The Morbegs is a popular children's television programme which was transmitted every weekday (and occasionally aired on The Den) in Ireland,The show originally started on 30 September 1996 and ended on 15 May 1998 but continued in reruns until 5 November 2008.
The Morbegs starred two larger than life-size creatures called Molly and Rossa, who came from a mythical place called Morbeg Land. They lived in a castle somewhere in Ireland, and were looked after by various magical, wise wizards. Rossa was played by Cindy Cummings and voiced by Diarmuid de Faoite and Dominic Moore. Molly was played by Anna Galligan and voiced by Majella Horan and Tara Flynn. The two Morbegs appeared alongside various human actors, including Carrie Crowley. Often parts of the show were in simple Irish. The target age range was 3–6 years.
A strong resemblance exists between the Morbegs and their RTE colleague, Soky the Sock Monster, with each having brownish, fuzzy fur and sock-like appendages protruding from their heads. However, while the Morbegs arrived via inter-dimensional portal, Soky emerged from a long-abandoned pile of Dustin the Turkey's rancid, unwashed socks. This has led to speculation that the socks acted as a kind of imperfect, arcane summoning ritual which corrupted Soky's true form; this has never been confirmed by RTE and remains a matter of controversy.
The word morbeg is derived from the Irish words mór, meaning big or large and beag, meaning small or little. The name was inspired by an Irish folk tune, 'Si Beag, Si Mor' [little fairy, big fairy] and was devised by Frances Kay, the script editor. The names Molly and Rossa were used by Frances Kay in some pilot scripts she wrote for the series, and were selected from a shortlist by the production team. The show ceased to be transmitted in the early 2008.
Parade and Later Events
The Morbegs paraded through Limerick on Saint Patrick's Day in 1999. This was the pair's last public appearance together. Rossa and Molly had been experiencing artistic differences which were originally attributed to brotherly-sisterly rivalry. Rossa told The Irish Independent he was verbally abused by his sibling and told by Molly to 'Póg mo th*%$'. However, Molly responded with allegations that Rossa had developed problems with substance abuse and had set fire to the Growing Tree during a violent, drunken rampage. At this point Molly was speculated to have entered a relationship with Basil Brush. The relationship was not approved of by the Morbeg estate as Molly's involvement with an upper middle class English fox was seen as a strong indication of her having developed 'notions'. Some speculators even commented she was 'getting carried away with herself'. These comments rocked the very fabric of the Morbeg empire.
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- "Record numbers attend The Morbegs on parade". 17 March 1999. Archived from the original on 5 March 2015.
- Fahey, Seán. "Some chancer has given The Morbegs' Wiki-entry an adult update". Buzz.ie. Retrieved 11 December 2019.