Accident (Bottom)

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Episode no. Series One
Episode 006
Directed by Ed Bye
Written by Ade Edmondson & Rik Mayall
Produced by Ed Bye
Original air date 29 October 1991 (1991-10-29)
Guest appearance(s)
Episode chronology
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"Accident" is the sixth and final episode of the first series of British sitcom Bottom. It was first broadcast on Monday 28 October 1991.[1] This episode sees the first appearance of Eddie's "real friends" Spudgun (Steven O'Donnell) and Dave Hedgehog (Christopher Ryan).


Richie breaks his leg, but he is determined not to let it spoil his birthday celebrations.[2]


The episode begins with Eddie sitting down at the breakfast table. Richie then enters the room in his pyjamas singing "Happy Birthday to me" much to Eddie's dismay. Richie then begins his annual birthday "routine" of reading what are obviously forged cards (Some allegedly from Sue Carpenter and General Pinochet) the same ones Eddie claims that Richie received last year. One of the cards is from ABBA with "Happy Christmas 1973" written inside. Another is clearly forged but appears to be from the people of the Soviet Union "In grateful thanks to comrade Richie". Eddie points out that Richie has simply written it himself and put all the R's the wrong way round, Trying to save face, Richie insists that the is how Russian is written. Richie asks Eddie where his birthday gift is and, after annoying Richie with a couple of gag-gifts (Richie's comb that he lost last week and the TV remote), Eddie hands Richie a piece of paper with the words "Madame Swish 3:30" written on it, Richie, believing it to be a prostitute's card, heaps praise on Eddie, so initially excited is he at the prospect of finally getting sex. However, it soon comes to light that Madame Swish is actually a horse running in the 3:30 at Kempton. Richie gives Eddie £20 to put on the horse, with odds of 10/1.

Whilst Richie puts up his birthday decorations, Eddie returns after the big race and successfully fools Richie into thinking that the £20 bet Richie put on the race has left him with £2 in winnings. As Eddie tosses over the winnings, Richie falls off the ladder he is standing on and breaks his leg. After trying to overcome the problem with Eddie's assistance (which actually leaves Richie worse off) Richie is forced to go to hospital.

The pair return from the hospital - with Richie bandaged up and in a wheelchair - at 7pm, when Richie is expecting his party guests. As the clock strikes 7 there is a knock at the door - however only Eddie's "real" friends Dave Hedgehog and Spudgun await. Richie realises he has no friends and invites the pair to stay, following which he insists the group play "Sardines" - a variant of hide-and-seek in which one person hides and the rest have to find him, and when they find him they hide with him. However, being in a wheelchair, Richie needs the other three to hide him in the upstairs cupboard, and they must do so with their eyes closed. Once they have hidden Richie and counted to ten, Eddie, Spudgun and Dave instead decide to spend the night in front of the television, drinking the liquor Eddie has bought with the winnings he stole from Richie.

Richie is ecstatic after being in the upstairs cupboard for over 5 hours, believing it to be a world record, but soon after he gets bored and attempts to rejoin them downstairs. Due to his immobility, he falls down the stairs, crashing through the cloakroom door and breaking his other leg, much to the amusement of the other three. A drunken Spudgun then vomits on the injured Richie, falling on him at the same time.

Richie's second mishap just so happens to occur at the same time as last orders at the local pub, so Eddie invites the regulars around for a quick party. Eddie is just in the middle of having the crowd in stitches whilst doing impersonations of Richie - with a mop end on his head and saying "Oh! Oh! why won't anyone ever have it off with me? Maybe it's because I'm a big fat ugly bastard with a microscopic penis!" - just as Richie (now with both legs in casts) enters the room, although he is oblivious to Eddie's mockery of him. After Eddie convinces him that all of his friends have turned up for his party after all, Richie cheers up and attempts to boss over the activities. After attempting to divest a female guest of her blouse, he is stopped by the woman's boyfriend who then proceeds to get everyone together to give Richie the bumps. As they all throw him into the air, Richie hits the ceiling and his casts shatter, ending the episode with a close-up of him screaming in pain.

Continuity and Production Errors[edit]

  • Richie breaks his leg by falling off a stepladder, landing on his front. In the next shot, he is seen on his back.
  • Following on from the above, Eddie tries to put Richie's leg back in place by tying the leg to the door with string, and slams the door. As he does this, the string pulls Richie and he hits the door. If watching in slow motion, once the door is slammed, Richie's jeans rip, revealing the fake leg, and Mayall's real leg behind it. Continuing in slow motion, a trolley can be seen under Richie as he is pulled across the floor.
  • Eddie, Hedgehog and Spudgun help Richie get up the stairs in his wheelchair to play Sardines. When Spudgun leans on the wall, the whole stage shakes.
  • It is often stated, notably in the stage shows, that Eddie is unable to read or write. However, in this episode, he is seen to write 'I'm sorry, I'm a twat... ten times.'
  • Eddie, Hedgehog and Spudgun end up watching Eddie's Emmerdale Farm compilation on video. But Eddie doesn't install a video player until Carnival, the final episode of series three.


  • Richie claims at one point that he 'doesn't have time to put on (his) girl bait underpants.' This is a reference to The Young Ones episode Summer Holiday, where it is revealed that Rik Mayall's character Rick also owns a similar pair of pants.


  1. ^ "Bottom: Accident -". Retrieved 2008-12-23. 
  2. ^ Bottom Series One (DVD). BBC Worldwide. 2003. 

External links[edit]