dawn french on vicar of dibley in lockdown

Vicar of Dibley In Lockdown divides viewers as characters played by now dead actors are mentioned

Some loved it, some found it 'weird'!

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Vicar of Dibley In Lockdown has begun, but so far it has had mixed reactions from viewers.

Some viewers found it strange that Geraldine Granger, played by Dawn French, referenced characters played by actors that are now dead.

During the first 10-minute episode, Geraldine gave several shout outs to beloved characters from the classic show, including Owen Newitt, played by Roger Lloyd-Pack, who died in 2014 at the age of 69.

She also referred to character Frank Pickle, played by John Bluthal, who passed away in 2018 at the age of 89.

dawn french on vicar of dibley
Geraldine pays homage to several departed stars (Credit: BBC)

Which late stars were mentioned on the Vicar of Dibley special?

Jim Trott was also mentioned. Played by actor Trevor Peacock, he now suffers from advanced dementia.

Some viewers took offence to their mentions, particularly as jokes were aimed at their characters.

Read more: Vicar of Dibley star Dawn French hits back at BLM criticism

One viewer took to Twitter, arguing: “It’s so weird seeing this #vicarofdibley thing given how much of the cast is dead, the show was the cast not just the vicar. Shouting at dead Frank is just odd….”

While another viewer claimed: “What a load of [bleep] that was! #vicarofdibley. Owen got more mentions than anyone and Roger Lloyd Pack’s been dead nearly seven years!”

dawn french on vicar of dibley
Geraldine grapples with modern technology in the short episode (Credit: BBC)

How are viewers reacting to the new series?

Whereas a third viewer asked: “Anyone else watch #vicarofdibley and instead of laughing grow depressed that all the cast are dead?”

Read more: What happened to Vicar of Dibley star Alice Tinker?

And another disappointed viewer chimed in with: “I am more annoyed with the #VicarOfDibley for pretending certain characters are still alive than any political protest. It could have been a beautifully poignant moment to pay tribute to the loss of the actors who played Alice, Frank and Owen.”

In a future episode, Dawn is expected to pay tribute to the late Emma Chambers, who played the show’s favourite character Alice Tinker.

Emma died suddenly from a heart attack in 2018 at the age of 53.

dawn french on bbc
And she even hosts a Zoom call with local school kids (Credit: BBC)

However, not everyone is upset with the departed being mentioned.

In fact, several fans said they really appreciated the nods to some of their favourite characters.

One viewer praised: “Nice to see Geraldine back tonight. Also sweet the characters of Frank and Owen are still about keeping the memory alive. Hugo was daft as always. #vicarofdibley”

A second viewer argued: “Loving the mentions of Jim, Owen and Frank! #VicarOfDibley #BBCOne.”

And a third viewer gushed: “Today’s #VicarOfDibley: no surprises, just a welcome comforting return.

“Like chicken soup and a warm, all-enveloping blanket.

“Looking forward to hopeful homages of characters (and their actors) gone but not forgot.”

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