1983, Magazine Articles

Kevin Turvey and The Bastard Squad featuring The Young Ones – Due South 1983

Here’s a write up from a local listings magazine called Due South about The Young Ones tour at Southampton University on 5th March 1983.

The Young Ones

An ambitious and successful event was staged at the University on Saturday which went a long way to opening up the union facilities to the community at large. The headline attraction THE YOUNG ONES played to an audience of 1300 which was about 600 over the official capacity and shows the desperate need for better facilities to put on attractions of this size. Although the crush meant a few short tempers at the bar the Events committee did a good job with the extra traffic and even managed to get a one way system of movement going.

THE YOUNG ONES rose to the occasion in spite of the hopeless changing facilities with such uncompromising things as ADRIAN BASTARD and his (reluctant) talking penis.

A local band of some promise X-14 played support in the gym. The audience included a healthy number from outside the university and showed that cooperation works both ways whatever certain members of X-14 might feel about the university. The closed shop policy of the union does little to foster community relations and the trouble many non students had getting tickets for the POLECATS for instance caused some bad feeling.

The days of breeze-block campuses dumped in the middle of a large field outside a cathedreal town like Warwick or Lancaster are over, the idea behind them is as obsolete as blocks of flats. Universities like Southampton at least have the good fortune to be well placed in the middle of a thriving community. Why waste it? The locals won’t bite. (J.B)

SOUTHAMPTON UNIVERSITY was packed with 1300 people last Saturday 5th, to see the YOUNG ONES on stage. RIK MAYALL, NIGEL PLANER and ADE EDMUSSEN, who met at the COMEDY STORE in Soho, are probably the most loved comedians amongst the youths in this country.

The first half of the show featured KEVIN TURVEY, VIVIAN AS KEITH MARSHALL and NEIL with intervals of Ruby Gill singing a variety of songs. VIVIAN’S PORTRAYAL OF KEITH MARSHALL was really slow and not very successful. The audience did not respond much to his magic tricks and his comments and it looked and sounded as though he hadn’t prepared an act until he got on stage. NEIL on the other hand, stole the show with his character of a slow, half awake hippie and RIK MAYALL dominated the stage with his outward going character of KEVIN TURVEY. Unlike their TV shows it didn’t matter if they slipped in the odd four-letter word. In fact they were dropped in all over the place but Rik insists that they were not put in for cheap laughs.

The second half of the show featured then as THE YOUNG ONES. They acted as well as on TV but must have found it more difficult working with microphones especially Rik who is very irritable and energetic on tele. VIVIAN reassured the audience in the second half as the punk, with some very funny gags and they closed the show by singing (or wailing) ‘CLIMB EVERY MOUNTAIN’ from the Sound of Music.

The show was a complete success although the audience were a bit over enthusiastic by laughing hysterically at every word. (Gaby)

The three most exciting young comedians in the country, together on the same stage. You couldn’t help looking forward to seeing RIK MAYALL, NIGEL PLANER and ADE EDMUSSEN in the flesh. Of course, you always feel let down when you build up your hopes too much.

Admittedly, the circumstances were all wrong, this being one of those ridiculous Rag Ball affairs with a free, unsolicited sauna, no chance of getting a drink, and about fifty student bands playing to themselves in warren-like corridors. The turn-out was enormous, which isn’t surprising since, in the form of the YOUNG ONES and the COMIC STRIP, they have had the two most successful and innovative youth orientated t.v series of the last few years.

It has to be said, however, that the humour transferred uncomfortably to the live stage, largely because of the restriction of having to stay close to microphones. Of all the RIK MAYALL incarnations, my favourite is still that gloriously lopsided investigative journalist and master of the thumbs-up and non-sequitur, Kevin Turvey; but the character didn’t come across nearly so well outside the swivel-chair. The same went for the wonderfully arrogant sociology student persona of Rick of the YOUNG ONES, who was often reduced to ALEXI SAYALE-style castigation of the audience for shrieking with laughter at every four-letter word.

Audience response to VIVIAN the punk was surprisingly muted, and in his guise of Keith Marshall, ADE can truly be said to have flopped. A surprising omission was the troupe’s COMIC STRIP heavy metal band, on the face of it the most suitable act for a live show. Still, VIVIAN’S horrible guitar solo in Rick’s ‘CONGRATULATIONS’ recalled the best days of the Bonzos. And Neil? Well, Neil ran away with the show. From the evidence of the rapturous roars which greeted his every appearance, it’s clear that the nation’s student population has taken everyone’s favourite oser and manic depressive to its collective heart. Heavy!

YOUNG ONES, we still love you. But get back to the Box and stay there. (Gary Revilo)

Kevin Turvey & The Bastard Squad featuring The Young Ones Tour

  • 23rd February 1983 – Trent Poly
  • 24th February 1983 – Cardiff University
  • 25th February 1983 – Aberyswth  University
  • 26th February 1983 – Manchester University
  • 27th February 1983 – Lancaster University
  • 28th February 1983 – Durham University
  • 2nd March 1983 – University of East Anglia
  • 4th March 1983 – Oxford Apollo
  • 5th March 1983 – Southampton University
  • 8th March 1983 – Reading University
  • 9th March 1983 – Loughborough University
  • 10th March 1983 – Leicester University
  • 11th March 1983 – Birmingham University
  • 12th March 1983 – Hull University
  • 13th March 1983 – York Theatre Royal
  • 16th March 1983 – Teeside Poly
  • 17th March 1983 – Dundee University
  • 18th March 1983 – Glasgow University
  • 19th March 1983 – Strathclyde University
  • 20th March 1983 – Sunderland Empire
  • 23rd March 1983 – Sheffield Poly
  • 24th March 1983 – Derby Assembly Rooms
  • 25th March 1983 – Ipswich Gaumont
  • 26th March 1983 – Coventry Apollo
  • 27th March 1983 – Bath Theatre Royal
  • 10th April 1983 — ‘Too Hot to Handle’, Apollo Victoria Theatre

These dates are just a guide and are taken from a publicity flyer of the time, they were very much subject to change and some were even cancelled at the last minute. As noted from the Soundmaker article, they did indeed arrive a month too early at one venue, so a radio campaign was made to drum up an audience for the that evening.

Arriving in Sheffield they were greeted with the incredulous, “but you’re not booked to play here for another month!” and only hasty local radio broadcasters drummed up an audience for the opening night of the twenty date tour.


I’d love to hear from you if you have souvenirs or memories of seeing Rik, Ade and Nigel on this tour or if you were at the ‘Too Hot to Handle’ benefit concert.

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