A Liar's Autobiography Paperback – 11 Oct 1999
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
One of the things that emerges from any history of Python--from, for instance, David Morgan's Monty Python Speaks!--is how much of a slacker Chapman was in the Python group; how completely his writing relied upon Cleese's more disciplined input, how late he was to every meeting, how lackadaisical was his approach to the practicalities of living. His autobiography is perfectly candid about the slapdash side of his personality, but it also manages to convey his energy, his capacity for kindness and the unique, mad slant of his particular genius. He relates the events of his life--his ordinary childhood, his time as a medical student at Cambridge, his Python years, his drinking, his mountain-climbing-- through the unique prism of his looniness. Some of this is lies ("Thinking of muons and quarks I invented the 'gluon' or at least sub-atomic particles of adhesiveness I term 'fettons'..."), most of it is painfully and precisely true. Chapman doesn't spare himself, or his fellow Pythons or anybody else. It's often very funny, although some of it is a bit too agonising to raise a chuckle.
There is a lot of sex, with both men and women, described in detail, which sometimes interrupts the flow of the narrative. After one vivid episode the narrator has to stop: "This description had made me feel so ... uh ... uhm... ah ... excuse me ..." But underneath the hedonism and the wackiness, the comic drawings and arch footnotes is a certain nihilism. "What are we?", he asks at one point. "We are tubes--hollow cylinders of flesh. What is our expectation from life? Regular fulfilment of primitive functions at both ends, coupled with the thought that we must leave at least something behind us, very much in the same way that a dog pisses against a tree." Perhaps there's some bleak vision like that behind the work of many great comedians. --Adam Roberts
About the Author
Graham Chapman (1941-1989) was part of the Monty Pyton's Flying Circus team.
What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?
Top Customer Reviews
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I'd long been an admirer of Mr Chapman's forays into television and cinema-particularly yellowbeard and timebandits, but this book had by-passed my awareness for thirty years. Read morePublished on 19 Nov. 2008 by Ed
`A Liar's Autobiography' is quite unusual for an Autobiography as it was written by five people only one of which is Graham Chapman, it is however his life story, at least partly. Read morePublished on 12 Feb. 2008 by Ian Wood, Author of 'Here's 2 Absent Fathers'
I adored this book. As a huge Python fan, I knew a lot of the facts already, but he led an amazing and hilarious life that can only really be heard in his own words.Published on 9 Dec. 1999