Sunday, May 25, 2008

BBC America Going Python on This Memorial Day

I believe if I had to distill down my most important TV influences to only two, it would have to be Star Trek and Monty Python's Flying Circus. Trek -- because it's just the best -- and Monty Python because to me it's just the funniest. Python embraces the absurd, celebrates eccentricity, and was a great place to begin exploring the brilliant British comedic point of view, which really is different than ours. I can't imagine not having that subversive influence around me, and finally BBC America is coming back to its roots a bit and bringing MPFC back to the air.

Weekly, starting this coming Friday, they will be running new digitally-enhanced versions of the show, with two episodes at 8p and 8:40pm (with later repeats), and more encores on Saturday afternoons and Sunday mornings. To get us in the mood, they're running 15 episodes from 9am until 7pm tomorrow, Memorial Day Monday. You can take a look at the BBC America website for an episode schedule but trust me the line-up listed for tomorrow has very weird ep numbers which don't necessarily correspond to anything. (Ep info seems to be back on track for the subsequent airings). I recommend just settling in and watching the whole darn marathon; it'll all be good, of course.

If you're a Python fan you probably have your favorite fella, possibly informed a bit by what they've done in the years since the show. Palin seems incredibly sweet after all his good-natured travel adventure shows, Cleese rather curmudgeonly but then we don't mind our Brits to be a little snarky (Simon Cowell, anyone?), Jones is
similarly kind and an intellectual seeker, and Idle seems to be the Brit version of John Waters in his ability to bring a cult movie to musical theater success. Poor Graham Chapman is no longer with us, but what a hilarious presence he is in MPFC. After watching and re-watching Python all my adult life, I truly can't pick a favorite anymore. I love them all.

Anyway, they're back on BBC America! There are a lot of great Python segments on YouTube -- how to pick just one to highlight here...tough! After much deliberation I've decided to go with the delightful "Vocational Guidance Counselor" skit starring John Cleese and Michael Palin. Enjoy!

1 comment:

Dean Treadway said...

When are they going to do a GOODIES day? Answer: never!