Three men in a bád
Pól Ó Muirí
Comedian Dara Ó Briain popped up on BBC2 NI last night as part of the ongoing whimsy that is Three Men in a Boat. With companions, Rory McGrath and Griff Rhys Jones they were in Ireland on another little sailing expedition the point of which seems to have been to fill the screen for a couple of hours. Amiable enough stuff with little of note – except at the end. Ó Briain and friends visited Inis Mór where he got the chance to speak some Irish. He seemed genuinely moved at being in the Gaeltacht and the importance of the culture – which is not to say the film makers did not take the opportunity to take the hand of him while he recited Irish poetry from Dún Aonghusa.
Ó Briain is undoubtedly one of the biggest names in contemporary comedy, having swapped hosting The Panel for the greater challenge of Mock the Week and various other gigs. The Three Men in a Boat series is wearing thin but you wonder if there is not an opportunity there to get a little more out of it – Ó Briain actually exploring the living Celtic languages in Ireland and Britain. He could take his crewmates if he wanted. Rhys Jones is Welsh and, if I am not mistaken, there is a Cornish connection with McGrath. So that only leaves an excuse to visit the Gaelic-speaking Hebrides and call in to the Isle of Man on the way home. They can even sail over to Brittany and give us a little insight into how Breton is getting on. Sailing, jokes and a wee bit of culture. What could be better?