Respected ethnologist and socio-political diarist Michael Palin is rumoured to be on the verge of breaking his silence over the time he spent as a member of the cast of Monty Python’s Flying Circus. It will bring to an end decades in which Palin has remained tight-lipped about his involvement in the cult TV show, much beloved of post graduate engineering students everywhere.
Friends of Palin say he has been deeply reluctant to talk about his spell in the show, which ran between 1969 and 1974. Indeed references to Python are all but absent from the first two volumes of his autobiography: ‘From Suez to Shah – Post-colonialism in Crisis 1943-1978’ and ‘Studies in Cross-Cultural Populist Exegesis: The BBC Years.’ Indeed, unseen footage from the ‘Around the World in 80 Days’ shows Palin coming face to face with a dead blue-rumped parrot in the jungle of Borneo and merely exclaiming ‘Oh God, that’s so tragic…’
Responding to the story, Palin’s agent Pippa Springhill further elaborated on Michael’s reluctance to trade on former Python glories: ‘If he was on a travel programme, meeting tribesmen of Ulan Bator living in incredible hardship, it would be completely out of character if Michael were to keep making Monty Python references, and looking at the tribesmen expectantly. So it never happens’
Stoopy De Gunt