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Series / Coogans Run

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A six-episode Thematic Series starring Steve Coogan, first broadcast in 1995.

Tropes in Coogan's Run:

  • Cult: In "Get Calf", Paul Calf joins one to avoid the Parry brothers. Although it's a Scam Religion, the cult members do come to his recue when the Parry brothers track him down.
  • Deliberately Monochrome: All but the final scene of "Handyman For All Seasons" is black-and-white, as it's meant to look like an Ealing comedy film.
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  • Fictional Counterpart: In "Natural Born Quizzers", the quiz show "Top of the Class" is obviously based on "Top of the Form", to the extent of having the same theme music.
  • Funny Background Event: An audio example in "Thursday Night Fever". It's almost drowned out by the dialogue, but if you're paying attention, The Wurzels' "Brand New Brand New Combine Harvester" is playing in the background when Mike arrives at the launch party. It sounds exactly like the original song, except they sing "Brand New" twice.
  • Generation Xerox: A couple of examples. Paul Calf's dad Peter Calf appears in "Handyman for All Seasons" and unsurprisingly looks a lot like Paul. Adrian Scarborough plays corrupt councillor Hillary Crabbe in "Handyman For All Seasons", and his son, corrupt councillor Len Crabbe in "The Curator".
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  • Holding Both Sides of the Conversation: In "Thursday Night Fever", Mike does this with his alter ego Clint Stallone, concluding by faking a fight.
  • It's Personal: In "Natural Born Quizzers", Cathy Briggs openly states that she wants to be assigned to the case for "personal reasons", which should be a big red flag, but she gets the job as nobody else is willing to work with the police psychologist.
  • Monochrome Past: Both used and averted in "Natural Born Quizzers" as the 1975 quiz show is in black and white (even though it wouldn't have been) but the other flashback sequences are in colour.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: In "Thursday Night Fever", everybody is fooled by Mike Crystal's disguise as "Clint Stallone", even though it's ridiculous.
  • Pastiche: "Handyman for All Seasons'' is a pastiche of Ealing comedies.
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  • Running Gag: Gareth Cheeseman's car gets damaged in three separate episodes.
  • The Shrink: The police psychologist Fraser in "Natural Born Quizzers" is, somewhat unexpectedly, the awesome type. Although the rest of the team consider him a phony, he's actually more-or-less right about everything, additionally making him The Cassandra.
  • Signature Line: "A wank, I think!" ("Dearth of a Salesman"). Second place goes to "A flagon of your finest foaming ale, stout yeoman of the bar!" ("Natural Born Quizzers").
  • Spinning Clock Hands: Used near the end of "Handyman For All Seasons" to link from the main story into the "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue.
  • Terrible Interviewees Montage: To back up the pretence that his "agent" Clint Stallone is real, Mike Crystal ends up having to "audition" other acts in character. They're all pretty bad.
  • Unsettling Gender Reveal: In Natural Born Quizzers, the discovery that the former quiz show host Jeremy Monkman is now Angela Monkman counts as this for the Crump brothers.
  • "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue: Most of "Handyman For All Seasons" is set in 1960, but the final scene is set in the present day.
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