Terry Jones



The wonderful Terry Jones has sadly died, aged 77, after a long and publicised battle with a particularly nasty form of dementia. Terry Jones was recognisable instantly, possibly worldwide, as one of the six members of the Monty Python comedy team. Performer and writer Jones contributed several acclaimed sketches alongside his colleague Michael Palin, including The Spanish Inquisition (where he plays Cardinal Biggles), the Homicidal Barber/Lumberjack Song, and of course, SPAM SPAM SPAM SPAM Lovely spam Wonderful Spam!

He also directed all 3 of the big Monty Python films. When finances were an issue for The Life of Brian, Jones managed to secure funding from George Harrison by telling him all about the film and securing “the most expensive cinema ticket price in history”. Life of Brian went on to bemuse Jones for the next 40 years as, having striven to point out that Brian is not actually Jesus, most of the orthodox religious criticism that followed treated it as if Brian was Jesus, including an infamous TV debate between the Pythons and Malcolm Muggeridge. It’s as if those hypocrites never watched the film or something… It was the first of three films directed by Terry Jones to be banned in Ireland.

Out with the Pythons, he continued to work with Michael Palin on Ripping Yarns, a comedy anthology series in which episodes like the superb Tomkinsons Schooldays were a clear influence on later shows like The Comic Strip Presents. He also wrote operas, a kids TV show (Blazing Dragons), the first draft of Labyrinth, sketches for The Two Ronnies, and produced historical documentaries for TV.

In 2014, Monty Python reunited, partly for the thrill, but mostly to pay off John Cleese’s latest divorce bill. It even paid off the producer of Holy Grail who had sued over Spamalot: Terry Jones joining that rare list of luminaries (John Fogerty another) who have been sued for plagiarising themselves…

Jones was the 2nd member of the 2020 Drop 40 to die, and as a result dozens of sods had him on their teams, 84 in all. You Might be a King or a Little Street Sweeper moves back to the top of the pile for the third time this year – hope you’re enjoying this, if you read these. 2nd spot contains  a hattrick of dangerous competitors in Bleaching the Bottom of the Barrel, Day in the Death and 2016 runner up Heading Nowhere. All three very capable of going on long runs at or around the top this year. I’m Sorry for your Trouble, under a previous regeneration, led the DDP before, in 2010, and is one of the many teams in joint 5th place after a solid start with 3/20 of their team gone before the Royal Rumble even begins. Also among the teams in that traffic jam is regulars DDP Tofoa, who finished 38th and 43rd in the last two years, but who looks on paper to have a very, very strong team indeed. Previous leaders Burning Bodies in Redcar have, I’m afraid to say, fallen to 15th spot, but can enjoy being the highest ranked team not to pick Terry J for now.

Further down the table, teams which break their duck here include C.A. Daver, Eternity Tours, perennial dark horses Going Underground, and 14th year in the DDP regular Lard Bazaar! Well done, each and all and others not mentioned for space reasons…

Terry Jones
1 February 1942 – 21 January 2020
84 teams