How popular are the comedy group’s films and television shows in 2019, and who is the nation’s favourite Python?
Monty Python is held up as a classic example of British comedy, but how does its wacky humour fare with the public half a century after it was first aired?
All three of the group’s narrative-based films are seen positively by a majority of Britons. Monty Python’s The Life of Brian, Monty Python and the Holy Grail and Monty Python’s Flying Circus are liked by 55%, 54% and 51% of Brits respectively.
Half of Brits (51%) also say they enjoy the group’s various television series.
Monty Python’s fanbase skews older. Two thirds (66%) of Britons over 40 years old say they like the comedy group, compared to 49% of Brits aged between 18 and 24.
However, which of the three films gets the biggest laugh from younger Brits?
By a margin of 14 percentage points, the comedy group’s quest in Monty Python and the Holy Grail has the highest score (50%), compared to just over a third (36%) who have a positive opinion of The Life of Brian. Only 31% of young Brits also say they like Monty Python’s Flying Circus.
Brits are divided over which member of the group is their favourite. Just under two thirds of Brits (63%) say they like Michael Palin, and the same number have a positive opinion of John Cleese.
However, Palin comes out on top when you take into account that just 5% of Brits have a negative opinion of him, and 9% have a negative opinion of Cleese.
Interesting, both John Cleese and Michael Palin are ranked by Brits higher than the group as a whole, with 60% of Brits saying they have a positive opinion of Monty Python compared to the 63% who like Cleese and Palin.
Once again, the cast proves more popular with older Brits. But when breaking it down by age, those aged over 55 have a clear preference for Michael Palin (75%) over John Cleese (68%).
Younger Brits have a lower positive opinion of all the actors and are also divided over their favourite, with 33% saying they have a positive opinion of Michael Palin and 35% liking John Cleese.
Monty Python's The Meaning of Life, Live at the Hollywood Bowl, and Monty Python Live (mostly) are not included in YouGov rankings.