John Cleese’s towering comedic influence has stretched across generations; his sharp satirical eye and the unique brand of physical comedy he perfected with Monty Python, on Fawlty Towers, and beyond now seem written into comedy’s DNA. In this rollicking memoir, So, Anyway…, Cleese takes readers on a Grand Tour of his ascent in the entertainment world, from his humble beginnings in a sleepy English town and his early comedic days at Cambridge University (with future Python partner Graham Chapman), to the founding of the landmark comedy troupe that would propel him to worldwide renown.
After getting his start as a writer and actor on the landmark David Frost-hosted The Frost Report, where he worked alongside many who would also later become comedy icons, Cleese landed his most famous role as a star of the TV show Monty Python's Flying Circus. To the legions of Python fans and comedy aficionados, Cleese's work with the Pythons has become the stuff of legend. His signature characters—including the Minister of Silly Walks and the owner (and would-be returner) of a dead parrot—embodied his knack for madcap buffoonery played completely straight and catapulted him to the shortlist of funniest men alive.
Twisting and turning through amazing stories and hilarious digressions—with some brief pauses along the way that comprise a fascinating primer on what’s funny and why—this story of a young man’s journey to the pinnacle of comedy is a masterly performance by a master performer.