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Saturday 22 July 2017

A nation holds its breath: gay Byrne's big hits and bad misses

Gay Byrne with Padraig Flynn.
Gay Byrne with Padraig Flynn.
Gay Byrne and Annie Murphy.
Gay Byrne with Gerry Adams in 1994.

Gay Byrne got people talking thanks to The Late Late Show and his long-running radio programme, but for all his successes, he wasn't always on song.

Hits

1972: Late Late panelist Fr Fergal O'Connor criticises Catholic establishment for not allowing divorce.

1982: Women's right to abortion argued by feminist guest Anna Raeburn on the Late Late.

1984: Entire episode of The Gay Byrne Show devoted to listeners' letters on teen pregnancies and having children out of wedlock, inspired by the Ann Lovett tragedy.

1985: The traveller special on the Late Late.

1999: Padraig Flynn talks himself into trouble on the Late Late.

Misses

1993: A condescending and rude interview with Annie Murphy, which exposed Bishop Eamon Casey.

1994: Lets emotion get in the way and refuses to shake Gerry Adams's hand.

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