That’s right readers, clean shirt himself.
This struck me whilst rewatching Peep Show for the third time, the consistently constant “Four naan, Jeremy? Four!? Thats insane.” meme taking my subconscious by storm and driving it towards Netflix at every possible opportunity. I got through the first series , reminding myself just how good a programme Peep Show is, an undisputed modern classic. Then I get to “Local Zero” (Series 2, Episode 3) and something hits home.
Mark Corrigan is a savage. Never cross Corrigan.
We are presented with the concept Mark is “responsible and bright, but also socially and sexually awkward”, I challenge this, with two feet. I challenge this with one of those two foot challenges that aren’t even a slide tackle and you just basically launch yourself onto your arse, studs facing out in front of you like some improvised weapon attached to human feet. This concept is Alf-Inge Haaland and I am Roy Keane.
You might be asking yourself, what can happen in Series 2 Episode 3 that aligned me with this train of thought? The first few series of Peep Show played out before it got really daft, before Mark pissed in mexican food, before Jeremy actually got a job and ultimately before “Quantocking 2”, because let’s be honest friends even Peep Show jumped the shark. However, it’s usually after the shark has been jumped that the characters become really dumb and caricatures of themselves, so why Series 2 Episode 3?
In “Local Zero” we see Mark Corrigan assassinate somebody’s character in front of their colleagues, manager and romantic interest, Mark Corrigan kills Jeff Heaney, improvising after sticking his neck out and potentially looking like a chump himself. Mark takes Jeff apart with a one-two combination of bravery and knowledge. Unfortunately it’s a moment gone by so unappreciated I can’t find it on YouTube, so please take a look at this transcript and imagine it in your own heads.
MC – Jeff doesn’t have much experience. The 2003 Scottish Consumer Directive, for example.
JH – I really don’t think that affects us, Alan.
MC – Oh, it doesn’t affect us that during the first phone contact we’re obliged to set out, without abbreviation, the terms of a standard repayment plan? ‘I’ve shot you, Jeff, with a bullet made of Scottish finance regulations!’
AJ – So, Mark, would you be prepared to go up there with Sophie if that’s the way things panned out?
MC – Yeah, Alan, I suppose I could probably make that.
Just like that, Mark Corrigan is a certified badass. Stealing Jeff’s business trip with Sophie and making him look like an inept dick in front of Alan Johnson and the top dogs at JLB.
Let’s indulge this further. Mark Corrigan is not awkward, Corrigan is an alpha male up there with Phil Mitchell, Gordon Ramsey and that guy from SAS Who Dares Wins. Corrigan doesn’t give a fuck, where Mark goes, pain follows. Mark Corrigan is James Bond, bear with me.
Mark infiltrates enemy groups and takes on different personas to get what he wants
From letting go and opening the box while the lid stays firmly on at Rainbow Rhythms, to ripping knobhead Ben to pieces about the true meaning of Wuthering Heights, Mark has never been one to stay in his comfort zone to win the hearts of Dobby and Sophie respectively.
Mark operates in the real world
Some of you may think this attitude is staunch and stuffy, but whilst Mark has indulged drug takers like Jez and Super Hans he knows where to draw the line and that a pill with a chicken on isn’t going to fix anything.
Mark Corrigan is brutal in the workplace
As aforementioned, Mark knows his stuff when it comes to loans and isnt afraid to flex his muscle in the workplace. From firing a pregnant Sophie to telling Jeff where to go time and time again (Project Zeus will never work), Mark is the real Wolf of Wall Street between 9-5.
Mark gets the women
Much like James Bond, Mark has only ever really loved one woman in Sophie. That aside he’s made his way through students, rich socialiates and on two occasions women have made sexual advances to him despite him showing zero interest. Toilets, stationary cupboards, Bond/shagger behaviour that.
Corrigan is a baller, he lives life for him and nobody else, he isn’t afraid of being alone as he goes from woman to woman. He knows where he stands in the world and doesn’t let anyone fuck with his pretty spot on world view. From shutting down racists, telling people where to stick their jobs and apprehending criminals, we could probably all do with being a little bit more like Mark Corrigan.