence of the new ‘alternative comedy’ movement.

It followed the comedic adventures and dysfunctional relationships of four misfit, house-sharing students at Scumbag College.

The series starred Adrian Edmondson as punk medical student Vyvyan ‘Vyv’ Basterd and the late Rik Mayall as anarchist revolutionary Ric.

It became known for its comic caricature, slapstick, infantile humour, rants and surreal jokes set against Thatcher’s Britain.

And now, to mark 40 years since its launch, The Young Ones: Complete Collection will be released on Blu-ray with previously unseen footage.

The Young Ones was one of the most beloved comedies of the 1980s (Picture: Ed Wooden/BBC/PA)

The never-seen-before deleted scenes will feature as part of the special additions alongside 10 new commentaries from the cast and crew and rediscovered clips from the cutting room floor.

It is set for release on Monday, November 28.

The Young Ones also starred Nigel Planer as Neil, Christopher Ryan as Mike, and Alexei Sayle as their landlord Jerzei – it helped make the actors household names.

The Young Ones helped introduce alternative comedy to the UK at the time (Picture: Ed Wooden/BBC/PA)

Its most famous episodes include the one where the boys discover a bomb in their kitchen, and the day they’re chosen to star on University Challenge.

Mayall, who died suddenly in 2014, co-wrote the show alongside Ben Elton and Lise Mayer, with Paul Jackson and Geoff Posner as directors.

An extensive photo gallery featuring the original music score and unpublished images from the production team also feature in the anniversary package among other extras.

Edmondson and Mayall starred on TV together for many years (Picture: Don Smith/Radio Times/Getty)

Earlier this year, The Young Ones’ release on Britbox was accompanied by a content warning for ‘offensive racial and homophobic’ content.

In one episode, Mayall’s character Ric is accidentally mistaken for a black man and is referred to by a series of racist insults.

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In 2021, Edmonson, 65, admitted that the series wouldn’t get made today, but not because of so-called ‘cancel culture’.

‘There are too many executives and they wouldn’t have understood the script,’ he told The Times. ‘In the days of The Young Ones, it was one.’

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