Fans have praised Peter Kay as a “comedy genius” following a charity screening of his BBC comedy Car Share.
Kay announced three charity screenings at Blackpool Opera House, showing a special finale of his BBC sitcom plus an improvised episode.
Almost 3,000 fans were at the first screening on Friday and saw what happens between Kay’s character John and Kayleigh, played by Sian Gibson.
They vowed to keep the ending a secret. The finale will be aired in May.
The second series of the Bafta-winning show ended on an emotional cliffhanger last year when Kay’s character John failed to reciprocate the advances of his car share colleague.
The (spoiler-free) review by entertainment reporter Ian Youngs
What can I say about the finale that doesn’t give too much away? John and Kayleigh are in it. As are Take That, Guy Garvey (again) and a hedgehog. It takes place the day after the final episode of the second series.
It’s poignant and it’s very, very funny. A bit near the end (the hedgehog bit) is up there with the monkey scene in the last series.
To find out more, you’ll have to wait.
The lucky fans at the Opera House also saw the new unscripted episode, which is a bit more rambling, but still hilarious – and proves what naturally funny people Peter Kay and Sian Gibson are – and what rapport they have.
Viewers were dismayed when Kay revealed there were no plans to pen a third series.
But the Bolton comic later announced two new episodes – a special finale to reveal what happens next for the pair, and the improvised Car Share: Unscripted.
Both shows were filmed last year and were announced on 29 March in the comedian’s first Twitter post since cancelling his live tour in December, due to “unforeseen family circumstances”.
Those who attended the first of the three charity events shared their delight on Twitter. One described the finale as a “perfect final episode” and hailed Kay as a “comedy genius”.
Another said it was “well worth the wait and laughed till I cried”.
The opera house event was held to raise money for The Lily Foundation, which treats children with mitochondrial disease.
Kay was due to start his first tour in eight years in Birmingham this month. It had 112 dates and was scheduled to run into 2019.
He currently holds the record for the biggest-selling comedy tour of all time after playing to 1.2 million people in 2010 and 2011.
The second series of Car Share ended with Kayleigh declaring her love for John. When he refused to say how he felt, she walked out of his car – and his life.
Car Share won two Bafta TV Awards in 2016, for best scripted comedy and best male performance in a comedy programme.