Dawn French is returning to Dibley’s (virtual) pulpit for a series of 10-minute specials airing on BBC One this festive season.
The Vicar of Dibley in Lockdown sees Geraldine deliver Zoom sermons for her parishioners during lockdown, with plenty of jokes and references to other Dibley characters from previous seasons.
Read on for a refresher on all the key characters (and the actors who play them) in The Vicar of Dibley.
Dawn French as Geraldine Granger
Dawn French plays the titular Vicar of Dibley, Geraldine Granger, who memorably described herself as “a babe with a bob cut and a magnificent bosom”. A bonne vivante with a sunny disposition and a taste for Crunchie Bars, her arrival in the sleepy village of Dibley shakes things up, bringing in more church goers and ruffling feathers at the stuffy parish council sessions.
In The Vicar of Dibley in Lockdown, our “buxom vicarette” is conducting her Sunday sermons via Zoom during the national lockdown.
James Fleet as Hugo Horton
James Fleet plays Hugo Horton, the bumbling son of wealthy parish council leader and village bigwig David Horton. In the series, Hugo marries the dimwitted (but endearing) Alice Tinker, but the shy lovebirds initially required some not-so-gentle coaxing from Geraldine.
Appearing on-camera in The Vicar of Dibley in Lockdown, Hugo is spending lockdown in Dibley Manor with father David, but just four weeks in and the pair are already sick of each other – or more accurately, sick of each other’s tired old anecdotes.
Emma Chambers as Alice Tinker
The late Emma Chambers played Alice Tinker, the gormless but loveable verger at Dibley’s local church, where Geraldine Granger resides as vicar. At the end of each episode in the earlier seasons, Geraldine would tell Alice a (usually dirty) joke. The fact that Alice never understood the jokes became a running gag.
Chambers died in 2018, and Dawn French has since revealed that Alice will also have passed away in The Vicar of Dibley in Lockdown, which will feature a poignant tribute to the character later in the series.
Roger Lloyd Paul as Owen Newitt
Roger Lloyd Pack played Owen Newitt, a foul-mouthed local farmer. His professed affection for his more ‘alluring’ ewes is a cause for concern for Geraldine, as are his frequent and abrupt offers of marriage or ‘nights of passion’.
The Harry Potter actor died in 2014, but in The Vicar of Dibley in Lockdown Owen is revealed to be still very much alive, and using his sheep-shearing skills to give Geraldine an (ill-advised) haircut.
Trevor Peacock as Jim Trott
Trevor Peacock played Jim Trott, one of Dibley’s most memorable characters and member of the parish council (who could forget his Full Monty-inspired charity striptease). His catchphrase is the repetition of ‘no, no, no, no,’ which has previously got both him and Geraldine into trouble.
In The Vicar of Dibley in Lockdown, Jim has taken social distancing to a whole new level after confusing ‘metres’ with ‘miles,’ and has spent the first four weeks of national lockdown hiding in the local forest.
Gary Waldhorn as David Horton
Gary Waldhorn played David Horton (MBE, FRCS, don’t you know), the snobbish chairman of Dibley parish council and the proud owner of local ancestral seat Dibley Manor. In earlier Vicar of Dibley seasons he often served as the cynical thorn in Geraldine’s side, but over the years he mellowed – and even proposed to her.
In The Vicar of Dibley in Lockdown, David is referenced by Hugo during his video calls with Geraldine, and we learn that the father and son are having a less than amicable lockdown together.
Richard Armitage as Harry Jasper Kennedy
Richard Armitage played Harry Kennedy, the ‘handsome stranger’ who arrives in Dibley in December 2006 and begins a whirlwind romance with Geraldine Granger, culminating in a Doctor Who-themed wedding where Geraldine dressed in pyjamas (after Owen Newitt accidentally sprayed her traditional white wedding dress in mud).
The Vicar of Dibley in Lockdown premieres on Monday 7th December. While you’re waiting, visit our TV Guide to see what’s on tonight, or check out our guide to new TV shows 2020 to find out what’s airing this autumn and beyond.