My Analysis of the Editing in The Young Ones - Sick (episode spoilers)

in #editing5 years ago

For a video editing course, I had to analyse the editing in a TV show and I chose an episode of The Young Ones.
If you haven't seen The Young Ones, go and watch it, it's funny.
I analysed the episode Sick and I thought I'd share my analysis with all of you. Note taht there are spoilers for what happens in the episode in this analysis but the spoilers end there as The Young Ones doesn't have an ongoing plot to speak of - it isn't that sort of show.

Here we go:


The episode started with the theme song, which is a real song changed for the show (cover) with sound effects added. It is a cover of "The Young Ones" by Cliff Richard. The theme song does suit the show and it relates to the show but not this episode, given they also have Rik obsessed with Cliff Richard. The first scene opens with them sick in bed going "aah" all looking in the mirror to the tune of twist and shout and then a little bit of twist and shout plays in the background of a small part of the scene.

The colours of the show are mostly a dull mostly pastel colour theme, which seems to suit the theme of four university students living together in Britain well. It works for the show and the tone of the show does get touched on in this episode.

There is quite a bit of cutting between scenes. In the start they are arguing while they are sick and it cuts from showing one of them in bed, to showing another in bed and back and forth. The show also uses non-sequiturs where random things happen. Sometimes these overlap with the main plot and other times they don't relate to the main plot at all but are brought about either situationally or by focusing the camera or zooming in on an item within the show and letting it go from there. There were some of these in this episode, but not quite as many as in some others. Animation and props are frequently used in this show and can happen as part of the plot or as part of the non-sequiturs. The toilet was animated in an early scene in this episode which was related to the main plot, but was inconsequential.

Music is used interestingly in this show, as they have bands come on the show and perform and sometimes break the fourth wall about the fact the band is there. This is unusual in a scripted show. The music sometimes seems random but other times blends with the show or is used in a humourous fashion. There are often cuts so that the show shows the band playing, then shows what the characters are doing, and back and forth between the various aspects. This episode used Our House by Madness. Madness were on the street performing the song. Mike addresses the camera about the music. The music fits into the plot as the main characters unwittingly caused a street fight and the fighting contrasts with the song choice. When the band first says "Our House" it zooms in on the window of where the main character's live and it zooms out to show Madness again. The show cuts to scenes of the characters doing things throughout the music and the music is made quieter but still playing as the characters still have dialogue. It cuts to the band, then to Mike at the chemist and back and forth appropriately. The 4th wall is broken with Neil and Vyvyen discussing medicine for their illness - "I hope Mike comes back with the cure", "No Neil, it's Madness this week". They do a good job of reducing the volume during talking scenes and increasing it again afterwards without it being jarring. The song ends with the street brawl expanding and the band getting involved in it.

There is some fake destruction on the show, some likely caused by props and some via effects.
There is use of zooming within the show too, often to exaggerate the effect of what a character is saying. Neil reveals his parents are coming for tea and that was something to make the characters panic (they currently had a crazy murderer in their house but that was less concerning to them than that). It zoomed in on him when he revealed the reason he was freaking out was because, in his words "My parents are coming round for tea". This was a good use of zoom. The following scene then used music again. It was the ending theme. However, they edited the video and music to have a speed change as both the video and music was sped up as they were doing a rush clean of the house. During their cleaning spree, Vyvyan opened a cupboard and found witches in there in a parody of MacBeth. The whole screen had a green filter over it with the scene having a green tinge over the whole of it. Vyvyan put a dead head in their pot and a smoke effect came from the pop as he dropped it in. This episode was also edited to have hidden pictures for some reason also as there was a white bird at 20:44 and a frog at 30:03. I do not know the purpose of these easter eggs but they are inserted in the middle of the video clips.

After Neil's parents arrive, we get the first rael contradiction in the colour scheme. 4th wall breaking occurred in a major does after his parent's arrived and his mother said they should be on a nice show like "The Good Life". WE then get a colourful animated intro for the good life with pinks and purples which is a major contradiction from the duller, more pastel colour theme of The Young Ones. Appropriately, Vyvyan destroys it, calling the good life out for being too nice a show. They end up inside the Good Life in a parody after this and it is mostly the original colour scheme of The Young Ones but Mike is dressed slightly brighter, with some yellow in his clothing.

Again there is some more animation and use of props, with stuff like an animated gnome.

During the Good life parody there is a sudden change to night time. The change is quite blue with the sky being dark blue but everything having a blue tinge to it, suggesting it is likely some kind of blue filter, however it would have been done best at the time.

We then end up with Neil growing from some plants (after being killed by Rik accidentally) and we end up with multiples of him growing from the plants. A second Neil sits up next to the first one and more appear. They use effects to make multiple versions of the same character within the one scene.

The episode also uses voice overs rather than just characters talking. This is used for Rik's conscience at one point.

These were all of the major uses of effects, colours and music in the episode. It worked well as the music was contradictory to scenes at times, speed changes were used to show them urgently cleaning, the colours were used to contrast (good life scene) and the story was combined well with all of these elements.


Well really interesting. Its fun reading this post. An upvote from me... keep posting. I must say can't stop reading it...

Thank you, and I will keep posting. I'm glad you enjoyed my analysis of the editing in the episode. Have you seen the episode mentioned?

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