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Return of the King
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The welcome return of Alan Partridge to the TV after many years away has been a joy to behold. The new series is great, but episode 4 is the standout episode. The last segment, where Alan's Irish lookalike, Martin Brennan from Sligo runs away with the show is just brilliant. Irish accents are far beyond most English lads and pretty much everyone else. Look at all the good films almost ruined by dreadful Irish attempts at Irish accents; Michael Collins, Gangs of New York, The Untouchables, Ryans Daughter..... but Steve Coogan nails it. The accent of the farmer from Sligo is incredibly accurate and the body language and little mannerisms are just spooky they're so accurate. I personally know guys like this.

You can tell he spent his summers in the west of Ireland and he has an Irish mother, from Mayo, while his father is also of Irish descent.

Anyway, breaking into rebel songs at the end of the program is just comedy genius and this has to be shared as often as possible. Come Out Ye Black and Tans is about the War of Independence and Men Behind the Wire is referencing the internment in the North during the war known as "the Troubles".

Everyone thought that the BBC would be awash with complaints and the Unionists in the North would blow another blood vessel with anger, but it seems most people saw the funny side, which is nice. I think it might have even triggered a bit of Googling into recent Irish history from audiences in the UK, which would be no harm at all.

I've always loved Steve Coogan's most famous creation, Alan Partridge and I thought they'd never match the classic series of 1997 and 2002 (now available on Netflix) but this stands up very well.