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"Ballykissangel"
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Reviews & Ratings for
"Ballykissangel" More at IMDbPro »

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32 out of 33 people found the following review useful:

Pleasing Irish series

Author: Steffen_John from New South Wales, Australia
15 November 2001

One of my favourite series. Ballykissangel is an example of how Ireland can produce quality family drama with wonderful characters and good writing against a picturesque backdrop of the Irish countryside.

Filmed at Avoca in Ireland it follows the characters in the fictional town of Ballykissangel, mainly the Catholic priest Father Peter Clifford. Hidden underneath the weekly episodes was the quietly growing attraction of Father Peter and Assumpta Fitzgerald (pub owner of Fitzgeralds)

The series had a slightly quirky edge to it and its humour helped make the series such a ratings winner. The show went for 6 seasons but the best episodes were the first 3 seasons. After the end of the first 3 the two main characters left and the the creator and writer, Kieran Prendiville, also handed over the reins to other writers. The show was never the same and lost some of its humour. Then Peter Hanley (Ambrose) left the show. Later on the series suffered more blows with actors, Birdy Sweeny (Eamonn) and Tony Doyle (Brian Quigley), dying in real life.

With falling ratings Season 6 saw Ballykissangel given some new life with the arrival of a more charismatic priest, Father Vincent Sheahan (played by Australian Robert Taylor) and the return of the original writer Kieran Prendiville. Despite Season 6 being more enjoyable, and showing more promise, it was decided to end the show after 58 episodes.

Personally I think it could have continued as long as Kieran Prendiville held its reins but it was not to be.

Ballykissangel will go down in television history as an example of how good an Irish production can be, which, at its best, was extremely likeable.

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23 out of 25 people found the following review useful:

It could happen next door

Author: CorineJC from Utrecht, Netherlands
31 May 1999

For some time now, I am following the TV-series "Ballykissangel". Why? Simply because it´s one of the few TV-series which is worth being watched: no unnecessary violence, no stupid, easy-to-see-through jokes, and a good storyline, combined with a set of good actors. I call this a real top british TV-product, and it´s a shame that the Dutch TV stations don´t show it on prime time! Ballykissangel is all about the life and complications of the people of a small irish village, where there has been assigned a new young catholic priest, which happens to be british. The main characters are the english priest, father Clifford, and the owner of a local pub, Assumpta, who gets sick from everything connected to the church. The fundamental differences of character of these two (Assumpta is verbally aggressive, sarcastic and sometimes even vicious, whereas Clifford is friendly, sweet, helpful, and unbelievably naive sometimes) result in a mutual love/hate relationship and neither of them knows what to do with it. Most episodes can be watched separately, however watching most of them gives you the best clue as to the development of the relationship of the main characters, or should I say, the non-development. However, it is very easy to identify yourself with one or more of the main characters. This, combined with the misunderstandings and tricks in every episode, makes it a joy to watch this series, time after time.

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14 out of 18 people found the following review useful:

Lovely but only with Peter and Assumpta!

Author: Manicheus from United States
27 February 2003

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I really liked the original run. It was very fresh and innocent in a sense. It brought the vogue of Irish small-town comedy to the mainstream feature films(like "Waking Ned Devine"). The success of TV comedy overwhelmingly depends on the cast chemistry: in"BallyK" the chem was just perfect, so I wouldn't miss a new episode! The vagaries of the "illicit" liaison between the utterly charming Father Peter Clifford and the frisky innkeeper Assumpta Fitzgerald were a wonderful love interest motif, around which various (mis)adventures of the Ballkissangelians evolved. Alas, WARNINGPLOT GIVEN AWAY: Assumpta tragically dies; Father Cliffored defrocks and leaves BallyK ---with a new priest, it is different series, without much charisma left.

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6 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

A Memorable and Enjoyable Television Series

9/10
Author: hjmsia49 from United States
19 December 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Bally K is the kind of quality television series I never tire of watching. The acting by an ensemble cast is first rate as is the script. I thought it gave foreigners an interesting picture of life in an Irish town. I thought the series lagged a bit after the initial two characters (Father Clifford and Asumpta) left but still had enough to continue interest. I noticed a strange commonality between almost all the main characters. Did anybody else note what all these pivotal characters had in common: Asumpta the local bar owner, Brendan the local teacher, Siobhan the local vet, Dr. Ryan, local yokels Liam and Donal, entrepreneur Quigley, storekeeper Kathleen, Garage owner Padraig and his successor in the later series, father O'Comnnell's sister Orla, Eamon and his elderly replacement and stable owner Avril? Not one of them was married? Rather unusual for a "typical" Irish town. Finally, one can wonder why Ireland, a country that sends priests all over the world, has to import them from England and Australia? I do recommend the series as an example of quality television, all too rare on local schedules.

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7 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

A Gem!

10/10
Author: Blkynboy from Manchester, CT
30 December 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Very-well crafted and acted series. Totally absorbing story-lines and characters.

Truly enjoyable,entertaining and original! An Irish soap opera on a grand scale.

Nothing detracts from this production. The scenery and locales are great. Excellent casting, direction and acting.

The series starts off with a humorous scene and has very deep character development. The trials and tribulations of the village residents is totally entertaining on all levels.

Total entertainment.

Post-script- I just saw the show where Assumpta accidentally dies. It looks like Dather Clifford is leaving the Priesthood. I don't know if the series can survive without these 2 leading characters. They really made the show and were supported by a strong cast. Alas!

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11 out of 16 people found the following review useful:

I love this show!!

Author: Steph-83 from South Dakota, USA
17 August 1999

This is one of the best shows that I watch. It is part of my Thursday night line up. My mother loves it too. We watch it regularly. It has all the makings of a soap opera but a much better story line!! You could actually believe that it is something that would happen to anyone. If you haven't seen it before, watch it!!

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8 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

I can't wait for the next episode to arrive from Netflix today

10/10
Author: katie-35 from New Orleans, LA
16 July 2008

In 1998, I toured Ireland with a group of Aussies. We stopped in Avoca only because Ballykissangel was filmed there. All the Aussies were excited to see the church, the store, and Fitzgerald's just as seen on their BBC back home. I remembered the cute name for the town (Ballykissangel) when I joined Netflix. The characters are so well developed. No U.S. TV series is ever this good. Only when PBS shows a series of BBC programs is there any quality, and this has never been shown where I have been. The quirky people of BallyK just keep on coming. Some better than others, but each disc always leaves me wanting more. This show could have continued longer that six seasons with Kieran Prendiville back in the helm, but alas, it didn't. I will be sorry when I watch the last disc. Should it ever appear on PBS, I will become an avid watcher again. It is worth seeing again and looking forward to each episode. Ballykissangel wins my highest praise as quality storytelling.

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4 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Ballykissangel took easy way out

5/10
Author: stevens-melody from United States
4 April 2009

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The first 3 seasons were very exciting. The storyline between the priest and the publican (Assumpta)was dangerous, edgy and romantic. Then the writers took the easy way out by killing off Assumpta. Then they did it again when they killed off the husband (Ambrose)of the woman (Niamh) who fell in love with someone else!

I was shocked at the first death. Although it was a cowardly way to settle the story line, it did work, although it could have been so much better had they explored the ramifications of a priest falling in love. But then they did it again with the next troubled romance.

Other serious flaw:People disappeared without comment: Eamon, Padraig, Danny, Emma, Orla. They just disappeared.

The series never recovered from the killing off of Assumpta and Father Peter's exit.

I wonder how much the story being in Ireland and funded with Irish government $$ (very Catholic) limited the writers.

Ballykissangel reminds me of Hamish MacBeth, which actually was much more fun and even though that also had some deaths, did not use them to artificially stop exploring interesting story lines.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

character driven

10/10
Author: pensman from United States
10 November 2010

This is a great series. As you watch you get pulled into the lives of the various characters living in a small village. While there is a tendency to romanticize the rural life in many films (and in part here), there is a greater depth than the average show. There is much humor in this series and also much heat break. As much as the viewer yearns for things to go right in the characters lives, things tend to go wrong and the characters must deal with personal loss, death, divorce, and financial ruin. For a show billed as a comedy, it is more drama with an overlay of humor. I am being somewhat vague in this review because this is a series to be dipped into for episodes that are uplifting and heart warming but ultimately overshadowed by reality. If you watch it once you will find find that after the passage of a few years you are longing to revisit Ballykissangel and share in the lives of what almost become real people.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

One of the Best TV shows of all time!

9/10
Author: glong131 from United States
1 November 2008

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This show is (or was) fantastic!! Definitely worth purchasing. The first 3 series are the best. With the departure of the 2 leads (and the series writer)in the final episode of series 3, the show loses some of it's chemistry. Also, the way that series 3 ended left me unsatisfied. Intellectually, it was excellent work, but the heart wasn't satisfied.

The rest of the run(series 4&5) was good and really worth watching but didn't have as much of the spirit established in the first 3. It's a testament to the ability of the remaining original actors that the show continued. Then, in series 5, the original writer/creator returns and just as he starts to get it all working again, the show is canceled!

I really feel that this is one TV show that can and should be brought back! It was amazing acting, writing,and scenery.A few of the original actors have,sadly,died and some of the the characters were killed off, but the meat of the show is still there. From the research I've tried to do, it seems a fairly accurate portrayal of rural Ireland as well.

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