Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Monty Python Minus Two

 

Terry Jones, a member of the Monty Python comedy troupe has passed away. He co-wrote and co-directed Monty Python & The Holy Grail, The Life of Brian (no relation), and Monty Python’s Meaning of Life, as well as a few episodes of George Lucas’ Young Indiana Jones and other shows and documentaries. Those familiar with the Pythons irreverent humor are aware that nothing seemed out of bounds to poke fun of and make ridiculous – from terrorism, transgenderism, politicians, know-it-all dinosaur experts, housewives, the knights of the Round Table, the Catholic Church, Americans, Australians, the French, the proper usage and grammar of Latin, to excessive dining. Mr. Jones is now the second Python to have passed away following Graham Chapman’s passing. I suddenly feel very old.

As I noted on another post:

Clearly his work and the work of his other Python cohorts have influenced a great deal of comedy and been an endless source of commentary on our age – and even more relevant today as it’s applied to our “woke” culture.

From The Guardian:

In 2016, Jones and his family revealed he had been diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia a year earlier, and he became a public face of the illness – appearing at a Bafta Cymru awards ceremony to highlight its effects and being interviewed in conjunction with longtime friend and collaborator Michael Palin in 2017. Jeremy Hughes, chief executive of Alzheimer’s Society paid tribute, saying: “We were lucky enough to work with Terry and his family when he joined us for our London Memory Walk in 2017 and his support really helped inspire others to unite against dementia. We are truly grateful for his aid in raising awareness and much-needed funds.”

And here is Michael Palin paying tribute to his friend and colleague:

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  1. James Gawron Thatcher
    James Gawron Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Brian,

    We’ll always have Camelot.

    Sometimes you just need to go to a silly place.

    Regards,

    Jim

    • #1
    • January 22, 2020, at 7:30 PM PST
    • 15 likes
  2. Brian Watt Member
    Brian Watt Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    James Gawron (View Comment):

    Brian,

    We’ll always have Camelot.

    It’s only a model.

    Sometimes you just need to go to a silly place.

    Regards,

    Jim

     

    • #2
    • January 22, 2020, at 7:32 PM PST
    • 6 likes
  3. Michael Minnott Member
    Michael Minnott Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    My wife and I both love the Nudge Nudge sketch. It’s become our in-joke.

    • #3
    • January 22, 2020, at 8:42 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  4. Caryn Thatcher
    Caryn Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    In memoriam, Terry Jones and Graham Chapman.

    • #4
    • January 22, 2020, at 8:50 PM PST
    • 7 likes
  5. Caryn Thatcher
    Caryn Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Michael Minnott (View Comment):

    My wife and I both love the Nudge Nudge sketch. It’s become our in-joke.

    My husband and I have our in-joke from Life of Brian: “Good idea, Biggus!”

    From the chocolate shop: “Where’s the pleasure in that?!”

    So many great lines; I’ve been quoting them since high school.

    Such brilliance. Good clean fun and games with a bunch of really smart, well-educated guys who didn’t/don’t take themselves seriously in the least.

    • #5
    • January 22, 2020, at 8:57 PM PST
    • 13 likes
  6. Arahant Member

    • #6
    • January 22, 2020, at 9:07 PM PST
    • 7 likes
  7. James Lileks Contributor

    He was my least-favorite Python, which is to say I liked him more than 98.9% of any other comic actor, writer, and director of his time. The contributions of that troupe are inestimable.

    • #7
    • January 22, 2020, at 9:58 PM PST
    • 13 likes
  8. Arahant Member

    Really, considering that the six are all in the age range of 76 to 80 at the moment, they have probably done pretty well. I wouldn’t be surprised if Cheese lives to 100, since his mother did. Don’t know about how the others will do.

    • #8
    • January 23, 2020, at 2:25 AM PST
    • 6 likes
  9. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    He helped change the world. 

    How many people can say that?

    • #9
    • January 23, 2020, at 5:34 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  10. Addiction Is A Choice Member

    Relax, people! Since each Python death is 30 years apart, the rest of the fellows will be with us for a very long time.

    • #10
    • January 23, 2020, at 6:07 AM PST
    • 12 likes
  11. TallCon Coolidge

    Almost my first thought when I heard this was for Palin. I wonder when you’re in that position how quickly do you move from just coping with the loss to realizing that you’re going to have to be on television all day at the same time?

    I am amused and alarmed that Mr. Creosote seems to be the go-to obituary pick. Just to be contrary I may have to watch Labyrinth today.

    Pythons down to 4, Beatles and Golden Girls holding steady at 2 and 1.

    • #11
    • January 23, 2020, at 7:57 AM PST
    • 1 like
  12. Doug Kimball Thatcher

    Monty Python was a singular TV phenomena in London in 1974. Unlike Americans, Londoner’s were much more fond of their pints in the pub than the weak offerings at home on the two BBC public channels and the single independent channel. I was there and other than football, Monty Python was the only show that thinned out the pubs when it aired. Oh yeah, that and Kojack. The BBC reruns of that five year old, stale, American police drama were the don’t miss, top hits in England back in the day. I even remember seeing a tabloid headline that claimed watching Monty Python proved fatal in numerous cases; viewers dropped dead watching the show; they literally laughed to death. I also remember the outrage when the Pythons did their famous BBC parody “Is the Royal Family Falling Apart” skit. These guys were fearless. They made fun of everyone. England has a long history of comedic irreverance (think Rickly Gervais as a current purveyor.) American comedy, not so much. We could use our own Monty Python right now.

    • #12
    • January 23, 2020, at 8:25 AM PST
    • 7 likes
  13. Bill Nelson Member

    Doug Kimball (View Comment):
    viewers dropped dead watching the show; they literally laughed to death

    They did that skit.

     

    • #13
    • January 23, 2020, at 11:51 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  14. Caryn Thatcher
    Caryn Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    TallCon (View Comment):

    Almost my first thought when I heard this was for Palin. I wonder when you’re in that position how quickly do you move from just coping with the loss to realizing that you’re going to have to be on television all day at the same time?

    I am amused and alarmed that Mr. Creosote seems to be the go-to obituary pick. Just to be contrary I may have to watch Labyrinth today.

    Pythons down to 4, Beatles and Golden Girls holding steady at 2 and 1.

    I suspect that Mr. Creosote is one of the few PC characters. I don’t think any of his “female” characters (Spam hostess, above, and Mrs. Cohen–Brian’s mum–to name a couple) would pass without someone screeching about its “trans insensitivity.” Yup, fat man is always funny and white enough to be safe fodder. And the “one wafer thin mint” finale absolutely brilliant. Disgusting, too, which, sadly, is more typical of today’s version of “comedy” than the smart humor of showing him as Karl Marx competing in a game show

    • #14
    • January 23, 2020, at 12:34 PM PST
    • 1 like
  15. Antisocial-Introvert Member

    For my high school graduation (Clear Creek High School in League City, TX), we graduating seniors were supposed to choose an inspirational song to perform during the ceremony. One of my classmates suggested “The Lumberjack Song,” but our principal said no and Diana Ross’s “Theme from Mahogany” was chosen. During our grand performance, while most of the class was singing the “Theme from Mahogany,” a small but very loud group of boys sang “The Lumberjack Song” instead. The rest of us were laughing too hard to sing either one. Lots of confused looks from parents; the principal just shook his head.

    • #15
    • January 23, 2020, at 12:37 PM PST
    • 7 likes
  16. Manny Member

    Good stuff, especially the Nudge Nudge. That was hilarious.

    • #16
    • January 23, 2020, at 12:58 PM PST
    • Like
  17. Umbra Fractus Coolidge
    Umbra Fractus Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    TallCon (View Comment):
    I am amused and alarmed that Mr. Creosote seems to be the go-to obituary pick.

    Sad. That is, by far, the worst Python sketch of them all. I almost vomited, myself when I saw it. He deserves better.

    • #17
    • January 23, 2020, at 1:12 PM PST
    • 1 like
  18. Bishop Wash Member

    TallCon (View Comment):

    Almost my first thought when I heard this was for Palin. I wonder when you’re in that position how quickly do you move from just coping with the loss to realizing that you’re going to have to be on television all day at the same time?

    I am amused and alarmed that Mr. Creosote seems to be the go-to obituary pick. Just to be contrary I may have to watch Labyrinth today.

    Pythons down to 4, Beatles and Golden Girls holding steady at 2 and 1.

    From one article I read, the team got together a few years ago for a show, the first since Chapman’s passing and entitled it something like Monty Python (Mostly) Live, One Down Five To Go. Mr. Cleese ended his remembrance tweet with 2 Down, 4 to Go.

    • #18
    • January 23, 2020, at 1:16 PM PST
    • 6 likes
  19. Umbra Fractus Coolidge
    Umbra Fractus Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Caryn (View Comment):
    Good clean fun and games

    You haven’t watched much Python, have you? ;-)

    • #19
    • January 23, 2020, at 1:20 PM PST
    • 1 like
  20. Dad Dog Member

    Arahant (View Comment):

    “Nobody expects . . . “

    • #20
    • January 23, 2020, at 2:02 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  21. Caryn Thatcher
    Caryn Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Umbra Fractus, cum Insigne (View Comment):

    Caryn (View Comment):
    Good clean fun and games

    You haven’t watched much Python, have you? ;-)

    No nudity (well, other than Brian’s frontal), no resorting to discomforting sexual situations for laughs (well, unless you count men in dresses–which I don’t), and no filthy words. Counts as good clean fun and games to me. 

    • #21
    • January 23, 2020, at 2:04 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  22. Joseph Stanko Coolidge
    Joseph Stanko Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    James Gawron (View Comment):

    Brian,

    We’ll always have Camelot.

    Sometimes you just need to go to a silly place.

    Regards,

    Jim

    literally fell out of my chair laughing the first time I saw that.

    • #22
    • January 23, 2020, at 2:34 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  23. Joseph Stanko Coolidge
    Joseph Stanko Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Brian Watt: He co-wrote and co-directed Monty Python & The Holy Grail, The Life of Brian (no relation), and Monty Python’s Meaning of Life

    I believe he was the sole director on The Life of Brian and Monty Python’s Meaning of Lifeafter he and Terry Gilliam co-directed Monty Python & The Holy Grail they agreed that the co-director model didn’t work so well and they needed a single decision-maker on set. It says a lot about his directing talents that the group chose him for this role over Gilliam, who went on to become an acclaimed director of such films as Brazil and The Fisher King.

    • #23
    • January 23, 2020, at 2:44 PM PST
    • 1 like
  24. Bruce Caward Thatcher
    Bruce Caward Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    I’m thinking of something trenchant to write about Terry Jones and the Pythons, and I want to post a link to a sketch, of course.

    Just sitting here going through them from memory got me laughing out loud, doing each sketch from memory. Having too much fun to go over to youtube.

    What does it say about me that the first sketch I think of when I think of Terry Jones is the Mouse Organ bit?

    God he was funny. They all are just the best.

    Oh, all right:

    • #24
    • January 23, 2020, at 2:50 PM PST
    • 5 likes
  25. kedavis Member

    James Lileks (View Comment):

    He was my least-favorite Python, which is to say I liked him more than 98.9% of any other comic actor, writer, and director of his time. The contributions of that troupe are inestimable.

    Really? You put Terry Gilliam ahead of Terry Jones?

    • #25
    • January 23, 2020, at 5:17 PM PST
    • Like
  26. Umbra Fractus Coolidge
    Umbra Fractus Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    James Lileks (View Comment):

    He was my least-favorite Python, which is to say I liked him more than 98.9% of any other comic actor, writer, and director of his time. The contributions of that troupe are inestimable.

    James is right. Jones was probably my least favorite Python, but that’s not saying much.

    That said, he was the best of the group at doing the old lady roles, in my opinion.

    • #26
    • January 23, 2020, at 5:18 PM PST
    • Like
  27. Joseph Stanko Coolidge
    Joseph Stanko Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    kedavis (View Comment):

    James Lileks (View Comment):

    He was my least-favorite Python, which is to say I liked him more than 98.9% of any other comic actor, writer, and director of his time. The contributions of that troupe are inestimable.

    Really? You put Terry Gilliam ahead of Terry Jones?

    It’s kind of an apples-to-oranges comparison, in my book. Gilliam’s contributions as an actor were minimal, but he was responsible for all the animation which was certainly an important component of Python.

    • #27
    • January 23, 2020, at 5:29 PM PST
    • Like
  28. James Lileks Contributor

    kedavis (View Comment):

    James Lileks (View Comment):

    He was my least-favorite Python, which is to say I liked him more than 98.9% of any other comic actor, writer, and director of his time. The contributions of that troupe are inestimable.

    Really? You put Terry Gilliam ahead of Terry Jones?

    No, I don’t; I always forget Gilliam when counting Pythons, which says something.

    • #28
    • January 23, 2020, at 5:39 PM PST
    • 1 like
  29. kedavis Member

    Joseph Stanko (View Comment):

    kedavis (View Comment):

    James Lileks (View Comment):

    He was my least-favorite Python, which is to say I liked him more than 98.9% of any other comic actor, writer, and director of his time. The contributions of that troupe are inestimable.

    Really? You put Terry Gilliam ahead of Terry Jones?

    It’s kind of an apples-to-oranges comparison, in my book. Gilliam’s contributions as an actor were minimal, but he was responsible for all the animation which was certainly an important component of Python.

    Quite so.

    • #29
    • January 23, 2020, at 7:00 PM PST
    • Like
  30. kedavis Member

    Funny. I just looked up the show – the original MPFC series – on epguides, which I use a lot.

    Instead of listing “Recurring Characters” or some such, as they do for other shows, it says “also wik.”

    Which, if anyone doesn’t know, comes from the Holy Grail movie credits.

    http://epguides.com/MontyPythonsFlyingCircus/

    I’ve been to that page in the past, but don’t remember if it’s been like that for a long time, or maybe a more recent change.

    • #30
    • January 23, 2020, at 7:11 PM PST
    • 1 like