Classic TV Moments: The Young Ones: Washing Machines


Another in our occasional series focusing on classic moments from the TV archives. This time out it’s anarchic 1980’s sitcom The Young Ones, in this classic moment the boys come to a shocking conclusion, they smell. Mike the Cool Person (Christopher Ryan) decides that there’s nothing else for it, they have to go to the laundrette where they betray their inexperience with washing machines.

For a start, when Neil (Nigel Planer) goes to put the dirty clothes in, the machines spit them out in disgust. Hippy Neil, of course, believes that technology is ganging up on him and so Vyv (Ade Edmondson) takes over. But still the machines are repulsed by the washing machine and close their doors simultaneously as he attempts to put it in.

‘Oh dear, this calls for a very special blend of psychology and extreme violence.’

The psychology comes from pretending that Vyv’s laundry bag contains ‘all of Felicity Kendall’s underwear, which needs a good wash’. A washing machine, making a perverted gurgling noise, opens up to receive this potential treat and the boys grab the unfortunate domestic appliance and force the washing in.