BBC drama The Reckoning, which stars Steve Coogan as Savile, has brought the Jim’ll Fix It presenter back into the spotlight.
After his death in 2011, Savile emerged as one of the most prolific pedophiles in history. Savile has had a successful career spanning decades and is said to have abused up to 1,000 boys and girls.
In 2006, he appeared on Channel 4’s Big Brother, which included George Galloway, Chantelle Houghton, Michael Barrymore and Pete Burns.
#The billing is scarier than any horror movie I’ve seen in a long time, and the worst part is that the monster and its victims were real.
However, Steve Coogan’s portrayal of Jimmy Savile is phenomenal and BAFTA worthy. pic.twitter.com/FxVoCEo9y1
— Robert Smith (@RobbieS310) October 11, 2023
Seconds after his arrival, Savile made a litany of stomach-churning comments as he greeted all the celebrities. He told basketball legend Dennis Rodman: “I want you to know that I have a violent temper, but you have nothing to fear from me.”
After hugging Coronation Street star Rula Lenska, he exclaimed: “I would want to marry all of you ladies for at least 24 hours.”
One of the most disgusting interactions occurred when Savile grabbed Chantelle’s hand and she giggled nervously. “I know a lot of people love you, but they don’t love you with the sincerity and tenderness that I do,” Jimmy said before kissing her hand. He kissed her hand again and added creepily, “I always tell the truth, even when I lie.”
Savile, who was known for doing exactly what he wanted, then told the housemates he was there to fix something for them and walked around the house. While Rula cooked, Savile told her that she looked “far prettier” than she did on TV “in the flesh.”
He then spoke about his experience with Beatles star John Lennon and claimed that Pete Burns’ (Dead or Alive singer) voice was almost identical. Later that evening, Savile began a conversation about prison by asking the housemates if anyone had been “in the slammer”. He joked that it was his first time “inside” the Big Brother house.
Before leaving the house, Savile said: “Don’t forget ladies, I’m available for home visits most weekends.”
BBC’s controversial factual drama The Reckoning details the life of the disgraced entertainer. It stars Steve Coogan as Savile, who has received both praise and criticism for his performance.
“Absolutely chilled to the bone”
The drama also attracted controversy because it was produced by the BBC, the broadcaster where Savile worked for several years.
However, viewers seemed to agree that Coogan’s performance as Savile was very accurate.
One person said: “It feels so wrong to say this but this is possibly Steve Coogan’s best performance. After the first few scenes you completely forget it’s him.”
Another shared similar sentiments, posting: “Six minutes later; now give Steve Coogan the BAFTA. Absolutely relaxed to the bone.”
All episodes can be viewed on BBC iPlayer.