50 Ways to Kill Your Mammies review: More stunts, more mammies, more fun

Baz and Nancy are joined by four more mammies in this third series, and widening the circle of fear adds to the fun – and increases the odds of actually killing a mammy

Nancy Ashmawi and Baz Ashmawi in 50 Ways to Kill Your Mammies on Sky 1

Nancy Ashmawi and Baz Ashmawi in 50 Ways to Kill Your Mammies on Sky 1

 

There comes a point in every business when it’s time to expand or fall by the wayside. Baz Ashmawi has reached this point with his successful TV series 50 Ways to Kill Your Mammy. The 41-year-old Dubliner has been throwing his poor aul’ mammy out of aeroplanes, over waterfalls and down cliffs for two series now, but there’s only so many potentially life-threatening situations you can put your elderly mother through before the law of probability starts to kick in and there’s the chance of a stunt going wrong and your mammy getting killed for real. So recruiting four other mammies to join in the fun and adventure might just spread the odds a little bit.

Of course, that’s not the reason Baz has brought in four new matriarchs to take part in the newly titled 50 Ways to Kill Your Mammies (Monday, Sky 1). Apparently, watching Nancy conquering her fears and widening her horizons has inspired other older mums to try to spice up their lives, so this series features 77-year-old Ann from London, 65-year-old Ros from Singapore, 73-year-old Grace from Scotland and 73-year-old Joy from Jamaica. Besides, reckons Baz, by the law of averages, one mammy is “gonna get it”.

You can see the problem right away, can’t you? That’s right, none of these newbies is Irish, so you can’t really call them mammies, can you? Ann is so posh, you’d probably address her as “mater”.

Shot of adrenalin

That small quibble aside, the addition of extra mums is a shot of adrenalin for this series. It would have got boring with just Baz and Nancy again, so widening the circle of fear injects a bit more fun into the proceedings. Now Baz has to manage five elderly ladies grumbling about being put through extreme tests of courage and nerve.

In this first episode, two of the new mammies, Ann and Ros, travel with Baz and Nancy to Costa Rica, where Baz has lined up some serious tests of the mammies’ mettle. First they have to trudge through the rainforest and abseil down a vertiginous waterfall; then they go tubing down the rapids in a “flotilla of fear”. Hearing a terrified Ann moaning “Oh Baz! Oh Baz!” in her posh voice as she decends the waterfall is priceless. Close your eyes and you could get the wrong idea about what’s going on here.

Mam up

Needless to say, everybody “mams up” and faces the challenges Baz puts in front them – well, almost all. Ros in particular is up for it, but to be fair she is the youngest of the mammies. He works hard to keep them pepped up: “You don’t need to be super-fit. You need to be mentally agile, and up there you’re like a ninja.” When rain stops play, he gets frustrated – any delay might give the mammies a chance to change their minds.

The final challenge involves a dizzying bungee jump over the Costa Rican rainforest. Who’ll take the plunge, and who’ll back out? Nancy thinks she might get a detached retina. Ann thinks she might just die. Even Baz balks at this challenge, but he’s willing to risk killing himself in his quest to kill at least one mammy.

This could be the start of something even bigger for Baz – a global business catering to thrillseeking widows and daredevil grannies. I know my mammy would sign up in a heartbeat.

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