The BBC's classic comedy The Vicar Of Dibley will return for a series of lockdown specials as part of the corporation's festive line-up this year. With the United Kingdom in a second lockdown, a lot of mental comfort food is called for, and nothing embodies English TV comfort food more than The Vicar of Dibley's brand of "jolly hockey sticks" brand of sitcom. The Vicar of Dibley in Lockdown will be written by series creator Richard Curtis and veteran comedy writer Paul Mayhew-Archer. The three 10-minute shorts will feature Dawn French returning as the irrepressibly cheery but faux pas-ridden vicar Geraldine Grainger. Grainger will use her time in isolation to reflect on an extraordinary year for the country and her parish, during which she has been delivering sermons over Zoom. Hugo Horton (James Fleet) will also feature. Emma Chambers, who played the hilariously daffy Alice Tinker as part of the show's comedy ensemble, sadly passed away in 2018.
The Vicar Of Dibley has returned for many specials over the years and was last on the BBC in April 2020 when Grainger delivered an address to the nation as part of the BBC's The Big Night In charity spectacular. The Vicar Of Dibley In Lockdown is produced by Jon Plowman with Curtis and Peter Bennett-Jones as executive producers. It was commissioned by Charlotte Moore, Shane Allen, and Ben Caudell.
The show's return was announced as part of BBC director-general Tim Davie's mission to keep audiences informed, educated, and entertained – the BBC's founding principles – during the second wave of the coronavirus crisis. "At a time that is challenging for individuals and every family, the BBC plays a unique role in putting a smile on people's faces, in helping children with their education, connecting people in local communities, and providing some much-needed escapism. We are incredibly proud to be going the extra mile this Christmas," said Davie.
The Christmas and New Year TV lineup on the BBC is going to be a busy one, with the Doctor Who Special and the new series of Line of Duty in the mix along with a lot of holiday specials to keep audiences trapped at home entertained.