The final season of the Irish phenomenon is here on Netflix (and without much marketing). There’s been a three-year hiatus since season 2, and the new season aims to capture the previous magic and pick up where we left off. Is successful?
Opening shot: A montage of images, such as a photo of the four girls, city fires, total war, fills the screen with a somber voiceover of hope. As the camera zooms out, our favorite gang is back together before the school year starts, trying to create an uplifting Oscar-winning video just because some German kids did the same thing to the Berlin Wall.
The essence: Set in 1990s Ireland, derry girls follows four Irish teenagers and a reluctant English boy as they navigate the conservative Irish Catholic school they attend, their often eccentric family and friends, and their uncertain future beyond their small town.
What shows will it remind you of? The 1990s high school setting, outfitted with social circles and school hierarchies, might remind you of weird and nerdy.
Our take: The funniest show on television returns for its final season. After three years off the air, there was a chance the show had lost its shine or wasn’t as biting as it was. But thankfully, those fears are unleashed. The show is as fantastic as ever, which only makes me sad that this is the last batch of episodes we’ll ever get.
What makes the show such a delight is the super specific characters and their dynamic with each other. The girls are great at conveying their long-term friendship with occasional bumps and snorts, but it’s the adults who add the icing on the cake for showbiz. There’s an unspoken rivalry between Erin’s father and grandfather, while her uncle is the perfect lovable weirdo. The show is very good at striking a balance between all the eccentric personalities in the room.
In Season 3, the future of the girls hangs in the balance. It’s a fitting end to the chapter, and thankfully it hasn’t lost any of its charm, punchy dialogue, or hilarious performances during downtime. If you haven’t had a chance to watch the show yet, now is a great time to start. I would advise those who are not well versed in the Irish accent to use subtitles so that they can catch every detail.
Sex and skin: Nothing in the first episode.
Parting Shot: The girls get their grades after worrying about them for the entire episode. All is going well until a police officer shows up with James’ camcorder.
sleeping star: There’s a hilarious guest star in the first episode that I won’t spoil, but as always, you can count on Jamie-Lee O’Donnell as Michelle to say the most outrageous yet hilarious things.
Most of the Pilot-y line: The best parts of derry girls are when the girls are fighting internally and throwing insults back and forth. A particularly amusing one comes when Clare (Nicola Coughlin) is freaking out over her test results, blaming the girls for her allegedly failing grades. “I was a scholar when I met you!” she screams, close to tears. “You were 3 years old,” rejects Erin (Saoirse-Monica Jackson).
Our call: TRANSMIT IT. The final season hasn’t missed a beat in providing fun scenarios and fast-paced dialogue.
Radhika Mennon (@menonrad) is a TV-obsessed writer living in Los Angeles. His work has been featured in Paste Magazine, Teen Vogue, Vulture and more. At any given moment, he can ponder at length about Friday Night Lights, the University of Michigan, and the perfect slice of pizza. You can call her Rad.