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The bizzies. The politicians. We go to the match. They march us along. They slam us against walls, they treat us like scum. We look for help. We're Socialists, we're trade unionists and we look to the Labour Party for help. But we're not queers, we're not black, we're not Paki. There's no brownie points for speaking up for us so the Labour Party turns its back. We're not getting treated like scum any more. We're getting treated like wild animals. And, yeah, one or two of us start acting like wild animals and the cages go up and 96 people die. The bizzies, the bourgeois lefties... they caused Hillsborough. And they're going to pay.
~ Albie's speech.

Albie Kinsella is the main antagonist in the opening story arc to season two of Cracker, To be a Somebody. He is an intellectually bright, working class man with a passion for football and an obsession with his perception from the public. Eventually he snaps at people "assuming things" about him and grows into a highly destructive and dangerous man.

He was portrayed by Robert Carlyle who would go on to portray Francis Begbie in Trainspotting, Renard in The World is Not Enough, Colonel Ives in Ravenous, Adolf Hitler in Hitler Rise of Evil and Rumplestiltskin in Once Upon a Time.


Early Life

Albie grew up in a working class home with a decent father of whom he was always close to. From a young age he and his dad bonded over football and this would continue for most of Albie's life. As an adult Albie followed in his father's footsteps of being a hard working man however he also excelled in academics and aspired to be a successful figure. He soon met his future love and the two had a daughter together.

In 1989 while attending a match with his father the two were caught up in the Hillsborough disaster and although unharmed Albie grew bitter towards his wife who remained oblivious to the situation until Albie returned home. To make matters worse Albie's father was diagnosed with cancer. In sheer spite Albie confessed to his wife that he cheated on her before moving in with his father to take care of him while still dropping money off for his ex-wife and daughter every week.

To be a Somebody

For the next five years Hillsborough continued boiling in Albie's brain morphing him into a cold, unsympathetic and surly man who still tried his best to be a recognized member of society. This all comes to ahead when Albie's father finally succumbs to his illness and dies. Shortly after this Albie has a bad day at work were he is dismissed by his coworkers on solving a crossword for what he perceives as prejudice against him not attending university and has an argument with a corner shop owner over Albie lacking the four pence needed to complete his purchase.

This causes Albie to snap, he shaved his head, branded a machete and finally set his plan into motion of killing 96 people to accommodate for the lost lives at Hillsborough starting with the corner shop owner who he berates for his country of origin before stabbing him in cold blood.

Albie pins the photo of his victim from newspapers onto his wall and prepares for his next killing all the while the police continue to investigate the murder. Eventually Albie finds his next victim in a university professor who concludes that the man who killed the corner shop owner was a simple racist hooligan and nothing more enraging Albie. He makes his move on the man, killing him and stealing a photocopy of his face as a memento of his latest attack.

Albie's next target was a freelance journalist who he also viewed as an assumer. This was his only murder attempt that failed as she thought quickly and managed to evade his capture by escaping her car in a busy street leaving several witnesses to see Albie.

In spite of this mishap Albie continued his plans, moving on to a different idea. This was interrupted however by Detective Sergeant Jimmy Beck interviewing him, thinking quickly Albie gave him his father's chemotherapy letters, claiming that he had no hair for that reason to which Jimmy believed. With that out of the way Albie set his eyes on Detective Inspector Billborough, leading him in by touching his wife's breast in a supermarket to anger him. This work and Billborugh chased Albie back to his home.

Here Albie stabbed Billborough before explaining all of his plans to him of how he planned on killing 92 more people. To try and appeal to his humanity Billborough told Albie he had a wife and child, something Albie shrugged off remarking that he has a wife and child too that he views as dead to him now. He fled the scene after this moving on to his next plan.

Albie wanted to plant a bomb in the Manchester stadium during the next football match between Manchester United and Liverpool. He attended the match in support of Liverpool but went on the side of Manchester supporters in order to rile them up which he achieved successfully. He then was escorted out by security and by chance was recognised by Jimmy Beck who chased him through several alleyways before finally apprehending and arresting him.

The following day Albie was introduced to Edward "Fitz" Fitzgerald, a criminal psychologist hired by the Manchester police department to help in the investigation of several cases, including Albie's and ultimately he explained all of his motives and reasoning behind his crimes before dropping hints about a bomb he planted addressed to Jimmy. Fitz switched the bomb with another item in the packaging however and brought it back to Albie, seeing if he would really go through with it.

Albie did much to Fitz' surprise and was disheartened when shown that he was bluffing. Albie received life imprisonment after this and became infamous among the Manchester police department for his killing of Bilbourough.


In his earlier life, Albie was a decent, hard-working and respectable man. However, from the Hillsborough incident onwards, he grew into a cold, surly, unfeeling, cruel and emotionally numb and wrathful man with no sympathy or respect for anybody. He was also downright obsessed with his father and how society perceived him as a person, motivating him into becoming the man he was.

He adopted large amounts of sentimentality however, in his keeping of kittens his old cat gave birth to and his wife and daughter still being in regular contact with him, he had nothing but contempt for his wife however was the strange thing about this.

He was also very hypocritical, getting angry at people for assuming things about him when he was doing just that with his thoughts on them, and for rejecting comparisons to xenophobic and unfeeling serial killers and anarchists when that is exactly what he himself was.


Albie was a twitchy, slightly under average heighted young man with pale skin and a skinny frame. At first he had short brown hair down to his neck, however he later shaved it off after snapping.

He wore several outfits across his appearances however his most famous was his camo print jacket, grey shirt, blue jeans and black combat boots.


  • Albie Kinsella was Robert Carlyle's breakout role.
  • Albie is arguably the most popular villain from the series, mostly thanks to Robert Carlyle's portrayal of him and his murder of the beloved series regular DCI Billborough.