There was a creepy fifth housemate lurking on the British TV show, “The Young Ones”.
Where this gets strange, the crew and fans don’t remember her.
The Young Ones was a seminal, anarchic comedy series that ran on the BBC for two series between 1982 and 1984. When the show resurged, in 2016, fans started rewatching it for nostalgic reasons. It soon became clear that there was a character on the show that no one remembered. If you look carefully in the first five episodes you can see a mysterious person with long black hair who appears sitting against walls in the background of quite a few scenes.
A fifth housemate appearing at least once in every episode of the entire first series. She never moves, she never speaks, you never see her face, and her presence is never acknowledged by any of the other characters, but she’s there.
When the writers were contacted they had no idea who the person was. One of the three directors, Geoff Posner, did remember the cast member and stated that he and fellow director Paul Jackson thought it would be funny to have some ghostly figure in the background of some scenes that were never explained or talked about.
But Posner’s explanation doesn’t quite make sense. How could Ben Elton, who not only co-wrote the series but also appeared in ep 1, have failed to notice the inclusion of this character? He himself stated this about it, “I have absolutely no idea what you are talking about, I’m afraid. There were four housemates plus the landlord”.
The actress playing the ghost had to be there on set for every episode bar one. There must have been times where they were sorting her costume, her hair, and getting her into position for certain shots. Although she is never acknowledged on screen, her actually appearing there must have taken more effort than Posner seems to suggest. When Elton was on set you’d think he’d have noticed this.
The ghost – or fifth housemate, as she appears in the picture above – is once again front and center and no-one seems to have noticed. In fact, no-one seems to have noticed to such a degree that this image seems to have been used for years in articles referring to The Young Ones, without anyone questioning it. How can that be? How can so many fans not notice this until 2016? How has she possibly been missed for 34 years?
The character is not listed on the cast list and cannot be found in any database showing the actors name. No credit has been given to the actor for the role played on the show. The actor is not shown in any cast/crew photos. No one on set has acknowledged her. She has not been found in the credits or at fan sites.
Most mysterious of all, this weird 5th member was only an issue starting in 2016. Why not when the show was at its peak?