Series 1, Episode 2
Oil Title
Air date 16 November 1982
Written by Ben Elton, Rik Mayall and Lise Mayer
Directed by Paul Jackson
Episode Guide


As they settle into their new house and allocate the bedrooms, Vyvyan announces that he has struck oil in the cellar, and instantly forms a coalition with Mike (whom Vyvyan calls "El Presidente") to extract the oil, using Rick and Neil as well-digging slaves following Vyvyan hitting Rick briskly between the legs with a cricket bat (Rick: "Ha! You missed both my legs!"). After Neil unwittingly injures Vyvyan with a pickaxe blow through the head, he and Rick prompt a workers' revolution which is ultimately proved futile by a demanding benefit band and, in a post-credits scene, Vyvyan's admission that it was all a lie. Meanwhile, Mike discovers Buddy Holly in his new room, who has apparently survived the plane crash by parachuting and crashing through the roof--in fact, he is still found hanging upside down from the ceiling by his parachute. Having survived since the 1950s by eating a steady diet of beetles, he proceeds to sing a song ("Koo Koo Daddy Longlegs") about his diet.

The episode featured a performance from post punk band The Cure, with a member of the Balowski family as their singer.

Edited sceneEdit

When the episode was originally aired, an extended scene was shown at the basement oil well involved Vyvyan criticising Rick for not working hard enough, and then head butting the ground to speed up the digging (which then leads to Neil accidentally putting the pick axe through Vyvyan's head). In VHS and DVD releases, this scene has been edited to just show the pickaxe event and aftermath. The scene began with a Beatles song playing on Rick's radio, so the reason for its omission may be a failure by the BBC to secure broadcast rights for the music. A similar problem afflicted the re-release of Cash on DVD.


click here for transcript of this episode.