Though I am a John Cleese fan, I rarely watched Monty Python when it originally aired. (It was on at a bad time for me, as I recall.) Nonetheless, certain bits and bobs did make their way into my world, enough so that I occasionally find myself singing the lumberjack song, or chuckling about dead parrots. I was introduced to Fawlty Towers when it originally aired, and adored it-- so much so that we have the complete set (on VHS no less, and introduced our kids to it at a tender age.) What I liked about this book was some of the fill-in-the-gaps about John Cleese that occurred before, during, and around these productions (and A Fish Called Wanda). The beginning chapters about Cleese's boyhood and school days were particularly interesting to me. And while the latter part of the memoir has drawn criticism for running through various shows and projects, popping in bits of scripts here and there, I found it interesting, as I didn't know a lot of the British shows pre-Python, though the actors and personalities are known from other projects (David Frost, Peter Sellers, Marty Feldman etc.) Yes, there were times when I was less engaged than others, but there were enough delightful nuggets of information, and moments where Mr Cleese's ability as a writer of comedy caused me to laugh out loud, that I have come away happy. I hadn't realized how tightly kniy that group of writers and performers were or how far back they knew each other.
Having introduced our grandkids to Dr Who and Firefly, I think it's time to add British comedy to the mix, starting with some John Cleese projects.
Thank you to Blogging for Books and to the publisher for sending a copy of this book my way.