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Feature: The Rik Mayall Nintendo Adverts You Totally Forgot About

Posted by Damien McFerran

What happened when a legend of British comedy and Nintendo collided

Nintendo Life readers over the age of 25 and based in the United Kingdom will no doubt be familar with the comedic talents of Richard Michael "Rik" Mayall. One of the pioneers of 'alternative' British comedy in the '80s, he starred in a whole host of popular TV shows, including The Young Ones, Blackadder, The Comic Strip Presents and - possibly most famously of all - Bottom.

He also attempted to crack Hollywood in the cult classic (but commercial flop) Drop Dead Fred, which features a cameo by the Nintendo Game Boy, but that's a story for another day.

Bottom is set to return to UK televisions next year after an 18-year absence in the shape of Hooligan's Island, so now seems like as good a time as any to reacquaint ourselves with Rik's fine portfolio of Nintendo adverts.

You see, during the early '90s - when Nintendo was embroiled in a high-stakes battle with Sega in UK - it badly wanted to shed its 'family-friendly' image.

Sega was seen as a cooler brand by UK gamers, a fact which was no doubt influenced by the brilliant (and award-winning) Pirate TV commercials. Sega's Mega Drive was also beating the SNES at UK retail, prompting Nintendo to throw a massive pot of cash in Mayall's direction in order to compel him to create some amusing adverts. According to legend, Rik purchased a new house with the cash he received, and jokingly christened it "Nintendo Towers".

Below, we present those very same adverts for your view pleasure. A word of warning to anyone outside of the UK: the humour is very, very British.

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User Comments (38)

DazzaAdmin

#1

Dazza said:

Oh my, some of these are truly awful. I'll have a Cyber Razor Cut instead please!

ThomasBW84Admin

#3

ThomasBW84 said:

Oh my, those are marvellous. Rik Mayall is pretty darn funny, in my warped opinion, and Bottom was one of my favourite shows in the 90s. The Chess Fight was particularly awesome, especially as I played chess a lot at the time -

HugoSmits

#7

HugoSmits said:

@Thomas; Bottom was simply briljant! so was the movie they made out of it; guest house paradiso!

I watched the chess clip you included and nearly pissed my pants and I have tears in my eyes hahaha

MattL

#12

MattL said:

Never saw these originally, can't understand why. Rik Mayall is a comedy legend. His performance as Lord Flashheart is timeless :) Bottom, too, is one of my favourite comedies of all time. A brilliant and timelessly funny actor who we, sadly, don't see enough of these days. Woof!! ;)

thedanman64

#13

thedanman64 said:

Nintendo should get Rik to do their adverts again. Much better than the ones they're showing now!

edhe

#14

edhe said:

@NintendoMaster

Yes it is.

I never remembered watching these adverts when I was young, but I have been compelled to search them oout on youtube - and now you've provided a page of them all, I can watch through them! I wasn't aware there were so many.

Trikeboy

#17

Trikeboy said:

"A word of warning to anyone outside of the UK: the humour is very, very British."
Will you be putting a disclaimer on US comedy in the future like you did here?
"A word of warning to anyone outside of the US: the humor is very, very American."

BTW, nice touch using the British spelling of humour. Rik Mayall owned the 80's and 90's comedy circuit, and he isn't above making fun of himself. I'm so glad I can see these again.

SavageBlackWolf

#19

SavageBlackWolf said:

lol I remember when The Young Ones use to come on MTV. Me and my friends loved that show. Was that Vivian in the chess video? The commercials you put on here were great, too.

Danglybits

#20

Danglybits said:

OMG!
BOTTOM 4
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hooligan%27s_Island
Thanks guys for this little bit of news that has put a big smile on my face after a really bad week, who know maybe Nintendo will ask Rik to do Wii U adverts.

New Doctor Who in 24 Hours, New Red dwarf in a few months, a New Nintendo Console soon and Bottom Series 4 in the new year with lots of Nintendo 3DS & Wii U Goodness to follow. Maybe things are getting better :)

Mowzle

#21

Mowzle said:

I've never seen any of those, Damien.Thanks for that.I'm off to bed with my ribs well and truly tickled.
@SavageBlackWolf:The Young Ones were true classics

MattL

#26

MattL said:

@ Eastlondon - You've gone and made my weekend! I had no idea a new Red Dwarf series was on the way! What fantastic news :) Now I can't wait for the 4th of October when it airs :D It's been way too long.

Ai64

#27

Ai64 said:

How memorable. Makes me wish for rik to star in 3DS and Wii U ads now. ^_^

Trikeboy

#29

Trikeboy said:

@Eastlondon New Bottom episodes? Hell yeah, I'm actually watching the second stage show as I'm writing this comment. I love Rik and Ade.

AcesHigh73

#32

AcesHigh73 said:

Rik May Mayall is the quintessential 80-90's British comedian. As well as Bottom, The Young Ones and The New Statesman were particularly good.

Bottom was my favourite though! Who remembers the Gas Man episode?! Epic! Eddie Hitler once said that Richard Richard was "simply known as the c..." Gold. Just pure gold.

DrDaisy

#34

DrDaisy said:

I never heard of him, but to be fair, I have never set foot in the United Kingdom. I don't find it repulsive or anything, it's just far away and there's travel expenses ... and I go crazy (well, crazier) if I'm stuck on a plane for more than six hours. I don't think any of you want to know what happened to the pilots and other passengers when I tried to take a trip to Japan.

Chunky_Droid

#35

Chunky_Droid said:

Will have to watch these in the morning so I don't wake anybody up with my laughter, I love Rik Mayall :)

Drop Dead Fred was a brilliant movie, as was Guest House Paradiso, and the Young Ones is one of my favourite shows :)

bouncer0304

#38

bouncer0304 said:

So sad to hear of his passing :-( I can imagine Ade will be be gutted too. Loved these ads before. RIP

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