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Steve Coogan's portrayal of Jimmy Savile is being hailed as the best performance of his career

Steve Coogan's portrayal of Jimmy Savile is being hailed as the best performance of his career

Viewers say the actor deserves a BAFTA after seeing just one episode of The Reckoning.

The first episode of the Jimmy Savile series The Reckoning has been released and viewers have been blown away.

The show focuses on Savile's life as he climbed out of his working-class roots to become one of the most famous people in the UK as a BBC presenter and DJ.

It then descends into his horrid and depraved sexual abuse and how he managed to keep it a secret until his death in 2011.

“It is important to understand how he was able to hide in plain sight in order to gain a greater understanding of how he evaded justice," a BBC synopsis explained.

“The drama aims to highlight the importance of confronting the horrors of the past and talking openly about abuse.”

The series premiered on televisions around the country last night (October 9) and it's safe to say that it was fairly confronting for many.

Some viewers said they felt sick after seeing Steve Coogan play Savile.

One person said: "Just watched 1st episode of The Reckoning, I feel physically sick it makes the documentaries about him very weak. A proper monster."

Another commented: "Watching The Reckoning and it's a tough watch, I felt sick to the pit of my stomach for most of it so far."

One thing that many people agreed on was how brilliant Coogan was at his portrayal of the twisted character.

A viewer wrote: "Steve Coogan has delivered the acting performance of the year in #TheReckoning. His Savile is skin-crawlingly creepy, note perfect in sound and gesture, and totally believable. A genuinely extraordinary tour de force. BAFTA incoming, surely."

Another added: "It’s hard to believe this is the bloke who 'was' Alan Partridge. Steve Coogan’s portrayal of Jimmy Saville is simply extraordinary. Chilling."

A third said: "Six minutes in; give Steve Coogan the BAFTA now. Absolutely chilled to the bone."

A fourth commented: "It feels so wrong to say but this is possibly Steve Coogan’s greatest performance. You totally forget it’s him after the 1st couple of scenes."

There are three more episodes to go in The Reckoning, so no doubt there will be more praise as viewers get to see how far Coogan goes with the role.

Series writer Neil McKay said that while there are loads of documentaries about Savile, he felt making a drama show provided a new way into the story.

"Anybody who gets involved with making a drama like this, if you’re not kept awake at night, questioning yourself, then in my view you shouldn’t do it," he said.

Featured Image Credit: BBC

Topics: Jimmy Savile, BBC, TV and Film