Irish sitcom Mrs Brown’s Boys was a ratings hit for Channel Seven on Wednesday night, with almost one million viewers tuning in for the show’s Australian premiere.
The BAFTA winning sitcom, starring Irish writer and performer Brendan O’Carroll, won its time slot on Wednesday night, taking 980,000 views across the five city metro markets, according to preliminary results from OzTam.
A spokesperson for Channel Seven said they are ‘delighted’ with how the show has been received.
Brendan O’Carroll stars as Mrs Agnes Brown, a foul-mouthed and irreverent Irish mammy, who rules the roost over her boisterous brood. Mrs Brown first appeared in a comedy series on RTÉ 2FM in the early nineties.
O’Carroll wrote a series of books and a sell-out theatre show based on Mrs Brown’s antics, before finally bringing the mischievous matriarch to the silver screen.
The first, six-part series aired on RTÉ in January 2011, and since then, it has become a phenomenal success.
The final episode of the first series saw an average Irish audience of 924,000. The second series has since been aired, and a third season has been commissioned, due to air in Ireland later this year.
The sitcom has become a runaway hit in the UK, scoring millions of viewers.
The 2011 Christmas Special scored 6.6 million viewers in Britain and was the most-watched TV show in Ireland over the Christmas holidays, with 880,000 viewers.
The success of the series spurred a Facebook petition, “Australia wants Mrs Brown”.
The transmission of the first episode has divided reviewers, with the Sydney Morning Herald asking, “Is Mrs Brown’s Boys the crappiest comedy ever made?”.
:: Social hit
Wednesday’s premiere sparked plenty of reaction on the Irish Echo Facebook page, with most commenting to say they loved the taste of Irish comedy.
“Some may have found the language offensive but worse can be heard in movies,” wrote Sheila Tuohy-Fitzgerald.
“I loved it, can’t wait for next week. It’s what everyone needs – a good belly laugh to cleanse the cobwebs, free the tear ducts and exercise the face muscles.”
“Loved it,” wrote Anita McCann. “I was expecting it to be ruder than it was, he has toned it down quite a bit from the days when he started out. Cannot wait for next week, not sure all aussies will get the Irish sense of humour but they will soon learn to.”
However, Mark Healy described it as “a terrible show”.
Fionnuala Jefferies agreed. “It’s definitely not in Father Ted’s league.”