His star appeared to have reached its zenith during the 1990s with a successful TV and radio chat show, Knowing Me, Knowing You. Then an unfortunate incident involving a stuffed partridge (the bird, not the man) saw him retreat back to his first home, local radio (a period chronicled in observational documentary I'm Alan Partridge), before his poorly received first autobiography, Bouncing Back, was pulped into what a disillusioned Partridge himself described as “word porridge”.
But, slowly and surely, Partridge has been working his way back into the public consciousness. In August 2010, a beguiling and hugely informative run of “webcasts” from his talk radio show, Mid-Morning Matters with Alan Partridge, thrust him back on to our computer screens, and now Partridge is a snowball ready to roll (collecting more snow as it does so and becoming an increasingly bigger snowball until it is enormous – in a metaphor in which “snow” equals “fame”).
Currently promoting his new autobiography I, Partridge (subtitle: We Need to Talk about Alan), the self-confessed polymath, who boasts in excess of 75,000 Twitter followers, is set to appear on The Jonathan Ross Show (ITV1, Saturday 1 October) and is now tantalising fans with the possibility of book signings at Waterstone’s Piccadilly (Tuesday 4 October at 6pm) and Waterstone’s Norwich Castle Street (Wednesday 5 October at 6pm).
All that’s standing in the way of these public appearances are Partridge’s modest riders, which include a chair “generously cushioned with PROPER LUMBAR SUPPORT”, a table “positioned in Classics. Not TV, not Autobiography, not Bestsellers – Classics” and what appears to be the main deal-breaker, provision for “a hot meal immediately after the event”.
No, there’s no doubt Alan Partridge is back – and you’ll remember where you were when you heard that news!