YMMV / Father Ted

  • Accidental Innuendo: From Mrs Doyle:
    "Oh, Father, Pat was wondering if he could put his massive tool in my box."
  • Alternate Character Interpretation: Is Dougal just extremely stupid, or does he have schizophrenia (or some other psychosis)? His behavior throughout the series is that of someone completely detached from the real world with Ted even having to draw him a chart describing the differences between fantasy and reality and moreover Dougal's thoughts and words do occasionally conform to reality and to varying degrees. In addition, many of his behaviors throughout the show are not outright stupid but just plain weird and nonsensical. He probably only became mentally ill sometime in his adult life, after becoming priest.
  • Awesome Music:
    • Which should also be a Crowning Music of Funny; "My Lovely Horse".
    • The Rugged Island priests' song "The Miracle Is Mine" from the same episode qualifies too. It is hammy and overblown (in the vein of many Eurovision entries), it has a vague religious lyric to it, and is backed up by a full choir and orchestra. This is a good Establishing Character Moment for Dick and Cyril, because they are shown to have a genuine musical talent and planning, whereas Ted and Dougal do not. However, due to the biased voting (again, which happens in Eurovision in real life), Ted and Dougal manage to win anyway.
  • Broken Base:
    • More like "broken periphery demographic." Catholic priests either think it is hilarious and harmless satire or insulting and poorly researched slander.
    • Between English and Irish fans, the debate rages over whether the show counts as Irish or not: All-Irish cast, including several iconic Irish comedians such as Pat Shortt, Tommy Tiernan, Graham Norton and Brendan Grace, Irish writers and a strongly Irish setting, versus an English broadcaster and a huge English fanbase.
  • Crosses the Line Twice: 'Night of the Nearly Dead' essentially has Frank Kelly in black-face to show that Father Jack's condition is hardly unique.
  • Ending Fatigue:
    • The Christmas special. Even the show's creators complain about it in the DVD commentary.
    • To a lesser extent the two part episode "Escape From Victory" and "Kicking Bishop Brennan Up The Arse".
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Bishop Brennan, who gained legendary status after appearing in a total of three episodes ("The Passion of Saint Tibulus", "The Plague" and "Kicking Bishop Brennan Up The Arse".
  • Fountain of Memes: Even two decades since the last episode aired, the show is still highly quoted in Ireland and many current events will have a Father Ted meme attached to them.
  • Fridge Logic: How on God's green earth did Dougal become a priest? Frequently asked In-Universe, especially by Ted. ("Did you win a "collect twelve crisp packets and become a priest" competition?") Of course, given some of the other priests out there in universe, Dougal is hardly the worst of them.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment
    • The flashbacks of Father Jack in his days teaching in a Parochial School during the first series episode 'Grant Unto Him Eternal Rest' definitely qualify as a "Funny Aneurysm" Moment given the subsequent scandals in Ireland regarding exactly this sort of abuse in Irish Catholic Schools and Orphanages.
    • There's an episode where Ted angrily tells a cop about the good old days, when the police would cover up crimes committed by Catholic priests. The whole thing is Played for Laughs, but can come off as somewhat disturbing in light of the massive pedophilia scandal that rocked the church years later.
    • Likewise, the scene in another episode where Ted tries to assure Niamh Connolly that not all priests are pedophiles, and ends up suggesting there may be as many as 10 million priests who are pedophiles.
    • One of the Bishops dying of a massive heart attack as lead actor Dermot Morgan would later die from the same thing.
      • Even worse, Ted grabbing his chest in shock when Mrs. Doyle surprises him with a cup of tea when he turns on the light.
      • And the three 'Death' Tarot cards he chooses from the fortune teller's deck in the first episode.
    • Averted in the finale; the writers originally intended the series to end with Ted commiting suicide, but this was replaced with a clip montage when Dermot Morgan died.
    • Another cringeworthy one is Jack's P.E teaching.
      Teaching Nun: He's also asked me to remind you that it is very hot today, so there will be no need for your tracksuit tops.
      • The dancing priest dying from having a heart attack due to too much dancing. As seen in the Harsher in Hindsight example, Morgan's constant reshoots of his dance scene in "Going To America" exacerbated the heart problems he was feeling during filming, and prevented him getting treatment in time. So effectively, what was one of the most absurd and improbable deaths in Father Ted ended up coming true.
      • The titling of the penultimate episode "Night Of The Nearly Dead". Dermot Morgan died after the filming of the following (and last) episode "Going To America".
  • Growing the Beard: While the first series isn't considered bad by a long shot, it's noticeably slower-paced than the two that follows, and has much more of a focus on cringe comedy than the surreal and absurd humour that the show would become known for. The second series is seen as when the really show found its footing.
  • Harsher in Hindsight:
    • Dermot Morgan was actually having heart problems during the filming of the Shaft scene of the last episode "Going To America". However, Tommy Tiernan (who played the suicidal priest) kept flubbing his lines, and the producers would not let Dermot go until it was finished. To make matters worse, Dermot had to do dance moves in this scene, and doing them repeatedly exacerbated his condition. He died less than 24 hours later. If the reshoots of the scene had been stopped and Dermot had gotten treatment, there is a chance he might have lived. However, there is equally a chance that he might have died whilst away and the rest of the episode would never have been filmed.
    • The set-up is that the Catholic church deals with miscreant priests by quietly shuffling them off to some out-of-the-way parish until it all blows over. Sadly, this turned out to be the case in real life too, and with worse offenders than Ted, Dougal and Jack.
    • The episode "Grant Unto Him Eternal Rest" had Father Jack's apparent death after drinking floor polish. Sadly, the episode is harder to watch now that Frank Kelly has passed.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: On a meta level: having watched "Cigarettes, Alcohol and Rollerblading" will almost completely derail any serious use of Mozart's Rex Tremendae or Dies Irae.
  • Hollywood Homely: Mrs. Doyle.
  • Jerk Ass Woobie: Ted, who's venal and self-serving but also has to put up Dougal's stupidity, Jack's own jerkassery, and things in general often going to hell.
  • Memetic Badass: Bishop Brennan and his cape.
  • Memetic Mutation: Loads in Ireland. All the catchphrases have become instantly recognisable, as well as a few other signature lines such as those quoted at the top of the page.
  • Mexicans Love Speedy Gonzales: As noted above, it's incredibly popular in Ireland. Yes, it was created by Irish writers, had an Irish cast, and was set in Ireland, but it was still intended for British audiences, making its popularity in Ireland an unintentional (or least secondarily intentional) byproduct.
  • One-Scene Wonder:
    • "Feckin' Greeks! They invented gayness!"
    • The boring-voiced priest from the Christmas special, and his polar opposite from the same episode.
  • Tear Jerker:
    • The last episode of season one shows the apparent death of Father Jack. He leaves Ted and Dougal £500,000 in will, with the condition that they must stay with him until he's buried. Ted and Dougal basically just treat this as an obstacle to get past so they can claim the money. However, right at the end of the episode, Ted clearly begins to feel sad over the loss of Jack and somberly delivers a famous passage from James Joyce's novel "The Dead" while an organ version of the main theme plays:
      Father Ted: It's beginning to snow again. The flakes, silver and dark, are falling obliquely against the lamplight. It's probably falling all over the island; on the central plain, on the treeless hills, falling softly upon the graveyards, upon the crosses and headstones, upon all the living and the dead...
      Father Jack: SHUT THE FECK UP!'
    • Father Austin Purcell in the season two episode "Think Fast, Father Ted". He's described in universe as "the most boring priest in Ireland" but there's something genuinely pathetic in his need to talk continually to everyone (and everything) he meets. In the credits sequence it's revealed that he will continue talking even if left alone in a room:
      Father Purcell: This is a piece of advice my father gave to me. Now, this not only refers to lagging, but all forms of insulation. He said, "Don't ever..." No, no, it was, "Always! Always re-..." No! It was, "Never..." Oh, I've forgotten. Never mind. [Beat] What's your favourite humming noise? Would it be "hmmmm" or would it be "hmmm-MMMMM"? The first one there, that's the sound of a fridge. The second one, that's the sound of a man humming. [Beat] You never hear a woman humming. I knew a woman once, but she died soon afterwards.
    • There's also the death of Dermot Morgan and, exactly 18 years after, the death of Frank Kelly.