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Who Is Mrs Brown?

Updated on July 20, 2013

Brendan O'Carroll is Mrs Brown

An Irish middle aged woman in a cardigan has Ireland and the UK all a-flutter!
An Irish middle aged woman in a cardigan has Ireland and the UK all a-flutter! | Source

Mrs Brown's Boys is a surprise comedy hit

Fans of slapstick Irish humour will be keen to see the smash hit west end comedy version of Mrs Brown’s Boys in 2013. Yes, Mrs Brown has finally hit the famous London West End.

The famous Mrs Brown, played by Brendan O’Carroll originated as a BBC radio sitcom character. O’Carroll, writer and creator of the character Mrs Brown, wrote several books as the result of the stunning radio popularity his working class character attracted in Ireland. Who would have though a middle aged Irish woman, widowed mother of six who lives with her father-in-law and two older children could become the next comedy sensation. Girl Power!

In 2010 filming began in front of a live studio audience as O’Carroll managed to lift the character off the page and into the visual medium. In 2011 a TV Christmas special based in the Brown household was the most watched program in Ireland that year and one of the most watched programs in the UK for Christmas 2011. Yep, a slapstick satire about the Irish was number one in 2011 - in Ireland. Must be something to it?

Mrs Brown's Boys is a family affair

Many of the main cast are played by O'Carroll's real-life family. Daughter Cathy Brown is played by his wife, Jennifer Gibney; Maria Nicholson by his daughter and her real-life husband is the show's director; Winnie McGoogan is his sister; O'Carroll's son plays Buster Brady and Betty Brown is his daughter-in-law. The character of Dermot is played by an actor who is a very close family friend of the O'Carroll's.

This is largely the result of the rapid rise to fame the translation of a radio play and book series to the TV screens of Ireland created.

Mrs Brown’s Boys is a ribald comedy full of sexual innuendo, light hearted puns, Irish Catholic jokes and lots of slapstick and endless offers of cups of tea. Some have described it as a “foul mouthed middle aged woman played by a man in a dress.”

Many Irish viewers say it makes you slightly uncomfortable to admit you’re Irish, however there is that grain of truth to it which O’Carroll twists very cleverly into funny comedy and satire. Whatever the appeal of this program, it has taken the UK by storm with theatre shows beginning in 2012 with the sellout “Mrs Brown’s Boys” Tour and in 2013 “Mrs Brown Rides Again.”

To get a taste of Mrs Brown's Boys check out the video below from You Tube. It has a series of best moments from the TV show and will give you a taste of the "Brown" sense of humour.

Mrs Brown's Boys TV Series Episode


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