‘Nasty’ Episode of The Young Ones TV series (1984)

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Nasty was the ninth episode of British situation comedy series The Young Ones. It was written by Ben Elton, Rik Mayall (also seen briefly in An American Werewolf in London) and Lise Mayer, and directed by Geoff Posner. It was first aired on British television on BBC2 on 29 May 1984.


As with all episodes of The Young Ones, the main four characters were student flatmates Mike (Christopher Ryan); Vyvyan (Adrian Edmondson); Rick (Rik Mayall) and Neil (Nigel Planer). Alexei Sayle starred as a South African vampire and driving instructor. Monty Python alumnus Terry Jones makes a cameo as a drunken vicar and comedy duo Hale & Pace appear as a pair of gravediggers that the lads tell their story to.


The show begins with a late-night burial at a local cemetery. There is then a flashback to events leading up to the burial.


It’s bath night, and while Neil jumps into the muddy bathwater used in the three others’ previous baths, Rick locks himself in his room for a sneaky read of Cosmopolitan. Here, he nearly gets sawn in half by Vyvyan’s cleverly placed circular saw. Mike and Vyvyan spend the time trying to set up the new video they have secured, in order to watch a “video nasty”.

A scene-stealing postman then arrives to deliver a human-shaped package from the Transvaal. This turns out to be a vampire, who disguises himself as a driving instructor from Johannesburg. When the four realise that vampires only attack virgins, it leads to them all unconvincingly denying their sexual purity.

However, they are saved by the clock, as the sunlight streaming through the window hits the vampire, who despairs at having his wristwatch still set to South African time – and they manage to wrap him up in their handy red dual-purpose sofa-coffin. This results in the funeral.

Back at the graveyard, the vampire escapes from a now white sofa-coffin and turns out to be Harry the Bastard, from whom they rented the video, and he quickly announces that their deadline for returning it had just elapsed and that they owe him ₤500 in late fees…


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The episode features punk/goth/psychedelic rock band The Damned, performing ‘Nasty’, a song written especially for the episode.

The opening scene of a man playing chess with Death is a reference to Ingmar Bergman’s 1957 film, The Seventh Seal.

Buy Nasty Damned CD from Amazon.co.uk

nasty damned the damned CD

Wikipedia | Thanks to Tomb Dragomir at Rue Morgue for the Evil Dead edit of ‘Nasty’

Related: Ban the Sadist Videos!: The Story of Video Nasties | Illustrated Checklist of Video Nasties | Phantasmagoria (album by The Damned)

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