They’re two of the most memorable British screen characters of all-time - and, after sparking delirium on the internet when it was teased - we’re finally able to read the most important head-to-head Brexit debate so far.
Yes, forget David Davis vs Jean-Claude Juncker - that’s just an irritating sideshow - what we all really needed to hear was the thoughts of arch-Brexiteer Alan Partridge and arch-Remainer Malcolm Tucker.
Both, of course, come from the genius comic brain of Armando Iannucci, who this week guest-edits The Big Issue, which publishes a full four-page back and forth between the pair.
The two exchange their thoughts via email, with The Big Issueyesterday revealing the first missives in the debate:
Tucker kicks things off, saying: “Brexit is like committing suicide by walking into a door over and over again. Leavers are imbeciles.”
Partridge: “As hot potatoes go Brexit is up there with the NHS, North Korea and the cycle lane epidemic.”
The North Norfolk Digital presenter then says that “teenagers” or “Guardian readers” should think about the 1942 film Went the Day Well? in which “The villagers mustered up all that plucky British spunk and machine gunned and beat the Nazis to death, I think the postmistress put a spade through a German’s head. That is the kind of attitude we need to get this country back on its feet.”
Partridge continues: “I also know how liberating it can feel when a loved one leaves after staying with you for a prolonged period. And that’s how I and millions of others feel about the EU.
“We’ve enjoyed having Brussels kip in the spare room sharing some Christmas cheer. But we want the spare room back now and have had enough of asking what Poland wants for dinner, or if Greece minds turning the TV down because the volume is absolutely ridiculous.”
Tucker replies: “When all your EU guests depart there’s no one to pick fruit in the garden or change your bed pan or fix the shower. To recap you are are now starving and unwashed, surrounded by overflowing turdpans.”
The Thick Of It star reveals that he is not a fan of Andrea Leadsom.
“Once a week I have to google that she ran for PM, just to check I didn’t hallucinate it after snorting heroin.”
He then suggests a title for David Cameron’s autobiography: “My Story: Shitting The Bed.”
His thoughts on prominent leavers Michael Gove and Boris Johnson?
“Would you follow them into battle? Michael Gove, the talking sea-lion? That lying shit Boris Johnson, a 20-stone binbag of fucking giblets in a Brian Jones wig. Shit off.”
Partridge is not amused by the foul language.
“Just a quick one to say if you EVER speak to me like that again, I will have you physically harmed by two very big, very loyal men I know.”
You can read the full interview in this week’s Big Issue which is available for just £2.50 from your local vendor.
You can also buy exclusive Tucker v Partridge merch from the Big Issueshop right here, including mugs, prints and T-shirts.