Irish don't mind laughing at themselves so that's one reason for it being so corny and jumping on all the stereotypes. Also its an old drama and they didn't have much imagination so they probably decided to make something they usually laugh about anyway - again themselves. Gabriel Byrne is a fine actor but if you give him crap dialog what is it that he can do. I was so surprised that this was listed on IMDb. I was just searching Mick Lally as I had seen him in Alexander with another few Irish actors, including Colin Farrell. My parents used to watch this and my guess is that the later drama Glenroe is a sequel to this show. Mick Lally seems to reprise the same role or at least a character with the same name.