Derry Girls Episodes 1 and 2 – The DVDfever Review

Derry Girls
Derry Girls is set during the Troubles in Northern Ireland, at a time not specified, but the first episode opens to the strains of Dreams by The Cranberries, which was released in May 1994, so that narrows it down for you.

The billing has a long description of why each girl in the family wants to rebel, but in essence, all kids want to rebel, and all parents get sick and tired of it, in this case, Ma Mary (Tara Lynne O’Neill) and Da Gerry (the brilliant Tommy Tiernan, and I wish we’d had more from his ’90s Channel 4 sitcom, Small Potatoes – please bring that back!)

In the first episode, the granddad of the family is scared of the fact there’s a bomb on the nearby bridge, the girls-only school had admitted its first boy, while one of the girls makes reference to the series of Renault Clio adverts to the advert with Nicole… y’know, “Papa!” “Nicole!”… which I suspect will go over the heads of viewers who aren’t TV geeks like myself, but if that’s the case, then it’s only a small part of the programme.

The best thing about Derry Girls is the occasional ’90s music (eg. in the first two episodes, The The – This Is The Day, EMF – Unbelievable, Supergrass – Alright, and En Vogue – My Lovin’), but while it’s amusing off-and-on, for me, the problem was that given the very strong Northern Irish accents, these do get a bit wearing after a while, and I’d rather not have to pay attention too much to them, and just watch it with the subtitles on.

Derry Girls begins tonight at 10pm on Channel 4. Once broadcast, it will be on All4, but isn’t yet available to pre-order on Blu-ray or DVD.

Derry Girls – Series Trailer – Channel 4

Episode 1 and 2 Score: 5/10

Director: Michael Lennox
Producer: Catherine Gosling Fuller
Writers: Lisa McGee

Erin: Saoirse-Monica Jackson
Orla: Louisa Harland
Clare: Nicola Coughlan
Michelle: Jamie Lee O’Donnell
James: Dylan Llewellyn
Ma Mary: Tara Lynne O’Neill
Aunt Sarah: Kathy Kiera Clarke
Da Gerry: Tommy Tiernan
Granda Joe: Ian McElhinney
Sister Michael: Siobhan McSweeney
Jenny Joyce: Leah O’Rourke
David Donnelly: Anthony Boyle
Miss Mooney: Claire Rafferty
Sister Declan: Barbara Adair
Deidre Mallon: Amelia Crowley
Aisling: Beccy Henderson