OPINION: ‘Long live Mrs Brown’s Boys – even if it is as funny as a dose of something nasty!’ - Mrs Brown's Boys

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Sunday, January 2, 2022

OPINION: ‘Long live Mrs Brown’s Boys – even if it is as funny as a dose of something nasty!’

 There are too many snobby critics of this show






There are loads of shows on the box that can be described as divisive. Reality shows such as TOWIE and Geordie Shore which split the ‘clever’ from the ‘easily-pleased’, to dramas such as Game Of Thrones and Bridgerton, with explicit violence and nookie.

And then there is Mrs Brown’s Boys, possibly the most divisive show on the telly!

What is Mrs Brown’s Boys?

On paper, it’s just an old-fashioned sitcom about a family in Ireland run by its matriarch Mrs Brown – played by the show’s creator and writer Brendan O’Carroll.

While ratings have been impressive enough over the years to ensure it has become a Christmas Day (and New Year’s Day)  fixture, this year the sheen appeared to fade as viewers and critics alike savaged the show for its desperate lack of jokes.


What have the critics said?

Taking to social media, one furious viewer raged: “Utterly rubbish programme! Why the hell does the BBC continue to flog a dead donkey? Waste of licence fee. It’s not entertainment.”

Another, who had watched the whole show, wrote: “Why haven’t the BBC got the message yet? This programme is a waste of licence payers’ money.”

In a piece in The Independent, a journalist described the show as “a hellish place where wit has gone to die” adding, “You don’t smile, ever, when you watch this stuff; O’Carroll’s dismal scripts, wooden direction and the jaded performances see to that.”

The writer also described the show as “more sickly than a glass of Baileys with a dash of grenadine”, a phrase he enjoyed so much that he used it twice in the article.

Critics have savaged the Christmas special. (Credit: BBC studios)




So is Mrs Brown’s Boys so bad it should be axed? 

Of course it shouldn’t.

In fact – and I can’t believe I am typing this – when I watched the Christmas Day special, I actually found myself chuckling once or twice at a couple of the jokes – one about ‘nut juice’ and another rather saucy visual ‘gag’ involving a visiting priest with a damp lap that made me blush.

While I will admit I usually find this insanely popular show as funny as an intrusive probe, it attracts legions of viewers – mainly of an older demographic – who delight at every word uttered by Mrs Brown.

And if they do, it means the jokes work – for them at least.


Comedy is very personal

As we all know, comedy is subjective – we all find different things funny.

There are those who will find the inane, fringe-flipping observations of Michael McIntyre absolutely hysterical and others who guffaw when they see a bra fly off in a Carry On classic.

I, for one, find klutzy slapstick and lame cracker jokes wholly unfunny, so find watching the likes of Mrs Brown’s Boys, Miranda and the ghastly Absolutely Fabulous utter nightmares to sit through.

But then I also find bum-numbing middle-class comedy such as Fleabag joke-free and sickeningly smug too.

If I had a choice, I’d happily watch witty, clever and occasionally smutty sitcoms like Friends, Golden Girls, Will & Grace, The Comeback, Blackadder, Mandy and Alma’s Not Normal whenever I could.

But that doesn’t mean I think shows like Mrs Brown’s Boys should be cancelled.

Why should their avid audiences be denied a fix of the comedy they enjoy?

And it’s this condescending ‘we know best’ attitude from posh, Oxbridge journo-types, who clearly don’t actually enjoy watching TV, that really boils my piddle.

Their arrogance and gall is utterly breathtaking. If they had their way, we’d all be watching those bleak and boring old Scandi bore-fests that are as much fun as watching grass grow.

TV made for young people
There are lots of things wrong in this world, but this irritating obsession for chasing the youth market is getting beyond a joke, especially when you consider that much of TV is watched by folks over 35.

TV should always offer its viewers a wide spectrum of shows that appeal to all sorts of people, which is what we have.

So come on TV snobs who think you know it all! Quit bitching about shows you think are beneath you.

If you don’t like Mrs Brown’s Boys, the answer to your sleepless nights is simple – don’t bloody watch it and go and bore yourself silly with something on BBC4 instead while pretending to like eating tofu!

Enjoy your miserable life and have an even more miserable new year!


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