Monty Python's Flying Circus: Complete and Annotated - All the Bits Hardcover – 1 Nov 2012
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Monty Python s Flying Circus s influence on television and on comedy is towering. This is truly the definitive book for fans of the show. So comprehensive, the level of detail is staggering. It will provide hour upon hour of pleasure and have you humming The Lumberjack Song and Spam Spam Spam all over again! --Sixty Plus Surfers
It's at times like this that I feel sorry for all those people who've bought Kindles or other electronic devices used for "reading books"... I believe this is the ultimate Monty Python book - around nine hundred pages of text, lavishly illustrated in full colour and containing every script and tons more stuff about the Pythons and the ground-breaking TV programme that turned British TV on its head in the 1960s. Black Dog have produced something extraordinary here - a magnificent tribute to the greatest comedy-sketch show that ever existed - there's so much material contained in this brilliant book that I can't help but make it my joint Nonfiction Book of the Month. A slice of TV heaven, a slice of cultural history the like of which has never been seen since - the inspiration for so many people, and so complete it's awesome. --Books Monthly
A book large enough to kill a parrot with, this collection of scripts for every episode of the Python TV show goes the whole hog, augmenting some of the greatest comedy ever written with reams of unseen pics and interesting notes. --Empire
About the Author
Luke Dempsey is deputy editor of bookish.com and author of the memoir A Supremely Bad Idea. A native of England --and a massive Python fan--he currently lives in Griggstown, NJ.
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1. Information that was left out of the original published script book (descriptions of It's Man sequences, animations, etc.)
2. Ways in which the recorded programme differed from the original and published script (cuts, fluffs, additions)
3. References encyclopaedia
4. Production trivia (anecdotes, sketches that were removed)
And also plop in bits of criticism when he feels necessary. That's fine. So... why all the blank spaces in the margin? There are loads of sketches which go uncommented on, and this is exacerbated by a lot of the comments taking up so much space being very poorly written. Many opportunities for fascinating and important pieces of information to be included are denied in favour of repeating certain entries (Reginald Maudling and Eton are described unnecessarily alongside every mention) and overblowing the hilarity of supposed bloopers (did Chapman really bump into a teenage boy during the Olympic Hide and Seek Finals sketch? Nope) Saying that Palin has to wait for laughter to die down before saying his next line in Interesting People is entirely needless. Some entries are also just plain inaccurate. Dempsey that the word 'mentch' as used in Biggles Dictates A Letter is an abbreviation of mention, when it's plain to anyone watching that he Chapman is saying 'mensch' in the Jewish sense, i.e. somebody who borrows from those around them.Read more ›
So this came as a bit of a disappointment. As far as I can tell, Luke Dempsey has annotated the Python scripts from the perspective of an English person who's assuming that American people won't get the jokes. However, his annotations tend to sketchy and tentative, rather than authoritative, and a riffle through the acknowledgements soon reveals that he owes a major debt to a much less attractive but far more magisterial and comprehensive work, a mighty, unauthorised two-volume companion to the Python scripts by a professor of media studies in Utah's Brigham Young University named Darl Larsen. Intrigued, I bought just the first volume of Larsen's work (can't be too careful) and sure enough, Larsen has done the spadework that Dempsey couldn't quite be bothered to do. Larsen is a specialist in Eng Lit of the Renaissance period and his doctoral thesis, which he later reworked into a book, draws parallels between Python and the Elizabethan tradition of college wit. His Python companion continues that tradition, but also shows the extent to which he's really researched the historical background of Python sketches such as the Architect Sketch, with its references to the Ronan Point disaster.Read more ›
Despite this,it's a nice book to have, does contain some useful and interesting information (possibly inadvertently) and is a satisfying thing to have about the house.
I wonder if we could persuade Andrew Pixley to have a go at a Python book?
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Great doorstop and fun to read the scripts. Margin comments a little trite and unnecessary at times?Published 12 months ago by Ian
Unbelievable, every single sketch in all detail. Really greatPublished 21 months ago by Pedro Miguel Fernandes Gonçalves
Bought for a 60th birthday gift - recipient enjoyed it very much.Published 23 months ago by katrina_marina
Everything I expected and more! Perfect for a die hard Python fan. If I feel the need to quote or correct someone on a quote I can easily do that now! Read morePublished on 14 Jun. 2013 by Evie Clare Tansley
Completeley as advertised. I have no complaints whatsoever.
I you are interested in this subject, this is one for you.
Couldn't be more satisfied
Always loved Monty Python and so this is great for any fan. Looking forward to reading through it all. GreatPublished on 19 April 2013 by mark baron
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