Sharp-tongued comic performer known for playing sardonic characters on English TV. Atkinson began his career writing with Richard Curtis (who went on to script much of Atkinson's subsequent work) and performing in comedy revues throughout England. This led to a stint on the celebrated comedy series, "Not the Nine O'Clock News," for which he wrote and acted. Atkinson became famous starring in "The Blackadder," a BBC "situation tragedy" co-written with Curtis. The show spawned three sequel series--"Blackadder II," "Blackadder the Third" and "Blackadder Goes Forth"--which chronicled the life of the initially aristocratic Edmond Blackadder and his gradual descent down the English social ladder. Miranda Richardson, Hugh Laurie and Stephen Fry co-starred with Atkinson in the show's various incarnations.