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Sat Oct 5, 2019, 10:13 AM

50 Years Ago Today: Monty Python's Flying Circus premiers on British TV

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monty_Python%27s_Flying_Circus



Monty Python’s Flying Circus is a British surreal sketch comedy series created by and starring the comedy group Monty Python. The first episode was recorded at the BBC on 7 September and premiered on 5 October 1969 on BBC1, with 45 episodes airing over four series from 1969 to 1974, plus two episodes for German TV.

The series stands out for its use of absurd situations, mixed with risqué and innuendo-laden humour, sight gags and observational sketches without punchlines. Live action segments were broken up with animations by group member Terry Gilliam, often merging with the live action to form segues. The overall format used for the series followed and elaborated upon the style used by Spike Milligan in his ground breaking series Q5, rather than the traditional sketch show format. The six troupe members, or "Pythons", play the majority of the series characters themselves, including the majority of the female characters, with a small team of regular supporting cast members, including Carol Cleveland (referred to by the team as the unofficial "Seventh Python" ), Connie Booth (Cleese's first wife), series producer Ian MacNaughton, Ian Davidson, musician Neil Innes (in the fourth series), and Fred Tomlinson and the Fred Tomlinson Singers (for musical numbers).

Much of the humour in the series's various episodes and sketches targets the idiosyncrasies of British life, especially that of professionals, as well as aspects of politics. The Monty Python troupe was highly educated; Terry Jones and Michael Palin are Oxford University graduates; Eric Idle, John Cleese and Graham Chapman attended Cambridge University; and American-born member Terry Gilliam graduated from Occidental College. Their comedy is often pointedly intellectual, with numerous erudite references to philosophers and literary figures and their works. The team intended their humour to be impossible to categorise, and succeeded (although, by their perspective, failed) so completely that the adjective "Pythonesque" was invented to define it and, later, similar material.

The opening titles of the series features as theme music the Band of the Grenadier Guards' rendition of John Philip Sousa's "The Liberty Bell" which was first published in 1893. Under the Berne Convention's "country of origin" concept, the composition was subject to United States copyright law which states that any works first published prior to 1923 was in the public domain due to copyright expiration. This enabled Gilliam to co-opt the march for the series without having to make any royalty payments.

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Post your favorite sketches! I'll start off with their most famous:



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Reply 50 Years Ago Today: Monty Python's Flying Circus premiers on British TV (Original post)
Dennis Donovan Oct 5 OP
roamer65 Oct 5 #1
Crunchy Frog Oct 5 #4
roamer65 Oct 6 #11
Bayard Oct 5 #2
Crunchy Frog Oct 5 #3
superpatriotman Oct 5 #5
malaise Oct 5 #6
canetoad Oct 5 #7
edbermac Oct 5 #8
Mendocino Oct 5 #9
Doc_Technical Oct 5 #10

Response to Dennis Donovan (Original post)

Sat Oct 5, 2019, 10:28 AM

1. I have the entirety on DVD.

Been thinking about playing it again lately. The 50th sounds like a good excuse for it.

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Response to roamer65 (Reply #1)

Sat Oct 5, 2019, 03:35 PM

4. I got the German DVD set, since the American and UK ones

Actually had some alterations from the original broadcasts. I guess that makes me pretty hardcore.

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Response to Crunchy Frog (Reply #4)

Sun Oct 6, 2019, 11:25 PM

11. Are they PAL, versus NTSC? I would assume so.

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Response to Dennis Donovan (Original post)

Sat Oct 5, 2019, 11:14 AM

2. I'm going to be old

They sure don't make them like that anymore.

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Response to Dennis Donovan (Original post)

Sat Oct 5, 2019, 03:31 PM

3. Nope. Never heard of 'em.

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Response to Dennis Donovan (Original post)

Sat Oct 5, 2019, 03:44 PM

5. And has affected yours truly every single day

Love Love Love!

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Response to Dennis Donovan (Original post)

Sat Oct 5, 2019, 03:48 PM

6. One of the greatest shows of all time

Loved it

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Response to Dennis Donovan (Original post)

Sat Oct 5, 2019, 04:31 PM

7. One of my favourite sketches

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Response to Dennis Donovan (Original post)

Sat Oct 5, 2019, 04:55 PM

8. Politicians - An Apology

The video is blocked but here’s the text.

WE WOULD LIKE TO APOLOGIZE FOR THE WAY IN WHICH POLITICIANS ARE REPRESENTED IN THIS PROGRAMME.

IT WAS NEVER OUR INTENTION TO IMPLY THAT POLITICIANS ARE WEAK-KNEED, POLITICAL TIME-SERVERS WHO ARE CONCERNED MORE WITH THEIR PERSONAL VENDETTAS AND PRIVATE POWER STRUGGLES THAN THE PROBLEMS OF GOVERNMENT, NOR TO SUGGEST AT ANY POINT THAT THEY SACRIFICE THEIR CREDIBILITY BY DENYING FREE DEBATE ON VITAL MATTERS IN THE MISTAKEN IMPRESSION THAT PARTY UNITY COMES BEFORE THE WELL-BEING OF THE PEOPLE THEY SUPPOSEDLY REPRESENT NOR TO IMPLY AT ANY STAGE THAT THEY ARE SQUABBLING LITTLE TOADIES WITHOUT AN OUNCE OF CONCERN FOR THE VITAL SOCIAL PROBLEMS OF TODAY.

NOR INDEED DO WE INTEND THAT VIEWERS SHOULD CONSIDER THEM AS CRABBY ULCEROUS LITTLE SELF-SEEKING VERMIN WITH FURRY LEGS AND AN EXCESSIVE ADDICTION TO ALCOHOL AND CERTAIN EXPLICIT SEXUAL PRACTICES WHICH SOME PEOPLE MIGHT FIND OFFENSIVE.

WE ARE SORRY IF THIS IMPRESSION HAS COME ACROSS.

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Response to Dennis Donovan (Original post)

Sat Oct 5, 2019, 06:27 PM

9. Whats on the telly?...

Looks like a penguin.

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Response to Dennis Donovan (Original post)

Sat Oct 5, 2019, 07:05 PM

10. Long John Silver Impersonators v. Bournemouth Gynaecologists.

https://

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