Monty Python's Flying Circus
Monty Python’s Flying Circus is a British sketch comedy series created by the comedy group Monty Python and broadcast by the BBC from 1969 to 1974. The shows were composed of surreality, risqué or innuendo-laden humour, sight gags and observational sketches without punchlines. It also featured animations by Terry Gilliam, often sequenced or merged with live action. The first episode was recorded on 7 September and broadcast on 5 October 1969 on BBC One, with 45 episodes airing over four series from 1969 to 1974, plus two episodes for German TV. The show often targets the idiosyncrasies of British life, especially that of professionals, and is at times politically charged. The members of Monty Python were highly educated. Terry Jones and Michael Palin are Oxford University graduates; Eric Idle, John Cleese, and Graham Chapman attended Cambridge University; and American-born member Terry Gilliam is an Occidental College graduate. Their comedy is often pointedly intellectual, with numerous erudite references to philosophers and literary figures. The series followed and elaborated upon the style used by Spike Milligan in his ground breaking series Q5, rather than the traditional sketch show format. The team intended their humour to be impossible to categorise, and succeeded so completely that the adjective "Pythonesque" was invented to define it and, later, similar material.
Where to Watch Monty Python's Flying Circus
Below you'll find every episode from all 5 season of Monty Python's Flying Circus.
To see what is available free to watch, click the 'Episodes on Sources' tab above.
Season 1Rent or Buy
S01 E01Oct 5, 1969
Whither Canada Hermit comes out of sea; credits; pig killed; It's W.A. Mozart, famous deaths with Ghengis Khan and others; pig killed; Italian language classes; pig killed; animation- pig swallowed by man; Whizzo butter and a dead crab comparison; It's the Arts- Sir Eddie-Baby Ross interviewed, Arthur `Two Sheds' Jackson interviewed, and live coverage of Picasso doing an abstract on a bicycle; animation- sit up! and other stuff; Ernest Scribbler writes the funniest joke in the world: Ian McNaughton The Killer Joke `Wenn ist das Nunstuck git und Slotermeyer? Ja!... Beiherhund das Oder die Flipperwaldt gersput!'; Hermit; credits.
S01 E02Oct 12, 1969
Sex & Violence Hermit struggles to camera; opening credits with flowers; Part 2, Sheep farmer explains about Harold `that most dangerous of animals' a clever sheep; Frenchmen explain commercial possibilities of flying sheep; women on Frenchmen; animation- The Thinker; and now for something completely different- a man with three buttocks `Oh! Me bum!', a man with two noses; Arthur Ewing and his musical mice; marriage counselor sketch `Arthur Pewty today you're a man!'; coal miner visits his playwright father; a scotsman on a horse; animation- flying sheep; The Epilogue: a question of belief to be decided by two out of three falls; animation- a train and other twisted things from the mind of Terry Gilliam, a baby carriage that eats people, the kiss; Of Mice and Men: a investigative report on mouse clubs; Hermit; end credits.
S01 E03Oct 19, 1969
How to Recognise Different Types of Trees From Quite a Long Way Away Hermit comes out of trees; credits; Episode 12b: How to Recognize Different Types of Trees From Quite a Long Ways Away: No. 1: the Larch; Mr. Larch on trial for parking offense with Mrs. Fiona Lewis, the late Arthur Aldridge and Cardinal Richelieu as character witnesses, Dim of the Yard! in pursuit of a notorious Cardinal Richelieu impersonator, song- If I Were Not in the C.I.D., knight with rubber chicken; No. 1: the Larch; `Bicycle repairman, but how?!'; announcer goes crazy on commies, chicken knight; storytime about Rumpletweezer, Old Nick the Sea Captain and Rikki the Magic Pixie; animation- hippo and rabbits, vicar pounds man into ground; an announcer at the beach introduces: the Restaurant Sketch, announcer and chicken knight; animation- advertisement purchase a past; disappearing Milkman; BBC news announcer kidnapped while on air; No. 1 the Larch; schoolboys recognize trees, `Eric's written a sketch', `Say no more! Nudge! Nudge!'; Hermit; credits.
S01 E04Oct 26, 1969
Owl-Stretching Time Hermit thrown off cliff; credits; Episode Arthur Part 7 Teeth, live from Cardiffs Room Libya; Art Gallery sketch- `fancy a Turner?'; an art critic- `but it's my only line!'; back to Cardiff Rooms- `It's a Man's Life in the Cardiff Rooms Libya'; Colonel objects to stolen slogan; viking `this is my only line'; gentleman trying to change into swimsuit, striptease `It's a Man's Life Taking Your Clothes Off in Public'; Colonel objects again; How to defend yourself against a foe laden with Fresh Fruit `and pointed sticks. SHUT UP!'; animation- my last operation; aristocrat at beach; back at Cardiff Rooms;`'It's a Man's Life in England's Mountain Green'; Colonel is furious; The Bookshop Sketch featuring `Lemming, Arthur Lemming special investigator British Dental Association' and `The Big Cheese!' song- Lemming of the B.D.A.; Colonel shuts show down; Hermit; credits.
S01 E05Nov 16, 1969
Man's Crisis of Identity in the Latter Half of the Twentieth Century Hermit rowing boat; credits; Confuse A Cat Ltd.; animation- growing mustache; customs sketch; implications of law enforcement techniques of last sketch discussed by a duck, cat and a lizard; man in the street interviews about customs regulations, chicken knight; Police Constable Henry Thatcher's raid for substances of an illicit nature; letter of protest; letter of protest about letter of protest; housewife urges use of satire as a weapon, more man in the street interviews; newsreader wanted for jewel robberies, Match of the Day highlights missing so tonight's romantic movie highlight's shown instead; animation- Charles Atlas' Dynamo Tension Ad; management training course interview; career advisory board, burglar comes to sell encyclopedias; Hermit; credits.
S01 E06Nov 23, 1969
It's the Arts Hermit answers phone; credits; Next week: how to fling an otter; BBC expenses on captions; This Week, autograph seeker; animation- autograph & titles for =>; It's the Arts profiles- Johann Gambleputtydevonausfernschpledenschlittcrasscrenbonfriedigger- dingledangledonglebursteinvonknackerthrasherapplebangerhorowitz- ticolensicgranderknottyspelltinklegrandlichgrumblemeyerspelter- wasserkurstlichhimbleeisenbahnwagengutenabendbitteeinnurnburger- bratwurstlegerspurtenmitzweimacheluberhundsfutgumberaberschonend- ankerkalbsfleischmittleraucher Von Hauptkopf of Ulm; animation the fig leaf and the hand; planning a jewel robbery; man in the street interview about robbers; The Whizzo quality assortment of chocolate `Crunchy Frog?!'; dull life of city stockbroker, animation- comic book adventure; Indian massacre at theater; policemen make wonderful friends, `for Mrs. Emma Hamilton of Nelson, a Scotsman on a horse'; animation- a man eating baby carriage, and the 20th Century Vole logo;
S01 E07Nov 30, 1969
You're No Fun Anymore Hermit runs downhill and can't remember line; credits; camel spotting; animations & vignettes of- You're no fun anymore; board meeting `I embezzled it!'; here is the address to complain to; reminder about leaving your radio on at night; announcer for the next sketch: The Science Fiction Sketch, Mr. & Mrs. Samuel Brainsample, first victims of being from another world, scientist and his assistant, more Scotsman, desolate England, scientist and his assistant, Mr. Angus Podgorny owner of a Dunbar Men's Shop receives an order for 48 million kilts from a blancmange from Andromeda `Angus Podgorny what do ya mean?', police station women reports seeing a blancmange playing singles with itself, Angus Podgorny's wife gets eaten, Policeman tells how Mrs. Podgorny could have avoided that, Scotland Yard detective inspector interviews Angus and gets eaten, scientist and his assistant `They mean to win Wimbledon', BBC coverage of a Wimbledon match between Angus Podgorny and a blancmange from the plane
Season 2Rent or Buy
S02 E01Sep 15, 1970
Face the Press Credits with flowers and man with chicken body; Face the Press- Minister in a pink tulle dress; The New Gas Cooker Sketch; animation- flying monarch; dirty old man and billboard `I like a bit of pram please'; Ministry of Silly Walks; Ethel the Frog looks at the rise and fall of Doug and Dinsdale Piranha; announcer, hermit; credits with Spiny Norman.
S02 E02Sep 22, 1970
The Spanish Inquisition Man flying into cliff; credits; Jarrow- New Years Eve 1911, interrupted by Spanish Inquisition; man asked to be in a sketch with a novelty salesman, man's head borrowed for animation- eyeball stolen and shot in cannon; new tax proposed on `thingie'; man on the street- What I would tax; snapshots with the Spanish Inquisition; animation- I confess!; semaphore version of Wuthering Heights, Julius Caesar on an Aldis Lamp, Gunfight at the O.K. Corral in Morse Code and the smoke signal version of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes; charades in the Criminal Court, judge on trial, credits, Spanish Inquisition late for court.
S02 E03Sep 29, 1970
Déjà Vu Woman undresses by window, announcer by window; exploding animals; Hermit; credits; A bishop practicing for show #8, `This way please!' to the flying lesson sketch `Oh, Oh, Oh! No more butter scones for me Mater, I'm off to play the grand piano! Pardon me while I fly my aeroplane!'; BALPA spokesman protests; airplane hijacking sketch `don't anybody move, except of course for certain involuntary movements'; bus hijacking sketch; The poetry of Ewen MacTeagle `Can You Lend Me Fifty Pounds to Mend the Shed'; exploding animals, scotsman protests McTeagle sketch, gynecologist on his lunch hour; animation- little girl and men, hands and a lasso; psychiatric milkmen; complaints; psychiatric dairies, This way please; It's the Mind- the strange phenomenon of deja-vu; credits.
S02 E04Oct 20, 1970
The Buzz Aldrin Show animation- drab caterpillar guy turns to game-show-host-type butterfly; credits; Gumbies introduce sketches; Architect Sketch; recognizing a free mason and cure; Gumbies; Insurance Sketch; The Bishop! a C of E film; housing problem of the aged; Poet Board- poet reads weather; discussing censorship `semprini?'; the chemist sketch featuring A Not At All Naughty Chemists Ltd., shoplifter and Police Superintendent Pan Am; Gumbies, Gumbettes; credits.
S02 E05Oct 27, 1970
Live from the Grill-O-Mat BBC1, announcer live from a Painton snack bar; credits; announcer- the hors d'oeuvre; Blackmail!; the Society for Putting Things on Top of Other Things turns into a German prison camp; animation- the escape; announcer- the dish; Population Explosion- new talk show; animation- more of the escapees; Prawn Salad Ltd. `Hello Officer, there seems to have been an accident'; escapees meet bishop still practicing from show #5; announcer- the dessert; Seven Brides for Seven Brothers a school play; animation- Teddy and Neddy hunting piggy banks; butchershop sketch `Oh, thank you says the great queen like a la-te-da poofter!'; announcer- the coffee; Ken Clean-Air Systems the great white hope of British boxing `nobody knows why'; waitress reads announcers note, announcer on bus; credits.
S02 E06Nov 3, 1970
It's a Living It's a Living explains it's rules; BBC1 tells time on both networks; animation- This Way Please!; credits; announcers appears to tell us why he is unable to appear; presentation of school prizes by thieving impostors; Mr. L.F. Dibley defends his films (IF, 2001, Midnight Cowboy , Finnian's Rainbow and Rear Window) on a TV talk show; Foreign secretary speaks on canoeing and Arabs throw him into lake, Arabs throw others into lake; dinner party interrupted by Book of the Month club dung, Dead Indian with new gas cooker and the M4 motorway; animation- other prizes; Timmy Williams Coffee Time; Raymond Luxury-Yacht (Throatwarbler-Mangrove) goes on a talk show; animation- pnuematic lady welcomes sexual athletes; marriage registrar misunderstands mans request; animation- Prince with a spot of `CANCER' not the audio dubbed `Gangreen' (see episode 24), `Yes, black as the ace of spades!'; Election Night Special- Sensible, Slightly Silly, Silly and Very Silly parties, candidates include Jethro Q.
S02 E07Nov 11, 1970
The Attila the Hun Show The Attila the Hun Show!; song: With a Little Love by the Hunlets; credits; Attila the Nun, doctor examines lady to `The Stripper'; Secretary of State for the Commonwealth delivers an address on Agrarian policies while stripping; political groupies; Ratcatcher sketch; scientist researches new strain of sheep; animation- killer sheep on the lamb; news for parrots; adaptation of Tale of Two Cities for parrots; Today in Parliament; news for Wombats; animation - Attila the Bun; the Art of Idioting - `I may be an idiot, but I'm no fool'; Cricketing from Lords; animation- cricket match played by furniture, Epsom Downs furniture racing; Mrs. Scum wins a blow on the head; credits.