The fifth episode of season two, Beer sees Edmund trying to juggle two nights in one. A sitcom cliché, I grant you, but watching Blackadder flip between his all-out debauched drinking party, complete with comedy boobs, and his puritan Aunt and Uncle Whiteadder is a great laugh.
Another episode from season two, this episode is Miranda Richardson at her best. Queenie repeatedly summons Blackadder to her court, only to play increasingly juvenile pranks on him. Add in The Baby Eating Bishop of Bath and Wells chasing Blackadder for a debt he can’t repay, Baldrick as a prostitute and Percy’s alchemy attempt resulting in the discovery of ‘green’ (“Think there’s a big market for jewellery that looks like snot, do you Percy?”) and you’ve got a classic bit of Blackadder.
8. Major Star
Number three on our list comes from the final season. Major Star sees Melchett fall for Lieutenant George’s drag act ‘Gorgeous Georgina’. A fun episode as it sees the return of Kate, or should I say Bob. With Blackadder seemingly finally set to escape the trenches on a cabaret tour, he has to find a way to end Melchett’s infatuation with George, landing him in ‘stickiest situation since Sticky the stick insect got stuck on a sticky bun’.
Chains is the last episode of season two and sees the dastardly Prince Ludwig The Indestructible, played by Hugh Laurie, a maniac German, determined to take control of the British empire. Ludwig eventually succeeds in murdering all the key characters before taking on the crown of Elizabeth the First. Hugh Laurie is great in this episode, and despite the show’s obvious comic theme, it’s quite a shocking way to end the season.
6. Nob And Nobility
Disgusted with the English obsession with France, and in particular The Scarlet Pimpernel, Blackadder hops across the channel to prove that the hero of the French aristocracy isn’t all that and agrees to pretend rescue the Le Comte De Frou Frou, only for Edmund to accidentally bump off the two men who were, in fact, the real Scarlet Pimpernel.
5. Duel And Duality
Guest-starring Stephen Fry as the Duke of Wellington, Duel And Duality sees Blackadder end up in a duel with the duke. The Prince has taken advantage of two of the Duke’s nieces and he is demanding satisfaction. Unable to face the duel, the Prince convinces Blackadder to take his place, only for it end up costing the Prince his life.
4. Private Plane
Lord Flashheart returns to convince Blackadder to join the Royal Flying Corps. With Baldrick as his navigator, he’s quickly shot down by The Red Baron (played by Rik Mayall’s long-term comic sidekick Ade Edmondson). Thankfully, George manages to convince Flashheart to help him rescue Balders and Edmund, before Flashheart shoots the Red Baron, calling him a poof.
3. Corporal Punishment
With a lack of decent food finally getting the better of Edmund, he shoots a carrier pigeon and is soon up for Court Martial after Baldrick drops him in it. Things are made worse when it turns out the pigeon was Melchett’s prized pet, ‘Speckled Jim’. Baldrick hatches a cunning plan to help Edmund escape, but this comes to nothing when his escape kit turns out to be useless, containing a toy duck amongst other things. Luckily, George’s Uncle Rupert has just been made Minister of War and is able to get Blackadder acquitted, only for him to end up being ordered on another certain death mission.
The final episode of the final season at last sees our boys receive the long dreaded orders. They’re going over the top. Blackadder’s last attempt to escape the front line sees him claiming to have gone mad, sticking two pencils up his nose, a pair of pants on his head, and answering every question with the word ‘wibble’. A wonderful episode, enormously respectful to all those that gave their lives in pursuit of our freedom, and a fitting end to a great TV show.
For me this is it. The best of Blackadder. A great episode that sees Edmund take on a new man-servant by the name of Bob. Which is short for Kate. Blackadder soon finds himself falling in love with Bob and is all set to wed until his best man, the flamboyant Lord Flashheart (played by Rik Mayall) whisks Bob away from Edmund, leaving him alone with Baldrick and Percy. A great episode not only for Rowan Atkinson’s performance and pronunciation of the name ‘Bob’ (I know you’re doing it while you read this!) but as the first episode of the second season it introduces the new faces and, most importantly, shows the massive improvement from the first season and made us all realise there was plenty of comedy gold yet to come from Edmund and co.