Gumbys are recurring characters in "Monty Python's Flying Circus", characterized by a very distinctive appearance. If a name was listed for them, the surname given would always be "Gumby". Gumbys would wear handkerchiefs on their heads, toothbrush moustaches, spectacles, braces, knitted Tank Tops, a 1950s shirt rolled up to the elbows (without the detachable collar), and gumboots. They would usually hold their arms in an ape-like position, speak loudly and slowly, and pronounce words syllable by syllable. Though created by John Cleese, the Gumbys were usually played by (and most affectionately remembered as being embodied by) Michael Palin. The Palin Gumby voice was used to announce the show title in series three. Many times, a Gumby or group of Gumbys would appear as a means of linking sketches, or briefly give their views in one of the Vox Pops segments. Their most notable appearance was in "The Buzz Aldrin Show" where they introduced sketches about architects, insurance, chemists, and the end of the show. A classic line from one of these is during a segment on taxation, where a Gumby, standing knee-deep in a river, says "I would put a tax...on all people... who stand... in water. (He then looks down on his feet which are in knee deep of the river) OOH!" They also appeared in their own sketches, such as "Flower Arranging" and "Gumby Brain Surgery".

A popular Gumby catchphrase is "My brain hurts!" which was used in the "Brain Surgery" sketch. This is also heard in the trailer for "Monty Python and the Holy Grail", when the crew is supposedly "looking" for someone to voice the trailer. Whilst playing a clip of Arthur knighting a peasant, (which, actually, never made it into the final film) a Gumby (as being voiced by Michael Palin) auditions, and after being told to "Go away!" by the casting director (voiced by Eric Idle), he comments, "What's wrong with my voice? My voice is fine, it's my brain that hurts...". Other recurring Gumby elements are a violent and oafish clumsiness, and enthusiasm for banging bricks together.

In the Pythons' 30th Anniversary Special, all the surviving Pythons (except Idle, who was filled in by Eddie Izzard) played Gumbys.

Normally, no names were given for Gumbys, but occasionally their names were listed in subtitles. Some of the names given for Gumbys were:
* Prof. R.J. Gumby (played by Graham Chapman, later Michael Palin)
* Prof. F.H. Gumby (played by Eric Idle)
* Prof. L.R. Gumby (played by Graham Chapman)
* Prof. Enid Gumby (played by John Cleese)
* D.P. Gumby (played by Michael Palin)

In choirs the term "Gumby Part" has come to be used for the slow cantus firmus part in some polyphonic music, because of the apparent simplicity of the part.

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Brandon Hein — Brandon Wade Hein (born February 17, 1977) was sentenced to life imprisonment without possibility of parole for his involvement in the 1995 stabbing murder of 16 year old Jimmy Farris, the son of an LAPD police officer. Hein and two other youths… …   Wikipedia

  • List of recurring Monty Python's Flying Circus characters — Very few characters of the BBC television series Monty Python’s Flying Circus appeared in more than one episode, and when they did, it was usually to link sketches together. A few well known characters are described below. Contents 1 Recurring… …   Wikipedia

  • Monty Python's Flying Circus — This article is about the television series. For the group, the conception of the show and other Python media, see Monty Python. Monty Python’s Flying Circus DVD cover – Monty Python members (left to right): Back: Terry Gilliam, John Cleese,… …   Wikipedia

  • Mr Praline — Mr Eric Praline is a fictional character from the television show Monty Python s Flying Circus, played by comedian John Cleese. Contents 1 Appearances 2 Character 3 References 4 Bibliography …   Wikipedia

  • Douglas Adams — This article is about the author. For the Indo Europeanist, see Douglas Q. Adams. Douglas Adams Born 11 March 1952(1952 03 11) Cambridge, England …   Wikipedia

  • Do Not Adjust Your Set — DVD cover From left to right: David Jason, Michael Palin, Eric Idle, Denise Coffey and Terry Jones. Format television comedy Starring …   Wikipedia

  • Gumby — For the Monty Python characters, see Gumbys. The Gumby Show Gumby in the episode Lost Treasure Genre Comedy, Family, Animation Created by …   Wikipedia

  • John Cleese — Cleese in 2008 Birth name John Marwood Cleese Born 27 October 1939 (1939 10 27) …   Wikipedia

  • Monty Python's Life of Brian — Directed by Terry Jones Produced by John Goldstone Executive: George …   Wikipedia

  • Monty Python — The Python troupe in 1969 Back row: Graham Chapman, Eric Idle, Terry Gilliam Front row: Terry Jones, John Cleese, Michael Palin …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”