Rock, Paper, Shotgun Meets Monty Python

By John Walker on December 9th, 2010 at 8:24 pm.

Gosh, it's really them.

Last week I was fortunate to sit down with Terry Jones and Terry Gilliam, at an event within the towers of London’s Tower Bridge, to preview the forthcoming Facebook release, The Ministry Of Silly Games. It seemed too obvious to talk with the director and historian about Monty Python, or even the game they were promoting, so instead we discussed the serious importance of silliness, and the reasons to cling onto it. There’s thoughts on the role of imagination in Gilliam’s films, and in both their lives. The two Terrys lament the poor state of history education in both the UK and America. And they talk about the challenge of getting films made when your company is called Poo Poo Pictures. Plus, learn how to see a table completely differently.

The video below has some glitches in it, I’m afraid. But it’s perfectly watchable. Plus it’s kind of cool when Terry Jones gets eyes in his forehead. Oh, and if you want to sign up to the Ministry Of Silly Games beta, you can do that here. (Re. the last bit, I should probably add that no iOS version of the game has been announced – they meant Facebook.)

After a week of fighting with it, this is the very best version we’ve managed to generate so far, with massive debt owed to Christo, and huge thanks to Andrew. If we get an improved version, I’ll replace it. As you’ll note, my voice was not picked up by the mic, hence the superb editing by the inestimable Jo. Thanks to everyone for helping out with this.

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118 Comments »

  1. pakoito says:

    <3

  2. Richard Clayton says:

    Ooo you lucky bastard

  3. Flameberge says:

    Brilliant.

    John really is becoming properly ‘famous on the internet’.

  4. Mike says:

    Really wonderful. Great stuff, John.

  5. Paul says:

    What does Terry say about the communism ? Couldn’t understand that bit.

    Btw what they say about evil mindless corporations obsessed with making money…BS, that.

    • Skurmedel says:

      “Communism was much sillier”.

    • John Walker says:

      They aren’t obsessed with making money? I think even they’d agree with that!

    • Latterman says:

      oh god i smell a political discussion.

      and i’m all out of beer.

    • Paul says:

      I work for huge international company that also makes products that are used by billions of people worldwide, voluntarily, and that make their (and our) lives better. Of course we do it because we want to have a good life, better than we already have, just like everyone else does. That is progress and there is nothing wrong with that. “Obssession with making money”..nothing wrong with wanting better life.Whether it comes from money or giving to others or charity is irrelevant as long as it is voluntary and peaceful.

    • Pijama says:

      The Pythons are (or were, as a group?) pretty renowned leftists. IIRC, some of them are pretty tight with Old Labour idealism. John Cleese was a declared Labour voter for a time, too!

      So they are pretty much the best guys to do the funnays in regards to that. :D

    • Jason Lefkowitz says:

      John Cleese was a declared Labour voter for a time, too!

      I thought Cleese was a Lib Dem? I know he made two funny party political broadcasts for them, first in 1987 and then again in 1997

      (I’m an American, though, so my understanding of British celebrity politics, among many, many other things, is tenuous at best.)

    • mlaskus says:

      Big companies are “obsessed with making money” by design not due to them being evil.
      I will try to make the simplest and shortest explanation I can think of.
      Most shareholders are only interested in the value of their investment and not in how the company’s is being ran, but they make the decisions about the employment and salary of the CEO. It is in the interest of the CEO, if he wants to keep his job, to make the decisions that positively affect the company’s value in the short term to appeal to the majority of the shareholders. This is, unfortunately, often not the most socially responsible or ethical option available.

    • Matzerath says:

      Big companies aren’t evil, they are amoral. They are Cthulhu.

    • Tetragrammaton says:

      What Matzerath said.

    • Cthulhu says:

      I’m highly offended!

    • RQH says:

      So if corporations are Cthulhu, then the people who work for them mostly realize that everyone will be devoured eventually, they just hope that by serving them they will be devoured last and/or gain a modicum of power in the process? I like this metaphor….

    • MarkSide says:

      I think the most interesting point is about the character assumed by corporations. Though they are largest organised bodies of human beings, they perhaps fail to embody many of the characteristics that we might think of as being most centrally important to human identity; for example being silly, or loving. And I guess the hold consumerism has over western society has the potential to degrade human quality of life by acting to align the general population with this half-image of what it is to be human. But, then, I am quite tired.

    • Collic says:

      Amoral is the perfect way to describe a company. A company is it’s own separate legal entity; a corporate personality. Companies exist solely because they are faceless, abstract things, devoid of morals and legally accountable rather than the people who own and run them.

      In the context of imagination and silliness I think what they’re saying is perfectly apt. Politics doesn’t really come into it; cold, hard reality and emotionless tedium does.

    • Neil says:

      Wow. What a wackjob worldview regarding those nefarious “multinational corporations.” Corporations are responsible for things like the proliferation of mass media, which is what enables Monty Python’s brand of silliness to be shared with an audience of billions. Those horrible things we want to keep acquiring, like televisions, the complete Flying Circus set, a computer and commercial internet service that let us play stuff like the Ministry of Silly Games, don’t subtract anything from our lives unless we use them improperly; multinational corporations bear no blame for our own choices on what kind of people we decide to become.

      I can agree that it is a shame to lose an appreciation for silliness. But honestly, don’t bring your ludicrous political views into the discussion and try to connect them. That’s a bridge too far.

      Cool that RPS was able to interview them – but there’s always that risk when you want to ask people questions they aren’t usually asked, they may come out with something completely ridiculous that was better left unsaid (see: Luke Scott’s recent blather about Obama’s birth certificate).

    • Neil says:

      Also, there is some irony as they decry the lack of history education. It sounds like they want to follow the example set by Mao in the Cultural Revolution, where professionals of all sorts were forced to become subsistence farmers. Productivity and hence quality of life plummeted, people were forced at gunpoint to live lives and work occupations that were not of their own choosing. It was quite serious, probably even more so than those glum corporations. It’s really disappointing to hear intelligent people rattle off anti-corporate dogma as if there were some magical alternative that would cure all of society’s ills.

      Fact is, a corporation are simply a tool, a system of organization, that has had a huge positive impact in increasing quality of life and personal freedom across the globe. (Not only do corporations make large capital investment into research technologies that people want possible, but they’ve also helped to obsolete freedom-limiting labor systems such as slavery and sharecropping, indentured servitude and other forms of involuntary apprenticeship, etc.)

      It’s just that people have so little knowledge of economic theory and economic history, so little imagination, so little ability to put disregard instinctual emotional reponse and perform logical analysis, and such biased political views that they do not even realize what would be lost if corporation-style entities had never existed.

    • MarkSide says:

      Thanks for your assessment, Neil. You make some totally good points. I think you’re right in saying that people’s reactions to corporations can often be primarily an emotional one; and it’s important to remember that that we have the ability to dictate the practice of companies through our legislative systems. I think my reaction to corporations is primarily emotional, as you point out above, and springs from my inability to reconcile the character of the people I’ve met with the character of the larger business world. A friend of mine was telling me the other day that this is why he thinks the Dilbert cartoons are so popular. Anyway, I think describing corporations as amoral may be, correct, but it’s not necessarily a bad thing, so long as everyone is intelligent enough to understand their function and it’s limitations.

    • Lilliput King says:

      Neil, I honestly don’t think they were laying out some political dogma. Mostly they seemed upset that corporations have no room for silliness on an individual or grand scale. And, well, they don’t. But they weren’t inviting people to throw down their keyboards and work on the land.

      You can tell they were talking about silliness and silliness only because a) that is what they say they’re talking about and b) that is what the question they were asked is about.

    • aerozol says:

      Neil, you come off defensive.
      Oc course, there’s pros and cons- but they were just chatting, giving us their thoughts, which needs to be appreciated. On the other hand, in reply to your post, if corporations are a tool, then definitely not a very versatile one…

    • Burc says:

      I would want to chip in on this, though my knowledge is admittedly small.

      I have a problem with systems where the amoral corporations (again, not immoral. Cthulhu, not Satan :) ) get to much power in government.

      I am obviously partial, but the Swedish Social-Liberal structure is one I am very pleased with. Corporations are held at a level where they are used as tools, a way to give individual freedoms to the citizens. But there is a strong government with state-run healthcare, schools, education. Basically the parts of society you don’t want amoral structures to be a part of.

      I find it worrying that society as a whole is moving towards the political right, away from socialism, when I believe their is a great way of balancing the two.

    • noom says:

      Describing Corporate entities as amoral is entirely accurate.

      I’ll state up front that I consider myself to hold what might be described as leftist morals, but I wouldn’t describe myself as either socialist or anti-capitalist. I have faith in market based economies, but only ones that are subject to effective, preferably mutilateral, regulation.

      Paul says “we do it because we want to have a good life”, and I’m afraid I cannot accept that. I believe that you, personally, do so Paul, as quite probably do many of your associates in your company. It would be more accurate to say, though, that you use your position within that corporate entity in a positive manner as far as you are able. But this is the crux; any ethical considerations within the corporate sphere are subject to their effect on the bottom line; ie. shareholder profit (worth noting at this point that I apply this as a rule far more to publically, rather than privately owned businesses, but it’s fair to say that most multinationals are certainly that). If moral considerations would force a business into bankruptcy, or even losses that are not countered by the positive effects in terms of a companies image, then they will be ignored. That is simple logic.

      And Neil, yes, of course corporations have made our lives easier; a competitive market will always drive innovation. But there are significant externalities which make our lives immeasurably worse too. Capitalism has ended slavery? Try telling that to those working in Sweatshops and Export Processing Zones. Try telling it to people in developing nations whose water tables are significantly lowered and polluted by Coca-cola’s bottling plants, or to the families of Union Workers murdered following donations made to corrupt governments. You think the repeated dumping of hazardous materials into the environment is justified by the fact that paying the criminal fines works out cheaper than processing them in an environmentally friendly way? How does this improve our lives? Is the levelling of rainforest to grow trees for the production of palm oil acceptable because a consumer-led society is too far removed from its occurance to be aware of it happening? It’s easy to blame the situation on a public who creates the demand, but busy people subject to a sensory overload of marketing who have their own lives and problems to deal with are unlikely to take the time to research such a complex and ambiguous subject as corporate ethics.

      Lastly, please spare us the right wing dogma that those who decry the evils of capitilism fail to offer up alternatives. This is just a complete fallacy. And secondly, quit the snide conflagration of those who question with those who consume, as if the questioning of the society in which one has been brought up automatically suggests hypocrisy.

    • rivalin says:

      @noom

      “Capitalism has ended slavery? Try telling that to those working in Sweatshops and Export Processing Zones”

      Oh no 10 year olds with jobs! Try being that ten year old after some self righteous campaigner has forced nike/adidas/levis etc to close the factory they worked in, being told that their parents can’t feed them anymore so they’re (if they’re lucky) being dumped into an orphanage, or (if they’re not so lucky) sold into prostitution. Those jobs, however bad they seem by our standards, constitute an improvement to their standard of life. The UK had child labour etc once, despite all the evils of the time, we pushed through it and became the most successful economy in history, leading to a transformation in living standards first here, then across the world, that pulled BILLIONS out of the miserable poverty that has characterised 99% of human history. And what was the main instrument of the Anglo-American rise to hegemony? The limited stock company.

      “You think the repeated dumping of hazardous materials into the environment is justified by the fact that paying the criminal fines works out cheaper than processing them in an environmentally friendly way”

      Again, green campaigners etc want to hobble economic growth by “green taxes”, massive redistribution of wealth from productive countries to horribly unproductive ones, and investment in joke industries (cough* wind power *cough). History however has proven that rapid advancement of technology through economic growth (paid for by guess who) has already incredibly reduced the amount of environmental damage companies do. A hundred years ago the London air was choked with smog, buildings blackened by soot, the Thames a lifeless ooze, now look at it today.

      Think of externalities produced by corporations as a trough in a graph, things inevitably get worse for a time before they get better, but the response when you see that trough ahead isn’t to try to put the brakes on, it’s to try to accelerate economic growth as quickly as you can. Instead of a constant retreat e.g. trying to pay China not to build power stations etc, which damages our growth prospects and theirs, we should be trying accelerate their development along the same path as ours,so that, while things may get worse for a time, we’ll have future with a much larger world economy with vastly more resources to channel into the technological advancements that will help to alleviate environmental problems rather than seeing the solution as being to go backwards.

      I’d rather see a world where children are eventually lifted out of poverty by economic development rather than western largesse, and where air pollution is reduced by fusion power, and ultra efficient internal combustion engines, rather than no one flying on planes anymore and going everywhere by bicycle.

    • jalf says:

      Capitalism has ended slavery

      No it didn’t. Capitalism works fine with slavery.

      And by the way, corporations are not the same as capitalism. Corporations are an artificial construction which regulates certain parts of the economy. A market with corporations in it is far from a free market.

      And one thing fanatic capitalists often fail to remember is that capitalism, as well as corporations, are always, or should be, a way to make a better world for us. A weak form of capitalism (yes, even the most fanatic “capitalist” country is heavily regulated and far from true capitalism) has served us fairly well, and had quite a few advantages. But it’s also dealt us some severe blows, and had some less fortunate side effects.

      But capitalism is not inherently a *good thing* or, for that matter, a *bad thing*. It is good as long as it,on the whole, improves the society in which it operates. It is bad once it becomes a negative influence on society.

      Capitalism wasn’t invented and adopted because “hey, obviously nothing matters except making money”. That happened because “it seems like a sensible way to encourage development and make a better world” Once capitalism fails at that, it is no longer of any use to us.

      Fact is, a corporation are simply a tool, a system of organization, that has had a huge positive impact in increasing quality of life and personal freedom across the globe

      True. But another fact is that corporations are also a tool which has had a huge *negative* impact. On the environment, on individual people’s lives and on the economy. A corporation is a way to eliminate the personal risk from your investments. That’s great when it allows you to invest in something that turns out wonderful and improves quality of life for everyone.

      It is less great when it frees you from any accountability for wrecking the world economy, for disregarding the safety of your employees, for turning the local environment into a toxic wasteland, for polluting the air, for using up scarce natural resources, for driving various flora or fauna to extinction.

      Don’t forget the flip side of the coin. A corporation’s sole purpose is to allow people with money to invest with no direct risk. That doesn’t just mean they can invest in “crazy potentially world-saving plan #14″ but also that they can put all their money into “potentially world-wrecking, hazardous systematic abuse project #33″.

      [...]so little ability to put disregard instinctual emotional reponse and perform logical analysis

      Yup. Has it occurred to you that it’s not just the crazy lefties who are guilty of this? Top-hat and monocle wearing respectable capitalists like yourself do it too. Conveniently forgetting the trouble that capitalism or corporations cause is no better than focusing on the downsides.

      Oh no 10 year olds with jobs! Try being that ten year old after some self righteous campaigner has forced nike/adidas/levis etc to close the factory they worked in, being told that their parents can’t feed them anymore so they’re (if they’re lucky) being dumped into an orphanage, or (if they’re not so lucky) sold into prostitution.

      So? Is it ok for us to exploit them then? What exactly is the problem with dumping them into prostitution then? It’s still better than starving!

      The point here is that we could do better. We don’t need to force children into doing hazardous and hard physical work for next to no money. Yes, having a bad job where people are dying like flies or getting crippled before they’re 20 is better than *nothing*, but that doesn’t mean we should say “ok, problem solved. Let’s just enjoy how good we’ve got it now, getting children to do our hard work for pocket money”.

      A hundred years ago the London air was choked with smog, buildings blackened by soot, the Thames a lifeless ooze, now look at it today.

      uh-uh. And you know why? Because all the polluting industries moved to poorer countries. Which means that now it’s your precious (and extremely fortunate, apparently) child laborers who are wading in lifeless ooze and getting their hands chopped off in hazardous work environments.

      That problem hasn’t *gone away*. It’s just moved to countries where *you* don’t notice it.

      but the response when you see that trough ahead isn’t to try to put the brakes on

      Silly analogy. Green taxes, for example, make it more profitable for companies to do better. For the company in question, the situation is much the same. They eventually hit a wall, and have to change some things in any case. But I’d rather they do it before, than after, they wreck the environment.

      A better analogy would be that of approaching a hill. Sure, if it’s not too steep, you can just step on the speeder and drive over it. But if it’s too steep, that just means you’re going to drive into what’s basically a wall, at full speed. Then a better strategy might be to straighten out the hill a bit, in this case, with green taxes effectively building a less steep ramp. True, it means the company starts hitting the incline earlier, but it also means that they’ll have to deal with a steady (and manageable) incline over a few years, instead of smooth sailing followed by hitting a wall.

      we should be trying accelerate their development along the same path as ours,so that, while things may get worse for a time, we’ll have future with a much larger world economy with vastly more resources to channel into the technological advancements that will help to alleviate environmental problems rather than seeing the solution as being to go backwards.

      So you want China to live like us? Yeah, that’s great, every westerner already use about 3 times as many resources are the world can provide. Let’s get a billion Chinese to do the same. The point here is that helping China to become like us is not sustainable. We have to lower our consumption quite a bit, and blindly “accelerating” China just means they’ll end up in the same situation. They need to keep developing, yes, but towards something sustainable. Just like we have to scale down until we reach something sustainable.

      I’d rather see a world where children are eventually lifted out of poverty by economic development rather than western largesse, and where air pollution is reduced by fusion power, and ultra efficient internal combustion engines, rather than no one flying on planes anymore and going everywhere by bicycle.

      And I’d rather see a world where free cake materializes out of thin air.
      But I don’t think it’s very sensible to plan our entire planet’s future based on the *hope* that this will come true. We’ve already spent 50 years working on fusion power. What if we just can’t do it? You’re assuming that *every* technological problem can be solved. It can’t. Sooner or later we run into limitations. And then it’d kinda suck if we’ve gambled everything on that specific technology.

      It’s also a ridiculous strawman argument. I don’t think any sane person has proposed that “we shouldn’t try to develop more efficient and clean technology”. But of course it is much easier to justify your own point of view if you can make it look like everyone else propose that we go back to living in caves.

      Oh, and cycling is good for your health. I don’t mind a future with cycling in it.

      Anyway, your blind faith that “capitalism solves every problem” is naive in the extreme. It has worked in some cases, certainly, but failed horribly in others. In many cases, corporations have “solved” the problems they created not by overcoming them, but simply by giving up on the market in question, and moving into something different, where it is easier to make a profit.
      There are plenty of examples where corporations have simply sucked some natural resource dry, and then moved on to something else, where, according to your idealized theory, they would have seen the problem coming, and found a sustainable way to keep making money off it.
      What used to be the most popular sort of banana has pretty much gone extinct because plantations focused singlemindedly on that, reducing genetic diversity and making it susceptible to disease. So now we get bananas of a different kind that are less tasty, bruise easier and don’t keep as well in storage.

      Or take an example closer to home. If we were sensible, we’d have switched to IPv6 a decade ago. Now we’re running out of IP addresses, with some regions likely feeling it within a year. And now, there’s no way in hell that ISPs across the world are going to manage to upgrade in time. Of course in the long term it’d have been good business for them to deal with this years ago. But corporations are short-sighted. Better to make lots of money today and have your business run into a wall tomorrow than to spend a bit more money today, and still have a business tomorrow.

      What makes you think the same wouldn’t happen in the case of fossil fuels? Why should my corporation spend money trying to develop more fuel-efficient engines? If my competitors don’t do that, they can focus on other improvements that matter more to the customer today, and do so cheaper, and I’ll go out of business. And then, eventually, they’ll hit the wall, some point where we just *need* a good alternative to fossil fuels, and where there’s no time to develop one.

      History is full of corporations, and entire industries, that failed to adapt to unavoidable changes.

      The assumption that “corporations will figure it out when they have to” is unwarranted. They sometimes do, but certainly not always.

  6. DAdvocate says:

    Great interview, I can’t imagine they’ll have many interviewers giving them such a free rein.

  7. Pijama says:

    Also, it must be said: Interviewing Monty Python members gives you a thousand glorious internets. Superb stuff, one of the best pulled off from the website so far! :)

    And John, say that to Kieron: “AM I A BAD HEALER NOW, PRICK?”

  8. Inglourious Badger says:

    Very good interview! Found myself watching til the end which I did not expect to do. SPOILER: You get to see John’s back!

    One question: Why is Terry Gilliam there answering questions about this and not off making amazing films!???!? It’s been too long.

    • Jason Lefkowitz says:

      Why is Terry Gilliam there answering questions about this and not off making amazing films!???!? It’s been too long.

      It’s only been a year since The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus came out! Give the man at least a little time to rest :-D

    • Auspex says:

      He said /amazing/ films.

    • Xercies says:

      Because no studio likes touching his films. he is one of those greatest directors that all throughout his life he has always struggled to get his films out there and basically profitable enough for companies to keep financing him.

      Thats the problem with a lot of things today.

    • Josh says:

      The Man Who Killed Don Quixote… I hope.

    • Auspex says:

      Apparently he is working on Don Quixote but Johnny Depp chose to work on Pirates 4 instead. /weep

      Ewan McGregor is said to be replacing Depp. /weep x2

  9. realsch says:

    I subscribed last night and today get the reassurance that yes, rps stays amazing despite already having my moneys! Very good stuff and good to see an interview without the obvious questions.

  10. alice says:

    John, these were seriously excellent questions and by the way they answered I think they quite enjoyed having been asked. Great job!

  11. sfury says:

    NOWAI!!!

    You lucky bastards!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XG63OtsKC7k&feature=related

    Great interview btw, can’t get enough of these two.

  12. Xercies says:

    Yay i have to say I liked how you approched the questions it would have been very boring if it was the same questions that everyone else has asked. But you made this very interesting, i think i really love these guys.

  13. 7rigger says:

    RPS meets Monty Python. This is one of the most awesome things that have ever happened.

    Great interview! More please!

  14. Kua says:

    I wish Terry Jones was my grandad.

    • Jason Moyer says:

      I wish Terry Jones were my grandma.

    • Xercies says:

      I wish Terry Gilliam and Terry Jones was my grandma and granddad

    • Skurmedel says:

      I wish they were my mistresses and we lived in a really big cupboard.

    • RIchard Fairbrass says:

      I wish Terry Jones was the really big cupboard and I could travel through him into Narnia where Graham Chapman is Aslan.

  15. Armyofnone says:

    I wonder wot they think about Lolcats….

  16. Taillefer says:

    You are a beautiful man, John Walker.

  17. ColOfNature says:

    Is it just me, or is Gilliam dressed like some kind of proto-Jedi? I half-expected him to stand up to reveal full length full length robes at the end. He’s not The One Who Will Bring Balance To The Force, etc.

    Oh, and great interview. Properly interesting. <3

    • ColOfNature says:

      “full length full length”? Damn these stuttering fingers.

    • bob says:

      That’s what I thought as well. He reminds me of Obi-Wan. Something to do with the sleeves…
      Anyway, <3 the interview.

  18. Edgar the Peaceful says:

    First reaction: Jesus fucking CHRIST John. Now to read…

    • Edgar the Peaceful says:

      *Watch* even. Wonderful, thank you John. The world is a better place with such people in the world. And these two aren’t meant to get on! (See Palin’s diaries)

  19. Premium User Badge

    Στέλιος says:

    GAMES ARE BOILS! I’ll have to remember that.

  20. Navagon says:

    Great stuff. But I did notice how they started out talking about consumerism, corporatism, gadgets and the evil of it all and by the end of it they were loathe to plug their own Facebook app. :P Perhaps just a touch of irony there.

  21. Wulf says:

    Why do they sound so much like me? Or at least they obsess over the tings I obsess over. It’s almost creepy.

    This has made me immensely, superlatively, perhaps even inordinately happy. I could almost claim that I’m exploding into a veritable cornucopia of liquid glee. Which isn’t a euphemism for anything at all.

    As if I didn’t adore them enough already, honestly.

    I do wish more people could embrace that attitude of wanting to see the world from new perspectives, that desire to walk in the shoes of another, to see things in perhaps ways that are completely alien to us. We cling to familiarity, but I think that so much potential is lost when we discard things simply because they aren’t popular any more.

    It’s like my love of really alien creatures, be they robots, doombeasts, or what have you. There’s a lot of potential there to really explore strange perspectives, those which wouldn’t be human. Where you could take something that just wouldn’t make sense to a human mind, because it’s outside of our scope of experience.

    The other day, I was playing around with the concept of the talking Deathclaws from Fallout 2, and how much further they could’ve gone with that. Just dropping them seems cowardly, because people are so buried in the bloody armpit of familiarity these days that a fresh rose would be lost on them. Deathclaws are essentially chameleons, and if you look at chameleons, their behavioural patterns, how they raise their young and so on, from that you could extrapolate how they might behave as sapient creatures. And you could get some really interesting scenarios from that.

    But everyone seems to want the same old, the same old cloying familiarity, I find it a bit sickening. I’m actually glad that there are at least some out there who value creativity and imagination. I don’t see that refusing to lose these things – sometimes seen as not growing up – is essentially a bad thing. Endless wonder is not a bad thing, and we could invoke wonder by moving away from familiarity more and more.

    I get what they’re talking about with being grounded. What they’re getting at there is having a point of relation, a point of entry, essentially, a degree where things aren’t so alien that you can’t relate to them at all. But just think, creativity is a powerful tool. You could take something completely alien, make it just human enough, and then you could use that to show people the world through entirely new eyes.

    That this is done so rarely is depressing.

    But I still have my imagination if nothing else, and it’s a particularly spectacular place. One of these days, if I ever stop being so self-conscious and lacking in confidence, I’ll probably wrap it all up into a novel or two. Possibly by the time I’m 60.

    • mlaskus says:

      Where you could take something that just wouldn’t make sense to a human mind

      You would probably enjoy some of Stanislaw Lem’s novels, if you haven’t already.

    • Tetragrammaton says:

      For the love of god Wulf: Just do it .
      Write of draw from your imagination. Buy a sketch book or note pad and just go to town in your spare moments – sitting on the bus, relaxing in front of the TV.
      If you feel self conscious about it don’t show anyone else for the time being.
      I really cannot tell you how much joy can be derived from this. There is no better feeling in life than creating something that is purely yours.

    • Xercies says:

      I also agree, i have lots of imagination and creativity. i make lots of film stories myself and genrally want to get out there and film these stuff. My stories are a bit fantastical(not silly I’m afraid not very good at being silly) they are grounded in a little bit of reality but there are imaginative elements to it.

      Its very nice coming up with all these good ideas and getting out there and showing them to people. Terry Gilliam is my role model in this.

  22. Badger says:

    Alec, John, Jim and Quinns should be referred to as the Shotguns (oh ok, and Keiron). Then the title could have read: Shotgun meets Pythons, which could be a fantastic game of its own

    • adonf says:

      Yes, definitely Kieron. Keiron is RPS’s Graham Chapman: the one who’s mostly not there.

    • Edgar the Peaceful says:

      ..and always pissed

    • Optimaximal says:

      Shouldn’t that be ‘the one who’s no longer with us (until we haul him out of the cupboard and set him down on the table as a centrepiece)’?

  23. frenz0rz says:

    Glorious! Astonishing! Sublime! A huge stonking great suprise to make me smile before I go to bed, before another daunting day of work tomorrow.

    To quote a (very) old PCG review; Somebody fetch me a new bag of superlatives!

  24. Dain says:

    Oh gods but I love these guys.. Damn the games, just to have the two Terries sitting together and chatting is occasion enough.

  25. Tangy says:

    Really good interview, and another example of the reason I spend far too much of my time on this website :)

  26. Jahkaivah says:

    Incidently… how do you take out a shotgun with a rock?

    • Wulf says:

      Quite easily, one would imagine. You just need a doombeast capable of lifting a very large rock. Then you take out not only the shotgun, but the person carrying the shotgun, and a clutch of ground beneath them.

      Technically, I might be talking about a boulder here, but let’s not split hairs.

    • Red Avatar says:

      Easy: you shove pebbles into the barrel. Or how about you slam a rock on the pin? Plenty of ways ;) The real question is: how on earth does paper ever beat rock.

    • adonf says:

      Not with a rock: with rock as in rock music. I can totally see rock n roll beat shotgun, especially if it comes with sex and drugs

  27. manveruppd says:

    Absolutely brilliant, always great hearing these guys speak!

    John you lucky lucky bastard! :)

  28. adonf says:

    Wow this looks absolutely fantastic, except… except I can’t watch it because it’s a BLOODY VIDEO !!! What’s wrong with written words? I thought this site was about them…

    Please John Walker, can you add a transcript next time you do this kind of things ? If you spent weeks editing this it would not be much more work. Some of us can’t watch videos because we’re at work, or on a mobile phone, or in bed with three hot ladies sleeping next to us, or linux geeks who don’t want flash because it’s not free as in speech… So please think of us sleepless polygamous linux fans with 3g internet, thank you.

  29. Matzerath says:

    So wonderful. So wonderfully unrelated to whatever the pitch was supposed to be. Bless you, RPS.

  30. Premium User Badge

    Sinomatic says:

    Snakes on a game?

    I just made myself cringe.

  31. Premium User Badge

    skalpadda says:

    Lovely interview John, thank you for brightening up my morning :)

  32. Ubiquitous says:

    I love you Terry Gilliam, you and your fondness of time traveling midgets, sillyness, and hats that are actually high-heel shoes. You are fantastic, and I commend you.

  33. nullpointer says:

    back to the <3, this was great,

  34. Gothnak says:

    These two Terrys are much funnier than Terry Waite, he just goes on about the middle east all the time…

    More like this please!

  35. Skusey says:

    That’s the first time I’ve heard a normal person saying Rock Paper Shotgun and it not sounding completely weird. I think I stopped visiting for a week after that time my Mum said it.

  36. Carra says:

    Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.

  37. [POo [POo says:

    i for one, approve of this company name.

  38. Premium User Badge

    Gabbo says:

    You managed to skirt both the game and Python’s body of work/reunion questions, thank you John, for that. Highly entertaining and somewhat informative.

  39. the blueprint project says:

    the content on this site is great

  40. TheRealGilliamFan says:

    It’s great to see the two Terrys together. Thanks for the interview. From the still images of the game released thus far, it looks entertaining. I’m looking forward to hours of amusement playing it.

  41. Bhazor says:

    “I’d be pretty pleased with what I’ve pulled off”
    Hmmmm, tell me more.

  42. gnome says:

    Funny, smart, insightful, and quite possibly the best video ever to appear on RPS.

  43. TNG says:

    Just wanted to say thanks for one of the best interviews I’ve ever seen. Well done lads.

  44. TWeaK says:

    I still can’t see the video :( I see plenty of spam, however….

  45. pipman3000 says:

    pipman meets monty python

    monty python: blu blah blo giveth me a shrubbery

    pipman: the cake is a lie huuuuuuurf

    monty python: bloooooooooh this parrot is deeeead it is deceased GLOOOOOORK

    pipman: the cake is a lie (V_V)

    spanish inquisation: nobody expects the spanish inquisation!

    pipman: the cake is a lie :========(!@@@@@_@@@@@@!)

  46. JuiceForTheSoul says:

    “This video is private” is all I’m getting. I randomly remembered this interview and wanted to see it again. Any chance it could be re-posted or made public again? I can’t find it anywhere else.

  47. Captain Hijinx says:

    It says the video is forbidden for me :/

    Anyone else having this problem?

  48. NoSane says:

    WTF?

    All I can see is a “This Video Is Private” screen.