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Film / Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa

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Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa (known in the United States as Alan Partridge) is a 2013 British action comedy film featuring fictional radio and television presenter Alan Partridge, played by Steve Coogan.

When famous (in-his-own-head) DJ Alan Partridge's radio station is taken over by a new media conglomerate, it sets in motion a chain of events which see Alan having to work with the police to defuse a potentially violent siege.

Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa contains examples of:

  • Alliterative Title
  • Bad Boss: Alan, although less so than in previous appearances. After accidentally clobbering Simon with a fire extinguisher whilst escaping the siege, he makes no effort to help him get out. Also, his treatment of Lyn throughout the film shows him to be a less than desirable person to work with.
  • Bathroom Break-Out: Alan attempts to escape from the mobile studio by going to the bathroom and climbing into the septic tank. This does not work so well.
  • Big Damn Movie: North Norfolk Digital is being held hostage by a disgruntled DJ and the hapless presenter becomes a siege negotiator.
  • Butt-Monkey: Sidekick Simon has any number of unfortunate calamities befall him in this movie, most of them by Alan's hand.
  • Chekhov's Skill: Alan mentions his skill with air rifles in shooting galleries. This comes into play during the final showdown on the pier.
  • Character Development: Alan becomes slightly less of a huge jerk in this movie. To be clear; he's still a huge jerk, just slightly less huge.
  • Comically Missing the Point: Alan, when he is being briefed by the chief firearms officer before entering the building:
    SFO Steve Stubbs: And if you do anything to endanger the lives of those hostages, so help me God I will take off this police uniform and make you pay for it.
    Alan Partridge: You want me to pay for your police uniform?
  • Dumbass DJ: One of the signs of the changes that North Norfolk Digital is going through is that the morning show is now hosted by a team of these.
  • Everyone Has Standards: Alan, despite being a well-known coward, makes little effort to hide his disgust at Greg Frampton eagerly escaping at the first opportunity and leaving the women behind as hostages.
  • Excrement Statement: Narrowly avoided. As Pat discovers that everything was his pal Alan's fault while in the mobile studio, the only hiding place available for Alan is the van's septic tank. Upon discovery and after a short chat, Pat begins to unbutton his pants, before the tank gives way and Alan escapes.
  • Fighting Irish: Alan tries to commandeer a car because there's a man with a gun. The driver isn't impressed. When Alan adds, "He's Irish!" the driver says, "Get in!"
  • Flanderization: Happens to several characters. Dave Clifton goes from a fairly unremarkable provincial DJ who Alan made nasty jokes about his alleged alcoholism to, to gleefully and openly recounting his experiences with booze, cocaine, heroin and prostitutes. Curiously, Alan himself undergoes the opposite, becoming less distinct and more general a character in the movie. In Clifton's case there's an element of All There in the Manual, since in many of the other things featuring Alan Partridge a Running Gag has been that every time Alan's life improves slightly, Clifton's completely falls apart.
  • Hand-or-Object Underwear: Alan loses his trousers and underwear while wriggling out through a window. He attempts to cover his genitals with his hands, but is then confronted by an armed police officer who demands he put his hands up.
  • Hidden Depths: When Alan picks up the bass.
  • Hostage Situation: After being fired, Pat returns to the studio with a shotgun and takes everyone hostage.
  • Indulgent Fantasy Segue: Alan has one when he imagines taking the shotgun off Pat and going on an action hero rampage through the studio to rescue the hostages. However, he spends so long imagining it that he fails to actually pick up the shotgun.
  • Jurisdiction Friction: Between Janet Whitehead, the Chief Constable of Norfolk Police and Martin Finch, a hotshot hostage negotiator from Scotland Yard.
  • Juggling Loaded Guns: Just about everyone who gets hold of a gun in the movie manages to do something stupid (and hilarious) with it. Highlights include someone with a taser shooting someone holding a shotgun, and Alan tossing away a loaded shotgun so that it goes off when it lands.
  • The Last DJ: With the North Norfolk Digital station being rebranded as "Shape" and old-timers like Pat Farrell being fired, Alan likes to think of himself as this.
  • Low-Speed Chase: Alan, Pat and Michael lead the police on a low-speed chase in the mobile studio, broadcasting traffic information about the low-speed chase while they do so.
  • Lyrical Dissonance: At one point, Pat "commissions" (at gunpoint) a radio jingle for the show he's broadcasting during the hostage situation. This leads the various hostages improvising a cheery-sounding little number about how Pat's been fucked over by Gordale Media and plans to execute the hostages — "even the ones with kids!" — if his conditions aren't met.
  • Mexican Standoff: Between Pat and Alan on the pier, however Alan is only armed with an air rifle.
  • Naked People Trapped Outside: Alan loses his trousers and underpants while wriggling out through a window. Before he can retrieve them, he is confronted by an armed police officer and a paparazzo.
  • Noodle Incident: Alan thought the mobile studio would still be in the police impound lot following the incident involving the boy scouts.
  • Only a Flesh Wound: Played straight; Alan gets shot non-fatally in the shoulder and the leg.
  • Police Are Useless: The police, and especially the firearm officers, are portrayed as pretty gung-ho and unprofessional throughout the film.
    • The chief firearms officer threatens to beat Alan up if he endangers the lives of the hostages.
    • Another firearms officer asks Alan if he wants to see his sidearm, and then proceeds to jokingly get him in a headlock and threaten to shoot him in the head.
    • One of the uniformed officers accidentally prints out a picture of a young male model for Pat Farrell's criminal profile, despite knowing he is well over 50.
    • At the end of the movie, a police sniper reacting to gunfire comically misses Pat and instead accidentally shoots Alan, who was standing a good five meters away from him.
  • Reflective Eyes: His glasses reflect what Alan is really looking at on his laptop.
  • Reliably Unreliable Guns:
    • After escaping from Pat on the pier, Alan arms himself with an air rifle from one of the amusement arcades. However, when he tries to shoot Pat, it is revealed the gypsies who run the arcade have messed with the sights, meaning he comically misses him by a good few meters.
    • Alan later attempts to fling Pat's shotgun into the sea. It lands on the pier railing and goes off, shooting Alan.
  • Soundtrack Dissonance: A tense moment in a hostage situation, to the soundtrack of "Ski Sunday".
  • Stripping Snag: Alan loses his trousers and underpants when he squeezes out through a narrow window, leaving him naked from the waist down.
  • Suspiciously Specific Denial: Alan says that he has never fired a gun in anger. Or at a cat.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: Alan is just a little bit nicer in the movie than he is in several of the other things he's appeared in. The ending, where he shows pity towards Pat upon learning of the death of his wife, is one of the few occasions he's ever demonstrated any kind of sympathy or empathy for someone else.
  • Typeset in the Future: The movie uses a metallic Eurostile Bold Extended text style for deliberate pseudo-dramatic effect in its teaser trailer.