Bernard is inspired by a real bookshop owner in Dublin whom Dylan Moran described as "he looks like he's swallowed a cup of sour milk and peed himself at the same time. He has this green bilious expression, years of displeasure have shaped his face".
Fran pushes her new phone into Bernard's face and says that it has web access and a camera. This is actually a joke about how annoying mobile users were seen at the time, a time when such features were unheard of. These features are now the standard.