All the four seasons of The Black Adder have six episodes. I have noticed that in the second episode of every season, the Black Adder almost dies or it is at least said that he is going to die - and then - he somehow just manages to live.

Is there some kind of pattern here? Do all the first, third, fourth, fifth and sixth episodes also have something in common?

Or something along those lines?

  • 1
    There are no fifth and sixth seasons (sadly). – System Down Jan 7 '13 at 15:45
  • @SystemDown I mean Episodes and not seasons. – user1356 Jan 8 '13 at 10:46
  • 1
    There are certainly running gags. Not a complete answer, but some patterns include Baldric's "Cunning plans", the appearance of the cross-dressed 'Bob' and the womanizer who sweeps her off her feet, the repeated motif of turnips, and repeated use of some incompetent leader figure who Black Adder is subordinate to (in order of season, the king, the queen, the prince of Wales, and the general). Not sure about episodic patterns though. – B. Elliott Feb 6 '13 at 8:02
  • @B.Elliott I'm fairly sure you've got enough to make an answer there! – Liath Sep 27 '13 at 8:00
  • the only "pattern" im aware of is in the last episode of every series, all or nearly all of the main characters are killed, all except percy and baldrick in series 1, everyone died in series 2, baldrick and blackadder himself actually survived series 3, prince george died in a duel, and of course the "going over the top " scene in series 4, which is cosidered to be a tearjerker moment in british tv history, it is a powerful scene, i hope this helps – alan Jan 5 '14 at 4:49

I'm not aware of any major common patterns that run throughout the series. There are a few similarities, but I wouldn't call them patterns. TVTropes has a page of similarities across the series. Using my own knowledge and that page, the similarities include:

  1. Same actors, obviously, in different roles/time periods.

  2. Same melody in the theme tune, though changed to suit the "style" of the period being portrayed.

  3. Poor rewriting of history, with large amounts of artistic license

  4. Each of the series ends with the "bad guy" winning

  5. Baldrick's catchphrase

  6. Idiosyncratic Episode Naming (e.g. titles of season 2 episodes are one word long, season 3 uses the style of The Noun and the Noun), etc.

  7. Oddly small organisations (the Queen's staff, Captain Blackadder's men) etc.

Those are just some of the common patterns, but the link has more. I fully admit some of them are quite a stretch, but they're certainly all that I'm aware of.

  1. Blackadder is always the schemer
  2. Baldric is always his dumber counterpart
  3. Blackadder is always subservient to another character - The King, The Prince, The Queen, The General, etc.
  4. The authority character always has a counterpart who more or less hates BlackAdder (Melchett, Darling, etc)

And almost always:

Blackadder dies in the end

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