The Young Offenders have, thankfully, ruled out their ever breaking into song for an entire musical episode and, for that matter, have also scotched any chance of a COVID-19 lockdown special.
Series three of the The Young Offenders, a hit comedy about two incompetent adolescent thieves Conor (Alex Murphy) and Jock (Chris Walley) in Ireland’s County Cork, has got a new Friday night time slot on BBC One and is streaming in full on BBC iPlayer.
As series three was filmed at the same time as two we’re not going to be treated to any claustrophobic coronavirus scenarios, for which Hilary Rose, who plays Connor’s mother Mairead, breathed a sigh of relief.
Rose told the Irish Independent: “I think people don’t want to know about COVID at this stage, they really need to laugh. And if we had referenced COVID, a lot of it would have been the whole lot of us sitting in a small room together so we might have run out of storylines pretty soon. It would be cheap to make, though.”
With more divine mercy, we’re also going to be spared the cast performing any song and dance numbers, as had been rumoured. “I’m going to go out on a limb here and say no, there won’t be a musical,” said Walley.
Instead The Young Offenders does include the comedy trope of a baby (played by twins Penny and Nola Richardson). “When you throw a baby into the mix, the dynamic changes completely,” said Walley. “You’ve more of the boys getting into mischief and ruining Mairead’s [Conor’s mother’s] life.”
The Young Offenders continues the remarkable success of Irish comedy exports that began with Mrs Brown’s Boys and also includes Derry Girls and the cast are grateful for the exposure and success on the BBC, which ironically then generated interest back home in Ireland.
“The BBC were the ones who said keep it the way it is and keep it as Irish as it was,” said Rose.
“The film blew up but it was when it went on Netflix that it was really brought it to an international audience. That’s when other outside broadcasters in the UK and elsewhere became interested. We’ve a really good agent in the UK and that’s how the BBC connection started.
“So it was really that they jumped on it first and then RTE got involved and we were really grateful for that.”
Stream the entire third series of The Young Offenders on BBC iPlayer and watch it on BBC One at 9.30pm from Friday, 24th July.
If you’re looking for more to watch, check out our TV guide.