A while back, I saw that Netflix had the complete 14-disc set of all the Monty Python episodes. I have, of course, seen all the famous sketches, but I figured that I had probably missed a few of the 45 episodes here and there. So I put all the discs in my Netflix queue.
The first one arrived recently, and I watched it this weekend. Three half-hour episodes. I remembered about 80% of each episode; the rest of each episode seemed completely unfamiliar to me. I don't know whether I've missed bits of episodes, or whether I just don't remember some of them. Apparently at least one bit (the Queen Victoria/Gladstone sketch) was removed from the episode at some point? But is restored in this version. So I may not have seen that one before.
Anyway. There are two unfortunate things here:
First, I don't know which episodes I have and haven't watched. I'd certainly seen (some version of) these three. There are probably others that I've missed, but I don't know which, and don't know how to figure it out. I could get an approximation by looking up which episodes all the famous sketches are in, but I imagine that wouldn't eliminate more than half the episodes.
But that seemed originally like it shouldn't be a problem; I could just watch the whole series regardless. Which brings me to the second unfortunate thing:
I didn't find these episodes funny.
I do still have a sense of humor. (I got concerned, so I checked.) But apparently it no longer matches Monty Python's. Maybe the humor's been worn down by constant repetition--I've certainly heard every word of some of these sketches recited, in unison, by Python fans many more times than I've seen the original sketches. And in general I'm not so fond of watching things multiple times. And, as I recently learned by re-watching Heathers and Fawlty Towers, apparently my sense of humor has changed since I was in high school.
But, y'know, there are jokes that I've been hearing (and telling) for 20 years or more that still crack me up. And last time I watched Brazil (a few years back), I still loved it.
Anyway. It seems likely that if the first three episodes didn't even elicit a chuckle (just a twitch of a smile three or four times), it's probably a waste of my time to spend 20 more hours watching the other 40+ episodes. But it's too bad.
One thing I did enjoy this time through was associating names with faces. John Cleese has always been easy to recognize, and I've usually been able to recognize Eric Idle and Michael Palin (though I sometimes mix them up). But somehow I didn't have a very firm grasp on which faces belonged with the names Graham Chapman and Terry Jones. So I referred to the handy group photo in the Wikipedia article, and got a much clearer idea of who was who in each sketch, as well as what sorts of characters each was likely to play.
On the plus side, I suppose clearing out 13 discs from my Netflix queue is nicely productive, especially since it only cost me a couple of hours.
But now I'll have to do some rearranging so that I'll have some comic relief mixed in between Insomnia, Alien, Night of the Hunter, Deliverance, and so on.