Graham Chapman

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Chapman (right) with John Cleese (center) and Benjamin Disraeli, 1st Earl of Beaconsfield (left) discuss the finer points of dressing up as old women and screeching a lot

Graham Arthur "Chappedlips" Chapman (1 June 1941 – 5 October 1989) was an English comedian, doctor, homosexual, alcoholic, loony, and one of the six members of the nonsense comedy group Monty Python — where, by all accounts he did very little but drink in writing sessions until he was so utterly bladdered that he was funny. Originally known as "The Gay One" of the group due to his cheery demeanour, Chapman later became known as "The Inebriated One".

Chapman starred in the Pythons' two good films, Holy Grail and The Heretical Life of Brian Blessed. He was picked to play the lead in the former role because he was too blotto to sit through makeup and so could only play one character, and the latter because he was actually quite good in the former.

Early life[edit]

Graham served under a number of hard servicemen during his time in the Queen's Own, reflecting in later life that it had "made him the man he is today."

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Chapman took the novel move of getting his early life out of the way as soon as possible by being born in a hospital (probably) and immediately deciding that he was to be a homosexual comedian.

However, rather than give the game up too soon, Chapman decided the spend the first twenty-some years of his life masquerading as a heterosexual doctor. To this end he acquired a fiancé and studied medicine at Cambridge. Soon, however, Chapman realized that being a doctor did not allow for much humor in his life, unless you were able to get high off the anesthesia gas, which is unfortunately illegal to do in England.

It was here that he met John Cleese. Given that Cleese was very very funny indeed and looked good in a swimming costume, Chapman decided to drop the pretext and adopt him as both his comedy and life partner. However, at the time Cleetorpes was married to a blonde American woman (probably), and his schedule had him down to be married to blonde American women until the year 2027, they decided to settle for the former.

Chapman, whose own schedule had him down to die in 1989, decided to drop his pursuit of Cleese and instead shacked up with Sherlock Holmes. Though they were very happy together, solving crimes in their spare time, Chapman always longed for a life with Cleese and couldn't help think he had forgotten something. Meanwhile, his fiancé sat twiddling her thumbs.

Chapman and Cleese began to write together for several seminal British satirical programmes, including Doctor In The House (The Life and Times OF Harold Shipman), At Last The 1998 Show (with Marty Fieldmouse, Tim Rice and Del Boy) and Jack Frost's That Was The Week That Was. Or Was It? Maybe It Wasn't I Can't Remember If That Was The Week That Was Or The Week That Wasn't The Week That Was But Whether It Was Or Wasn't The Week That Was Don't Tell Peter Cook Because I've Essentially Stolen His Whole Bloody Act.

Monty Python[edit]

In 1969, Chapman and Cleese were offered their own series by Baron Von Took of the BBC. However, by this point, Chapman has picked up some bad habits from the laudanum addict Holmes and was himself a raging alcoholic. On an ordinary day he was known to consume two bottles of gin, two of Bell's Whiskey, and various cocktails comprising of rum, larger, ale, bleach, babysham, brake fluid, Mr Sheen and other industrial solvents.

Naturally, Cleethorpes was reluctant to work alone with Chapman, as he could get a bit violent after a bucket full of vodka. In order to help him restrain a drunken Chapman in writing sessions, he recruited fellow brain-box funnyman Michael Aeropalin, washed-up Welsh singer Aled Jones and all-around good-egg Eric Idle.

By sheer coincidence it emerged that the group were pretty funny and, with the addition of token Yank and cartoonist Walt Disney, the series — Monty's Pile-On Really Hurt Us! — proved a great success by simultaneously proving that both Americans and Germans had some degree of previously undiscovered sense of humour, albeit primitive.

Biggles[edit]

However, as Chapman's drinking escalated, Cleethorpes grew impatient and left Pile-On to write a sitcom with his blonde American wife about a blonde American actress who plays an blonde English maid in a hotel but cannot affect a British accent. Fortunately Cleethorpe's manic, ecstasy-fuelled portrayal of the hotel manager distracted everyone's attention and the series was a hit. I forget what it was called.

Without Cleethorpe's, Pile-On limped on for one more series. It's demise came in 1974 when Idol attended a Ku Klux Klan wedding and it gave him a really good idea for a faux-punk song. He immediately left and shot straight to the bottom of the charts in somewhere nice.

Aeroplain and Jones then left to travel the world and history respectively. As Disney had died in 1966, Chapman was left with little to do but drink and solve mysteries in Victorian London. This he did until, in 1975, the rest of Pile-On jumped out of his cupboard, announced it had all been a joke and wrote a film to give him something to do.

However, throughout the filming of Holy Surprise Box Office Hit Chapman was drunk and cold and his beard was itchy. He could not go on. Then, sick of his antics, on a crucial day of filming, the rest of the team flew in Jake "The Snake" Roberts who delivered a DDT to Chapman. Instantly Chapman was cured.

Flash Gordon’s alive???[edit]

Chapman's reformation was evidenced in 1979's Life of Brian Blessed in which he gave a stunning portrayal of the bearded British luvvie, Blessed, and was subsequently condemned to hell for questioning the word of the Bible. Pile-On made one final film in 1983, but it wasn't very good.

Subsequently Chapman made some more films that weren't very good and spent his time hanging around with Douglas Adams whose literary imagination allowed Chapman and Holmes to solve mysteries not only in Victorian London, but also Victorian Mars, Victorian Neptune and a Victorian Cafe at the end of the Universe.

Death[edit]

Then he died.

Legacy[edit]

Chapman was regarded as the one true anarchist of Pile-On, mainly because he was so very, very drunk all the time. Consequently he has an immeasurable influence on the punk rock movement of the late 1970s. This is evidenced by the Sex Pistols' "God Save The Dead Parrot"; The Ramones' "I Wanna Have An Argument (Nudge Nudge, Wink Wink)"; and Buzzcocks' "Graham Chapman Has Had An Immeasurable Influence On Our Work".

At his Funeral, his fellow Pile-On's noted his wild ways, with Cleethorpe's claiming that Chapman would have wanted his funeral to be the first where someone said the words "Cock-sucking Cunt" and Idol leading the mourners in a rendition of "Always Look On The White Side Of Wedding".

Sherlock Holmes subsequently went missing along with his mortal enemy Professor Moriarty, though I bet they're still alive somewhere.

See also[edit]