Top 5 moments, alphabetically by Python

I want to know your top 5 sketches, moments or characters for each Python member. I know there are already 'best moments' threads, but they're all quite old, and there only seem to be ones for individuals. I'm sticking to actual Python stuff, because I haven't seen all the other ones yet, but you can add non-Python stuff if you want. So ...

Graham Chapman

1. 'I've been in the city for twenty years, and I must admit I'm lost.'
2. As the pepperpot in the penguin on the tv sketch
4. As 'Mr Atkinson' in The Cycling Tour
5. 'Look you bastard, I've told you I'm not on a wire!'

John Cleese

1. Talking to Mrs Sartre on the phone
2. As the Minister for Silly Walks
3. When he's a Gumby doctor, the look on his face when Palin first asks him if he's the brain specialist
4. As the doctor in the 'Birth' section of Meaning of Life
5. As the Sgt Major in 'Self Defence'

Terry Gilliam

1. Guy on sofa in 'Most Awful Family In Britain' sketch who shouts 'BEEEEAAAANS!'
2. Cardinal Fang
3. The 'remote control' guy who gets electrocuted
4. The voice of a fish in the Meaning of Life special features (how a fish thinks)
5. The cartoon 'Unlearning a Mason'

Eric Idle

1. The sort of idealised version of the complete Renaissance Man saying 'No it is NOT a Flemish Merchant!'
2. French woman in The Cycling Tour saying 'Formidaaaabllleeeee'
3. Woman doing Eurovision scores: 'And now, guten abend, die scores, das scores, die scoren, oh scores, HA! SCORES!' (or something like that!)
4. The man who speaks in anagrams: 'Be ot or bot ne ot, tath is the nesquie!'
5. Norwegian Party Candidate

Terry Jones

1. 'I think he's right about the coons, but then I'm a bit mental.'
2. The Public Are Idiots
3. The Bishop
4. Find The Fish
5. Secretary of State Striptease

Michael Palin

1. The Fish Slapping Dance
2. The Minister for Not Listening To People
3. Blackmail
4. Cardinal Richelieu
5. Knight who says Ni

That actually taxed my brain a lot. Happy brain taxing!

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Here Comes Another One: Just wanted to add a couple of moments that had me in stitches today.

1: Fawlty Towers, the one with the lady who had the hearing aid & complained all the time. The scene where John Cleese mouths the words to make her think her hearing aid's busted, then says: 'Is this a piece of your brain?' That had me laughing at my least favourite Python easily as much as I do at my faves!

2. I watched the Birds Eye Peas promo on Youtube after being pointed towards it by a link on I'm-sorry-I-don't-remember-what thread. That bit with the marketing expert & interpreter had me in hysterics; it's a wonder I didn't flood the neighbourhood with tears of laughter!

genji at 7:42 am October 27

There are so many incredible moments in Fawlty Towers, I'd be hard-pushed to single out any of them.

I haven't watched those promo films. Are they any good?

Here Comes Another One at 5:20 pm October 27

Yes they are, if you're a Python fan. I don't know that they would be the best introduction to Python, because obviously they're out of their usual idiom. They tend to go pretty much like the long sketches (think Ethel the Frog or Science Fiction sketch) starting off slow and maybe going on a bit too long, but with some brilliant bits in that make them worth watching.

Here's a link to part 1 of the Birds Eye one (check sidebar for other links):

genji at 9:23 pm October 27

OK I'll give them a go. There are three, right? The Frozen Peas, the Harmony Hairspray and the Close-up toothpaste.

Here Comes Another One at 10:17 pm October 27

Yeah :-) that I know of anyway.

Here Comes Another One: Another multi-performance best moment - 'Archaeology Today.'. Especially:

1. MP: Oh, to hell with archaeology!

2. TJ: LET ME SPEAK! (& rest of rant)

3. JC: 'I'll do what I like because I'm 6 foot 5, & I eat punks like you for breakfast!'

4. TJ: Here, Lord!

Here Comes Another One at 2:23 pm October 17

Oh, and totally forgot the 'Today' song - JC & CC awesome there.

mrsCutout at 7:18 am October 27

Hahaha!This song is so funny!it's Jonesy singing you now!John's so funny n this sketch!

Here Comes Another One at 7:38 am October 27

Yeah, I thought it probably was ... must admit I wasn't completely sure! I love Cleese's middle-distance gazings, & the way it keeps going back into song!

TheRealGilliamFan: This was not easy. And I could switch it up, depending on my mood...

1) Burma
2) Colonel
3) Four Yorkshiremen
4) Transvestite (Meaning of Life)
5) Mr. Neutron

1) Grim Reaper (MOL)
2) Super Inn Dungeon Room Waiter (MOL)
3) Silly Walks
4) Albatross - Live at Hollywood Bowl
5) Parrot sketch

1) Patsy
2) Suicidal Leaves animation
3) M'Lady Joeline at the Super Inn (MOL)
4) Mad Jailer (Holy Grail)
5) Hollywood Bowl History of a Joke - pies

1) Mrs. Hendy (MOL)
2) Bright Side of Life song
3) Interesting People - Mr. T. Walters
4) Galaxy song
5) Mr. Smoketoomuch

1) I wish to report a burglary
2) Mrs. Brown (MOL)
3) Spam lady
4) Fiona Portland-Smyth (MOL)
5) Mr. K. Maniac from Guatemala

1) Mr. Pither
2) Marvin Hendy (MOL)
3) Mr. Gumby
4) Mrs. Katzenberg (MOL)
5) Lumberjack

Lvndr HppE at 3:54 pm October 18

THANK YOU! Someone else sees that "CH" goes before "CL".

Here Comes Another One at 4:31 pm October 18

Haha - oops!

TheRealGilliamFan at 12:55 pm October 17

and I typed too fast... I meant Mad Jailer - Life of Brian... obviously ;)

Here Comes Another One at 2:14 pm October 17

Good to have a vote for Mr Pither! 'The pump caught in my trouser leg and my sandwiches were badly crushed!' The Cycling Tour's my favourite episode I think - though it does fight with 'Deja Vu,' 'Dennis Moore,' and most of series 4 for the top spot.

King Brian the Wild: John
1. Are there any women here today???
2. Pining for the fjooooooords? (TSPB version)
3. Look, I happen to know that this is the Loupins Express....
4. Oh nooo (when Biggus Dickus is going to speak to the crowd)
5. Have you got any cheese at all, he asked expecting the answer no.

Terry J.
1. Well, we are paying for the watch
2. So there you are, Brian!!
3. Well we have egg and bacon, egg, bacon and spam.......
4. Oh damn, damn, damn and blasted!! (Life of Brian)
5. So how do you know she is a witch???

1. Some things in life are bad.....
2. No, no, no, no. You have to say: ten for that, you must be mad!!
3. Is your wife a....goer, know what I mean??
4. Oh yea, nnnne, nnnnneee, yes, sir....... Anyway, go on with the story (LoB)
5. Big nose scene in Life of Brian

1. I have a vewwy good fwwiend in Wome called Biggus Dickus...
2. Beautiful bird, eh, nice plumage (TSPB version)
3. Fish Slapping Dance
4. The Lumberjack Song
5. And to that time, a friend shall loose its friend's hammer and nobody will really know....

1. I hate the Romans as much as anybody. - How much? - A lot. - Ok, you are in.
2. I command you, as king of the britains, do stand aside....
3. A duck.
5. Mr. Luxury-Yacht

Terry G.
1. The confy chair (Spanish Inquisition scene)
2. jail guard in Life of Brian
3. Dancing Teeth
4. Cartoon: children's car
5. Cartoon: bus stop

the_thina: ok, I think my terrorist-cat is sleeping now, so I give this another try.

john cleese
1. tim the inchanter in holy grail. I love the scottish accent, and how pissed off he is
2. the french taunter, holy grail. the insults arent that insulting, rather poetic some of them in an absurd way
3. ministry of silly walks and the nazi-marching in fawlty towers. the way he can (or rather could now I guess) move those long skinny lims is wonderfull
4. his speach on grahams memorial. gray would have loved it
5. the dead parrot-skit in secret policemans ball when he hits the crap out of the parrot, making mike start giggeling

graham chapman
1. when he screams "BURMA!" and then have to look away from john to dont burst out laughing
3. when brian says he is every not-so-nice-word there is for jew there is and rounds it off with "and Im PROUD of it!"
4. in yellowbeard when he runs out from the whore-house with a woman in his arms and just throws her down from the top of the stairs
5. the transvestite in "find the fish" his high-pitch voice just kills me

terry gilliam
1. patsy. just one line, but I love the faces he makes is great
2. the very wierd woman in the resturant in meaning of life. the way he says "hi!" to eric and mike
3. the animator that gets a heart-attac in holy grail. again, its all the face
4. the very gay man in "the visitors"
5. the knight with the chicken

eric idle
1. the man singing the galaxy song. I want him in my fridge too!
2. mr cheeky
3. the whole movie nuns on the run
4. the rutles. for writing it, being dirk and the reporter, and getting gerorge harrison to be in it. neil also deserve a standing ovation for all the amazing songs he wrote and the shower-scene
5. the way he gets all worked up over the knickers-ballon in münchausen

terry jones
1. the wife in confuse a cat, the way she is hushing off her husband
3. the nude organist
4. never be rude to an arab
5. prince herbert. even if he looks disturbingly skinny, it wanet until I got it on dvd I saw it was him

michael palin
1. in a fish called wanda when he struggels with the name of the air-porte and goes "ka!... ka!..."
2. the swamp castle king
3. the lumberjack
4. the way he is breaking up in the parrot-skit in secret policemans ball and then tries to save it and puts all his effort in "beautiful plumage!"
5. fish slapping dance. the fall he takes into the water is crazy

and since I think neil and carol are important as well I will present their top moments too, but they only get one each since my brain is all washed out now

how sweet to be an idiot on hollywood bowl, especially the way he is smiling and firting after the line "smile at everyone I meet"

zoot in holy grail

Lvndr HppE at 3:49 pm October 18

The first time I saw Neil in the Hollywood Bowl, I thought he was Paul Simon. I wondered why Paul Simon was on stage with them.

the_thina at 3:53 pm October 18

haha. oh gosh. well, maybe a slight recembelence, but cant say I think its a BIG one. ^^

the_thina at 9:25 am October 15

I was in luck here, the moment I had posted it my cat, the destroyer, came walking and jumping up next to me, yawning from a long sleep. she could have done it again!

Here Comes Another One at 10:04 am October 15

'The destroyer.' Haha. I love that. My cat is currently sleeping peacefully next to me, which must be because I don't have any long posts planned. :-) I agree with most of your faves. I, too, would like an Eric in my fridge!

It's funny, I've read a couple of posts that say TJ looked disturbingly skinny as Prince Herbert. I think it must be the pale makeup, because in the interviews from Holy Grail era he looks pretty normal, i.e. normal when he was in his slim phase, but not unhealthy or anything. Like you I didn't recognise him as Prince Herbert ...

(though admittedly when I first saw Holy Grail I'd only heard the records and hadn't a clue what any of them looked like)

... and only realised when I saw the documentary on the special features where TJ was talking about hanging out the window. I suppose if I saw it for the first time now, having watched Flying Circus half to death, I'd have recognised him, or assumed that because Palin was one he'd be the other.

the_thina at 10:13 am October 15

hehe, but she IS a destroyer, but I love her anyway. :)

yeah, I know he had a skinny period back then (I like him better when he is chubby tho, he looks so snuggable) but I think you have a point about the makeup. his cheeks looks all hollowed out, its creepy. I saw holy grail the first time when I was about 12 or 13 I think, but as I said, it wasent until I got the dvd when I was maybe 25 I saw it was terry. and then I got all "oh no! I hope he isent sick!" to then realize I was worried over his health about 25 years earlier. haha

genji at 10:12 am October 15

I think it's really interesting reading how other people discovered Python. I'm quite envious of Americans back in the seventies. Having the records and getting used to the humour and becoming familiar with the sketches then being able to see it all in glorious technicolour must have been a real moment of excellence.

I sometimes wish I could have that procedure from Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind to erase all memory of my favourite books, TV shows, films, music, etc. and get to discover them for the first time again.

Not that late at 10:16 am October 15

But, if it's not a personal question, how old are you?

genji at 10:18 am October 15

"If it's not a personal question"? How much more personal can you get?

Not that late at 10:20 am October 15

I could have asked if you are a virgin

genji at 10:21 am October 15

Well, I have a son but he's not the Messiah.

larsen525: Carol also deserves a top-five list. My top five Carol-moments:

1. Scott of the Antarctic
2. Marriage Guidance Counselor
3. Zoot and Dingo
4. Tapdancing with Neil Innes: "I'm the Urban Spaceman"
5. The maid in the "Accidents" sketch

Here Comes Another One at 8:11 am October 15

Yep, I'd agree with all those. I love it when she dies in the Accidents sketch, with that shriek - not to be too 'severe upon my sex,' but not many women are good at or even inclined to do physical comedy, and Carol's fantastic at it.

larsen525 at 1:36 pm October 15

Or as the DVD subtitles describe her dying noise: "(squealing in pain)" :-)

the_thina: add a comment

the_thina at 4:50 am October 15

´FUCK! I had written a whole list, then my cat came and stepped at the keyboard, deleted the whole thing and posted an empty post.
ah well, I will write it down again in a few hours or so. :/

Here Comes Another One at 5:16 am October 15

Oh, don't I know what that's like! I'd written one of my really long Python Scrapheap Challenge posts and my cat did the same thing. Luckily I grabbed him and pressed 'undo' before he managed to press enter!

the_thina at 5:22 am October 15

yeah, I had been writing for about 40 minutes when she did that! the terrorist! but well, I will give it another try, when she is sleeping or something, later today.

arkennedy: This is a good idea, I like this thread.

It took me awhile to decide but (at least for now) here's what I've chosen for my Top 5's.

John Cleese:
1: Dennis Moore and Lupines Sketches
2: Self-Defense Against Fruit
3: Ministry of Silly Walks
4: Let's Learn English (from At Last the 1948 Show) Graham was in this sketch too but I think it was one of John's best pre-Python performances :)
5: The Tale of Sir Lancelot from Monty Python and the Holy Grail:

Graham Chapman
1: Any time he played the Colonel and stopped a sketch.
2: Argument Clinic (Graham's part in this was great in my opinion)
3: Silly Vicar:
4: Mattress Skit
5: Flying Lessons

Terry Gilliam
1: Mrs. Cutout (she was in the beginning of the Mrs Premise and Mrs Conclusion visit Jean Paul Satre sketch).
2: Killer Cars (
3: Conrad Poohs and his dancing teeth
4: Gilliam as Patsy in Holy Grail. Especially the scene right before they go to Camelot :)
5: As Cardinal Fang in The Spanish Inquisition.

Eric Idle
1: Galaxy Song from The Meaning Of Life
2: Storytime:
3: The Money Program
4: Let's Learn about Gravity (from Do Not Adjust Your Set)
5: Kilimanjaro Expedition

Terry Jones
1: Terry Jones as Sir Bedevere: in the Holy Grail. Specifically this scene:
I love his "logic" :)
2: Italian Lesson:
3: Here's something I just discovered and it's now in my top 5 sketches that feature Terry Jones: "The A and B Game"
4: New Cooker Sketch
5: The First Man To Jump The Channel. I didn't like this one much at first but now it has become among my favorites.

Michael Palin:
1: Lumberjack Song
2: Blackmail
3: The entire Tompkinson's Schooldays episode of Ripping Yarns.
part 1:
part 2:
part 3:
part 4:
4: The "Whinfrey's Last Case" Episode of Ripping Yarns.
part 1:
part 2:
part 3:
part 4:
5: The Spanish Inquisition Sketch

I've also included an extra category.
Top 5 sketches where I think 2 or more Pythons had some great performances:
1: Confuse a Cat
2: The Dead Parrot Sketch
3: The Cheese Shop
4: Two of Us: (from DNAYS)
5: Flying Sheep and Fish Slapping Dance. (I couldn't decide between them so I made it a tie)

Here Comes Another One at 4:39 am October 15

Good extra category, arkennedy. I love 'Two of us' as well.

One of my favourite Palin/Jones performances from DNAYS is the Concorde sketch:

And there's also the hamster allergies one, but that's not on YouTube :-(

Another favourite multi-Python sketch is the Welsh mining one from series 2:

I like both the restaurant sketches as well - the one with the dirty fork and that TOTALLY INSANE one with Terry Jones as the main course and Eric Idle as that unbearable woman who gabbles incessantly. And Graham Chapman as the headmaster - genius!

One of THE BEST multi-Python sketches though, is the Secret Service Dentists one.

Well, that's 5 I guess (3 sir!) - or, no, 6 actually. Not in order, but I'm tired. :-p

arkennedy at 8:24 pm October 15

The concord sketch is a great one :) I had forgotten about the Welsh Mining sketch, but I've always liked that one as well.

I thought two more DNAYS sketches that I think are among the best in DNAYS:
How to Eat and I can't remember what it's called but I think it may have been the "Holiday Sketch" where it keeps raining on Eric.

Here Comes Another One at 10:07 pm October 15

Yes, they are great, esp 'How To Eat'.

mrsCutout: oooooh I forgot! I wanted to add on Palin's top 5 the part from the Meaning of Life where he is dressed as a woman and contradicts the Grimn Ripper! He's amazing!

Here Comes Another One at 4:24 am October 15

Yeah, I love that one too. That look on his face when he says 'how can we all be dead at the same time?'! Brilliant.

thewastelandr at 8:11 am October 15

Oh I forgot that one too! One of his best moments!

Not that late: This have been very hard! And probably I will change my mind in a few hours, but these are mine.
By the way, as you did, sometimes I chose a character, sometimes it's just a face, and sometimes is the whole sketch.

John Cleese
1: Self defense
2: "I felt off of my chair"
3: The penguin on the television set (he got the hard part, he couldn't laugh)
4: Dennis More
5: Dead Parrot sketch

Graham Chapman
1: The Colonel
2: Documentary about moluscs
3: King Arthur (as they say in the comentary, his performance is excellent considering he was drunk in almost every scene)
4: Medical Love Song
5: Burma!

Terry Gilliam
1: Organ donor
2: Eating beans at Dead Bishop on the landing, in Hollywood Ball
3: Cartoon about a wart that becomes cancer and kills a Prince, and then gets married and has little warts.
4: Mad and deaf prison guard
5: Patsy

Eric Idle
1: Every song he sings, especially Always Look the Bright Side, Galaxy Song and The Money Song
2: Every time he is a woman, especially with the "Salmon Mousse recipe" and the director of the reconstruction of the Battle of Pearl Harbour.
3: The travel agency sketch
4: The man who wants to haggle with Brian
5: Dead Bishop on the landing, in Hollywood Ball

Terry Jones
1: Mandy Cohen
2: Every time he is a Pepperpot, especially when he gets a new brain ("Stapling machine!")
3: Arthur "Two Sheds" Jackson
4: Trotsky /Clodah Rogers
5: The owner of Whizzo Chocolate Company

Michael Palin
1: Pilate
2: Mr Gumby
3: (How could be all dead at the same time?) His face
4: Prince Herbert's father (His name eludes me at the moment, the King of Swamp castle)
5: Mr Pither

genji at 11:00 am October 14

Lots of good stuff in there that didn't come to mind when I was wracking my brains. I agree with Mr. Idle's part in the the 'Travel Agent' sketch. He deserves a special commendation for that extraordinarily long monologue, especially the Hollywood Bowl version, which seems to go on forever. In fact, I think he's still reciting it.

And the Whizzo Chocolate Company sketch is one of my favourites. Sheer class from Mr. Jones.

Lvndr HppE: Top 5 Terry Gilliam moments
1) We've got lumps of it round the back!
2) Graham: Are you a pooftah? Terry: I must certainly am not!
3) This is my only line
4) And now, a man with a stoat through his head
5) I've got two legs from my hips to the ground and when I use them they walk around and when I use them they climb the stairs and when I shave them they ain't got hairs.

Top 5 Eric Idle moments
1) And Pray that there is intelligence somewhere out in space, 'cause there's bugger all down here on earth.
2) Always look on the bright side of life! {whistles}
3) The man who speaks in anagrams
4) Is your wife a goer? Know what I mean nudge nudge?
5) The money programme

Top 5 Terry Jones moments
1) Secretary of State striptease (especially when he moved the pasties on his chest around)
2) The wife in Confuse a cat
3) Mrs. S.C.U.M
4) The Spam lady
5) A Fish, a fish, a fishy oooh!

Top 5 Michael Palin moments
1) My brain hurts!
2) No, its pining for the fjords
3) Thwo him to the floow.
4) I have a vewy good fwiend in Wome named Biggus Dickus.
5) I'm a lumberjack and I'm okay, I sleep all night and I work all day!

I don't know why, but its always so hard to pick the fifth moment! And I was just writing down the five most memorable sketches and scenes.

genji at 10:43 am October 14

re: Mr. Jones, #1 - what do you mean by "the pasties"? He didn't have pasties in that sketch, unless I missed it.

the_thina at 11:20 am October 14

the tassels I think the word she was going for is. you know. those things strippers have on their nipples

genji at 11:38 am October 14

Now that's a pasty.

Here Comes Another One at 11:21 pm October 15

Is that carrot I spy? Because 'real' Cornish pasties do not have carrot in them. I feel I must point this out in duty to my Cornish mining ancestors. Then again, some claim that the pasty was invented in Devon - which I should point out in duty to my Devonian heritage. And to think this topic got raised in response to the things attached to Terry Jones' nipples. Which is NOT typical behaviour of a man of his race - as I feel I must point out in duty to my Welsh heritage. There - I think my silly rant is over now. :-p

genji at 11:46 pm October 15

It must be a modern version. It might not even be Cornish. Here's one with the dessert included (apple and apricot).

Here Comes Another One at 12:36 am October 16

Wow! That's quite interesting. I don't think I've ever seen one with the dessert in it before. The recipe my grandmother, my mum & I follow is strictly savoury. :-)

It's so funny that we're talking about food. Mind you, I don't think this would really go with the Python recipes thread except as a multi-layered in-joke.

Not that late at 10:58 am October 14

Yes, what do you mean? my dictionary says "pasties" is a kind of pie... wtf!