Opinion: The Missing Monty Python Link

Monty Python

I have to say I thought everything by the soon-to-return Monty Python was on the internet by now, but I was reminded of something this morning and went to check and it doesn't seem to be online. Back in the 1970s Eric Idle and Terry Jones starred in the brilliant "nudge nudge" sketch in which Idle played an interfering busy-body who wouldn't leave Jones' upright, bowler-hatted Englishman alone in the pub. He kept asking him about his love life – "evening squire...candid photography...follow me, a nods as good as a wink.."  I hadn't noticed the shades of The Fast Show's Suit You until I watched it again. Idle wrote it and delivers a brilliantly twitchy, nervy performance with an absolutely marvellous punchline. Watch it for yourself below.

But there was a different appearance from Idle's character which I can't find anywhere. It was in a TV advert for Breakaway chocolate bars which also featured Idle's blazered buffoon, though this time, if my memory is correct, he wouldn't shut up about the chocolate and crispy biscuit combination. Funny how back then a marketing team could think that an irritating character would make you buy a product, but it seemed to work. I'm just thinking about it now I certainly bought a few Breakaways in my time. I can still remember peeling back the foil and trying to separate the chocolate from the biscuit. I quite fancy one now. I think that's what they call a Proustian rush. I guess that contrary to what I'd have thought, those marketing people and Eric Idle were clearly onto something.


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