Reeling in the years – 45 Years of the Late Late Toy Show

This Years toyshow is set to mark 45 years of the Christmas Edition of the show. Although it may be in a slightly different. To mark this milestone we are reminiscing on some of our most memorable guests that have appeared on the show throughout the years.

When did it first Air? 

The Toy Show first landed on our screens in 1975, a special edition of the late-night talk show which showcases all the toys kids might want to ask santy for this year. The Toy Show is now watched all around the world and has millions of viewers, often one of the most-watched events on Irish television annually. 

Who has hosted it? 

Since its launch in 1974, we have seen 3 famous Irish faces present the show. Gay Byrne, Pat Kenny and Ryan Tubridy and let’s not forget for many years the appearance of Dustin the Turkey. His appearance every year to present each of the hosts with a gift, a comical part of the show.


What Famous faces have appeared on the show? 

Some of the most iconic moments on the show come when a young child meets their idol. We have seen famous faces such as Girls Aloud, Ed Sheeran, Robbie Keane, Davy Fitzgeral and Boyzone. In the last few years however, RTE and the show have made a point of inviting on homegrown familiar faces.


Some of our favourite guests: 

Stella McGirl 

This boisterous young future farmer had everyone laughing with her education on young farm animals. Representing Leitrim in her county jersey she was well able to hold her own with her witty comebacks. Not only that she went on to appear again on the late late show a couple of months later reporting live from her farm. This charismatic young girl has us all in knots.

John Joe Brennan 

This young 8-year-old boy appeared on the 2009 edition of the show, and right from the time he landed on the screen he stole the hearts of the whole country. He instantly became a meme for his passion for clocks wanting to be a horologist when he gets older. His excitement of the book reviews and his interactions with Ryan and his giggly personality and his slight shade towards Ryans watch that wasn’t a Rolex, was more than endearing.

Michael O’Brien 

Michael was invited onto the show for the book review segment, he was the first child to review braille and audiobooks for visually impaired children. From the outset, his charm and cool attitude radiated and his love for GAA was strong. His idol being Davy Fitzgerald joined him on the bench and he was stunned and lost for words. This cheeky chappy then grew confident to tell Davy that he has his book in the back and needs it signed. Davy went on to invite Michael to the final 3 games of the season and he even got all Ireland Tickets for the following year with the VIP treatment.


Mark McSharry

Who could forget this guest, Junior culchie of Ireland Mark McSharry also appeared on the 2009 edition of the show riding into the studio in style on his toy tractor. Talking us through his run-up to the Junior Culchie contest went on to showcase toys and gadgets for all the culchie kids out there.


Joe McCaul 

Later in his life he would go onto Eurovision fame with his sister as part of a duo, ‘Donna and Joe’. As a child appearing on the Toy Show to showcase some toys in the science category. His honesty in rating the toys had everyone laughing letting us know how he wasn’t really into science kits or most of the toys didn’t work but did love the camera. The catchphrase at the end was ‘I can’t understand that’. Pat tried to keep the conversation moving but Joe really was taking the lead and in doing so making the audience laugh.

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