Derry Girls Season 2 was a joy to behold and with another season on the cards, JOE had the chance to chat with the cast and reflect on the last six episodes
With Season 3 of Derry Girls on the horizon, now’s the perfect time to reflect on those last six episodes, and unlike that famous wake when Michelle brought the ‘funny’ scones, things were slightly more normal when JOE had the chance to chat with Lisa McGee (writer/creator), Nicola Coughlan (Clare), Dylan Llewellyn (James), Louisa Harland (Orla), and Saoirse-Monica Jackson (Erin).
Here’s what they had to say on…
The opening scene when Orla interrupts Erin taking a bath.
Just like the very first scene in the show, Season 2 opens with Orla gatecrashing a very private moment of self-reflection for Erin when she’s in the bath and imagining what it’s liked to be interviewed by Terry Wogan.
Louisa Harland really hopes that every season of Derry Girls opens on her character being hilariously-intrusive!
The four girls and the wee English fella will return to Channel 4
Hot on the heels of the series two finale, Channel 4 has announced that Lisa McGee’s hit comedy Derry Girls will return for a third run.
The sitcom, which revolves around four teenage girls from Derry and one wee English fella in 1990s Northern Ireland, ended its second outing on a positive note with a rousing speech from Bill Clinton taken from his real-life 1995 visit to the city. Lisa McGee told RadioTimes.com that this was ushering in a more hopeful period for the gang, as their hometown marches towards peace and the Good Friday Agreement of 1998 (where the writer suggested she would like to wrap things up).
And, as soon as the episode finished, Channel 4 confirmed that another set of six episodes is on the way – meaning we’ll get to see how the ceasefire (announced in episode five of series two) changes things for Erin (Saoirse-Monica Jackson), Clare (Nicola Coughlan), Michelle (Jamie-Lee O’Donnell), Orla (Louisa Harland) and James (Dylan Llewellyn).
We also might get to see a bit more romance between James and Erin.
“I think the potential is there,” McGee said of their budding relationship. “It’s something I’m interested in seeing – I might toy with it next season, I’m not sure.”
And so Derry Girls hop-scotches into the sunset after a successful second season (the last episode is on Channel 4 tonight at 9pm). Once again, the biggest surprise about the Lisa McGee hit is not that a late-period Troubles comedy could be a rich source of chortles. It’s that we all so very desperately miss the ’90s.That seems to be true even of people too young to have meaningfully experienced the Nineties first time around. For some reason, the decade of grunge, boybands and cynicism pouring from our pores and through the walls continues to exert a deep fascination. Why this should be so, is a matter sociologists could spend forever and a day interrogating.
What’s unquestionable is that Derry Girls paints a halcyon picture of a time when the music was better, the fashion was… more interesting and selfie moments weren’t a thing.
In her portrait of female friendship in the pre-social media age, McGee pleads a powerful case, moreover, that life before the internet was in many ways superior. Nobody had a mobile phone constantly distracting them and a Twitter storm was what happened when a flock of birds took fright en masse.
How far have we come in the interim? Not quite the distance we might like to think, is the implication. So what have we leant?
1 The music was just better back then
From The Cranberries’ ‘Dreams’ to Cypress Hill’s ‘Insane in the Brain’, at its most assured Derry Girls is a valentine to the pre-internet music era. The soundtrack brims with nostalgia – season one, for instance, treated us to ‘Alright’ by Supergrass, ‘Unbelievable’ by EMF and ‘No Limit’ by 2 Unlimited (which yielded surely the greatest nineties pop couplet in “I’m making techno” and “I am proud”).
This was a golden age for pop, the show quietly argues – perhaps the last golden age. Rap-metal was coming over the hill and then music downloading would bring the industry to its knees. But in 1994 we’d never had it so good.
Most impressive of all is the way Derry Girls conjures the era without resorting to clichés such as grunge or early Britpop (which was just about twinkling on the horizon circa 1994). Even techno cheese-mongers D:Ream come away with their reputations burnished. Continue reading →
Fans of Derry Girls will be familiar with the hilarious Sister Michael memes that crop up on social media during and after each new episode, inspired by the character’s acerbic one-line
Fans of Derry Girls will be familiar with the hilarious Sister Michael memes that crop up on social media during and after each new episode, inspired by the character’s acerbic one-liners and trademark eye roll.
So, just one and a half seasons in to the Channel 4 hit, Sister Michael is already well on the way to being immortalised as a classic comedic character, and nobody is more tickled than the woman who plays her, Cork native Siobhán McSweeney.
“It’s extraordinary, and how quickly they appear!” she laughs of those aforementioned memes. “People are so funny. Even before an episode is over there are three or four out there. I can barely look at them with the amount of chins! People say that actors are vain. It’s the complete opposite of vanity. You couldn’t look at yourself on screen like that if you were in any way vain or self-conscious. There’s no glamour in our world!” [ . . . ]