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Nadine, Nidge and noughties TV: The Gogglebox Ireland gang were confronted with Irish TV archives last night

‘Check her ID!’

VIRGIN MEDIA ONE took a walk down memory lane with the crew from Gogglebox Ireland last night, and as was to be expected with Irish TV dating back to 2001, the result was pure toe-curling.

Googlebox Ireland Does 00s and Now kicked off by reminding us that when it came to the 2008 Eurovision, Ireland was faced with one serious conundrum: do we send Dustin the Turkey or do we send Donal Skehan?

Yep, for anyone who might have blanked it at the time, Donal Skehan was in the running to represent Ireland at the Eurovision Song Contest in Eurosong 2008, and we chose a stuffed turkey over the budding chef.

By the look of things, the Gogglebox gang had no recollection of Donal’s foray into the world of glitz and glamour, and could barely contain their distress as he sang for the opportunity to follow in the footsteps of Johnny Logan and Linda Martin.

“I never knew he was a singer,” Angela in Castleknock said in astonishment to Eileen before quickly adding: “Says you, he’s not!” Nice one, Ange.

And the fact that we ultimately voted for Dustin to represent us?

Well as John in Portobello remarked sadly: “We’ve never recovered from sending him.”

After a bizarre segment where we were reminded that Marty Whelan and Coolio once shared a stage during a 2002 episode of Open House, attention turned to one of the most memorable moments in Irish television.

Enter Nadine Coyle.

PastedImage-23255 Source: YouTube

 ”Check her ID,” hissed Dawn in Cork as the Derry-native presented herself to the judging panel in Popstars back in 2001.

After reaching the final stages of the competition, Nadine was asked a pretty standard question; her date of birth.

“Fifteenth of the sixth 85 making me a Gemini,” she said before turning pale and whispering: “What date of birth did I say?”

All manner of chaos ensued as producers smelt a rat, and Nadine was asked for her passport which she proceeded to look for in much the same way you looked for the homework you hadn’t done.

“She obviously thought she was a master criminal,” the boys in Portobello surmised while the Adenuga family in Co Meath struggled to get their heads around Nadine’s web of lies.

She gave 85 instead of 83 but she thought she said 87.

Knowing the jig was up, a tearful Nadine fessed up to Linda Martin, and was promptly bundled into a car and returned home while her former bandmates went on to enjoy the heady success offered by a brief stint in the limelight.

Things took a turn for the stomach-clenching in 2013 when we were reminded of an episode of This Morning with Sybil and Martin which featured the liquidising of a placenta.

Put simply, Lorraine Duffy was in the business of making smoothies out of placentas, and the Gogglebox gang were along for the ride.

As a placenta was plopped into a kitchen sink and examined with considerable thoroughness, viewers were treated to excessive hiccupping, less-than-discrete gagging and shrieks of ‘don’t look!’ from the Goggleboxers.

Oh, and did we mention it was all to the tune of Kelis’ Milkshake?

Gogglebox Ireland Does 00s and Now took an emotional turn as those at home were reminded of Donal Walsh’s heartbreaking struggle with cancer.

Donal Walsh: My Story, which was broadcast in 2014, detailed a 16-year-old boy’s dignity and courage in the face of a terminal illness, and had everyone in tears as the programme recalled the impact the teenager had on an entire nation.

With Donal’s mother remembering her son’s passing, she said: “Donal took his last breath and went out as gentle as that.”

In 2010, the nation was introduced to Love/Hate, and in 2014 we saw the show’s anti-hero meet his maker in an episode which had viewers on the edge of their seat.

As Tom Vaughn Lawlor’s character attempted to escape Patrick, those at home found themselves rooting for Nidge before instantly questioning themselves.

I don’t know why I’m cheering on a drugdealer.

“For months and years people thought he was still alive,” the lads in Louth remembered. “This was unbelievable TV.”

“The best TV show in the last…well… eternity in Ireland,” added Fergal and Neil in Cavan.

Googlebox Ireland Does the 00s and Now then brought the show to a close with a reminder of the moment that made the 2011 Rose of Tralee.

Siobheal Nic Eochaidh, please step forward.

The self-taught hip-hop dancer stunned those in the dome and at home eight years ago with her routine to LMFAO’s Party Rock Anthem, and it seems the performance still has the ability to leave people reeling.

“She’s sober!” John in Portobello said in disbelief while Tadhg in Co Clare gasped: “I can’t help but cringe!”

Alex in Co Limerick was all for it, however. Sure, what’s not to like, he says.


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Niamh McClelland

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