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Series / Give My Head Peace

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Give My Head Peace is a Northern Irish comedy show by the Hole in the Wall Gang that ran in Northern Ireland from 2001 to 2005 with a special in 2007, which finished their (tremendously popular) TV run. It chronicled The Troubles, sectarianism and politics as seen by two linked families.

Ma and Da are a Catholic couple who live in Divis Towers with grown-up son Cal. The pilot parodies the 'love across the barricades' plot of most drama written about Northern Ireland, ending with Emer's marriage to Billy, an RUC officer.


Billy lives with his Uncle Andy, an Orange Order member, lecherous Elvis-wannabe and staunch Protestant, who is naturally horrified that Billy has married one of Them.

The actress playing Emer left in 2002, and Emer is replaced by Dymphna, her previously unseen sister.

Gives My Tropes Peace:

  • Apron Matron: Ma. Based off the Belfast housewives, who were a trope unto themselves - hard women who were usually the one to discipline a wayward teenager when she had to pick him up at the police station for drunk and disorderly, cook dinner on a tiny budget, make a packed lunch, take care of six children, catch up with the gossip and nag a layabout husband, all in a strident voice that could peel paint.
  • Dumb Blonde: Dympna definitely qualifies.
  • Psychopathic Manchild: Red Hand Luke personifies this trope, being a Loyalist psycho who beats up everyone when he doesn't get what he wants, pushes Uncle Andy around and believes in Santa to the point that he hangs Big Mervyn by his ankles for telling him that Santa doesn't exist.
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  • Shaped Like Itself: Two characters form a loyalist pressure group called the "Protestant Loyalist Organisation for Protestants" after realising that the acronym of their first choice was already in use by the Palestinian Liberation Organisation. The same applies to the attempt to form another Loyalist pressure group called the Protestant Retaliation Orange Volunteer Organisation when Provo is another word for the Provisional IRA.


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