Monty Python Live (Mostly)

Last week we went to the opening night of Monty Python Live (Mostly). Now, Monty Python haven't performed live in 40 years, so the announcement that they were doing one show, and one show only, caused a bit of excitement - tickets sold out in 42 seconds.

We were obviously super duper thrilled to snag tickets, only for the Pythons to then announce that they were doing more dates. In fact, the last show on July 20th will be broadcast live in cinemas and on Gold - typical, but not unexpected if we'd have thought about it and not got caught up in the mania!

Now, I have to confess, whilst I do know Monty Python and the Holy Grail extremely well, and Life of Brian a little bit, I don't really know the TV sketches at all, which is what the show centres around.

Some people sat near us clearly knew the sketches inside out as they were giggling and tittering as soon as the Pythons walked on stage in their various costumes, without a single word leaving their mouths or a facial expression being pulled.

Others avid fans rocked up in costumes in tribute to their icons, and their excitement in the air was palpable.

The O2 is a big venue, and with one Python down (five to go) as they declared themselves, it meant that they couldn't do their comeback/farewell show alone.

There's a musical feel to the production with the supporting cast, and it's a bit Love Never Dies at times with the use of video throughout. 

Old sketch clips and animations from Terry Gilliam make up at least 50% of the show, if not a little bit more, and some of the "new" material did feel dated in 2014.

But, a lot of the old material rehashed was simply superb. The "Four Yorkshiremen" was definitely my favourite sketch of the show, and it was lovely to see John Cleese cracking up at times when trying to deliver some of his lines. In a way, this added a personal touch to a show which quite easily could have felt impersonal because of the vast venue it was performed in.

Stephen Hawking and Brian Cox featured in one of the videos, whilst Stephen Fry made an appearance in person, though I'm not sure if that was a one-off for the opening show, or whether other guests are involved each night.

The show ended with, what else, a good old sing along to Always Look on the Bright Side of Life. I'm pleased we went to see it, though I suspect it was always going to be a show for the die-hard fans rather than the likes of me.

I'd have loved it more if a few of their film sketches had been worked into the show and the price had been a bit cheaper (our tickets were £95 each) but, regardless, it was enjoyable to see a British institution that is, rightly so, revered.

Are you a fan of Monty Python? x

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