Carrying on from the Mid-Morning Matters online shorts from a few years back, Alpha Papa finds Partridge’s employment as a provincial DJ under threat when his station is bought up by a media conglomerate. As the new owners, their first point of order is to fire the station’s longest serving DJ (Colm Meany), who doesn’t take the news too well and comes back to work with a shotgun.
With hostages being taken and police surrounding the building, the authorities decide that it would be a good idea to send Partridge in as an intermediary. The same man who once shot and killed critic Forbes McAllister on live television.
Star Steve Coogan, along with co-writers Peter Baynham and Armando Iannucci have wisely kept most of the action confined to the station instead of sending Alan to America perhaps, or off on holiday to an unfinished hotel in Spain. We get to see just enough of fan-favourite characters like his put-upon assistant Lynn and Geordie factotum Michael. None of them outstay their welcome or feel extraneous to the plot.
The gags fly thick and fast, with new lines and set pieces that rank as highly as anything from the classic I’m Alan Partridge. Plus, it gets bonus marks for an eclectic soundtrack and a hyper-obscure Marillion reference!
Go see this in a cinema with a full audience: if there’s a more laugh-out-loud funny movie this year, we’d be pleasantly surprised.
Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa is in cinemas now.