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Last Updated on May 6, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 174

At least 2 million Americans are now aware of the Ministry of Silly Walks. College students are finding new meanings for the world stupid, and old ladies may even be getting ideas about beating up kids. What is this pernicious influence, bordering on a cult, that is now sweeping the U.S.? The word is Monty Python. Five roopy young Englishmen, who methodically take the world apart each week in a series of sketches mysteriously called Monty Python's Flying Circus….

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Whether or not Americans actually do understand the Pythons' uniquely English nonsense is moot. Their comedy is crowded with jokes about British TV announcers and politicians; their best sketches are intimate parodies of the idiocies of British life. Moreover, their style is the opposite of hard-hitting American humor. The Pythons can hardly summon a wisecrack among them….

They have done their best to remove themselves from boring reality and construct something far more pleasurable.

"Killer Joke Triumphs," in Time (reprinted by permission from Time, The Weekly Newsmagazine; copyright Time Inc. 1975), Vol. 105, No. 22, May 26, 1975, pp. 58-9.

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Stanley Kauffmann


Ed Naha