Do you remember Mr Bean? I’m sure you do, you’d have to be living under the rock not to know him. His crazy and sometimes (okay, most of the time if not every time) unorthodox solutions to everyday situations that almost always gets him into trouble and brings a bunch of trouble to others has brought great laughter and joy into our lives, and the day he retired was a sad day for most of us.
But other than his foolish antics and hilarious comedic actions, do you know anything about Mr Bean? Let us attempt to go back in time to find out more about the history behind Mr Bean and the series, shall we?
Mr Bean made an appearance as early as 1979.
A similar character Rowan Box played by Atkinson appeared in a one-off appearance on the sitcom “Canned Laughter” in 1979. A sketch featuring Mr Bean was also performed at Edinburgh Fringe in the early 1980s. It’s amazing how a character from the 1980s can still capture the hearts of little kids far away in Asia even in the 2000s.
Mr Bean (Rowan Atkinson) was one of the first pioneers in building a career while studying.
He crafted the character Mr Bean when he was studying for his master’s degree in Oxford University. Yes, he’s like the predecessor of Mark Zuckerberg and other notable people who became multimillionaires based on ideas that were conceived in school.
Mr Bean, an Englishman, in one of his earliest appearances, insisted on being on the French section of “Just for Laughs” in 1987.
Having no French dialogue, the programme co-ordinators were puzzled and leery but eventually place him in the French section. Interestingly, Atkinson wanted to test Mr Bean in front of a non-speaking audience, and it seems to be a hit.
Mr Bean is heavily influenced by Monsieur Hulot, a character created by French comedian and director Jacques Tati and is similar to the silent films of old, relying on physical comedy.
This has also led to the benefit of Mr Bean series being distributed worldwide without significant changes to the dialogue. This could have been a factor behind Mr Bean not saying much except for making unintelligible mumbles and grumbles in the series.
Mr Bean could easily have been Mr Cauliflower.
Honestly, when I first heard this, it was a nightmare to me. No, just no. Mr Bean will never be Mr Bean if he’s not called Mr Bean. But get this, apparently the name was not decided until after the first program has been released, and they were looking at all vegetable related names, one of which is “Mr Cauliflower”.
Mr Bean’s car was supposed to be orange, not green.
Who could forget Mr Bean’s car with its latest security – padlock and removal of steering wheel – and a frigging armchair on top of the car? In the show, Mr Bean’s car was a 1976 BMC Mini MK II, Austin Citron Green in color with a matte black bonnet. It was supposed to be an orange 1969 BMC Mini MK II but the car was destroyed in an off-screen crash at the end of the first episode.
Mr Bean was supposed to retire somewhere around November 2012.
In November 2012, Rowan Atkinson told Daily’s Telegraph Review of his intention to retire Mr Bean because “someone in their 50s being childlike is a little sad.”
Fortunately, even now in 2015, Mr Bean is still active attending a funeral along Ben Miller and Rebecca Front in a sketch for BBC Red Nose Day.
I’d like to say that just for you Mr Bean, I won’t mind you behaving so obnoxiously and childishly even when you’re 70. What say you?