6 Sketches To Watch If You're Just Starting Your 'Monty Python' Journey
On Tuesday Jan. 21, it was announced that actor and comedian Terry Jones had passed away, four years after being diagnosed with a rare form of dementia. Friends and fans were quick to share their great sadness online, paying tribute to the legend of entertainment. Despite being involved in a number of projects, Jones was best known for his work with Monty Python, a 1960s comedy troupe with a profound lasting influence on British comedy. If news of Jones' passing has inspired you to find out more about his life and work, there is no better place to start than the five iconic Monty Python sketches below, which will lead you into the surreal depths of British humour at its finest.
With 45 episodes of their original TV series (Monty Python’s Flying Circus), five feature films, and multiple live shows, there’s a lot to choose from when it comes the six-man comedy group. Delving into their most famous moments is a good way to go, though, with Dead Parrot sketch, the Spanish Inquisition, and the lessons on Spam being some of my personal favourites. And of course I couldn't go without mentioning The Life of Brian and The Holy Grail.
Along with some of the most iconic sketches, a few of the ones I’ve picked could be considered more obscure. That's because I believe six sketches below best highlight the talent that Jones brought to Python, which, especially now, is so important to acknowledge.
1. 'He's Not The Messiah'
If there's one quote that Jones will forever be remembered by, it's right here in The Life of Brian. Jones co-directed the film too, alongside The Holy Grail and The Meaning of Life.
2. 'The Llama'
Just about as nonsensical as you can get with a Python sketch, ‘The Llama’ sees Cleese, Idle, and Jones singing about the illogical dangers of llamas in Spanish. Just when you thought it couldn’t get more absurd, Chapman interrupts the scene on a motorbike dressed in a lovely pink gown.
Remember, llamas are bigger than frogs.
Canned meat would never be the same after this sketch, and nor would the amount of times that Jones would reprise his role as the waitress.
4. 'Self Defense Against Fresh Fruit'
If approached by someone on the street and they threaten you with a banana, what would you do? That’s what Cleese is here to teach, along with all matter of other fresh fruity delicacies. As with any Python sketch, the situation gets out of hand rather quickly with the inclusion of a gun, a 16-ton weight, and a tiger.
5. 'Crunchy Frog'
Willy Wonka has some competition with Jones' Mr. Milton, owner of the Whizzo Chocolate Company. In 'Crunchy Frog,' Milton is confronted by two Hygiene Squad officers, who confront the disgusting delicacies contained within Whizzo's chocolate.
6. 'The Cheese Shop'
Fancy going to a cheese emporium only to discover they don’t actually sell any cheese? That’s the entire premise of this sketch, where an increasingly irate Cleese asks shopkeeper Palin for all sorts of cheeses that aren’t in stock.