Dirk Gently axed by BBC Four

Monday 28th May 2012 @ 4:20pm by Ian Wolf

Dirk Gently. Image shows from L to R: Dirk Gently (Stephen Mangan), Richard MacDuff (Darren Boyd). Image credit: ITV Studios.It has been revealed today that BBC Four's adaptation of Douglas Adams's Dirk Gently series will not be given a second series.

Stephen Mangan, who played the self-styled 'holistic detective' in the show, wrote on Twitter this afternoon: "It gives me no pleasure whatsoever to report that the BBC have decided not to make any more Dirk Gently."

The comedy drama, in which Mangan plays a private detective who believes in the 'fundamental interconnectedness of all things', was first broadcast as a pilot on BBC Four in December 2010. A three-part series followed in March this year, attracting around 500,000 viewers an episode. The series also starred Darren Boyd as Gently's assistant and partner Richard MacDuff, and Helen Baxendale as MacDuff's girlfriend Susan.

Reviews of the series were mixed, with some viewers wishing the show had been a more faithful adaptation of the stories written by Adams, as opposed to the more original stories adapted and overseen by Howard Overman, the creator of Misfits. However, the show had many supporters too, with Metro commenting "We'd love another series of this double act of Stephen Mangan as Douglas Adams's eccentric holistic detective and Darren Boyd as his eyebrow-raising assistant."

Comments from fans on Twitter include "Gutted Dirk Gently isn't coming back. Great cast and an interesting way to adapt Douglas Adams' material", "No! Dirk Gently on BBC Four was great. Proves cretins now run the BBC" and "Dirk Gently was better than most TV shows, it shouldn't go".

One user of the micro-blogging site added: "Very sad about Dirk Gently. But as they say, 'tis better to have had 4 great episodes and get cancelled, than to have never loved at all."

A BBC Four spokesperson said that the comic drama will not be recommissioned because the freeze on the license fee has led to a reduced drama budget for the channel.

The original novel of Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency was first published in 1987, with a sequel, The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul published the following year. Adams was working on a third story, The Salmon of Doubt, when he died in 2001, but prior to this he had claimed the story would possibly work better as part of his The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy series.

The two completed Dirk Gently novels have been adapted for radio in previous years, with Harry Enfield playing the title character between 2007 and 2008.

Interestingly, the programme has now gone the same way as the TV adaptation of The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy, which also lasted only one series on television back in 1981. The radio version of the sci-fi comedy will shortly begin a nationwide tour, starring the original cast and famous guests as 'The Voice Of The Book'.

Stephen Mangan is currently starring in the second series of the transatlantic comedy Episodes and will be the voice of Postman Pat in the new big-screen 3D animation of the classic children's show. Meanwhile Darren Boyd, who won the BAFTA for Male Performance in a Comedy Programme last night, is working on a second series of Sky1 sitcom Spy.

Here is a clip of Mangan and Boyd in Dirk Gently:


Our Guide to 'Dirk Gently'

 

Latest News

BBC One orders 3rd series of Count Arthur Strong

BBC One orders 3rd series of Count Arthur Strong

BBC One has announced the commission of a third series of Count Arthur Strong. The seven new episodes will be on TV in 2016.

Ben Miller's Horrible Science coming to CITV

Ben Miller's Horrible Science coming to CITV

Ben Miller is to star in Horrible Science, a new children's comedy-entertainment series for CITV based on the popular books from Scholastic.

Sketchorama Series 4 line-up revealed

Sketchorama Series 4 line-up revealed

Isy Suttie will host Series 4 of radio showcase Sketchorama, with a line-up including The Penny Dreadfuls, Frisky & Mannish, Hennessy & Friends, and Gein's Family Giftshop.

Catherine Tate's Nan to return for new TV specials

Catherine Tate's Nan to return for new TV specials

Catherine Tate is to return as her foul-mouthed OAP character Nan. She is set to record two specials for BBC television next month.

Cast announced for BBC comedy thriller Stag

Cast announced for BBC comedy thriller Stag

Tim Key, Reece Shearsmith, Rufus Jones and Sharon Rooney are amongst the comic actors joining Jim Howick as BBC Two's Stag begins filming.

Aborted Morecambe & Wise sitcom by Roy Clarke uncovered

Aborted Morecambe & Wise sitcom by Roy Clarke uncovered

Historian Graham McCann has revealed his discovery of an aborted Morecambe & Wise sitcom pilot, written by Still Open All Hours creator Roy Clarke.

Get More News

In The Press

In The Press

The latest press clippings from the newspapers and various internet blogs.

Newsletter

Newsletter

Subscribe to our mailing list to get news and more in your inbox every Monday.

Twitter

Twitter Feed

You can follow us on Twitter too. We post the latest news and gossip every evening.

RSS Feed

RSS Feed

Subscribe to our RSS feed to get our headlines in your news reader software.

BBC Radio Contract Writers

BBC Radio Contract Writers

BBC Radio Comedy has announced the appointment of two new Contract Writers, Sarah Campbell and Liam Beirne. Read

Hadrian's Wall charity gigs

Hadrian's Wall charity gigs

A 15-strong collective of comedians are hoping to raise more than laughs when they tackle Hadrian's Wall. Read

Knight & Gotobed interview

Knight & Gotobed interview

An interview with double act Rob Gotobed and Tony Knight. They provide lots of punchline filled answers. Read

Room To Write interview

Room To Write interview

Laura Marks, the producer and director behind the BBC's Room To Write video sketches, shares some advice: Read

Frog and Bucket plaque

Frog and Bucket plaque

The Frog and Bucket club has celebrated its 21st birthday with a blue plaque for those that 'died' on its stage. Read

John Moloney interview

John Moloney interview

John Moloney introduces his new Radio 4 series and talks about how the comedy circuit is different nowadays. Read

Williams & Hancock show

Williams & Hancock show

A preview of Seriously Funny, a play at The Museum Of Comedy about Tony Hancock and Kenneth Williams. Read

Why We Need Ethnic Comedy

Why We Need Ethnic Comedy

In this article, comedy performer Inder Manocha discusses how ethnic comedy relates to the mainstream. Read

'Making it' in comedy

'Making it' in comedy

Barry Ferns writes on the topic of what it means to 'make it' in comedy. Think carefully about your end goals. Read