Ricky Gervais is best described as the marmite of the comedy world; you either love him or loathe him to the point of soiling yourself. Hey, we're not here to judge, we're here to inform.
Everyones favourite/most hated English comedian was born in the city of Reading in 1961. As with most English people, he spent his youth eating fish and chips, moaning about the weather and playing cricket (it's like baseball, except it's nothing like baseball). At University, he chose to move from studying Biology to studying Philosophy, as Biology took up 40 hours of his week, whilst Philosophy only took up 7, which is, of course, the right way to decide what course to take in higher education.
"40 hours? Fuck that, what else you got?"
Before his career as an award winning writer and comedian, he was part of an 80's pop group called Seona Dancing. As you'd expect, this failed miserably, since no-one wanted to listen to a man singing whilst wearing make up and wearing tight clothes.
Ricky moved on to greener pastures when he signed up to host a radio show at XFM. Needing a co-host, he grabbed the first CV that appeared on his desk, which just so happened to belong to Stephen Merchant, who, as described by Ricky, was a "lanky, goggle eyed freak". Unfortunately, Ricky was a bit of a loose cannon, in a sort of toned down, not-a-loose-cannon-at-all sort of way, which resulted in Steve quitting the show out of fear of getting fired. Seems like a pointless exercise, but hey, what are you going to do, eh?
Yeah, like this guy would have trouble getting work!
The two remained good friends, and developed an idea from a character Ricky invented called "Seedy Boss". The idea became The Office, a mockumentary about an Office in Slough (don't look up Slough, it's as appealing as it sounds). The series was a hit, gaining them many awards, including a Golden Globe and two Emmys, as well as a Globe for Ricky himself. After The Office, the two returned to XFM, this time joined by a round headed demi-moron called Karl Pilkington.
Head like a fucking orange!
The trio gained a fanbase, mainly thanks to Karls idiocy and Rickys constant quest to feed him knowledge. Of course, things changed when Extras was conceived. The show was centered around the character of Andy Millman, an extra who dreams of one day being a big star. It was famed for featuring many celebrity cameos, and was a testament to how persuasive Ricky and Steve were.
Pictured: Non-complience with Mr Gervais
After the success of the XFM shows, Ricky decided to start a podcast/audiobook series, centered around Karl and his idiocy. The show featured such hit sgements as Monkey News, Karls Diary and Rockbusters. The majority of the podcasts consisted of Ricky and Steve shouting at Karl for making up stories about chimps doing bizarre things, the standout story being about a simian builder in the middle of an undisclosed city, with Karl coining the lie: "And that's where they get the saying 'Chimp off the old block'", showing a great misunderstanding of sayings and quotes, which is further explored when he claimed that Descartes once said "I know I'm alive, because I dream", which Karl dismissed as pointless, since it doesn't always work, as "Ants don't sleep."
Above: 49 year old man wrestles former Radio producer
The series of podcasts and audiobooks were so successful, HBO commisioned an animated version to be aired in the USA and the UK. Whilst this had unending possibilites (okay, not really unending), it was really only an opportunity for Ricky to sit on Karl in cartoon form.
Honestly, Rickys television work puts his film work to shame. His filmography consists of a couple of minor roles, two major roles in under-achieving films. However, he and Steve recently wrote, directed and starred in a low budget film called Cemetery Junction. Whilst the box office was underwhelming, the film is actually pretty good, in a depressing, 1970's Britain sort of way.
Oh yeah, Voldemort's in it too!
His Stand-up career consists of four shows in England (Animals, Politics, Fame and Science) and two American shows. This opened him up to presenting the Golden Globes, which he did. Hilariously. Of course, Hollywood didn't think so, calling him "rude", "mean" and "a bully". Turns out Celebrities, on the whole, can't take a joke.
"Hey, you, Gary Busey, you're insane!"
"Guilty as charged, Rick, guilty as charged!"