The 3 Best Monty Python Sketches (Aren’t Necessarily the Funniest)
Monty Python saved my life. Their best sketches stand up today because they're such accurate portraits of human nature.
January 31, 2013 - 7:00 am
#3 — The Four Yorkshiremen
One of the rules of comedy (and most creative efforts) is that one must stick to a kind of internal logic, no matter how surreal the set-up.
It seems odd to apply that test to things as intentionally illogical as Monty Python skits.
But it’s true. No matter how bizarre the setting of any good Python sketch, that curt, eye-rolling waiter (likely played by Eric Idle) looks and acts uncannily like the one who (reluctantly) served you two nights ago.
A fine example of such verisimilitude can be seen in the “Four Yorkshiremen” sketch, in which the eponymous nouveau riche gents try to outdo each other’s tales of childhood deprivation.
This certainly rings a bell for me because just a few years back, a bunch of my friends casually attempted to top each other’s stories of “the time the cops showed up at your house when you were a kid.”
My pal from Montreal won: in search of bank robbers — that city has more than its share for some reason — the Quebecois version of the SWAT team had kicked her front door down.
As you might have noticed a few pages back, there are few things former poor people enjoy more than masticating on their long ago misfortune.