|The Dead Chapman Sketch: A Monty Python Special
Author: M. Night Wolfalona PM
I heard somewhere that at Graham Chapman's funeral, they quoted a bit of the parrot sketch. But what if that had been an ACTUAL sketch? Well, you're about to find out. Please R&R! And enjoy the fondest of Monty Python's personal jokes and hintings. Enjoy!Rated: Fiction T - English - Humor/Parody - Words: 4,151 - Reviews: 6 - Favs: 17 - Follows: 1 - Published: 09-09-08 - Status: Complete - id: 4528746
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Hello there my finely feathered friends, my poofy pigeon perverts (not really, but still, lol :P) Wolfy here, with a new fanfic. I've recently had some writers' block, and thought that writing a new story might loosen up this ol' mind o' mine; plus, I also thought that I could try a new angle (for once). But then again, maybe not.
Now, I heard somewhere that at Graham Chapman's funeral, they were either planning to or actually did a version of the Dead Parrot Sketch at his funeral. So, in memory of the Great Graham Chapman, I shall recreate this very thing in sketch form. But please be gentle with me, it's my first Python fic (and possibly my last), and a little morbid, but still, I hope that anyone who reads this will enjoy it. Toodles!
The Dead Chapman Sketch
Wolfy the Ironic Ninja
(Scene: A living/sitting room that has a fish tank and a desk next to each other, as well as an antique cash register, amongst other antiquities from foreign countries, looking surprisingly like a strange pet shop. John Cleese enters, dragging a limp, dead Graham Chapman with him. Michael Palin is bent down behind the 'counter' as it were. John rings the convienantly placed bell on the desk)
John: Hello, Ms. Palin?
Michael (straightening up): What do you mean, 'Missus'?
John (pause): I'm sorry Mike, I have a cold. I wish to make a complaint.
Michael: Sorry John, I was just 'bout to go to lunch, do you want to join-
John (interrupting him): Never mind that, my old boy. I wish to make a complaint on this Chapman that I brought home for tea with me and my wife not half an hour ago from your house here.
Michael: Oh yes, the uh, Graham Chapman, 6 foot 2. (notices that he's limp and being dragged along by his arm) What's wrong with him?
John: I'll tell you what's wrong with him. He's dead, that's what's wrong with him.
Michael: Oh, he's not dead, he's just restin'. Or playing a mean trick on you, aren't you Grammy?
Michael: See, there you are then, 'e's just restin'.
John: Now listen here m'lad. I know a dead Chapman when I see one and I am looking at one right now.
Michael: No, no, he's not dead! He's only taking a nap, didn't sleep too good last night, y'see. But a remarkable comedian 'e is, the Graham Chapman, isn't he, ay? Beautiful hair and eye color!
John: His hair and eye color don't enter into it. He's stone dead.
Michael (shaking his head): No no, e's just restin'.
John: Alright then. If he's resting I shall wake him up and scold him for the scaring he gave my wife this morning. (lifts up Graham until he's at shoulder height, with one arm around his neck, and begins shouting right into his ear) Hello, Grammy! Got a nice glass of sherry when you wake up, Grammy Chapman!
Michael (picks up Graham's arm and flings it upwards): There, he moved!
John (turning in outrage): No he didn't! That was you flingin' 'is arm!
Michael: I did not!
John: Yes you DID! (lifts Graham Chapman up to lean against the 'counter', with his head pulled up near John's) Hello, Graham! GRAHAM! (bangs Graham's head on the counter repeatedly) Grammy Chapman, wake up! (bangs head several times again) GRAMMY! (shakes him back and forth as head lolls around in circles, then tosses him sideways and watches him fall to the ground motionless on his face, his pipe dropping out of his mouth) Now that's what I call a dead Chapman.
Michael: No no, he's stunned. You've stunned him now, 'e stuns easily y'see, but has lovely hair.
John: Now look here Mikey, I've had just about enough of this tomfoolery. That Chapman is definitely deceased. And when I brought him home for tea earlier, you assured me that his lack of movement was due to him being tired and shagged out after his date last night.
Michael: He's probably just pinin' for the fjords. He always did enjoy the fjords a lot, John. And he has been in need of a vacation recently.
John (incredulously): Pining for the fjords?! What kind of talk is that?! Look, why did he fall out of his wheelchair flat on his face with his fly undone and his leg bent behind his kidneys the moment we got home?
Michael: Well, you and I've known Graham for ages, and we've known that he's an odd one. Maybe he prefers kippin' in that particular position now. Or maybe the doctor told him to do that, I mean, cause he has had some back problems for a while now, y'know?
John: But Graham IS a doctor! Or was one, rather. But that's beside the point.
Michael: No it isn't.
John: Shut up. But anyways, I took the liberty of examining that Chapman, and I discovered that the only reason that he was sittin' upright in his wheelchair at all was that he had been nailed there.
Michael (brief pause): Well, of course he nailed himself there. Otherwise he'd muscle up to those razor blade-sharp-spoked wheels and VOOM!
John: Now see here Mike. This Chapman wouldn't 'VOOM!' if I put 4,000 volts through him and called him Chapman-stein. He's bleedin' demised.
Michael: No it's not. He's pining!
John: He's NOT pining! He's passed on! This Chapman is-no-more! He has ceased to-be! He has expired and gone to meet his maker! This--is a late Chapman! He's a stiff! Bereft of life, he rests in peace! If you hadn't nailed him to the chair he'd be pushing up the daisies! He's rung down the curtain and joined the choir invisible! THIS--is an EX-Chapman!
Michael: Well, I better get you a clone then while he's restin'. (leaves the room)
John: But he's NOT res--Oh forget it. Shame. It seems that if you want to get anyting from your old friends at all, you've got to complain until you're blue in the mouth.
Michael (re-entering): Sorry, haven't got any full grown identical clones with identical memories. Of Graham Chapman that is. But I have got a wooden puppet of him.
John: Well, does he talk or do funny things or make pantomime jokes?
Michael: Not really, no.
John: Well that's scarcely a replacement for a living breathing human being, isn't it?
Michael: Well, if you look at this way--
John: No, I will NOT look at it that way! I want to get a second opinion on this!
Michael: Well, alright. Meet me at my brother-in-law's flat in Bolton for lunch. In fact, it actually looks a lot like this one does. I think that we had the same room designer. But just meet me there, and you'll see that he's only resting.
John: You're in denial, mate. Why don't you go take a nice long walk around the block to clear your head a little, alright?
Michael (in fem voice): Oh but if I could walk that way I'd--(John glares at him)-- Sorry.
John: So... Bolton, eh?
John (briefly pauses): Alright then. I shall meet you there, and we shall finally put this matter into the ground! (looks down at Graham at his feet) Sorry Graham. Goodbye Mike! (leaves with Graham in tow)
(Scene change: A very similar sitting room. John walks in, still dragging Graham, and notices the room, even spotting a pipe very similar to Graham's sitting on the rug. He finally spots a man who looks very much like Michael does with a fake mustache on. We'll call him 'Bob'. John walks up to the 'counter'.)
John: Um, excuse me. This is-Bolton, isn't it?
Bob: No no, it's uh, Ipswich.
John: Ipswich? How very strange. I could've sworn that I'd gotten on the train for Bolton. I guess that's inter-city rail for you. (leaves and pulls Graham along behind him)
(Scene change: Complaints department at the inter city railway station. John is waiting with a very dirty Graham lying face down next to his feet. No one is at the counter. John turns to leave and crashes into two other people, falling down on top of Graham)
John: Now see hear my lads, just what is the big hurry around--Wait a minute. Terry? Terry Gilliam, is that you? I almost didn't recognize you with that awful cowbot hat and Hawaiian shirt. I'll have to get me one of those.
Gilliam: Another thing that may have kept you from recognizing me was the fact that my face was in the pavement.
John: Well, that too. So tell me, what have you been up to these days?
Gilliam: Well, currently, I'm looking for locations for my new film, The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus. We needed somewhere with an English feel, so where better then England itself?
John: Here, here!
Gilliam: Also, I was looking for a place to sit down and start working on my--
Someone else (muffled): Would you two PLEASE get off of me??
John: Terry Jones? Is that you? (he and Gilliam move to get off of him)
Terry: Yes, why? (looks up) John! What an odd coincidence! How are you old chap?
John: Oh fine, fine, fine. Can't say the same for him though. (motions to Graham, who is still lying in a heap on the floor)
Terry: Graham? Is that you? Well, how are you? Are you alright? (to John) Why won't he get up?
Gilliam: He's dead.
John: THANK you. I've been trying to tell that to Michael all day.
Terry: Wait a minute. Graham's dead?!
John: I'm afraid so.
Terry: Rats. And we were hoping to invite him over for a cup of tea, too. Shame. I hadn't seen him in ages! And now that I do...well, this is just sad.
Gilliam: Agreed. (pauses) Should we search his pockets for change? I don't want to break a twenty over here in Bolton.
John: Wait. We're in Bolton? But Michael's brother-in-law Bob said that we were in Ipswich.
Gilliam: No, this is Bolton. See? (points to a sign reading 'Welcome to Bolton' written on it) And what has Michael got to do with any of this?
John: Well that would mean that Bob was lying.
Terry: Well, you can't blame British railways for that, now can you?
John: Not really, no. But come on! Let us return to the pet shop--er, sitting room! I'll explain on the way.
Gilliam: This all seems very familiar. Have we done this before? It just all seems like deja vu to me.
Terry: Who cares?! I just want to actually do something. I haven't done anything on TV since a cartoon voice in 1996 for 'Wind in the Willows'!
Gilliam: Hey, can't argue with that. Let's go!
(they all run out of shot. Then, they run back into it, grab one of Graham's limbs, and lift up)
John: You know, you're right, Gilly? This reminds me of the undertaker sketch we did on Python, doesn't it?
Gilliam: I wasn't talking about that at the time. Now come on! Lift your share, it seems like I'm carrying all of him. Put your backs into it!
(An audible popping sound is heard. Terry shrieks in pain and collapses on the ground)
Gilliam: Well then. Never mind.
(Scene change: the sitting room again. John and Gilly burst in through a door marked 'Similar Sitting Rooms Ltd.', panting, now carrying both Graham and Terry, who has hurt his back. Bob looks at them nervously as the two unceremoniously drop their burdens on the rug, earning another shriek of pain from Terry, and a fart from Graham. Bob pulls out the air freshener, as the two talk to him)
Gilliam: Hey, buddy? We understand that this IS Bolton.
John: But you told me it was Ipswich.
Bob (pause): It was just a pun, mate.
Both: A pun?!
Bob: No, no not a pun, um...what is that thing that reads the same backwards and forwards?
Terry (weakly): A palindrome?
Bob: Yeah, that's it. A palindrome.
John: But that's not a palindrome. The palindrome of Bolton would be Notlob! And that don't bloody work, now do it? And now that I'm in a rant, I can now see that you are NOT in fact Michael's brother in law Bob.
Gillaim: Wait...he isn't?
Michael (entering): Nope. Afraid not. Shame though. Would've been nice to fool you and show that no one pays any attention to me when I talk about my home life. Oh, and hello Gilly. (to the floor) Hello Terry. Are you alright?
Terry: Hello. I'm fine. My back just gave out on me. I'm fine.
John: Well, okay, now that all that's settled, just who IS this impersonator?
(Bob pulls off fake mustache, hairpiece, nose, and teeth to reveal:)
All three but Michael: ERIC IDLE??
Eric: Hello everyone, how are you then? Glad to see that you're all well. Except for Terry. And what's wrong with Graham?
John: He's dead. Stone f-cking dead.
Eric: Really? Is that true? Well then, do you lot wanna search his pockets for some loose shillings?
Gilliam: I already suggested that. No one went for it.
Eric: Oh. Oh well, too bad. I could've used a few for the ride home on the bus. Don't want to break a fiver, not here in Bolton.
Gilliam: No way! I said that too!
Terry (from floor): Eerie.
John: Look, none of that is the point! Now all of you just shut up about searching him for spare change and listen to what I have to say!
Eric: Well blimey, I didn't expect the--
Other Three: Spanish Inquisition?!
Michael (in Cardinal Ximenez voice): Because NOBODY expects the Spanish Inquisition! Our chief weapons are--
John: SHUT UP!! JUST SHUT YOUR BLOODY GOB UP AND BLOODY LISTEN YOU BLEEDING PIGS!!
All: Alright, geez, we were only having a bit of fun, way to ruin it for us John.
Eric: Look, if you're looking for a replacement Chapman, I've got a few clones of him in my garage.
Terry: What, not in your shed? Or do you have two sheds for these clones?
Eric: John had a good point for you. Now shut up.
Terry: Fine. (muttering) Still don't like that sketch...
Eric (turning): So John, you still want that Graham clone?
John: No! for two reasons: One, it's just not the same thing now, isn't it? And two, I'm not prepared to pursue my line of enquiry any longer as I find that this is all getting to be too silly.
Colonel Chapman (entering): Quite agree, quite agree, silly silly silly.
All others: GRAHAM!!
John: By Jove, you're alive!
Gilliam: But how?
Terry: And who's this down here next to me who keeps farting in my face?
Colonel chapman:' My name's not Graham Chapman. My name is written on this card. (hands card to Eric and Michael)
Eric: 'Colonel Raymond Luxury Yacht'.
Colonel Chapman: That's not my name!
Michael: Must be 'Colonel Raymond Luxury Yach-cht' then.
Colonel Chapman: Nope. Wrong again.
Terry: Well, what the bloody hell is it then?
Colonel Chapman: My name is Supreme-o Captain of the Universe Raymond Throatwobbler Mangrove.
John: Wait a minute, you ARE Graham Chapman!
Colonel Chapman: No, no I'm not. I have a mustache and am obviously alive, while he does not, and is clearly deceased.
Michael: Hey! You're wearing a fake mustache! See? (reaches out to grab mustache, and his hand goes through Graham's head. Everyone, including Graham, screams in fright)
Terry: AAAAAHHHHHH!! You're-you're a bloody ghost! You're dead! Really really dead!
Ghost Graham: AAAAAAAHHH!! You took my mustache! Give it back right now!
Michael: No, you silly ectoplasmic figure! It's not even real. It's made from goat-hair and polyethylene glue.
Gilliam: Besides, we can't, you're a ghost, you idiot.
Michael (to self): How am I even holding this?
John: Maybe it's a property of the ectoplasm.
Ghost Graham: No, I actually bought that at a joke shop on 5th and Riverview.
Eric: Really? For how much?
Ghost Graham: Oh, for about 2 and 6.
Terry: Really? I always thought that they were more expensive then that.
Ghost Graham: Well, normally yes, but this was in the discount bin in the uh, in the back of the store.
John: You got in out of the garbage bin in the back, didn't you, Gramsy old boy?
Ghost Graham: ...No.
Gilliam: Yes you did. Now get on with it.
Ghost Graham: Get on with what?
All: JUST GET ON WITH IT!!
Large Crowd (out of shot): YEEESS!! GET ON WITH IT!!
Ghost Graham: AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!
John: Dear God, Gray, what the bloody hell is it?
Eric: Maybe it IS bloody hell he's screaming about. Is that it Graham? Are you going to Hell? If you do, send me a postcard, would you?
Terry: Ooh! Me too!
Gilliam: And me.
Michael: I wouldn't mind a postcard either.
John: Neither would I. Then it would give me something to talk about at dinner parties.
Michael: And you don't already have enough to talk about?
John: Shut up Mike.
Ghost Graham: No! It's NOT that!
Eric: Well what is it then Graham?
Ghost Graham: I've forgotten the punchline for this sketch.
Michael: You stupid sod, this isn't a sketch, this is real life.
Ghost Graham: Alright then, explain those cameras over there. And the fact that almost every word that we've said is in this very script. ( A floating script appears as he points to the cameras) Evening all. (waves hand at the audience that has just materialized out of thin air. Audience laughs as the rest look stunned)
John: Where the bloody hell did they come from?!
Ghost Graham: Oh, they're the audience from Hell. (camera pans to a row of nasty looking people with horns, pitchforks and tails sitting behind them) Shame that. I was hoping to get the perfect audience that laughs in all the right places properly and appreciates good British satire humor. Oh well.
Terry: The audience from HELL?! (leaps up, only to collapse again with a loud shriek). AAAHH!!
Michael: SHUT UP!!
(audiences oohs and boos)
Eric: Yeah, you heard him. I'd rather be dead then perform for these lot! They probably only like fart jokes and-and physical injuries rather then good witty jokes and men dressing up as ladies! You lot sicken me, now go home you bastards!
(audience yells and boos)
Ghost Graham: Eric, be mindful of what you're saying.
Gilliam: But he's right about all of this shit. I agree with Eric, I'd rather be dead then be around this lot here.
(more boos and frequent yelling)
Michael: Gilly, be careful. Think about what you're saying, they're getting madder.
John: You know what? I've had about bloody enough with this lot of EXCREMENT!!
Ghost Graham: Cram it John! don't do it!
John: You lot here aren't worth what gets flushed down my loo every day, you slimy, greasy, greedy toffee-nosed BASTARDS!! I would rather DIE in a most IRONIC way that would be both humiliating and just, then to listen to you p-ssyfaced pigs insult our life's work and million-making by calling about us like some cheap transexual hooker with a bloody COLD!!
Ghost Graham: JOHN! NO!!
(A giant 16-ton weight comes and drops on top of him and Terry, who was still lying in pain on the floor. The audience roars with laughter).
Eric: What rotten luck. Well, at least the rest of us are still oka-AAH!!
(A giant hammer comes and beats him to the floor, where he now lies dead when it drops down on top of him. The Audience laughs even harder now)
Gilliam: Eric? Eric, are you okay? Come one Eric, speak to MEEEE!! (A giant pig jumps on Gilliam and smooshes him flat. A giant hedgehog then comes around the corner, says 'Dinsdale? Dinsdale! There you are! Now for my revenge!' and picks up the now flattened Gilliam, carrying him to a piece of animation nearby. We cannot see it, but by the sounds that are being made from it and the audience from Hell's uproarious laughter, we know that it's not pretty and that by now, Gilliam is most likely dead. Michael and Graham look at each other a little nervously).
Michael: Graham? What's my fate?
Ghost Graham: Come on, come with me. And don't lolly-gag! (Michael follows obediantly until they come to a large, open window that is now several stories up for some bizarre reason) Ah, here we are.
Michael: Um, Graham? What are we doing here? Graham? Gra-HAAAAAAHHHMM!! ( Graham somehow picks him up and throws him over his transparent ectoplasmic shoulder.) PUT ME DOWN YOU BASTARAD!! JUST WHAT THE BLOODY HELL ARE YOU DOING TO ME?!
Ghost Graham: Oh nothing. Just throwing you out now. Goodbye!
Michael: NO!! WAIT!! GRAHAM, WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAIIIIIIIIIIIIiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiitttttttttttt...
Ghost Graham: Alright then. My turn to go back up to the pearly gates. Beam me up Buzz Aldrin! (Holds up one fist heroically, before being hit on the head by a rubber chicken by a ghostly knight and falling to the ground, who then hits himself on the head, and falls down next to him. The audience cheers loudly, as the screen fades to black)
(Scene change: Heaven. The Monty Python gang are now seated comfortably in big cusy chairs being massaged by pretty women. Or in Graham's case, men. They're all drinking scotch and smoking cigars)
Eric: Now THIS is the life.
Gilliam: Mm. Agreed. Thanks for bringing us up here Graham, it's fantastic!
Michael: Yeah. I never thought I'd get to meet George Bernard Shaw. He's great, y'know! A real talented person. Shame we lost him down on earth so soon.
John: Well, I don't care what you lot say, but getting to meet William Shakespeare and Aristotle at the very same time was the most amazing thing in the world.
Terry: And my back's never felt better!
Graham: Well, I'm very glad you like it. Now, if you excuse me, I've got to perform some unnecessary surgery. Best to keep in practice! You never know when you'll be sent down to Earth to get someone, like I had to get you lot up here! Besides, botched surgery is the best excuse.
Eric: But I thought that the best thing was a natural death. Y'know, a quiet one that's real peaceful with all your family and friends.
Graham: Says you, now shtoom it. I'll see the rest of you later. Cheerio, lads!
All: Cheerio Graham!
Michael: And who'd've thought that a homosexual could get into heaven? Just goes to show just how ignorant people of Earth really are.
All: Yeah, mm-hmm, indeed, well of course, poor blighters.
Michael: Well, I'm off to disinspire punchlines from those idiots at SNL. Goodnight! God bless! And it's...
(Sousa's Liberty March starts up, and everyone comes in and bows, even Jesus and God, as well as Aristotle, Shakespeare, a previously dead parrot, and some flying spam).
Graham: (on sight of spam in woman's voice) UGH!! I STILL HATE SPAM!!
(everyone laughs, and as they do so, a giant foot steps on them all with a loud SQUISH farty sound, causing the screen to go black. A voice-over comes up).
John Cleese Voice-Over: And here is the finally score for the day. Giant hedgehogs named Dinsdale, 3; Previously Dead Parrots, 942 and 3/4. Goodnight!
Now, I know that I went off track a little, but I hope that you lot still enjoyed it. Toodles! And have a pleasant tomorrow, but only if you review. Goodnight now!