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'Monty Python' Reunion Show Opens to Mixed Reviews at London's O2 Arena

Image: 'Monty Python' Reunion Show Opens to Mixed Reviews at London's O2 Arena
Monty Python cast left to right, Michael Palin, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, John Cleese and Terry Jones.

By    |   Thursday, 03 Jul 2014 08:11 AM

"Monty Python Live (Mostly)," the performance reuniting the surviving members of the popular British comedy troupe, opened to mixed reviews Tuesday as it kicked off a 10-show tour at London's O2 Arena.

The production, directed by Eric Idle, features Python veterans John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Michael Palin, Terry Jones, the Los Angeles Times reported. Original Python performer Graham Chapman died in 1989.

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Mark Jefferies, of the U.K.'s Daily Mirror, said that while the show was not something completely different, to borrow a popular Monty Python phrase, it was something that'll please the legion of longtime Python fans.

"There is not much new material, but most people are here to see their favorite gags," Jefferies wrote. "With so many well-known gags, it's the comedy equivalent of seeing the Beatles play a greatest hits gig."

Dominic Cavendish, of the Daily Telegraph, said he felt "Monty Python Live" relied too much on old television episodes but believed the show will still be a fan favorite.

"What they lack in sprightliness is compensated for by the choreographed frolics of a troupe of 20 performers young enough to be their grandchildren," Cavendish wrote. "Although there's an over-reliance on TV clips between-scenes, the live material looks far more golden than olden, reminding us at every turn of the debt we owe them — as a surprise cameo from Stephen Fry and starry video contributions from Stephen Hawking and Prof Brian Cox further confirmed."

Brian Logan, of The Guardian, wrote that show was disappointing because the cast did not push the envelope the way they did at the height of their popularity, instead relying too much on nostalgia.

"The disappointment, such as it was, is that the Pythons didn't subvert (nostalgia)," Logan wrote. "Their 70s success was built on iconoclasm, and some of us dared hope that they might apply iconoclasm to the concept of a nostalgic love-in/cash-in celebration of their greatest hits."

Reviews on social media outlets like Twitter were also mixed.





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"Monty Python Live (Mostly)," the performance reuniting the surviving members of the popular British comedy troupe, opened to mixed reviews Tuesday as it kicked off a 10-show tour at London's O2 Arena.
monty python, o2, reunion, show, reviews
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2014-11-03
Thursday, 03 Jul 2014 08:11 AM
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