The first of 39 episodes of Monty Python’s Flying Circus was shown on BBC TV on this day in 1969. The final series of six, making 45 in all, dropped the Flying Circus after John Cleese left; the last episode was screened on 5 December 1974.
As for dealing with an armed communist uprising, ‘Well, obviously it’ll depend how far you’ve got with your party when the signal for Red Revolt is raised. If you’re just having preliminary aperitifs – Dubonnet, a sherry or a sparkling white wine – then the guests will obviously be in a fairly formal mood and it will be difficult to tell which are the communist agitators.
‘So the thing to do is to get some cloth and some bits of old paper, put it down on the floor, and shoot everybody. This will deal with the Red Menace on your own doorstep. If you’re having canapés, as I showed you last week, or an outdoor barbecue, then the thing to do is set fire to all the houses in the street. This will stir up anti-communist hatred and your neighbours will be right with you as you organise counter-revolutionary terror.
‘So you see, if you act promptly enough, any left-wing uprising can be dealt with by the end of the party. Bye!’
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