Thursday 20 September 2018

‘Gone to bed with my hurley tonight’ – viewers loved RTE’s magnificent hurling doc The Game

The third and final episode aired on RTE One on Monday night

Hurling fans, 1960s. PIC: Failte Ireland
Hurling fans, 1960s. PIC: Failte Ireland
1967 All Ireland Final. PIC: RTE
Michael Cusack. Copyright: James Hardiman Library, NUIG
Galway fans 1966. The Game, RTE
Wexford fans. The Game, RTE
The winners, first All Ireland 1887. The Game, RTE
The Game, RTE
Aoife Kelly

Aoife Kelly

RTE's documentary about the history of hurling in Ireland wrapped on Monday night and viewers were hugely impressed with the three-part series.

All three episodes which aired every Monday night for the past three weeks drew an impressive audience with 253,400 tuning in for the final episode compared to 273,400 for the first and 265,900 for the second.

Viewers took to Twitter to bemoan its departure from the schedule after the final episode, which explored the chase for perfection, and the women's game and the battle camogie has had to fight to be recognised in its own right.

Filmed over the course of two years, the series featured interviews with legendary players, commentators, and fans (60 interviews no less) to paint a picture of the evolution of the game and what it means to people in Ireland.  State of the art cameras, techniques and technology were used with rare and unseen archive footage.

The scale and quality of the production did not go unnoticed by viewers, many of whom were also moved by the emotion it evoked. 

While RTE tells Independent.ie it's "too early" to talk about a second series, RTE's Head of Specialist Factual Programmes Colm O'Gallaghan tweeted "That's it for now from #TheGame. We did our best to fit as much as we could into the space afforded us. We'll be back soon."  So, take from that what you will...

Here's some of the reaction to the final episode in the series:

RTE's The Game review: 'The time and money that went into its making are visible on screen' 

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