The grim repeaper looms out of the woods.

“Hey why are you shaking like that? Didn’t you hear the chorus of that song?”

It’s Cartoon Friday, again!

As I mentioned on Monday, comedian and actor Rik Mayall has died. Best known for his roles in British comedies like The Young Ones and Blackadder, ironically one of his last appearances was as the main voice actor for the short animation Don’t Fear Death.

A fast-paced comedy arguing the joys of being dead, aided by a montage of corpses and a dance-crazed Grim Reaper.

Rik Mayall
Marc Silk
Myles McLeod

Directed and Animated by Louis Hudson
Written and Produced by Ian Ravenscroft
Associate Producer – Ed Bye
Sound – Mark Ashworth (
Music – Rob Connor (
Animation – Ross Butter, Jo Hepworth, Ian Whittle
Animation Assistant – Alex Jolliffe
Voice Recording – Guilt Free
Post Productions Services – Munky

The cartoon was created by Dice Productions, an award-winning cartoon production house from the UK. They had this to say about Mayall’s death and the timing of the project:

The sudden and tragic death of Rik Mayall has been a loss for generations of comedy fans and has robbed the world of one its most irreplaceable humans. Thankfully, the morbidly ironic fact that Don’t Fear Death is now one of his last projects hasn’t been lost. It’s nice of people to think that this would have been a fitting two-fingers to the world on the way out.

From my point of view it’s hard to tell if the humour of the film’s been tainted as Ian and I felt quite close to him. He was generous and supportive to us in the short time we spent with him. We had planned further projects and it looked like he was set to have a strong new wave of output. I was particularly looking forward to Richard Herring’s influence on Rik in Man Down, an old git take on Bottom would have been lovely, and he had a mine of subtlety in his acting that had barely been harnessed in 20 years. Maybe everyone else can just see his vast body of work and incredible life for what it is.

I just keep hoping that he faked it and has been in on the joke the whole time.

Thanks to the AVClub for the cartoon tip.

What’s your favorite media dealing with the subject of mortality? I was a huge fan of Six Feet Under, which I marathoned long after it aired. I agree with critics who say it has one of the best endings ever on TV.

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Photo by Ruth Hartnup released under a Creative Commons license.

Kit OConnell

Kit OConnell

Kit O’Connell is a gonzo journalist and radical troublemaker from Austin, Texas. He is the Associate Editor and Community Manager of Shadowproof. Kit's investigative journalism has appeared in Truthout, MintPress News and