VIDEO and REVIEW: Monty Python's Global farewell

The Monty Python team: Left to right Michael Palin, Eric Idle, Terry Jones, Terry Gilliam and John Cleese

The Monty Python team: Left to right Michael Palin, Eric Idle, Terry Jones, Terry Gilliam and John Cleese

First published in News
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Wirral Globe: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Reporter

I WAS only a year old when Monty Python’s BBC comedy series came to an end – but I have been hooked on their comic genius from an early age and the opportunity to see their final farewell show was too good to let pass by.

The Monty Python Live (Mostly): One Down, Five To Go shows were the first time John Cleese, Michael Palin, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle and Terry Jones had performed live together in 30 years.

The 10-night run was staged at London's O2 Arena. But the final night of the show on Sunday was screened at more than 2,000 cinemas around the world, including the Light Cinema in New Brighton.

Sitting there in my Python t-shirt it was just great to be part of a major international event, laughing along with fellow fans.

The audience was not disappointed by the sketches, which included The Lumberjack Song, Dead Parrot, Cheese Shop and Nudge Nudge. Musical numbers included a homage to John Cleese's Minister for Silly Walks.

Other sketches dusted down for the reunion show were the fish-slapping sketch and there was special applause for archive footage of the late Graham Chapman, who died of cancer in 1989.

Sadly, technical problems concerning the internet streaming from London dampened what was an otherwise fantastic show.

Python-inspired comic stars including David Walliams, James Corden, Martin Freeman, Stephen Fry and Mike Myers were among those who had appeared the show over the course of the 10 nights.

In a humorous short film screened during the show Professor Brian Cox questioned some of the details raised by Eric Idle in The Galaxy Song, which featured in Python’s 1983 film Meaning Of Life. He was knocked down by Professor Stephen Hawking seconds later.

The show ended with a sing-a-long of Always Look On the Bright Side of Life.

The ending was hit by streaming problems again, but in the footage that was unaffected it was clear that the group enjoyed themselves.

Watching Cleese and co fluff lines and forget some of their cues showed that they did not take themselves too seriously.

Monty Python's Flying Circus was broadcast on the BBC between 1969 and 1974. The group also made several films including Monty Python and the Holy Grail and Monty Python's Life of Brian.

It has been reported that each of the comedians will pocket more than £2million from the shows and the reunion received mixed reviews, with some critics dismissing them as a quick way for five old men to make easy money.

But for the fans it was a chance to celebrate one of this country's greatest comedy teams.

If you had never seen them on stage at Drury Lane in 1974 or Hollywood Bowl in the early '80s it was a chance to see them perform some of their classic work, something they have said will never happen again.

In my opinion, the team may have left the stage for the final time but their humour is, by no means, a dead parrot.

9 out of 10. Legendary

Video courtesy of Press Association.

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