From humble radio beginnings to defusing a hostage situation, take a closer look at Alan’s incredible life
This Time With Alan Partridge, Monday 25 February, 9.30pm, BBC One HD (CH 101/108). Also available for 30 days in Catch Up > Channels > BBC iPlayer
The biggest TV comeback of 2019 takes place this week, as a certain Norfolk-based broadcaster/writer/Lexus owner makes his long-awaited return to the BBC in brand new series This Time With Alan Partridge.
Oh, how we’ve missed our Alan. Having only emerged from the wilds of Norwich a scant few times in the past 20-odd years in a handful of appearances and a feature film, he’s “bouncing back” (again) to the world of TV in a hilarious six-part series. This time around, Partridge (Steve Coogan) stars as the guest host of popular magazine show This Time. Expect a line-up of bizarre special guests, a co-host with a penchant for stealing Alan’s jokes and segments about burning issues such as the importance of washing your hands.
Has Partridge lost any of the cringe factor after being away from the Beeb for so long? Of course not. But, as Coogan notes, the character has evolved since he was last on national telly.
“Alan does reflect the times,” says Coogan, who co-wrote the new series with brothers Neil and Rob Gibbons. “The good thing is he doesn’t stay the same. He tries to be in tune with the zeitgeist. We can adapt him and his attitudes to the times.”
“Twenty years ago he was a reactionary, right-wing character. Now, he’s a bit more like David Cameron – he’s economically conservative but he understands you’ve got to be socially liberal. He tries to be on message with things, but he’s not really.”
With a long and varied career – not to mention a compellingly disastrous personal life – Alan Partridge remains one of British comedy’s most legendary characters. Here, we take a closer look at the Partridge story in all its messy, embarrassing, wince-inducing glory. Just click/hover on the images below to find out more…
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Image credit: This Time With Alan Partridge © BBC Studios – Photographer: Andy Seymour
I'm Alan Partridge © BBC 2002
Knowing Me Knowing You © BBC
The Day Today © BBC