Saturday, February 4, 2012
Monty Python's Flying Circus: The animations & artwork of Terry Gilliam-Keith
While most kids watched all the latest Saturday morning cartoons, I watched my dad's archives of Monty Python's Flying Circus. The comedy sketch show appeared on BBC from the late-sixties to early-seventies featuring the legendary Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Terry Jones, Michael Palin, Eric Idle, and Terry Gilliam. The six of them produced what to many, changed the face of comedy. Besides the sketches which you really need to watch to appreciate, some of my favorite parts of the show were the visual animation breaks that were solely on the shoulders of Terry Gilliam, early comic strip artist and the only American in the British surreal comedy group. Gilliam's style is unique and his crude, hilarious, animations gave the show a balance of brilliant sketch comedy and artistic stimulus to the viewers of Flying Circus. His conception has moved on since the disbandment of Monty Python after Flying Circus in the early to mid seventies and their last film, The Meaning of Life in 1983. As a film director, Gilliam has a very obscure, visual conception in his work. His latest film was The Imagniarium of Doctor Parnassus in 2009. Monty Python is a not only and inspiration to me, but a comfort. It's utter silliness gives me laughter and creativity when ideas are limited.