The comedian looks into another funny man in his family, although this relative was making jokes in one of the worst places imaginable.
Lee Mack begins this episode by looking into the life of his great-grandfather, known as Billy Mac, who was a comic. He also quickly learns that he took part in the First World War, which leads him to look more at his military background. It was here where he was part of a comic troupe that went out to the Western Front, where Billy ended up fighting in the Battle of the Somme. He survived, and the group he was in, “The Optimists”, helped to boost the morale of troops during the war.
After this, Mack investigates the life of his Grandad Joe, who was born illegitimate raised by his labourer grandfather in Ireland after his mother left him for Canada. There were learn that because his 2 x great grandfather had such a big family to look after, he made money by operating an illegal drinking establishment for which he was fined for – several times.
Although the main area of interest at the beginning of the episode is the comedy connection between Mack and his great-grandfather, it is his military background hat ends up being the more interesting, the fact that his comedy help to entertain people during the war, and also the issue that Billy Mac would be fighting battles and performing to the troops on the same day. The story of his Grandad Joe is interesting too, consider the problems he had growing up while Ireland was starting to get its independence.
Who Do You Think You Are? is on Mondays at 21.00.