British Comedy Guide

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Andrew Birch

The Rebel starring Simon Callow to return for Series 2

The Rebel, the sitcom starring Simon Callow as hellraising pensioner Henry Palmer, is to return to the Gold TV channel for a second series.

British Comedy Guide, 30th July 2017

In The Rebel we rubbed up against the ageing population again. This time in the form of 70-year-old anarchic ex-mod Henry Palmer, played with characteristic booming glee by Simon Callow. A new sitcom adapted by Private Eye cartoonist Andrew Birch from his own cartoon strip series, there were some nice spiky moments and lots of proper swearing and other mildly radical things that no British person can wholly dislike. Such as Palmer beating a police officer with a teddy bear, blowing up an ATM, smashing a shopping trolley into a supermarket, and shouting: "Gay, my arse!" while representing himself in court. Lots of deckchair smashing, Pink Floyd, and no mention of data whatsoever ensued. Some things don't change.

Chitra Ramaswamy, The Guardian, 21st July 2016

The Rebel review

The key difference with The Rebel and One Foot In The Grave: Meldrew was battered by external forces driving him to distraction, but Palmer is the architect of his own fury. Plus you could never see Meldrew pogoing to The Jam in his living room.

Steve Bennett, Chortle, 20th July 2016

How a cartoon came to life

Andrew Birch explains how his strip about an elderly hooligan in 'The Oldie' has been turned into a TV sitcom.

Andrew Birch, i Newspaper, 15th July 2016