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MOD ON Monday: Marty doesn't just know Ireland, he is Ireland...so let's give him a show


Marty Morrissey with Roz Purcell and Lorraine Keane

Marty Morrissey with Roz Purcell and Lorraine Keane

Karl Bowe

Karl Bowe

Conor McGregor

Conor McGregor


Marty Morrissey with Roz Purcell and Lorraine Keane

It's time to talk about Marty Morrissey.

While RTE may be toasting the return of Ray D'Arcy to their airwaves, they have been forced to say goodbye to the man who's been keeping his seat warm for the past few weeks (following the departure of Derek Mooney).

Marty was in the news for two reasons last week. First he appeared in Moll at the Gaiety and was typically low-key about his brief role.

"I'm not an actor, I've never performed," he said, downplaying any thoughts that this might be the start of a new career.

Of course, it's typical of Marty to be so modest about his talents, and his reticence is something that we should all rightfully ignore.


Marty is clearly a free spirit that refuses to be tied down, and his appearance on RTE radio has been just as fleeting.

And, just like the feeling that he leaves his many female admirers with, his brief dalliance with the country's listeners left us begging for more.

In true Marty style, even though he was only on air a few weeks, he celebrated his last show with a knees-up in RTE radio centre, inviting guests such as Roz Purcell, Stephanie Roche and Nathan Carter to let their hair down.

The assembly also feasted on some unique culinary, er, delights - a batch of cupcakes with Marty's face emblazoned across them.

But his departure from radio should not be a cause for celebration, because in letting him go, you feel that RTE have missed a trick.

Marty's show hosted an eclectic, sometimes bizarre collection of guests, from old school entertainers such as Chris De Burgh and Brendan Grace, to new kids on the block Nadia Forde and Roz Purcell, and plenty in between

But in being unashamed about inviting on people whom many people might now consider to be terminally uncool, Marty delivered some broadcasting gems.

One was Chris De Burgh reminding us that while time may have thinned his hair, it most certainly hasn't diminished his self-belief.

De Burgh revealed that he had heard Hozier play on a visit to his house the summer before last and was blown away by the young artist's talent.

"He is the first person I heard in 10 years where I really went, 'Wow!...I thought, it's like watching myself all those years ago'," he enthused.


What Marty's guests all had in common, of course, was their uniquely Irish appeal, exactly like the man himself.

It may be right that Ray D'Arcy's return to RTE should merit headline space but it would be foolish of the broadcaster not to appreciate what they are losing in taking Morrissey off the airwaves.

In an age when so many presenters talk about spreading their wings and trying their luck overseas, Marty is a staunchly Irish phenomenon, a man who transgresses the divides of class, county and age, captivates young and old alike, and has been tragically underused by RTE. It's time they sorted that out, and gave him his own show.

The name is Bowe, Karl Bowe

As if to prove that Ireland's female models don't have a monopoly over dreams of making it big in Hollywood, Mr Ireland Karl Bowe is talking up his chances of being the next big thing.

Last Friday, Karl, a veteran of such works as the Cheerio's Panto and RTE 2's The Centre, talked about his small role in TV3's Red Rock, and also looked forward to his appearance on ITV dating show Take Me Out the following night.

Of Red Rock, Karl said: "The producer said I did a pretty good job and that there is a possibility they might bring me back into the show again."

Not one to rest on his laurels, Karl was preparing for Take Me Out as the next step on his plan for stardom. "I didn't go on the show to look for a date or to find love, I did it for the exposure and publicity and get onto the UK market," he revealed.

"Hollyoaks would be ideal. Coronation Street...I would get to be the next Keith Duffy."

And such is Karl's confidence that within 24 hours that dream had morphed into something somewhat loftier. "People might think it is so far-fetched but I'd love to play James Bond one day," he said.

Far-fetched? Not in the slightest, Karl. As we all know, Sean Connery started out in panto, and Daniel Craig was a regular on TV dating shows.

Yes, I'm sure that's right...

FG can learn from Conor McGregor

Conor McGregor, looking forward to his UFC title fight against Jose Aldo this summer, has threatened to "rip that Brazilian's head off". This promise might send Senator Catherine Noone in paroxysms of anger, as a few weeks ago that she described the sport as "vile" (she later changed her mind, of course).     

What the Senator may have forgotten was that such expressions are just part of the game, a deliberate exaggeration designed to stoke up a reaction amongst an audience which the person will never go through with.  But let me put it into terms she can probably understand.      It's like a promise that her party, Fine Gael, makes at election time...

*Former Westlifer Mark Feehily is back and, over three years after the band broke up, is releasing his debut solo album. Mark no longer wants to be known as Mark, but instead as Markus, though it's hard to know exactly the precise motivation behind this move. Perhaps Mark considers this elongated version of his name to give him greater gravitas. But let's not forget the other person who tried that exact thing: former boxer, boozer and aficionado of aesthetically-challenged escort girls, Kenny Egan, who re-branded himself as Kenneth because, in his own words: "Kenny was my drinking name." I rest my case.