Parrot fashionable

Python sketch named funniest ever

Monty Python’s Dead Parrot sketch has been named the best of all time, by an easy margin.

It attracted almost twice as many votes as its nearest rival in the poll on the Radio Times website.

The Pythons ended up with four of the top ten: The Four Yorkshiremen at number two, the Ministry Of Silly Walks at six at the Spam song at ten.

A spokesman for the magazine said: “Unlike that famous parrot, it seems their humour is alive and kicking.”

But in an interview with the magazine to mark the 25th anniversary of the Secret Policeman’s Ball, John Cleese says he doesn’t understand the appeal of watching sketches over and over again.

“I get fed up with it,” he said. “It’s not just the parrot, it’s the silly walks and all the rest of it. Repetition kills everything.”

Not all the sketches in the top ten are old, with entries from Little Britain and The League of Gentlemen.

The magazine said it was “shocking” that Little Britain and Goodness Gracious Me were “beating established names like Cook and Moore, French and Saunders and Victoria Wood”.

Radio Times conducted a similar poll three years ago which found the Two Ronnies’ Fork Handles routine the best sketch of all time, ahead of the Dead Parrot at number two.

But this list was confined to ‘alternative comedy sketches’, whatever  that means.

The top ten is

1: Dead Parrot, Monty Python

2: Four Yorkshiremen, Monty Python

3: Lou and Andy by the pool, Little Britain

4: Going For An English,  Goodness Gracious Me

5: I Want A Brown Baby, Harry Enfield and Kathy Burke as The Slobs

6: Ministry Of Silly Walks, Monty Python

7: One Leg Too Few, Peter Cook and Dudley Moore

8: Papa Lazarou, The League Of Gentlemen

9: Two Soups, Julie Walters in a Victoria Wood classic

10: The Spam Song Monty Python

Published: 28 Nov 2004

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