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Lord Flashheart is the name of two fictional characters who appeared in two episodes of the popular BBC sitcom Blackadder. They are both played by Rik Mayall.

The first Lord Flashheart appeared in a single scene of the first episode of the second series of Blackadder. His descendant, Squadron Commander the Lord Flashheart, appeared as a major character in the fourth series in an episode called "Private Plane". In the credits of this episode the name Flashheart is written Flasheart.

Character[edit]

Lord Flashheart is boisterous, arrogant and appears very attractive to all the women he comes in contact with. He is extremely popular among his peers, and immediately becomes the centre of attention whenever he enters a room, usually by bursting through a wall in a spectacular fashion. The two Flashhearts are stereotypes of a certain kind of hero (the Elizabethan swashbuckler and the World War I RFC flying ace, respectively), slanted to emphasise the negative qualities associated with such characters such as narcissism, sexism, homophobia, and promiscuity.[citation needed]

Rik Mayall later recalled,

I was surprised when they asked me. Very honouring that they asked me. 'Alright,' I said, 'I'll do it as long as I get more laughs than Rowan.'"[1]

His catchphrase is to shout "Woof!" or "Let's do-oo-ooooo it!" very loudly, while thrusting his pelvis suggestively. He commonly uses sexual innuendoes in ordinary conversation, for example, "Am I pleased to see you, or did I just put a canoe in my pocket?"

Flashheart is inspired in part, in name and personality, by Harry Flashman, the protagonist of George MacDonald Fraser's popular Flashman novels, also a swashbuckling womaniser with an exaggerated sense of "heroism".[citation needed]

Mayall played a Napoleonic War-era character very strongly reminiscent of Flashheart in a 2011 advert for Bombardier Bitter, although the character is referred to as "Bombardier Bedford".[2]

Character Development[edit]

Blackadder II[edit]

Flashheart's first appearance was in the season two episode "Bells". He is initially introduced, in conversation, by Lord Blackadder as his most trusted friend, and he is chosen to be Blackadder's best man. Lord Percy, while expressing regret on Blackadder's choice of best man, describes Flashheart as being "The best sword, the best shot, the best sailor and the best kisser in the kingdom". However, once he makes his extravagant last-minute entrance to Blackadder's wedding and throws Percy through the door, he flirts outrageously with The Queen, Nursie and even Baldrick, who is dressed as a bridesmaid ("Thanks bridesmaid. Like the beard. Gives me something to HANG on to!"), then insults Lord Melchett ("Still worshipping God? Last thing I heard, he started worshipping me!") He then steals the bride — but only after they swap clothes, since she decided she liked trousers better than skirts, and he claimed to have always felt more at ease in a dress.

The song over the final credits of "Bells" included the lines "Lord Flashheart, Lord Flashheart, I wish you were the star; Lord Flashheart, Lord Flashheart, You're sexier by far."

Blackadder Goes Forth[edit]

In the fourth series episode "Private Plane", Flashheart reappears as a World War I flying ace. His full rank and title in the fourth series is Squadron Commander The Lord Flashheart. After running out of fuel and landing near Captain Blackadder's trench, Lord Flashheart proceeds to boast about his aerial victories and sexual conquests. Although Baldrick and Lt. George listen in rapt admiration, Blackadder makes no effort to conceal his disgust. However, hoping to escape no man's land, Blackadder, Baldrick and George all volunteer for the Royal Flying Corps.

When the three arrive in his squadron, Flashheart can hardly contain his contempt. He repeatedly refers to Blackadder as "Slackbladder" and calls Baldrick "The Mound of the Hound of the Baskervilles." While instructing them, Flashheart orders his new recruits to, "Treat your kite like you treat your woman... get inside her five times a day, take her to heaven and back." Disgusted, Blackadder retorts, "I am beginning to see why the Suffragette movement want the vote", upon which Flashheart promptly remarks that any woman willing to 'suffer a jet movement' from his pelvis can have his vote.

After Baldrick and Blackadder are shot down and captured by the Imperial German Army, Flashheart and Lieutenant George mount a rescue mission. However, Blackadder had been overjoyed that the war was finally over for him and pretended to be injured. Flashheart states that he finally understands. He says, "Just because I can give multiple orgasms to the furniture just by sitting on it doesn't mean I'm not sick of this damned war; the mud, the noise, the endless poetry."

Blackadder is deeply moved and asks, "Do you really feel this way, Flashheart?" Flashheart draws his revolver and screams, "Of course I don't feel that way! Now get out that door before I re-decorate that wall an interesting new colour called 'hint of brain!'" However, before they can "return to that lovely war," they are confronted by The Red Baron, "The Greatest Living German."

At last facing his greatest foe, the Baron (Adrian Edmondson) launches into a long-winded soliloquy about chivalry and honour. Without a word, Flashheart shoots the Baron dead and screams, "What a poof!" The group then returns to British lines.

Upon returning, Flashheart criticises Captain Darling for not attempting a rescue mission and then knocks him out with a head butt. Blackadder is greatly amused and the two part as friends. As soon as Flashheart is gone, however, Blackadder mutters, "Git!"

Blackadder: Back and Forth[edit]

Mayall also played a very Flashheart-like Robin Hood in the millennium special Blackadder: Back & Forth. He is accompanied by Will Scarlet (Sacha Bennett), Friar Tuck (Crispin Harris), Maid Marian (Kate Moss) and his band of Merry Men. Intending to rob a time travelling Blackadder and Baldrick, Robin is horrified when Blackadder begins rattling off the flaws with his lifestyle. However, Blackadder smugly continues, reminding the Merry Men that they face certain death if they're caught, live in total squalor in Sherwood Forest, yet give all they steal to the poor, who do nothing but "sit on their backsides," waiting for the next cash installment. Enraged, Robin shouts, "That is it! Shoot him, boys! I'm great and he's not!" However, the Merry Men realise that Blackadder is right about their lives being worthless and promptly shoot Robin full of arrows. In the aftermath, Maid Marian, smitten by the "gorgeous" Blackadder, proceeds to have sexual relations with him.

Later, however, Blackadder returns to the present and is horrified to learn that none of his friends have heard of Robin Hood. Worse, William Shakespeare had given up on writing after Blackadder accused him of causing four hundred years of misery by writing plays where everyone is "talking total crap", and England has been conquered by Napoleon Bonaparte. Frantic, Lord Blackadder runs back into the time machine screaming, "We've got to save Britain!"

Upon returning to Sherwood Forest, Blackadder asks Robin "There's something I've always wanted to ask you. How come you are so great?" Flattered, Robin retorts "Because I'm me!"

After fixing the time-line, however, Blackadder is informed by Archbishop Melchett, "Imagine, the slightest thing could alter the course of history. Imagine what damage an unscrupulous person could cause." Intrigued, Blackadder returns to the time machine with Baldrick. Later, he arrives at the Millennium celebrations as the absolute monarch King Edmund III. Accompanying him is, "Queen Marian of Sherwood," (Kate Moss). If Blackadder's queen is indeed Maid Marian, then it is likely that Robin Hood was killed again. This represents a sort of poetic justice for the Blackadders, finally getting one over on Lord Flashheart and getting the girl.

Footnotes[edit]

Category:Blackadder characters Category:Fictional English people Category:Fictional air force personnel Category:Fictional aviators Category:Fictional World War I veterans Category:Fictional characters introduced in 1985