Peter Kay’s Phoenix Knight (E4) (2007)
AFter the lukewarm reception for Max and Paddy’s Road to Nowhere northern funster Peter Kay returns to his stand-up roots in this heartwarming documentary. In it Kay relives his early stand-up shows which ended with his beseeching an audience to sing along to a taped recording of the theme tune for TV’s Jim’ll Fix It. In the documentary Kay watches some of those early gigs and then hunts for Sir Jimmy Saville . The trail takes Kay to Stoke Mandeville Hospital, the London Marathon, and the Scottish Highlands, and an in-depth confrontation with Paul Theroux – where Kay surprisingly engages in a debate as to the merit of VS Naipaul while discussing parenting techniques. Eventually, Saville is encountered in a room covered in clingfilm, preserved as a tribute to “the Duchess” (believed to be a reference to Wallis Simpson). Following the concussing of Saville and his despatch to the flames of a pyre Kay movingly sings the Jim’ll Fix It theme tune whilst brandishing an umbrella and being watched by The presenter of E4’s Unanimous companion broadcast, Patrick McGuinness. The final scenes where it is apparent that rather than rising from the ashes Sir James has been cooked inside his bacofoil tracksuit are tear-jerking. Unfortunately a dispute over the writing of the documentary delays broadcast and leads to the removal of sequences featuring Dave Spikey and Neil Fitzmaurice.