"Sam Peckinpah's 'Salad Days
" is a Monty Python's Flying Circus
episode from season 3 (episode 33).
In an example of the Python team
's fondness of the 'double spoof', this third series sketch targets both the genteel stage musical Salad Days
and the work of the controversial American film director Sam Peckinpah
and his exaggeration of extreme bloodshed and violence in his films. This sketch occurs immediately following the famous Cheese Shop sketch
After a preamble by Eric Idle
(impersonating the British film critic Philip Jenkinson
), who praises Peckinpah's predilection for "violence in its starkest form" (while constantly sniffling, despite the onscreen captions persistently pleading for him to stop), we are treated to a clip from Peckinpah's latest project, an adaptation of the aforementioned musical.
Well-dressed, well-spoken, upper-class youngsters frolic in an idyllic garden around an upright piano, responding enthusiastically to Michael Palin
's suggestion of a game of tennis. Things go awry when Palin is struck in the face by the ball, causing blood to seep through his fingers. He reflexively flings his racquet out of shot; we then see that it has become embedded in the stomach of a pretty girl (Nicki Howorth), who faints, tearing Eric Idle
's arm off in the process. Idle staggers across to the piano and slams down the lid, severing both hands of the pianist (John Cleese
). The piano then collapses in slow motion, crushing a screaming woman to... Read More