Spam (Monty Python)

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"Spam" is a popular Monty Python sketch, first televised in 1970. In the sketch, two customers are in a greasy spoon café trying to order a breakfast from a menu that includes the processed meat product in almost every dish. The term spam (in electronic communication, and general slang) is derived from this sketch.[1] The sketch was written by Terry Jones and Michael Palin.

It features Terry Jones as The Waitress, Eric Idle as Mr. Bun and Graham Chapman as Mrs. Bun. The televised sketch also featured John Cleese as The Hungarian and Michael Palin as a historian, but this part was left out of audio recordings of the sketch.

Contents

Sketch

Only three and a half minutes long, it builds up into a semi-argument between the waitress who has a menu limited to having Spam in just about everything (among them, "Lobster Thermidor aux crevettes with a Mornay sauce, garnished with truffle pate, brandy and a fried egg on top and Spam"), and Mrs Bun, who is the only one in the room who does not want Spam. She asks for an item with the Spam removed (despite there already being some items mentioned that do not actually include Spam), much to the amazement of her Spam-loving husband. The waitress responds to this request with great disgust. Eventually, Mrs Bun resorts to screaming, "I DON'T LIKE SPAM!!"

At several points, a group of Vikings in the restaurant (referred to as the Green Midget Café in Bromley) interrupt conversation by loudly singing "Spam, lovely Spam, wonderful Spam." They are ordered to "shut up" by the irate waitress several times, but they resume singing more and more loudly until the sketch cuts to a historian talking about the Vikings, "...and Spam selecting a Spam particular Spam item from the Spam menu, would Spam, Spam, Spam, Spam..." while the backdrop is lifted to reveal the restaurant set behind. The historian joins the Vikings, Mr. and Mrs. Bun are lifted by wires out of the scene and the singing continues on and on...

It premiered on 15 December 1970 as the final sketch of the 25th show of Monty Python's Flying Circus, and the following end credits were changed so every member of the crew has either Spam or some other food item from the menu added to their names. (Spam Terry Jones, Michael Spam Palin, John Spam John Spam John Spam Cleese, Graham Spam Spam Spam Chapman, Eric Spam Egg and Chips Idle, Terry Spam Sausage Spam Egg Spam Gilliam, etc.) The sketch became immensely popular. The word Spam is uttered at least 132 times.

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