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Alan Partridge: Nomad

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A merciless piss-take of every bullshit 'personal journey' every celeb ever undertook, as Alan undertakes the Footsteps Of My Father TM walk to come to terms with the memory of his late father, and definitely not because he's under the mistaken belief he might get a new TV series out of it (because he's perfectly happy working on North Norfolk Digital's mid-morning slot, OK? In Nomad we find Alan attempting to complete the journey that his father never could, a walk to Dungeness A through a somewhat unscenic Kent. Moreover, the character's behaviour is now so erratic that it seems unlikely he wouldn't have been sectioned. The key to the character’s success over the years has been how Coogan has used him across different formats and styles, changing it up with new new show to avoid it all getting stale.

I'm not normally one for audio books but 'Nomad' being read by Coogan as AGP himself is what makes it even funnier. He even explains why it's really much better than certain other slots which people might mistakenly consider higher profile). The main trait of Alan Partridge is how oblivious he is to him own shortcomings, and how he is able to convince himself that life is working in his favour. You could, I suppose, analyse what makes Alan Partridge such a satisfying creation; what I find interesting is the way he lets you laugh at that comfortable, right-of-centre boorishness, while also often being as it were accidentally justified when arguing with some of his leftist adversaries, so that your allegiance can switch abruptly from derision to grudging sympathy within a scene.Deep down, Nomad is essentially a great parody of travel writing with a uniquely Alan Partridge twist. Sometimes, I find myself filled with a sad pity for him, but when that happens it’s never long before he reminds me that he’s a bellend to his core, and I soon start laughing guilt-free once more.

I figured hearing Steve Coogan narrate as Alan would at least bring it one step closer to a TV special.

We’re in Gravesend so it’s likely to be more Morrisons than Waitrose, but (and this is lovely writing) beggars literally can’t be choosers. While it worked as a joke in the film, to go on and on about it throughout the book got really grating, as were the long discussions about minor characters from the somewhat sub-par film. But then again, it seems people from further afield find Partridge funny anyway, so maybe I’m just spewing drivel… again. I reckon the web series from last year, Alan Partridge's Scissored Isle, is one of the best things he's done.

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