It's all about bouncing back

Monday, June 30, 2008

Ricky Gervais Show Podcast, Season 4!

Just confirmed -- another full season this fall!!

Eddie Izzard on Conan tonight

No idea whether he will perform for tall one or just sit at the desk (given his stature, probably the latter); but if he does some stand up (rather than just blather on about The Riches), this could be a treat since his current U.S. stand up tour, Stripped, has been getting rave reviews.

It hits Seattle on the 10th -- wahoo!!

Squatting Monkeys Pt. 2

Finally, a quick review.

First, I have to restate my respect for Dana Carvey for trying to take on a comeback at age 53. At the height of his success, the glory of his work arose largely out of combining the boyish innocence and enthusiasm of his characters with his skill for voices and impersonations. So everyone has to arrive at this show wondering whether the same jokes would play well from a face that is slightly wrinkled and/or whether the impersonations risk pushing him into Rich Little territory (obviously a terrifying possibility for any performer.)

On the first point, I have to give him props. Although he'd obviously had some minor work done to his face (smooth as a baby's bottom it was), he didn't try to pretend that he was still 30. He faced his current stage of his life with humor ("I love getting old -- you can get hurt doing nothing at all!") and addressed himself to his peers under the assumption that they would form the bulk of his audience. I think that was a logical choice and I liked his approach -- it felt honest. His delivery wasn't perfect -- there were times when you could see that he hadn't spent the last year or two of his life on the road perfecting every beat of this material; but he has enough residual skill to pull it off regardless and you can forgive a tiny bit of rustiness to someone whose last HBO special was in 1995.

As to what I call "the Rich Little Challenge" -- this one was always going to be trickier. Dana never specialized in material with a strong viewpoint or heavy insight -- and by the way that's fine with me. I love silly as much as the next person. But if you only do voice with no political or social commentary, you do risk looking more like a harmless old hack. Carvey came close at a few points in this show -- pulling out impersonations of Reagan, Bush 1, Bill Clinton and Ross Perot (Ross Perot??). Maybe he thought the crowd expected it (the same instinct that causes Rick Little to keep trotting out Dick Nixon); but it felt a little forced and dated. I guess that will always be a fine line for him.

All in all, it was comfortable and pleasant -- like an old sweater -- but I only laughed out loud a few times. Check it out on HBO reruns if you are looking to enjoy some relaxed happy memories, but probably not much more.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Spring Break in Slough; Thanksgiving in Torquay? Are you having a laugh?

VisitBritain has recently launched an effort to promote the locations of past British sitcoms as tourist destinations. According to the Times: "The tourism body, which had success last year with its campaign to encourage “set-jetting” to locations of blockbuster films such as The Da Vinci Code, says that 40 per cent of all visits around Britain are inspired by scenes shown on TV and in films.

The most visited places for comic nostalgia are expected to be Torquay, location for Fawlty Towers, Holmfirth in West Yorkshire, setting for Last of the Summer Wine, Turville in the Chilterns, the parish made famous by The Vicar of Dibley, Norwich, home to Steve Coogan's I'm Alan Partridge, and Cricket St Thomas, Somerset, the village where Peter Bowles and Penelope Keith filmed To the Manor Born."

Look: I'm a ridiculous Britcom nerd. I admit to being over-the-top addicted. If I didn't have a family to raise and a job to hold, I would certainly and happily waste the rest of my days away -- "Spaced" in front of the television -- watching reruns of Fawlty Towers, Give My Head Peace, the Mighty Boosh, the Fall and Rise of Reginald Perrin, I'm Alan Partridge and Black Books -- and that would ideally be before breakfast.

But here's the difference between me and the promoters of these tour plans: I was paying attention while watching these shows. I recognized that, in the original Office, a central theme was the characters' flailing inability to escape from the dreary life of Slough. Likewise, Fawlty Towers wouldn't have been quite as brilliant if it were set in an exciting seaside resort so that the inn might occasionally attract fun or interesting guests. (Okay -- "the Germans" would be funny in any setting, but that's just because of the funny walk . . . ) The show is better because Basil is stuck in Torquay. As a proud British citizen, he refuses to admit that it's not exactly the Cote D'Azur -- but that denial only further fuels the premise.

Point being: these spots are not hidden gems of holiday excitement.

I will say, however, that the campaign's website -- although sporting a very goofy design -- is actually chock full of useful info for folks like me, including links to where one can find comedy clubs and festivals around the island. I could have used this last time we were in London and I was whining to my long-suffering spouse that I didn't want to go to the Comedy Store OR Sohoho again. They even reference and link to the Blue Lounge in Thirsk -- which I might actually visit someday if only because I think that Greg Proops' "Back in the UK" was partially recorded there (though mostly taped in Sheffield and Edinburgh). And how about this description: "Giggling Badger Comedy Club, which opened in 2006, is one of the biggest Sunday night comedy clubs in the Midlands." (Please Note: In February 2008, a second Giggling Badger club opened at the Royal British Legion club, Melton Road, in Syston. This venue now hosts a comedy night on the second Wednesday of every month.)

Wow: the biggest of *all* the Sunday night gig venues in the Midlands?? Now you almost have to go, right?

It also has an index of outing spots organized by comedy hero. My favorite part about this index is that it links the reader back to pictures of the places mentioned. These show glowing pictures of the getaways -- all of them sunny, bright and cheery. Here is the picture they show of Torquay:

And, granted, I visited there once and the place certainly has charm. It's cute. Looks like you'd think an English seaside village would look. But, honestly, here is how I remember it:

That picture was lifted from the "boy was this a bad marketing strategy" Torquay webcam -- visit it and judge for yourself!

Note: no picture posted for Slough. We wonder why? Probably best summarized by the first stanza from the famous John Betjeman poem -- remember when Brent read aloud from it?

Come friendly bombs and fall on Slough!
It isn't fit for humans now,
There isn't grass to graze a cow.
Swarm over, Death!

Come, bombs and blow to smithereens
Those air -conditioned, bright canteens,
Tinned fruit, tinned meat, tinned milk, tinned beans,
Tinned minds, tinned breath.

Mess up the mess they call a town-
A house for ninety-seven down
And once a week a half a crown
For twenty years.


Thursday, June 26, 2008

Zoo Cruelty

My old friend Mark and I have a long-standing tradition of making regular buddy trips to the L.A. Zoo. It started many years ago when I bought him a zoo membership for his birthday and continued regularly during the rest of the years that I lived in L.A. On average, we'd visit a couple of times a year to see the new exhibits, eat Kettle Corn, gossip and generally catch up. It's always a fine time; but since Madeline was born and we moved up north, I haven't been good about setting aside time for it. I wanted to remedy that, so this last weekend we set a plan for a zoo visit.

Unfortunately, the temperature in Griffith Park on Saturday topped 110 degrees. More than 98% of the animals were hiding in their enclosures -- completely invisible to the slim hardcore crowd of sweaty tourists. Those few intrepid critters who did venture out looked like this:

Frankly, it just seemed cruel. To be fair, though, I think that photo fairly summarizes how I felt about our trek that day as well. I was wilted and weary about 10 minutes into the first loop; but my not-so-subtle pleas to Mark that we consider packing it in and adjourning to a neighborhood pub were ignored. For reasons that aren't clear to me, he veritably thrived in the swelter. Hours later, he was still like a Gila Monster on holiday at the shore, he was -- well, see for yourself:

It still baffles me.

How to get away with racial slurs

Vince Morris raises a good point -- modern urban culture is really just making this too easy.


The fifth issue of Monkeybicycle actually looks promising. Contributor list for this one includes Sarah Silverman, Patton Oswalt and David Cross.

A final resting place for your stuff

I can't add anything meaningful to the many wonderful tributes already written about George Carlin's passing. (I especially loved this one by the ever-amazing Louis CK which reminded me of something I had forgotten -- that I used to listen to many Carlin bits on the AM radio show classic, Doctor Demento -- remember that? I actually used to hide a transistor radio under my pillow so I could listen on Sunday nights at an hour well after I should have been asleep . . .)

I can only humbly say that Carlin is responsible for many happy giggling hours in my childhood and for that I am especially grateful. I played "Class Clown" until the grooves wore thin and quoted "FM and AM" verbatim far before I had reached an age where I really understood most of it. If there is one Carlin bit that will forever define him in my mind, however, it has to be the great classic "A Place to Put Your Stuff" -- a masterpiece of social commentary wrapped in utter silliness -- I still find it very impressive. Every time I listen, I still laugh -- and it never fails to make me briefly reflect on how I'm living my life. Once, when I asked some friends to help me move out of one house and into another, I overheard my friend Eric, box in hand, walking away from me and mumbling: "Sometimes you gotta move -- why? Too much stuff!" Can't argue with this logic.

Here he is, performing the bit at the 1986 Comic Relief -- years after it had already become a classic. Thanks for everything, George.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Another hot night at the Bowl

My dear friend Apryl was kind enough to bring me along Sunday evening to see Thievery Corporation play at the Bowl.

Since the show, I've been trying to think of the words to describe their work, but their own bio for the Bowl show actually does it surprisingly well: "“Our deepest source of inspiration comes from our record collections,” says Rob Garza, an apt reference to their collective nom de plume. Always great admirers and curators of dusty grooves and all-but-forgotten music styles, THIEVERY CORPORATION borrows from the classically sensual and blunted sounds of their favorite Brazilian bossa nova, Jamaican dub reggae, vintage film soundtracks, and psychedelic rock to forge into new sonic territory."

"Classically sensual and blunted" are the key words here -- because on an already simmering evening, this was one seriously sexy performance. How else can you describe the mixing of sitar grooves, Perry Farrell, psychedelic projections, belly dancers and Seu Jorge? If you weren't swaying your hips at full speed, then you don't have a pulse. But, thankfully, that didn't seem to be much of a problem for the sold out crowd of young music fans from every ethnic persuasion -- coming together on a warm Bowl night for dancing, swaying and flirting.

Good call, Apryl!!!

Edited to add: Our friend Tano saw their show the previous evening in Vegas, and it sounds as though it was fabulous -- here is his review.

Joel Hodgson: still the sexiest man alive?

So what's the verdict? Can Mystery Science Theater 3000 work effectively before a live audience sans robots? Whaddaya think, sirs?

I was lucky enough to attend the sold out Cinematic Titanic show at the John Anson Ford amphitheater this past weekend and, for me, it exceeded expectations. Of course, a great setting always helps and the Ford is one of my favorite venues on the planet -- intimate, charming, fine wine list. Cool evening breezes blowing through the tall trees and reflections of the Hollywood Bowl fireworks on the stage. I really can't think of any place where I would rather see a show. The last concert I saw here was in September 2002 when we saw Minus 5 open for Wilco, which was amazing. The Ford is so tiny that I felt as though I was attending a backyard bbq at Jeff Tweedy's house and Peter Buck was going to tap the keg. . . but I digress. My point is simply that the stage itself added to the sweet and simple joys of the evening.

Joel and crew delivered a playful and energetic commentary to the alarmingly annoying "Doomsday Machine". Granted, "Doomsday" was rather easy pickins' for such an adept and accomplished crew -- but that didn't matter because picking the correct film for abuse is actually part of the challenge - much like picking the correct set of symphonies to highlight an orchestra's key talents.

And this is truly a talented crew, obviously coming back to their true calling. They worked from a prepared script propped on music stands which kept the narrative crisp and quick so the performers stayed well ahead of the many more obvious jokes that the movie brings immediately to mind. After all, that was always the triple charm: bad movie + joke I hear in my head + joke I didn't seem coming = spewing giggles. Of course I won't deny the warm feelings of nostalgia and the happy memories of Saturday mornings past; but this really didn't feel like watching an early 90s grunge band touring with just their old material. It truly felt fresh and full of glee. I considered the passing reference to "Manos: The Hands of Fate" to be a personal gift to me, wrapped up with a sparkling pink bow and sprinkled with sugar on top.

I hope that they continue to perform live from time to time. They obviously really enjoyed drinking in the laughter of a live crowd and yet it never seemed to throw their timing. Even the Bowl fireworks didn't cause them to skip a beat.

Tom Servo, RIP.


Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Miss You, Part 2

It's wonderful to be home again. Madeline is getting funnier every day. She tells amazing jokes and just learned a new song about killer robots from Venus. The strawberries in our garden are nearly ripe and the blueberries are getting close. It's cool, sunny, peaceful and uncrowded; but I still miss all of you back in LA. Painfully so.

So thanks to the whole gang for a truly wonderful weekend. And just to spark some cozy memories from very long ago (well, for most of you anyway), here's the "Love You" video that I think we all first shared back on Valentine's Day 2001 (has it really been that long?) It always makes me think of you people and it always makes me smile. Anyway -- to everyone who helped to make my weekend special: Love you. See you again soon.

Sunday, June 15, 2008


If you came of age during the carefree days of the early 90s, then you owe many happy Saturday morning memories to Joel Hodgson. Back when your hangovers were still rather manageable -- before Bill Clinton proved what an ass he could be -- before Comedy Central was a powerhouse with multiple hit shows -- and back when your "friends" still passed out on your couch every Friday night -- Joel provided a reliable source of snarky charm with his masterpiece, Mystery Science Theater 3000 (MST3K).

Joel began his career as an easygoing, midwestern comic and (ahem) magician. Sporting the same sleepy, innocent-eyed manner we later grew to love, in 1982 he moved to LA and had some promising success with appearances on Letterman and SNL -- as well as his own HBO special. By 1984, however, he was already fed up with the Hollywood scene and the lack of fun, originality and spontaneity in the roles he was offered -- so he moved back to Minneapolis. He continued to perform stand-up and also took up sculpture and toy design -- building robots for fun in his spare time.

In 1988, Joel built Cambot, Gypsy, Tom Servo and Crow! and MST3K was born. No one had ever seen anything like it before -- sitting in front of the screen and making fun of bad movies? Joel has admitted, in later interviews, that many viewers didn't get the joke at first. It certainly caught on quickly, however, and essentially spawned its own unique form of interactive humor. The show also owns a small piece of funny history because was one of the first shows ever picked up by the Comedy Channel (early name for what became Comedy Central). The show quickly grew in popularity; but Joel left the lead role in 1993, when it he gave the reins over to his successor, Mike Nelson.

Hodgson later admitted that he only left MST3k because of creative differences with his co-producer and that he missed the show greatly. Finally, in October 2007, he launched a successor effort -- Cinematic Titanic -- which he operates with fellow MST3K alums Trace Beaulieu, J. Elvis Weinstein, Frank Conniff and Mary Jo Pehl. And this weekend, their happily reunited team will be performing at the John Anson Ford Amphitheater as part of the LA Film Fest. Myself and my friend tribe will be there to pay tribute to the man, the show, the genre and the memories.

As Joel turns 48 this year, what is his answer to the comeback question? I am hesitant to comment before seeing the show; but if the website is any guide, the answer is: simply keep doing what he does best. And that makes sense to me. There is no need to update this act. He is the master of his own subgenre -- making fun of bad movies was funny then; and why wouldn't it still be now? If you were KISS, would you undertake a reunion tour without makeup -- or without playing "Detroit Rock City"? Exactly.

FYI: I would be remiss if I didn't mention that his successor, Mike Nelson, also has a movie commentary site that sports a whole library of clever audio overtracks for old and current films -- you can find them at Rifftrax, and it is well worth a visit.

See you at the Ford!

xoxo, Rabbit

Friday, June 13, 2008

Chocolate Squirrelador

Just a quick one today; but it's fun: AND another chance to mix stand up with cute fuzzy animals! Here is young Dan Cummins telling about his ideal dream pet, the Chocolate Squirrelador. We know you want one.

As per Punchline magazine, Dan got the thumbs up during MN auditions to compete on Last Comic Standing this summer. So, if you like cross-breeding dream pets, you can see more of Dan's work there.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

The Ricky Gervais Show Podcast Reunion!!


A reunion of the Ricky Gervais Show podcast team!! Gervais, Merchant and Pilkington getting back together for the launch of NME Radio -- times and rebroadcast info here. It may not be much, but I'm still thrilled.

For life knows no purer joy than Monkey News.

Look! I think the sun is shining!!

Sqatting Monkeys Tell No Lies

A classic Bouncing Back post today. Dana Carvey, age 53 (can you believe that?!), is making a stand up comeback on HBO this weekend with "Squatting Monkeys Tell No Lies."

Many of the early pre-release reviews have been fairly harsh, accusing Carvey of relying too heavily on his 80s material. And God knows I am certainly hoping that there won't be much time spent on impressions of George Bush the 1st or a rehashing of the Church Lady; but I'm willing to give it a try for two reasons: 1) it's obviously my blogger duty, given our focus here on comedians finding a new tempo to their work after age 40; and 2) I read some more sympathetic words about the piece over at Dead Frog which suggested that Carvey does spend some time reflecting on the unique challenges of age (from divorce to some rather terrifying health challenges). And after watching this early release clip, I'm hopeful. Yes, it is essentially just Carvey playing with this love for voices, impressions and silly accents, but he does do so here in the context of facing some of late life's harsher realities (in this case, a disconcerting chat with the cardiologist). Even the youngster readers over at Funny or Die, most of whom were certainly too young to enjoy Dana Carvey's initial run on SNL, seem to be giving this clip some kind words.

So enjoy the preview and check out the full show on Sunday. I will, of course, be back with a full review next week. Would love to hear what ya'll think of it as well.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Thanks for the Coogan Tips!

Wow! Big response to "Knowing Me, Knowing You" -- including the happy news that Coogan will be going on tour again soon with an act entitled "“Steve Coogan is Alan Partridge and other less successful characters”

That news taken from a charming Merseyside Comedy blog (possibly associated with the Liverpool Daily Post, though I can't tell for sure) that posted this very fun "Top Ten Steve Coogan Moments". So, if you are looking for more funny Coogan bits, just follow the link!

xoxo, The Rabbit

Knowing Me, Knowing You

Somehow it has already become a running theme in this newly-born blog: finding the funny past age 40 when most of your prior work has been centered on the snarky joys of youth. Maybe that's an inevitable point of fascination for me given my fondness for continuing to follow comedians that I've known and loved for decades; but, the more I start to notice their differing approaches to the problem, the more intriguing find it. And, in addressing this theme, Steve Coogan's story is absolutely one of my favorites.

Coogan originally found fame in England through his self-created role of Alan Partridge: a crass, idiotic and self-absorbed chat-show host with a disconcerting fondness for ABBA. His short BBC series, "Knowing Me, Knowing You with Alan Partridge" had its first run in 1994 and was an instant hit. Part of the show's odd charm was the way the character frequently reflected Coogan's public tabloid image as -- well -- crass, idiotic and self-absorbed. (Though the real-life Coogan was certainly a good deal smarter, better looking and less socially awkward than poor Alan).

Interestingly, Coogan started to play with the theme of passing one's prime while he was still young. Between 1997 and 2002, he created the follow up series "I'm Alan Partridge" -- in which Alan has fallen from television grace, lost his BBC chat show, gotten divorced and is now reduced to hosting a small-town, rooster-hour show on Radio Norwich. Even funnier than the original, Coogan does an impressive job of somehow causing us to feel sorry for this washed up lout and to (nearly) regret his well-deserved fall. In the great tradition of Basil Fawlty, it is painfully clear that the character is limited primarily by his own choices and flaws, but you somehow can't help but wish that his fate could be a bit less cruel regardless.

I really can't overstate how amazing these shows are -- down to the finest detail. Honestly, even the DVD menu makes me laugh - presenting itself as a combination of the security camera footage and the video-for-purchase television menu of the dismal old residential hotel Partridge inhabits in Norwich. You're forced to go through the whole menu -- with very odd results -- in order to find the shows.

In 2002, Coogan finally leveraged his long-running Partridge success into a movie role that brought him broader international attention: Michael Winterbottom's "24-Hour Party People". Starting a consistent and enjoyable pattern of roles that break the fourth-wall, Coogan addresses the audience directly (though in character) as he plays Tony Wilson, the journalist and TV presenter who co-founded Factory records (label for the Happy Mondays and Joy Division) and owned Manchaster's famous Hacienda nightclub. As a young, passionate and painfully sexy Manchester native himself, Coogan made the role sing -- and the critics began to take notice.

Coogan's fondness for roles that break the barrier between himself, the character and his audience created a fun compliment to the work that, as I mentioned above, seemed to be a reflection of his own public persona. In 2003, Jim Jarmusch decided to play along by casting him in one of the "Coffee and Cigarettes" vignettes opposite Afred Molina. In the brief 5 minute sketch, Molina meets a distant, preening and egotistical Coogan briefly in an American coffee shop with the exciting news that he believes they might be cousins. Molina is thrilled; but Coogan is visibly unimpressed by the notion until a quick call on Molina's cell reveals that he is friends with one of Coogan's favorite directors, Spike Jonze. It was, yet again, an extremely funny and self-depricating send-up on Coogan's own reputation as shallow and narcissistic. Even if you think that you're completely burned out on the excessive "cleverness" of the self-referential comedy of the 90s, just trust me: it's far more enjoyable than you might expect to watch Coogan consistently poke fun at himself this way.

The entire trend came full circle in 2005 when Coogan teamed up with Winterbottom again to make "Tristam Shandy -- A Cock and Bull Story." Winterbottom and Coogan take the joke so far in this film (which is, after all, a purported effort to film the first truly post-modern novel) that the movie includes a scene where Coogan, playing himself as the actor playing the lead role in the movie, is interviewed by the real life Tony Wilson (the person who Coogan played in 24 Hour Party People) and they discuss whether Alan Partridge is an abstract creation or is actually just a reflection of Coogan's true personality (his answer: I'm not saying; but obviously it's a bit of both). How's that for a mind bender? Again: even if you hate everything about post modernism as a movement, you have to laugh at the silliness of it all when you see that scene. It's a send up of a send up of a gag twice-removed. It actually gets funnier, inside your head, hours after you watch the movie. And how often does that happen?

Okay -- well! -- that's a great deal of background; but in service of a good cause, I assure you! (In addition to, I hope, introducing you to some fun clips you might not have seen before).

Saxondale is Coogan's most recent television effort. It's the story of a washed-up 50+ former rock and roll roadie who still considers himself a critical force in "fighting the system" while he toils away his days working as a pest exterminator. Coogan's character vacillates between the day-to-day drudge and humiliation of fighting bugs and dealing with the fallout of his past, including visits from other aging rocker pals who insist on trying to party as hard they did in their 20s -- until they end up in an ambulance from the effort. Each episode opens with the lead character suffering through a nearly unbearable group anger management session at the local public library. Priceless.

I don't know how Coogan actually feels about getting older (he's only 43; where as Saxondale is clearly identified as post 50); but he certainly has a keen fascination with the subject. Whereas many actors seem focused on continually trying to play roles suited for much younger performers, Coogan does the opposite -- creating characters older than he is -- and ones who are on the downwards slide, whilst he himself is still quite successful (the later years of Partridge where meant to show Alan in his late 40s, when Coogan was still in his early 30s). It's almost as if he is trying to get out in front of the challenge and say "I know I'm going to someday become old and irrelevant and I really don't care -- because I'll find a way to make that funny as well." It's somehow simultaneously bold, silly and ingenious. Or maybe it's just common sense. Maybe it's always funnier to watch aging and suffering than youth and success. If you've seen Saxondale, I would be curious to hear what you think on that subjec.t

p.s. Mike just pointed out to me that BBC America has recently been doing viewers the great favor of running Saxondale and "Knowing Me, Knowing You" back to back some nights, so that you can follow the progression described herein. Well done.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Baby Owls and the Rooftop Comedy Festival

By now, you probably realized that if you don't like either cute furry animals or stand up comedy, you're probably in the wrong place. But what about those rare days when I can combine the two? Impossible you say? Watch and be amazed!

While viewing some bits from the Aspen Rooftop Comedy festival over at Punchline, I found this wonderfully simple piece by Matt Braunger about the dangers of baby owls. Sounds silly, but I especially love it because recently two of my favorite hiking trails on the island were *closed* because of attack owls. That's right -- renegade owl attacks made in broad daylight. We have no gang activity here on the island, but apparently it is still possible to get mugged in broad daylight while hiking through the Grand Forest. By an owl. That, alone, stikes me as funny. So I was especially pleased to see a comedian who appreciates the unadvertised dangers of a life lived near birds of prey. Enjoy.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

The Complete and Utter History of Britain

Complete_and_utter_history In a mix-up that could easily have been described in a Monty Python sketch, episodes from Michael Palin and Terry Jones's "The Complete and Utter History of Britain" have been found by the British Film Institute's Missing Believed Wiped effort. The intrepid folks at MBW track down footage from eras when archival of film was prohibitively expensive, so many shows were erased after transmission. Why didn't they just upload to BitTorrent?

"The Complete and Utter History of Britain" was a sketch comedy by Palin and Jones, who collaborated before joining Monty Python. The show, which presented historical events like the Battle Of Hastings as live news, is a sort of Rosetta Stone of sketch comedy, providing a definite chronological link between The Goon Show and The Daily Show. This major discovery is just as if Aristotle's Poetics of Comedy had been discovered, and had been funny, and Aristotle had long hair and a wacky accent.

In addition to the three episodes discovered recently, another has been unearthed. It had been misfiled. It is hoped that the parties responsible for the misfile have been sacked.

Messrs. Jones and Palin will be introducing the show at a special event hosted by the British Film Institute on June 25th.

[Via Dead-Frog]

NOTE: I, the Resilient Rabbit, did not write this post -- it is taken in full from Comedy Central Insider who, apparently, lifted it from Dead Frog. So full credit goes to them and I have linked to the original above. I pass it along here only because I know that folks who read this might be interested.