by Hans ten Cate
Sunday, 10 April 2005

The Incomplete History of Monty Python runs April 1 through June 12, 2005 at the New York and Los Angeles Museum of Television & Radio

The Museum of Television and Radio, located in both New York City and Los Angeles, is presenting The IN-complete History of Monty Python, a screening series running in New York and Los Angeles from April 1 to June 12, 2005.

The series started on April, to celebrate the opening of Spamalot on Broadway in New York, and will be screened as five discrete packages. The screening series features some of the best episodes from the Flying Circus plus material done by members of the team before and after the series

The five sets will screen in New York Tuesdays to Sundays at 12:30 p.m., with an additional screening Thursday evenings at 6:00 p.m., and in Los Angeles Wednesdays to Sundays at 12:30 p.m.

The schedule is as follows:

Sex and Violence (April 1 - 14)
Some rarely seen pre-Python material includes John Cleese on Frost Over England (1967); the premiere of the children’s series Do Not Adjust Your Set (1968), featuring the work of Eric Idle, Terry Jones, and Michael Palin; and segments of Cleese and Graham Chapman on At Last the 1948 Show (1967). In addition, the first two episodes of Monty Python’s Flying Circus are included, the second featuring the notorious “killer joke,” later told by Idle in German at a Museum seminar.

Full Frontal Nudity (April 15 - 28)
Three Python episodes are featured, with such sketches as “Hell’s Grannies,” “Dead Parrot,” and Michael Palin as “A.T. Hun.” Also included are clips of John Cleese and Graham Chapman on The Ed Sullivan Show (1964), a sketch from At Last the 1948 Show (1967), and Palin’s visit to The Tonight Show (1989) during which he talked about the parrot sketch, as reinterpreted by Cleese at Chapman’s memorial service.

Spam (April 29 – May 12)
One of the Python’s best-remembered episodes features a much-loved restaurant where everything comes with the spreadable meat product. Also included in the package are an excerpt from At Last the 1948 Show (1967); a 1989 appearance on The Tonight Show by Michael Palin; and the second of the team’s German productions, Monty Python Blodeln für Deutschland (1972).

Royal Episode Thirteen (May 13 - 26)
The “Exploding Blue Danube” features in the Python episode Royal Episode Thirteen, while the “Fish-Slapping Dance” is one of the highlights of Mr. & Mrs. Brian Norris’ Ford Popular. Also included are “Scott of the Antarctic/Sahara,” John Cleese chatting on Late Night with David Letterman (1983), and Eric Idle portraying Prince Charles on Saturday Night Live (1979).

Idle Pleasures (May 27 – June 9)
Immediately after Python, Eric Idle developed his own series, Rutland Weekend Television (1975), purportedly broadcast from Britain’s smallest television station; and, in collaboration with Neil Innes, created the ultimate Beatles spoof, The Rutles: All You Need is Cash (1978).

For more information, call the Museum in New York at (212) 621-6800, in Los Angeles at (310) 786-1000, or visit the website at