Brendan O’Carroll has described Mrs Brown's Boys fans as "the audience that comedy forgot" and says he has no problems recycling old gags for the hit sitcom.

Speaking to The Guardian, who describe the 57-year-old Finglas comedian as “a moustachioed Barry McGuigan lookalike”, O’Carroll said, "Somebody at the BBC read in a magazine, that comedy is the new rock'n'roll. And they actually believed that, and started pitching it only to the 18-25-year-old market. And left the rest behind."

The Christmas Mrs Brown special attracted 11.7 million viewers on the BBC and over 800,000 on RTÉ, beating ratings for Downton Abbey and sitcom favourite Miranda but UK critics have not been as keen, describing O'Carroll's creation as “Lazy, end-of-pier trash . . . the worst thing [I've] ever seen.” And "the worst comedy ever made . . . It is Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps, but more than 10 times as crass and not as cerebral."

In response to charges that he uses second-hand gags, O’Carroll said, "I have absolutely no problem recycling old gags. The old is new if it hasn't been seen for a long time.

"And y'know, every time we have a new child, we tell them the same fairytales we were told when we were kids. And they sound great! Who gives a f***? It is what it is. There are people who will love it, and people who won't."