When I first bought this CD, I thought that the jokes were "amused smile" funny, not "ha-ha" funny. Then I saw the show on 4th of July weekend and it's a miracle that I left with my pants still dry. That's how funny the show itself is.
And now a critical analysis of this 'ere CD.
1. Tuning: Not in the show but still funny. Is that Eric Idle talking?
2. Overture: Very nice.
3. Historian's Introduction: Very funny, very Pythonesque in its offhand remarks (To the North, the Anglo-Saxons, to the South, the French, to the East, nothing but Celts and some people from Scotland.)
4. Finland: In reality, a song written many years ago by the Pythons. The closest the show's gonna get to the Swedish subtitles gag. Missing from this track is the "fish slap" section. Oh, well, gotta get to the singing, right?
5. I Am Not Yet Dead: A lovely musicalization of the classic scene...
Yes, it is all terribly silly just as any Python fan would wish. It also makes for a fun original cast album where you can pretty much follow the action without reading a synopsis. A god thing too for Decca has not included one in the booklet! Oh there are plenty of colour pictures, all the lyrics and endless credits. (Does the home listener really need to know who the show's press rep is???) But you'll look in vain for a synopsis. Nevertheless the disc spins merrily along for 52 minutes zipping form one lunacy to another, pausing for a couple of extended numbers ("Knights of the Round table"; "Always Look on the Bright Side of Life" and the "Diva's Lament") but most or the rest are so short the end before they barely get started! None of the men offer truly spectacular voices, which is fine since the style of Monty Python calls character voices, however the biggest voice belongs to the...
"Spamalot" is explicitly proud of the fact that it is lovingly "ripped off" from the classic film comedy "Monty Python and the Holy Grail." Directed by Mike Nichols, the show has a book by Python's Eric Idle and a whole bunch of new sons by Idle and John Du Prez. Now that the production has won the Tony Award for Best Musical for 2004-2005, we can only imagine what will happen when "The Life of Brian" or "The Meaning of Life" are transported to the stage and another nail is driving in the coffin of Western civilization. All I know is that the first time I saw "Monty Python and the Holy Grail" I never laughed so hard during opening credits in my life (even with three of us sitting in two seats in the front of a Volkswagen rabbit--appropriate, huh?), and they do not have opening credits in Broadway musicals so I think the film still comes out ahead on that score.
"Spamalot" looks again at the legendary tale of King Arthur and his knights of the Round Table, who dance when...
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