Monty Python's Flying Circus Page 3

Monty Python's Flying Circus. Image shows from L to R: Eric Idle, Graham Chapman, Michael Palin, John Cleese, Terry Jones, Terry Gilliam. Copyright: BBC.

Monty Python's Flying Circus

Highly influential off-the-wall 1970s sketch series, starring John Cleese, Michael Palin, Eric Idle, Graham Chapman and Terry Jones

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Tursiops

  • Tuesday 6th November 2012, 1:24pm
  • Welwyn Garden City, England
  • 9,784 posts

There are plenty of seventies (and earlier) shows where the comedy is still fresh.

With the transgressive novelty value removed a lot of Python just does not work as comedy. A lot does of course.

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Michael Monkhouse

  • Friday 7th December 2012, 5:36pm [Edited]
  • Eternal City, Italy
  • 3,915 posts

I'm a huge fan of Python but I understand the TV series is a little hit 'n' miss. You have to remember two things:
1. The period. This kind of stuff was so new and fresh and funny back then - nothing like it before, except maybe the Goons and Milligan's always been a point of praise from the Pythons. And nothing like it since, except maybe my personal epiphany The Young Ones. But while The Young Ones had an exploding fridge - an exploding fatso? And while Vyv had his head knocked off by a train - getting your liver ripped out in the name of science? Love it.
2. The sheer amount of material they were knocking out. I love shows like League of Gentlemen and Little Britain but they're essentially the same characters repeated (that's not criticism, it's a fact): Flying Circus was always new, always different. Rik Mayall said he loved their ability to not necessarily shock, but to surprise - and that's the key element he wanted to bring to sitcom with The Young Ones. You'd watch it and it could turn into a sketch, song, animation, anything.
So yeah, I'm a fan.

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lofthouse

  • Friday 7th December 2012, 7:13pm
  • Nowhere, England
  • 8,901 posts

I think the Gumbys were the only recurring characters in MP?

And it wasn't that often either

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Pingl

  • Friday 7th December 2012, 7:20pm [Edited]
  • England
  • 4,818 posts

The pepperpots, Mr Puty, the stop being silly army officer, the continuity announcer, the "It's" man.....

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Gordon Bennett

  • Friday 7th December 2012, 7:28pm [Edited]
  • Basel, Switzerland
  • 19,033 posts

The giant hedgehog ("Dinsdale!") had more than one appearance...

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Michael Monkhouse

  • Saturday 8th December 2012, 12:08pm
  • Eternal City, Italy
  • 3,915 posts

Sure, but the recurrent characters were essentially call-back gags. My point is that the Pythons were producing a hell of a lot of material and it was rarely reliant on repetition. They still get an unequivocal thumbs-up from me.

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Ben

  • Sunday 9th December 2012, 12:25pm
  • England
  • 18,345 posts

Upper Class Twit of the Year.

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lofthouse

  • Sunday 9th December 2012, 3:23pm
  • Nowhere, England
  • 8,901 posts

That no way to talk about Michael

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Aaron

  • Tuesday 25th December 2012, 11:20am
  • Royal Berkshire, England
  • 68,160 posts

I wish I was. Were?

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sootyj

  • Tuesday 25th December 2012, 11:28am
  • England
  • 51,287 posts
Quote: lofthouse @ December 7 2012, 7:13 PM GMT

I think the Gumbys were the only recurring characters in MP?

And it wasn't that often either

The pepper pots, the announcer, the Bruces, there were loads!

But yeh the material was less repetitive.