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Rik Mayall: Comedian And Actor Dies Aged 56
Comedian and actor Rik Mayall has died aged 56.
He was best known for the TV shows The Young Ones and Bottom, both of which he starred in alongside long-time collaborator Adrian Edmondson.
Mayall was also in several other programmes including The New Statesman - as conniving MP Alan B'Stard, The Comic Strip Presents, Blackadder II and Blackadder Goes Forth, where he played Squadron Commander the Lord Flashheart.
He appeared on the big screen in films including Drop Dead Fred.
One of his most recent roles was in the TV show Man Down, in which he plays the father of a teacher whose girlfriend has left him.
Mayall, who died at home in Barnes, southwest London, was married with three children.
It is thought his wife found him on Monday and his death is not believed to be suspicious.
A London Ambulance Service spokesman said they were called to the house at 12.07pm.
Edmondson paid tribute to his friend, saying: "There were times when Rik and I were writing together when we almost died laughing.
"They were some of the most carefree stupid days I ever had, and I feel privileged to have shared them with him.
"And now he's died for real. Without me. Selfish b*****d."
In 1998 Mayall was seriously injured in a quad-bike accident which left him in a coma for several days.
But he made a full recovery and was working until recently.
Mayall said doctors had kept him alive on a life-support machine for five days and were about to turn it off when he began to show signs of life.
Speaking last year he said: "The main difference between now and before my accident is I'm just very glad to be alive.
"Other people get moody in their forties and fifties - men get the male menopause. I missed the whole thing. I was just really happy."
Mayall found fame playing would-be anarchist Rick in The Young Ones which ran from 1982 to 1984 in two six-part series.
The show featured anarchic, offbeat humour and it helped to bring alternative comedy to television in the 1980s.