Mr Eric Praline is a character from the TV show Monty Python's Flying Circus and John Cleese's mark role.

Appearances[edit | edit source]

Mr Praline in the Dead Parrot sketch

Praline first appeared in It's the Arts, the sixth episode, during a vox pop segment (Non-Illegal Robbery) to announce he would be appearing later in the show. This he did as a policeman following up on the case of Whizzo's Chocolates, which produced such gems as "Cockroach Cluster", "Anthrax Ripple" and the titular "Crunchy Frog". Another sketch detailed Praline's attempts to buy a cat from a pet shop which had none (but whose owner offered to 'convert' other animals to cat-ness by modifying assorted body parts).

However, Praline's defining moment came in Full Frontal Nudity, the eighth episode, when he attempted to return his recently purchased Dead Parrot to the pet shop from which he bought it.

In Live from the Grill-O-Mat, he appears with his flatmate Brooky as a host of a new chat show. However, the show in the sketch is cancelled and they later appear in the sketch, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers.

In Scott of the Antarctic, the twenty-third episode, Praline had more pet trouble, this time trying to buy a Fish Licence for his pet halibut, Eric. This final sketch later led to Praline singing on the 'Monty Python's Previous Record' LP, the song being 'Eric the Half-a-Bee'. However, it will forever be the 'Dead Parrot' sketch with which Praline is associated. John Cleese later got so fed up with "doing the one with the parrot", that he vowed never again to perform the sketch; conversely, the 'Eric the Half-A-Bee' segment is one of Cleese's personal favourites. (It is also where we learn Praline's first name, also Eric).

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