Derry Girls viewers delight at throwback episode

Mammy’s the word! Derry Girls viewers delight at throwback episode showing Aunt Sarah and Mary in the 1970s – with fans calling for a prequel series

  • Ma Mary and Aunt Sarah took centre stage in last night’s episode of Derry Girls
  • Throwback episode showed the duo as teenagers at their school disco in 1977
  • Featured younger incarnations of grandad Joe plus Clare and Michelle’s mothers
  • Fans were delighted with the episode and are eve calling for a prequel series  

Derry Girls fans delighted last night at a special throwback episode saw Ma and Aunt Sarah in their younger years take centre stage – with fans even calling for the duo to get their own spin-off series. 

Last night’s episode, which aired on Channel 4, showed the beloved characters attended their school reunion, swapping between the present day and their 1977 leaving disco. 

The hilarious episode featured younger incarnations of both Mary and Sarah, plus much-loved characters like Clare’s mother Geraldine Devlin and Michelle’s mother Deirdre Mallon. 

Viewers were thrilled by the episode, with several praising the casting choices and performance from the young actress, while others urged producers to commit to a full prequel series. 

Derry Girls fans delighted last night at a special throwback episode featuring L-R; Claire Keenan as young Jeanette Joyce; Martin Quinn as young cousin Rob; Jessica Reynolds as young Deirdre; Dearbhaile McKinny as young Aunt Sarah; Shauna Higgins as young Ma Mary and Lucy Mcllwaine as young Clare

The episode sees (L-R) Deirdre (Amelia Crowley); Sarah (Kathy Kiera Clarke) Mary (Tara Lynne O’Neill) and Geraldine (Philippa Dunne) visit their class of 1977 school reunion 

‘To give us this episode without committing to a full prequel series is just twisting the knife with only one episode left’, wrote one user. 

Another said: ‘LOVED tonight’s episode of #DerryGirls I usually hate tv flashbacks but this was brilliant. Casting perfection. Also I have a major crush on Sarah’.

A third wrote: ‘#DerryGirls This programme should be up there with the sit-com greats of the past. It is absolutely superb. A special mention should be given to whoever cast the younger versions of the women plus the actresses themselves who got the nuances and mannerisms spot on. Will be missed.’ 

The comedy about a group of Catholic schoolfriends returned for its third and final series in April and has been met with rave met with rave five-star reviews from critics. 

Viewers were thrilled by the episode, with several praising the casting choices and performance from the young actress, while others urged producers to commit to a full prequel series 

The programme normally follows Erin (Saoirse-Monica Jackson), her cousin Orla (Louisa Harland) and friends Clare (Nicola Coughlan), Michelle (Jamie-Lee O’Donnell) and Michelle’s cousin James (Dylan Llewellyn). 

Last night’s episode followed Erin and Orla’s mothers Mary (Tara Lynne O’Neill) and Sarah (Kathy Kiera Clarke) as they prepared to attend their class of 1977 school reunion. 

The hilarious episode begins with the sisters trying to drop a dress size in just one day before the party by eating nothing but oranges, to the disbelief of Mary’s unimpressed husband Gerry (Tommy Tiernan). 

As Sarah reads about the Russian revolution in a bid to impress her friends, their daughters are surprised to discover they were once pals with Jenny Joyce’s mum Jeanette. 

After arriving at the event the group meet up with pals Deirdre (Amelia Crowley) and Geraldine (Philippa Dunne) – plus Deirdre’s Canadian cousin, who was set to live with them as a teenager. 

The hilarious episode begins with the sisters trying to drop a dress size in just one day before the party by eating nothing but oranges, to the disbelief of Mary’s unimpressed husband Gerry

As Sarah reads about the Russian revolution in a bid to impress her friends, their daughters are surprised to discover they were once pals with Jenny Joyce’s mum Jeanette

The group find their partners have all come dressed in the same suits and ties, all purchased from a sale at Dunnes, and dance to a band playing Teenage Kicks by The Undertones

The group find their partners have all come dressed in the same suits and ties, all purchased from a sale at Dunnes, and dance to a band playing Teenage Kicks by The Undertones. 

Viewers are soon introduced to Shauna Higgins as young Ma Mary, Dearbhaile McKinny as young Aunt Sarah, Lucy Mcllwaine as young Clare, Jessica Reynolds as young Deirdre and Martin Quinn as young cousin Rob. 

During the flashback the schoolgirls are dropped off by a young grandpa Joe (Ian McElhinney), played by who gives them a hockey stick to ward off any boys who ‘won’t take no for an answer’.

Viewers meet a similar figure to Sister George Michael, a Catholic nun called Sister Benedict who threatened to put them in ‘disco detention’ for fraternising with the boys from the local school. 

To the disappointment of the friends, after an IRA mounted roadblock means nobody could go in or out of the school, Sister Benedict decides one of the other nuns will lead the group in praying the rosary. 

During the flashback the schoolgirls are dropped off by a young grandpa Joe (Ian McElhinney), played by who gives them a hockey stick to ward off any boys who ‘won’t take no for an answer’

Viewers were thrilled at the casting of young Sarah and Mary as the episode showed the beloved characters attended their school reunion

The flashback shows a young Deirdre with her cousin Rob, who was set from Canada t Ireland to live with them as a teenager

In an act of teenage rebellion, the friends all decide to give each other skull and crossbones tattoos using a compass – a revelation which comes out during their present day reunion. 

Ira mounted a road block which meant nobody could enter the school grounds and nobody could leave, but one of the sisters offer to lead them in the rosary.   They gave themselves tattoos of a skull and crossbones. 

Fans loved the details of the episode, with one writing: ‘Dunnes suits on sale. Teenage Kicks National Anthem. The Mammies. Oh my heart! Anyone else feeling desolate/in denial about #DerryGirls coming to an end?’

Another said: ‘Ahh jeez @LisaMMcGee you wrote a doozy of an episode of #DerryGirls Three suits, a sarnie tin, The ‘O’ Diet, teenage dreams, and Aunt Sarah and Ma Mary at their finest. Grand! And whoever directed and edited this episode deserves an award @Channel4′.

‘The Dunnes suits and ties The orange diet, Gerry commenting on the diet: ‘cut off one leg’, Sister Michael searching everyone with her crutches. Another epic #DerryGirls episode ‘, wrote a third. 

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