Sean was never really a huge watcher of television, as he liked to be outdoors whenever possible, or socializing with other people. Shortly before he died he contrasted the lifestyle of himself and his friends when aged, say, between 10 and 14 with that of the current crop … the latter spend far more time on technology, he reckoned. He was glad that he’d had the outdoor life.
Having said that, there were various TV shows that he liked over the years (some of which have probably slipped my mind). He and his sister were watching The Simpsons from quite an early age (he grew to dislike it, and went back to liking it in the past year or so).
Later Sean became a fan of the comedy Peep Show series, starring David Mitchell and Robert Webb. He also enjoyed South Park and Scrubs. He always liked and admired Frasier, and particularly the Martin Crane character. In recent months he had watched several series of a low-budget US comedy called Trailer Park Boys – he got his mum and me to watch one episode (Sean was always a proselytizer for the things he was enthusiastic about – he liked to share).
I think the TV programme that meant the most to him in the course of his life was a drama rather than a comedy – Skins. He used to watch it a few years ago, in his school days, and loved the first series or two – all the characters were changed afterwards and it wasn’t as good, according to Sean.
It was about the lives of a group of teenagers in England. The actors were all amateurs and unknowns, and the writers were young. Sean felt that it was very realistic and well done, and I think he identified with it in terms of his group of friends at school and the experiences they were having.
Sean made an excellent ‘mix’ CD a few years ago that included Vanessa Carlton’s ‘White Houses’ – a song that features in Skins. I have a memory of driving into Virginia with him, past the turn-off for Bailieborough, with this song playing; Sean was talking about Skins and what it meant to him.