Since we’re mere hours away from the final episode of Derry Girls Season One (fingers crossed they wise up and give Season Two a longer run) let’s chat about the highlights of last weeks episode.
And there were oh-so-many-highlights to choose from. We had Gerry finally get some proper screen time, Sara’s certificate for being psychic and so many brilliant one liners from Michelle, Orla and Sara that I honestly don’t know where to start.
And, of course, it took place during the Twelfth of July, but sure that was just part of the scene setting before the real fun began.
The sound of drums means something uniquely different in Derry. Ok, yes, there’s the history of violence and sectarianism that surround the marches, but Derry Girls focuses on the real issues surrounding the day:
- Traffic’s a nightmare with all the roads blocked, this was before Google Maps. Imagine having to be the driver in a time before Google Maps.
- It really is while hard to concentrate with all the drumming and pipe bands. Jim’s double glazing is The. Best. Thing. Ever. I imagine anyone living near the city centre in Derry thanks the day and hour double glazing became affordable and widespread.
- Everyone in Derry makes for Donegal on the day. Although once a friend and I holed up in South Belfast with wine and chocolate and Netflix, which was also a good way to spend the day. We ventured out for a chippie at around tea time and there was a distinct lack of bother or any reason to have stayed indoors all day.
- You can’t go to Donegal unless you have your punt purse (remember punts? They were lovely, very unique) and far too much luggage. Only the big clock will do. And a small library. And a weeks worth of clothing. Did anyone else get the impression that Gerry and Mary’s discussion about the big clock is a yearly occurrence?
Tommy Tiernan really got a chance to shine this episode. We got to see much more of him as Gerry, the beleaguered husband, father and son in law. The dynamic between Gerry and Granda Joe (Ian McElhinney) is hysterical. Gerry can do no right and Joe will capitalise on any and all opportunities to give him abuse.
Granda Joe reminds me of every Derry da I’ve ever met. My own granda to my da*, my da to any boys we’ve ever brought home (even the gay ones, a father’s discrimination doesn’t see any difference). The way the family falls in line with Granda Joe’s criticism of Gerry is also, of course, standard Derry Girl. It’s basically a family rule that when you get a chance to wind someone up that’s exactly what you do. To the point that my brother’s Scouse fiancé didn’t know if we were joking or genuinely disliked each other the first time he came to visit.
Special shout out to Aunt Sara in this episode. Kathy Kiera Clarke’s delivery is so perfectly blithe. Seamlessly switching between letting everyone know she’s psychic and they’re in ‘grave danger’ to asking ‘is there any Rice Crispies’. Oh yeah, and the cards might be saying Mary should leave Gerry, but sure Granda Joe could have told her that years ago and he doesn’t have a certificate for being psychic. Sara, much like her daughter Orla, is a scene stealer.
And of course, the one liners. The timing, delivery and sheer volume of them makes it difficult to choose a favourite. Michelle’s ‘You wouldn’t move over there [James] I can’t see past your massive closet ‘ her casual ‘There’s something really sexy about the fact that they [the Orange Order] hate us so much’; Orla’s: ‘But there was a cheetah on the beach [in Portnoo] one time [it was a greyhound]…I know what I saw’, ‘I’m considering joining [the Orange Order]’, ‘Aw look, that cop’s pointing his gun at us’, ‘Did you not put him [The IRA man in the boot of their car] in there Aunt Mary?’
Not forgetting the casual ’RA man hiding in the boot, that poor wee waitress and the loss of Jim’s second best tent. Another brilliant offering that I’ve watched at least ten times now and have yet to grow bored with.
P.S I was at a Ladies lunch for Cancer Research in Derry on Sunday and Lisa McGee came over tho say hello because someone told her I wrote reviews for the show and she was just lovely. I’m still star struck.
*No word of a lie, my granny made my granda and my mum leave the house before her on my parents wedding day because she knew my granda would try and talk mum out of getting married**
**My daddy is actually the best daddy ever and my granda is just a typical Derry da***
***My dad will definitely try the same thing on my wedding day.