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27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Weird Trip Through A Loony's Mind
No doubt about it, Graham Chapman was a loony. But a wonderful and funny loony as this book clearly shows. What's most revealing about this book are the (fairly) serious essays on serious topics such as over-population. But being a Python he can't keep itstraight for too long and he ends up making some valid points whilst making you laugh--the best medicine from the good...
Published on 24 Aug. 2005 by kevin cream

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2.0 out of 5 stars Niche audience
I grew up watching Monty Python and have watched Life of Brian several times so I was intrigued by this book. And sadly disappointed.

I found the bits about his life interesting (and possibly should have looked for a biography) but the sketches...were drivel. Much of this stuff was written on his own and that makes me think that it was his partnerships (mainly...
Published 17 months ago by Galning


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27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Weird Trip Through A Loony's Mind, 24 Aug. 2005
By 
No doubt about it, Graham Chapman was a loony. But a wonderful and funny loony as this book clearly shows. What's most revealing about this book are the (fairly) serious essays on serious topics such as over-population. But being a Python he can't keep itstraight for too long and he ends up making some valid points whilst making you laugh--the best medicine from the good Doctor! I also enjoyed the foreword which acts as a brief life history of Chapman, giving the reader a good insight into how he ticked. Weird, funny and touching. Great book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Graham Chapman's breadth and depth in full, 16 Feb. 2008
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Mr. Stuart Bruce "DonQuibeats" (Cardiff, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Calcium Made Interesting: Sketches, Letters, Essays & Gondolas: Sketches, Letters, Essays and Gondolas (Paperback)
Graham Chapman is the most mysterious of the Monty Python team, what with him being dead and therefore unavailable for documentaries, interviews and Monty Python tribute nights on Channel 4. However this book redressed the balance- a very thorough collection of Chapman's sketches, speeches, serious essays, letters, and select extracts from his book "Liar's Autobiography", many of which you haven't seen before.

It really shows Chapman's breadth and depth. He was so intelligent, both broadly as a doctor and an observer of the human race and on specific issues such as homosexual rights, and with a scathing wit.

My sole criticism of the book would be that it is arranged by group- all the letters in a group, then all the sketches, and so on. When I re-read this book, as I will, I'll probably read it in a random order to get the full contrast between comedy and tragedy.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Niche audience, 19 Oct. 2013
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This review is from: Calcium Made Interesting: Sketches, Letters, Essays & Gondolas: Sketches, Letters, Essays and Gondolas (Paperback)
I grew up watching Monty Python and have watched Life of Brian several times so I was intrigued by this book. And sadly disappointed.

I found the bits about his life interesting (and possibly should have looked for a biography) but the sketches...were drivel. Much of this stuff was written on his own and that makes me think that it was his partnerships (mainly with Cleese in the early days) that helped him hone his writing into something funny.

The anecdotes were amusing but, once I'd gotten to the halfway mark, I started skipping pages whenever it came to a sketch. The fact that this work was unpublished should have been a warning....there's a reason why it wasn't published.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Funny But Sad, 13 Aug. 2008
A collection of monologues, letters, essays, teleplays, sketches and photos by the late Graham Chapman, edited together in this nice hardback book by Jim Yoakum.

Yoakum isn't much of a writer, but we're not here to read what he has to say. Unfortunately, he isn't much of an editor either. He puts sketches and stories that have appeared earlier in the book in again in a slightly different form and keeps repeating himself. And why he has picked what he has picked is a mystery.

Some of Chapman's stuff here is funny, some interesting, some weird and worrying. But what weighted it down for me was the constant reminder that the whole point to this book is that none of this was ever published or produced. Some of it wasn't meant to be - in which case, should we be reading it? But most of it was meant to be, only it never made it. So why not? Did Chapman fail? That's depressing. Did he think it was rubbish? Why do we have to read it? Did he die before he got the chance? That's depressing again.

So it is funny, although it could have been put together better, but it's all so melancholy.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Graham Made Graham, 21 Jun. 2009
This review is from: Calcium Made Interesting: Sketches, Letters, Essays & Gondolas: Sketches, Letters, Essays and Gondolas (Paperback)
I have not come across a better reference to this King of the Pythons.

His "It looks like a brown trouser job" albeit awful in film quality is a must have nonetheless (and a subset of the book).

Enough out of me, let us read Graham. There have been sightings... :-)
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5.0 out of 5 stars Nice one., 16 Feb. 2011
This review is from: Calcium Made Interesting: Sketches, Letters, Essays & Gondolas: Sketches, Letters, Essays and Gondolas (Paperback)
A really cool book for Python lovers if you don't bother about having hardcovers. Worth buying, contains many works of Graham of different kinds and some kind words and memories of his friends and colleges.
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