Father Ted is 20-years-old this week, here are the best 15 moments from the first episode 8 years ago

Father Ted is 20-years-old this week, here are the best 15 moments from the first episode

Good luck, Father Ted

Sometimes a TV show is so good that you feel like God himself had some divine role in its creation; Father Ted is this show.


20 years ago this Tuesday, Graham Linehan and Arthur Matthews gave the world a masterpiece that captured Ireland's unique take on comedy, culture and outlook on the world.

Without a hint of hyperbole, Father Ted ranks alongside the best Irish pieces of art that have ever been created.

Here are the best moments from a stunning debut.

1) The Credits


Like The Simpsons or Frasier, the theme song by The Divine Comedy has since been heralded as iconic and memorable.

There's something wonderful about hearing those first few notes and knowing that you're going to be happy for the next 25 minutes.

2) Meeting Dougal


This might be one of the greatest introductions to any TV character because it tells you everything that you need to know about Father Dougal McGuire in just one sentence.


3) The Magic binoculars

A long running gag that's brilliantly executed.



It gets better later.


4) They've got a spider baby

It really does take a genius to make the concept of a 'spider baby' so popularly ingrained in Irish culture.


While it doesn't have a nappy or gurgle at you, spider baby has since come to mean talking 'complete bo**ocks but in a funny way' to all Irish people.

They do keep it in a pram though.

5) Dougal riding an an auld lad for an hour

This entire passage of text is one of the best pieces of dialogue that you'll ever read.

Dougal: I had a go at the horse riding and it was just fantastic.

Ted: I didn't know you could ride horses.

Dougal: Well it wasn't a real horse, it was just this auld fella with a saddle on him, he couldn't go very fast and I had to lash him with the whip a few times.

Ted: And how old was he?

Dougal: I'd say about 80.

Ted: And how long were you up on him?

Dougal: Ah....an hour.

Ted: So you were up on an 80 year old man for 60 minutes, whipping him around the place, you realise that image will stay with me for the rest of my life?

6) Jack's glory days


7) Here we are now, tea for everyone.



8) The best pyjamas in the world


We never did find out if Dougal was only allowed to join the priesthood because he collected those crisp packets.


9) Ask Tom there. He'll help you out.


Who wouldn't love to have a pint with Tom? He must have some great stories.


The sheer manic glee in the delivery of the words "I certainly did" cracks me up every time.

Dropping your jocks in front of a stranger, that's just Tom.


10) Funland in the field

This carnival worker is very close to stealing the episode with six famous hate filled words.


That's not to say that there aren't lots of other things to do in the place that has fewer rocks than most places the field.





11) Craggy Island's happiest couple

One of the best insults that you'll ever hear and the comeback is just as good.

Tomand Mary

The below image is so quintessentially Irish that its since been used by countless arguing couples in the 32 counties.


12) The Deliverance banjo scene that features a dancing auld lad for no reason and the best skinhead with a look that says 'I'm going to murder you'

That look.

13) You must first cross my palm with silver

The spooky music is what makes it.


14) How did that gobshite get on the television?


15) The tunnel of goats

Father Ted has the best post-credit jokes of any show. Wonderful stuff.