The Young Ones "Sick" - Oh Neil Neil Orange Peel!

The episode where the housemates are sick


Sick was the 11th Young Ones episode, and opens up with the the housemates all being ill in bed.

The Young Ones Sick

Vyvyan tries to ease his suffering with vodka, which he later uses to blow up Rick's bedroom, in the form of a Molotov cocktail, to stop Rick complaining.


Neil's sneezing fit prompts Vyvyan to send Mike out to get a cure (prompting a joke about the Cure). Vyvyan takes drastic emergency action, involving the use of Rick's laundry bag, and some extreme acupuncture, using six-inch nails.


Vyvyan also tries to get Neil to sneeze outside, pushing him through the bedroom window. Neil's snot splatters all over a man's face who is standing in the street. His reaction throwing a brick toward the four's house, ends up smashing through the window of a neighbouring house, thus beginning a cycle of violence which results in a street riot, also sucking in musical act, Madness, during the performance of their song, "Our House" (who in unsurprising Madness humour, launch the attacks on each other).

Brian Damage

Brian Damage Balowski escapes from his police guard after they're called in to deal with the trouble, and takes the quartet hostage. Usefully, he cures Neil's sneezing with a timely headbutt. Just as the four's doom seems sealed, Neil reveals that his parents had arranged to come for tea in a few minutes.


A major clean-up operation - with the convict doing his bit, helpfully polishing his shotgun - follows, before Neil's parents ring the doorbell as the street continues in violent chaos around them. After breaking a wooden chair over Rick's back, Neil's mother complains that the show should be more acceptable, in the manner of a sitcom like The Good Life, at which point, Vyvyan gives a highly articulate and vehement outburst against the "bloody" Good Life.

The Good Life

Suddenly, the quartet go into a whole new sitcom involving the cultivation of plants in the back garden. Rick ends up supposedly killing Neil with a spade after he drones on too long about the cycle of plant life, then buries him in special, grow-anything compost. Neil subsequently re-grows as three separate Neils.

Oh Neil, Neil, Orange Peel

Meanwhile, Rick is being taunted by his own conscience for killing Neil while he slept and has a nightmare about being on trial by judge Mike and prosecutor Vyvyan who suggests they decide to hang Rick, when girls show up and wishes that the "People's Poet" will not die. But first, the girls are going to strip naked for Rick. Rick's conscience wakes him up for having a nightmare when he is supposed to be feeling guilty of killing Neil. Rick later runs down into the living room and wishes that he could see Neil once again, and the three Neils come into the house, which spooks Rick. Just as Vyvyan and Mike enter, the back wall opens up, and Neil's parents and Brian Damage head up a large staircase, milking the audience's applause during the show's closing credits.

Oh, Neil! Neil! Orange peel! If only I could see you again.

Does Sick stand up to time?

There's a lot of strong dialogue sequences in Sick, including Alexei Sayle giving probably his best performance in the show and Vyvyan's infamous rant against The Good Life. However, it probably tops the list of "it was funny at the time" as the full on, gross-out content does rely far too heavily on shouting and crass humour. A firm favourite at the time, nowadays it seems a bit over the top and loud.





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