Steve Coogan is driving on thin ice

This Time with Alan PartridgeI’ve always wondered just how much of Alan Partridge’s pompous behaviour is a reflection of his creator, Steve Coogan. Sometimes the comedian seems to encourage it. 

Coogan has persuaded a magistrate not to hand out an automatic six-month driving ban (despite already notching up nine points on his licence) after being found guilty of speeding in Sussex.

Coogan claimed that filming for his forthcoming BBC series involved driving around Britain and that “it’s an artistic thing that he [Partridge] drives and that defines his character”.

He also argued that 15 or 20 professionals had been lined up to work, presumably suggesting an inability to drive would leave them jobless, if only for a while.

But what really startled me was that the judge appeared to agree and reduced the ban to just two months.

I think it’s worth recalling Coogan’s driving record. In 2012 he was found not guilty of speeding after it had initially “slipped his mind” that a friend had been driving; in 2016 he was fined and banned for 28 days for speeding in Brighton.

The chairwoman of the magistrates this time around said she had taken into account the “exceptional hardship” a lengthy ban would cause. What kind of “hardship”?

How wonderful for celebrities who can put forward defences of this type. Would the same argument work for ordinary drivers who don’t appear on television? Like delivery people, ambulance drivers, care workers and busy mums trying to combine a zero hours job with dropping their kids off at school.

I think we know the answer.

Source: Janet Street-Porter: Steve Coogan is driving on thin ice

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This Time with Alan Partridge: Steve Coogan comedy on ABC iview

The funniest show on British television came to an end after six glorious episodes this week — and as of today, it’s also available for Australian viewers to watch for free in full.

This Time With Alan Partridge marks the latest outing for the character that comedian Steve Coogan and Veep creator Armando Iannucci first devised way back in 1991.

Partridge is a consistently inept veteran light entertainment personality: ruled by ego, an appalling listener and cack-handed public speaker and yet somehow — perhaps by virtue of being a straight white man — he remains gainfully employed.

Alan’s got a new gig.

Source: This Time with Alan Partridge: Steve Coogan comedy on ABC iview

Alan’s got a new gig.Source:Supplied

In his latest outing, Alan has been handed a career lifeline: He’d been slumming it as a presenter on a North Norfolk digital radio station when he’s whisked back to the hallowed corridors of the BBC in London.

He’s the new stand-in co-host of weekday lifestyle show This Time, the show’s regular host having fallen ill.

Scene one, episode one and he’s already feeling the pressure:

Alan Partridge is back… and it’s about time!#ThisTime. Tonight. 9.30pm. @BBCOnepic.twitter.com/MvF23TYFcF— BBC Comedy (@bbccomedy) February 25, 2019

Partridge and perpetually chipper co-host Jennie Gresham have a total lack of chemistry, Gresham gamely trying to keep her program on the rails while her new co-host demonstrates time and time again he’s really not the man for this job.

It’s hilarious — and frequently ridiculous. Here’s Alan giving viewers an unsolicited demonstration of how to use a public toilet without ever once using your hands:

Alan Partridge’s Hands-Free Train Toilet Drill will revolutionise your life. #AlanPartridge #ThisTimepic.twitter.com/WVTXYPU4AF— BBC Comedy (@bbccomedy) February 25, 2019

Alan doing his best to build a rapport with a guest who can only be described as Quite Scottish:

Alan has always been a man of the people. #ThisTimepic.twitter.com/Ppb40MrbZG— BBC Comedy (@bbccomedy) March 11, 2019

Alan furiously trying to down an entire sandwich — seeded bread — during a brief commercial break:

“You’ll never break it down”#ThisTime with Alan Partridge, Monday night at 9:30pm on @BB

This Time with Alan Partridge star responds to Piers Morgan criticism: “I think it’s great!”

“I think it’s great!”

This Time with Alan Partridge star Susannah Fielding has responded to Piers Morgan’s criticisms of the series, saying she thinks it’s “great” that the Good Morning Britain host hit out.

Poor Piers got all in a tizzy about This Time, which sees Steve Coogan’s Partridge co-host a painfully awkward BBC magazine show with the long-suffering Jennie Gresham (Fielding).

“Very sad news [about] the new Alan Partridge show, called This Time, which obviously mocks me and Susanna,” Morgan fumed on GMB.

“I used to love Alan Partridge, he used to be hilarious, brilliant. It is now utterly unwatchable.” (Piers also predicted that This Time would be pulled off the air after three or four weeks. It wasn’t.)

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“I think it’s great!” Fielding said, when asked by Digital Spy about Morgan’s comments. “I think that’s probably exactly what we expected. [ . . . ]

Continue at: This Time with Alan Partridge star responds to Piers Morgan criticism: “I think it’s great!”

Review: There has never been a Partridge moment more genius than this

Steve Coogan as Alan Partridge

Despite my long acquaintance with the Partridge phenomenon, I find myself utterly unprepared for Alan’s practical demonstration of cardiopulmonary resuscitation.

Despite my long acquaintance with the Partridge phenomenon, I find myself utterly unprepared for Alan’s practical demonstration of cardiopulmonary resuscitation.

As Alan explains during his short filmed insert on CPR during This Time with Alan Partridge (BBC1); although the British Heart Foundation use a basic head-and-torso model for their training, Alan prefers a full-sized 35kg realistic human replica with workable joints for his monthly practice.

Lugging the petite, fully dressed female model from the loft of his spacious home, it slowly dawns on us, if not Alan, that this “replica” he purchased from his friend – the late Pate Gabbatiss – some years ago is in fact a sex doll, complete with full lips and generously proportioned mouthparts to which Alan eagerly “docks” in the initial stages of saving its life after a putative overdose.

In this scenario, Alan is rescuing his sister-in-law Eileen, who has OD’d because she hates his brother so very much. “Come on Eileen” is the heartfelt plea as he checks for pulse and breath. As a musical accompaniment to the saving of a silicone love doll’s life, Alan rejects the usual beat of “Stayin’ Alive” by the Bee Gees (“namby pamby”) in favour of Queen’s “Another One Bites The Dust”, a “pounding rock number that injects a welcome dose of realism”.

I am racking my mind to think of a funnier bit of Partridge/Steve Coogan over his eventful 28-year long career but can’t. The chocolate-sex session/dirty protest in the Linton Travel Tavern; the full stilton slammed into the face of BBC head of commissioning Tony Hayers; the “king and car” sequence on Mid-Morning Matters; hiding in the septic tank of the chemical toilet on the Radio Norfolk roadshow bus; conversations with Michael at the BP garage: all brilliant, but none more genius than this.

Quite unnecessarily, at the conclusion of Alan’s first-aid class he advises This Time viewers: “Don’t forget to clean the mouth.” Rinsing Eileen’s cavity may be relatively straightforward, but not cleansing the memory of the image of Alan Partridge pummelling a rather primly-dressed sex doll. It is a wonder that, with its poor head bouncing as it does on hard flooring, the doll retains a beatific smile throughout. Lovely stuff.

In that respect at least, Eileen the doll resembles Alan’s co-presenter Jennie Gresham (Susannah Fielding), who seems to have got the knack of dealing with Alan by a mixture of humouring his eccentricities and ignoring his unscripted outbursts about his former wife, Carol. Somehow the pair of them manage to navigate a series of standard fluffy news-magazine items that quickly degenerate into unbroadcastable outrages against taste and decency, “Eileen” serving as a symbol of the show’s awfulness.