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New sitcom Derry Girls set at fag end of Troubles

By Allan Preston

Published 25/08/2016

Writer: Lisa McGee
Writer: Lisa McGee

A new Channel 4 sitcom set in Northern Ireland will tell the story of a teenager set against the background of the late Troubles in Londonderry.

Derry Girls was penned by local writer Lisa McGee and inspired by her own experiences growing up as a teenager in the early 1990s.

Her other credits include the Channel 4 comedy London Irish, as well as writing for the vampire and werewolf BBC comedy Being Human.

The six-part comedy focuses on 16-year-old Erin and her friends in 1994. Against the backdrop of police in armoured Land-Rovers, Army checkpoints and peace walls, viewers will follow the daily ups and downs of her life, including romantic and family dramas, conflicts at school and body insecurities.

"Anything set during the Troubles tends to be a bit grim and bleak, but that just wasn't my experience of Derry as a child and a teenager, it was a joyful place," she said.

"I'd like to celebrate that. It was also hugely matriarchal, so I was keen we have a large and varied cast of female characters."

She added: "There were other things going on in Northern Ireland at that time, there were other stories, I'm excited to have the opportunity to tell some of them."

Announcing the show at the Edinburgh TV Festival, Nerys Evans, Channel 4 deputy head of comedy, said: "Derry Girls may have a unique setting but it's a really warm family sitcom, seen through the eyes of teenager Erin. Lisa's writing is truthful, brave and laugh-out loud funny."

Belfast Telegraph

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