What Michael Palin actually said about Holy Flying Circus:
Michael: Well, it was very odd because I was away when it went out and I rang my wife from Brazil and said, ‘Did you see it?’ and she said, ‘I just couldn’t watch it - I mean after seeing you in bed with Terry Jones, I’m afraid I had to sort of turn off.’ So I came back expecting the worst and we sat down together and watched it and I haven’t laughed as much at a programme for a long, long time. Somehow, the writer had… Tony Roche had caught the sort of mischievousness, the silliness, the in-consequentiality of Python, but it made something very funny out of it and I thought they all… they played it remarkably well. Tis odd, I must say, seeing someone playing yourself… and being better at it than you are. There’s a guy called Charles Edwards who’s apparently in… I think he’s doing The King’s Speech on the stage and he was great as me, so I’m hoping he’ll trade and he can be me for the rest of my life.
Richard Bacon: But they had captured some of the essence of what the experience was like out there on the show.
Michael: Yes. I mean they weren’t trying to do exactly what we’d done, the way they dealt with the whole idea of Python and censorship and the church being very affronted and that whole debate we had with Muggeridge and the bishop was just done with a nice, odd, off-centre quirkiness which just made me laugh.
I love Monty Python, specifically Michael Palin. I do however think that the Dead Parrot sketch isn’t as funny as other things but this video is hilarious. Michael’s corpsing when John says ‘pining for the fjords’ and how he tries to centre himself again. It’s wonderful.