When famous DJ Alan Partridge's radio station is taken over by a new media conglomerate, it sets in motion a chain of events which see Alan having to work with the police to defuse a potentially violent siege.
Tommy Saxondale is an ex-roadie with anger management issues and his own pest control business in Stevenage. Having survived a hostile divorce, Tommy now lives with his girlfriend Magz. ... See full summary »
Has its moments but not consistent enough to be as strong as Partridge can be, even if it is still funny
This one-off special from Sky is filmed in the style of the sort of local special that digital television has made drop off the radar a little – local programming. Growing up in Northern Ireland we had loads of it – recognisable accents and locations, but lower budgets and lower grade celebrities. In this local special Alan Partridge shows us round "his" Norwich, re-enacting debates in the city council chambers, driving to his workplace, visiting the local market stalls, going for a swim in the public baths and test-driving Land Rovers in the hope of getting one for free in return.
As someone who believes that Partridge is by far Coogna's best creation, I am always happy to see more of him whether it is webisodes or specials like this; he is such a great character – a real monster of insincerity and intolerance but polished up behind the fake smile of being a minor celebrity (which has just added unjustified entitlement to his list of flaws). The joy of the character is seeing beyond what is being said and having the cracks in his "personality" exposed; at its most accessible it is simply the foolish way he phrases and delivers stuff but at its finest it is all at the character level, with his frustration and short temper never being far away. There are bits of both of these things in this 45 minute special and as a result it is pretty funny. The wordplay and delivery is the focus though, although there is a constant air of insincerity to his overall character because the low budget shoot gives him plenty of asides where he ends the take early and unprofessionally.
The nature of the character is less of a constant than I would have liked, although there are a few moments where his short fuse is evident and his "man of the people" act is stressed when he is forced to deal with "the people" like he is in the marketplace. This side needed to be more consistent though – it works best when it runs all through the material like it would a real person, but here it tends to be something done rather than just feeling like it "is". This stops it being as strong as Partridge at his best but it is still pretty funny and I had a good laugh at least every 5 minutes and plenty of chuckles outside of that.
Probably not the place to start if you are new to the character, but for fans there is plenty to enjoy here as long as you accept this great character not quite performing at his best.
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