Steve Coogan has assured fans that he has no plans to remove his comedy character Alan Partridge, who returns to BBC One this weekend for a second series of This Time.
This summer marks 30 years since the character made his debut on the BBC Radio 4 satirical news show On The Hour, and meanwhile some viewers feared Coogan would decide to step down from the role.
However, at a virtual event to mark the launch of the second series This Time, the star credited his other projects – such as the BAFTA-nominated film Stan & Ollie – for removing “the curse” from Alan and rekindling his enthusiasm for the hapless broadcaster.
“If that was all I did, I would consider him an albatross,” he says. “But because I’m able to do these other things, it kind of took Alan’s curse away for me.” That means now I’m doing Alan Partridge because I want to, not because I have to, and that’s really important to me.
Coogan had previously taken an extended hiatus from his comedy creation between the acclaimed second sitcom series I’m Alan Partridge and the launch of Mid-Morning Matters, which saw him team up with writers Neil and Rob Gibbons.
Since this collaboration was forged, fans have seen a wealth of Partridge content ranging from the 2013 feature film Alpha Papa to the Audible From The Oasthouse podcast.
“People were like, ‘When are you going to kill Alan Partridge?’ They just stopped asking that now, ”Coogan continues. “He’s a bit like an old friend. I would never like to do it again because it feels great in everything I do.
“I love working with Rob and Neil and Susannah [Fielding] and Felicity [Montagu] and Tim [Key], and I wouldn’t want to not work with them, so that’s another important part.
It will be music to the ears of Patridge fans, as Coogan reveals that there is a lot more life to his famous alter-ego: “I’d like to keep coming back as long as I think it’s funny … The thing with Alan is that the world is changing and Alan is a reflection of this changing world, so he can go on.
“And you can continue to tighten things up with Alan. It may someday go over target and implode, but part of the problem is finding out – just keep pushing it until it falls off a cliff or something like that.
If you’re looking for more content on Alan Partridge, check out our interviews with co-creator Armando Iannucci and I’m Alan Partridge co-author Peter Baynham.
This time with Alan Partridge returns to BBC One at 9:30 p.m. on Friday April 30. While you wait, visit our TV guide to see what’s going on tonight.