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October 05, 1989|ALEENE MacMINN | Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press

Twenty years ago tonight, "Monty Python's Flying Circus" first aired in a late-night slot on the British Broadcasting Corp. Some claim the BBC hoped no one would notice the show, replete as it was with lampoons of old ladies and politicians, gags, bizarre animation and naughty British humor. But, of course, its audience soared and "Monty Python" went on to attract an international following. The "Python" actors planned to get together for a 20th anniversary reunion Wednesday in London, but canceled the party because one of the group, Graham Chapman, is recovering from cancer treatments.

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