1 9 9 5 (UK)
6 x 30 minute episodes
Alan Partridge creator Steve Coogan brought this short series to the BBC portraying six different people who all live in a (fictional) northern town called Ottle.
Apart from the well-known Manc duo Paul and Pauline Calf, Coogan played insensitive, egotistical computer hardware salesman Gareth Cheeseman (shades of David Brent) in ‘Dearth of a Salesman’, repairman Ernest Moss in ‘A Handyman For All Seasons’ (the stand-out episode, filmed entirely in black and white and set in the 1960s), mediocre club entertainer Mike Crystal (who invents an alter-ego, Clint Stallone, when his career begins to falter) in ‘Thursday Night Fever’, trivia-obsessive Guy Crump in ‘Natural Born Quizzers’, and Tim Fleck – the psychopathic curator of the very dull Little Ottle Museum – in ‘The Curator’.
The cast was augmented by regular Coogan collaborators like John Thomson, Patrick Marber and Rebecca Front, whilst guest characters were played by prominent actors like John Shrapnel, Alison Steadman, George Costigan, Adrian Scarborough, Oliver Ford Davies and John Shuttleworth creator Graham Fellows.
Although Coogan had a hand in writing all the episodes, he cannily surrounded himself with some of the most accomplished comedy writers on offer, with Henry Normal, Patrick Marber, Geoffrey Perkins, Graham Linehan and Arthur Matthews all getting a slice of the action.
Paul Calf/Pauline Calf/Peter Calf/Gareth Cheeseman/Ernest Moss/Mike Crystal (Clint Stallone)/Tim Fleck
Councillor Hillary Crabbe
PC Ted Cromwell
Philip Martin Brown
Oliver Ford Davies
Post Office Barbara
Gerald the Sumo Magician
Get Calf | Dearth of a Salesman | A Handyman For All Seasons |Thursday Night Fever | Natural Born Quizzers | The Curator