It’s had nearly 100 million views worldwide – making it the most-watched British comedy of the decade, according to a tweet shared by creator Ricky Gervais at the end of 2021.
The show also secured the comedy prize at the National Television Awards in 2021, fending off competition from shows such as Sex Education, The Vicar Of Dibley and Friday Night Dinner.
Gervais has said he is “gutted” there will be no more seasons of his hit show after its third and final run - released on 14 January - but it is right to “end on this high”.
He said he would do a third series of After Life if it was a “demanded encore”, and the creator of shows including The Office and Extras recently admitted he “secretly” wanted to do another season of the dark comedy.
To celebrate the return - and to mourn the demise - of After Life, here are 30 great quotes from Gervais.
30 of the best Ricky Gervais quotes
“Piracy doesn’t kill music, boy bands do.”
“Remember, if you don’t sin, then Jesus died for nothing.”
“It seems to be true, particularly in middle America, that those most militant about using up fossil fuels, don’t actually believe in fossils.”
“I like a drink as much as the next man. Unless the next man is Mel Gibson.”
“First of December, World Aids Day... I don’t think it’ll ever take off like Christmas.”
“Do commandos not wear pants? They must wear pants, don’t they?”
“I could solve the world’s problems if I… cared.”
“Mondays are fine. It’s your life that sucks.”
“Give a man a fish, and he’ll probably follow you home expecting more fish.”
“I’d like to thank God for making me an atheist.”
“Where there’s a will – there’s a relative!”
“If your boss is getting you down, look at him through the prongs of a fork and imagine him in jail.”
“Remember, being healthy is basically dying as slowly as possible.”
“Same sex marriage is not a gay privilege, it’s equal rights. Privilege would be something like gay people not paying taxes. Like churches don’t.”
“I can’t find someone funny whom I don’t like. Hitler told great jokes.”
“Please don’t worship me. I’m just an ordinary guy, with lots of followers trying to spread my message. Sort of like Jesus Christ I guess.”
“I can have a go at the French cause I’m half French half English with a stupid name like Gervais. No I am, I’m half French half English and um I’ve got qualities of both, French and English which is good, so… I am crap in bed but at least I’ve got bad breath.”
“iPhones are Barbie Dolls for grown men. You carry them around, dress them up in little outfits, accessorise, & get a new one every year.”
“Remember, when you are dead, you do not know you are dead. It is only painful for others. The same applies when you are stupid.”
“America champions the underdog. We champion the underdog until he’s not the underdog anymore, and he annoys us.”
“For any of you who don’t know, the Golden Globes are just like the Oscars, but without all that esteem. The Golden Globes are to the Oscars what Kim Kardashian is to Kate Middleton. A bit louder, a bit trashier, a bit drunker, and more easily bought.”
“Avoid employing unlucky people – throw half of the pile of CVs in the bin without reading them.”
“It’s gonna be a night of partying and heavy drinking. Or as Charlie [Sheen] calls it: breakfast.”
“You won’t burn in hell. But be nice anyway.”
“It seems like everything this year was three-dimensional, except the characters in The Tourist.”
“You have to be 100% behind someone, before you can stab them in the back.”
“My greatest hero is Nelson Mandela. What a man. Incarcerated for 25 years, he was released in 1990 and he hasn’t re-offended. I think he’s going straight, which shows you that prison does work.”
“Following someone on Twitter and asking them to tweet about something else is like stalking someone and asking them to go a different route.”
“I’ve never worked out what the moral of Humpty Dumpty is. I can only think of: don’t sit on a wall, if you’re an egg.”
“My wealth and happiness would suggest that God definitely does love me. If he existed of course. Which he doesn’t.”
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