I don’t see, understand, or get the humor of Monty Python. Oh sure, I understand what they’re saying and I get the jokes. I just don’t find it funny…but apparently I’m in a huge minority. Everyone and their uncle seems to love Monty Python movies and the flying circus show.
Me, I’ve seen Meaning of Life and the Holy Grail movies and I’ve seen many clips from the show and even a few full shows. Am I the only one that doesn’t laugh at it? I don’t see how or why people find it so funny.
I think Python fans are overrepresented on the internet, and especially on, let’s face it, slightly geeky boards such as this.
To me, while they were groundbreaking, and the very best stuff does live up to their reputation, they were more miss than hit. The films are a bit different to the TV shows. I find Life of Brian only mildly funny and hugely overrated. I actually prefer the Meaning of Life. I have seen only a little of Holy Grail, enough to discourage me from watching the whole thing.
Yeah, let’s put this one to rest right now. It absolutely is possible to get it but still not think it is funny.
I happen to love it. I will note, though, that Flying Circus is full of filler. We remember the great stuff (like how we think the first five years of SNL was all gold, when in fact a lot of it sucked).
I have the full DVD set of Flying Circus, and as someone who has a critical appreciation of sketch comedy, as a writer and performer, I can still watch the crap sketches with interest- deconstructing them, noting where a funny idea had bad execution vs. sketches that had no inspiration to begin with.
For someone who doesn’t nerd out on it as much as I do, though, there’s a lot that can be tossed. I had introduced my friend’s kids to Monty Python by playing selected sketches for them- and they LOVED it. Then, recently, for the first time I sat down with them and just let a few full episodes play straight through. They were (rightfully) bored by a lot of it.
Holy Grail and Life of Brian I think are near perfect. Meaning of Life is great where it’s great but has a lot that doesn’t measure up.
I absolutely agree. This sort of degenerate humour isn’t at all funny. Now, nobody likes a good laugh more than I do…except perhaps my wife and some of her friends…oh yes and Captain Johnston. Come to think of it most people likes a good laugh more than I do.
In my day, we laughed at the jokes whether or not they were funny.
Young people today have no idea how we suffered. I used to get up before dawn and walk miles just to see the latest offering at the comedy club.
You got to watch the shows at the comedy club? Luxury! We had to get up at 4 in the morning, clean our room with a used toilet brush, and crawl to the comedy club, where we spent the evening shoveling fuel into the coal-powered PA system.
Even though I have always found it funny, it’s long past its time, and I can see how people more familiar with modern comedy would not find it amusing. It was influenced by a lot of comedy of its era, and since then a lot of modern comedy has followed its lead.
It’s also very British, sometimes relying heavily on UK-centric tropes for the comedy to work.
I am a product of its influence, too. I look at a lot of modern US comedy and stand mystified. I cannot fathom what people see in SNL, or Chappelle’s Show. It’s clearly not something that travels well, and I think Monty Python is the same.
You silly twisted boy, you – most Americans would never have heard of the Goon Show, and they would find it even harder to understand than MP. (But I love it, having heard it on radio in Australia over many years, and now having a collection of MP3 files that I listen to from time to time.
And I agree with bienville that Holy Grail and Life of Brian are close to perfection as comedy movies, but I can take or leave The Meaning of Life.
Quite. For every hilarious Monty Python sketch, I can list four or five that were DOA. Oh, wait, I can’t list them, because they were so bloody forgettable. I don’t even find the Spam skit all that amusing. What was good was very good, though.
Kids in the Hall was more consistently funny, but it’s entirely possible we’re talking about cultural differences there, where I followed KitH more easily than Python.
As **GuanoLad **said, it’s a product of its era, and most comedy doesn’t travel well through time or across cultures. Also, most comedy doesn’t bear too much repitition, and Monty Python is repeated endlessly. At the time it was *shockingly *funny: we’d never seen anything like it and your critical faculties get bludgeoned into submission by the endless innovative stream. One very good example of that was Ben ‘Motormouth’ Elton: you were just caught in his endless escalating rush of nonsense. Brilliant stuff.
I’m not too fond of Monty Python either. I did giggle at the “Pining for the Fjords” sketch, and this one You Tube sketch someone linked to where these young British nobles were competing in some sort of obstacle course. But whenever PBS showed Monty Python reruns, I would try to watch it, but it was just boring. I got the jokes, but, as someone else stated, “meh”.