christine~ (eppylover) wrote,
christine~
eppylover

Rutles article, some screencaps and analysis (heavy on the anal)

From this article in the Toronto Sun.com:
The Rutles in Sgt Rutters uniforms

Rutlemania lives!

Neil Innes is shocked at the durability of
Beatles spoof band The Rutles
By BILL HARRIS, TORONTO SUN
Wed, May 10, 2006



{{Reprinted here by unknowing courtesy of BeatleLinks Fab Forum member 'I am the Paulrus'}}

Neil Innes never dreamed mankind would best remember him as one of the Rutles.

"It's still a source of pride in my household that when it first aired on NBC (in 1978), it was among the lowest-rated shows in the history of primetime TV," Innes said this week. "But who remembers the episode of Charlie's Angels that killed the Rutles in the ratings that night?
"It really has become an unofficial biography of the Beatles."

Innes was one of the masterminds behind All You Need Is Cash, a mockumentary about a fictional group called the Rutles that obviously was based upon the Beatles. Innes wrote the songs and played the John Lennon-inspired Ron Nasty.

Innes, 61, will be playing a few Rutles tunes tonight, as well as some numbers from his years with Monty Python's Flying Circus and the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band, when he takes the stage at the St. Lawrence Centre's Jane Mallett Theatre.

"You'll either cry with laughter, or just cry and laugh about it later," Innes said when asked what fans can expect.

Innes' three-piece band is in the midst of a quickie, five-city Canadian tour.

"It's not about making money at this point," Innes said. "We're just having a great time doing this. The show is a mixture of a lot of things.

"When I was getting questioned at Canadian customs, I was asked, 'What kind of music do you play?' And I had to say, 'I don't know.' "

The Rutles project is one of those rare satiric endeavours that has been embraced by fans of the act being lampooned. Many Beatlemaniacs have line-by-line knowledge of All You Need Is Cash, even though one of the stars -- Monty Python's Eric Idle -- has expressed puzzlement over the continued fascination.

"I thought it would be cheap and cheerful to do a send-up of A Hard Day's Night (for British TV)," Innes recalled. "Then the next thing you know, Eric (Idle) hosts Saturday Night Live, they play a clip of what we had done, it's well-received and (SNL guru) Lorne Michaels gets involved in the full deal.

"But it wouldn't have been anything without George Harrison (who had many partnerships with the Python crew and also played a TV reporter in All You Need Is Cash). George was the one who got Mick Jagger and Paul Simon involved. George really wanted it to happen."

I would call the last two paragraphs of the article the Key Paragraphs: "I thought it would be cheap and cheerful to do a send-up of A Hard Day's Night (for British TV)," Innes recalled. "Then the next thing you know, Eric (Idle) hosts Saturday Night Live, they play a clip of what we had done, it's well-received and (SNL guru) Lorne Michaels gets involved in the full deal.

"But it wouldn't have been anything without George Harrison (who had many partnerships with the Python crew and also played a TV reporter in All You Need Is Cash). George was the one who got Mick Jagger and Paul Simon involved. George really wanted it to happen."

The Rutles
There was a member of The BeatleLinks Fab Forum who posted the following about The Rutles:
I know I'm a minority of one, but I HATE the Rutles! Even though I'm a big Python/Eric Idle fan, I think the Rutles does little more than make an absolute mockery of the Beatles--I found it very insulting that way. Yeah, I know George gave his blessing and appears in it, but I've long since chalked that up to an unfortunate lapse of creative judgement. Hell, if I were a Beatle, I would have sued, not APPEAR in the damn thing! I guess I just don't like seeing the Beatles made to look so utterly ridiculous--even if its a bogus version of them. Really dreadful.
Last edited by (member name withheld) : Jun 22, 2006 at 09:23 AM.
I can appreciate her feelings, because I have been every bit as anal about people ridiculing Brian as she does about The Beatles, but you must understand that the boys possessed a very anacharistic sense of humor, wicked and biting, especially as regards themselves and their fame. I very much respect and admire that.

If you followed the Boys' own descriptions of their feelings about their "Beatlemania" years, you'd realize that they (George and John in particular) were not Beatlemaniacs themselves ~ at first the phenomenon was amazing and thrilling, but they grew to hate touring, got sick of the idiots they had to deal with and perform in front of, and were feeling half past silly and grown out of sticking to the "image" that Brian created of them and around them (without which they never would have made it past the beat clubs of Liverpool and Hamburg, wink wink nudge nudge).

Eventually both George and John felt so painfully restricted in their creativity by having to parrot the same (what became to them) crap over and over and over... which nobody ever heard, anyway, because of the mindless asinine shrieking of the fans... that they became very depressed, and ended up rejecting their carefully Epstein-crafted image. Brian had an extremely hard time accepting this, at first, but after awhile he was learning to go with the flow.

The Boys' feelings, coupled with their self-effacing barbed humor, were the reason George so eagerly involved himself in The Rutles ... and John & Yoko took to singing Rutles songs.

They GOT IT.

However, I must say I also understand the Brian and Paul side of it, too, because they were in their hearts the showmen, and the biggest Beatlemaniacs inside the inner circle. The Rutles could have done a lot more roasting of Paul and Brian, because Macca and Eppy were such goody-goodies in public yet such naughty boys in private, but the Pythons held back in respect and understanding. The furthest they insinuated was what Brian would have giggled at himself ~ the trousers gag and mocking his upper-crustiness. (Remember Brian's proud use of what was originally Bob Wooler's snide term for Brian ~ "The Nemperor"?) Instead, the Pythons transformed Yoko into a nazi and picked on George's spiritualism, because they knew George and JohnYoko could take it and wouldn't get hurt over it ~ in fact they all, even Yoko, were always very supportive and thought it was hilarious.

Conversely, I have reason to believe that Brian would have been highly amused by the character of Leggy Mountbatten, because his best friends have always said that, amongst close friends, Brian made fun of himself to the point that nothing was sacred ~ nothing. And he enjoyed mocking himself in such a manner that would send his shocked audience to the floor in stitches. For a person who is unfortunately these days seen by the public as being so pitiful and sad, actually a great deal of the time Brian was a riot. Very funny, witty man.

The only part of The Rutles I have grave doubts about is the Queenie Epstein character. The woman who played "Iris Mountbatten" had her voice and mannerisms down too well. It was too harsh a characterization, without the clever edge that would raise it above simple mockery. It would have hurt Brian's feelings badly, I think. And since the program aired in 1976, long before her death in 1996, I do hope she never saw it. It made me sad, because she was such a lovely and loving mom.

But as for the rest of the show ~ well, The Rutles is indeed the best Beatles satire ever made, and ~ always remember that the best comedy is built from the most clever twisting of tragedy and stupid ultra-seriousness. The key word here, at least to my eyes and ears, is cleverness. And the Pythons were the champions at that. All You Need Is Cash was their best work.

The Rutles All You Need Is Cash Title Screen The Rutles All You Need Is Cash Title Screen
CLICK PICS FOR LARGER IMAGES


====
A Fab Mag on a Grubby Cemetery Lavatory Floor ~
Beatles on 2005 Readers Digest cover
Husband was on a job (he's a civil servant that does tree work for city-owned properties) at a city cemetery, and in the cemetery office bathroom there he saw this issue of Readers Digest ~ lying on the floor ~ and didn't pick it up. Just left it there. Said "hey, it might belong to somebody!"

In describing it, all he could say is that it was a 2005 issue with all four on the cover. I searched and found a copy on eBay to make sure it was the same one he was talking about. Sure enough, same one.

Well, whoever it supposedly belongs to certainly doesn't know its worth, if that's how they treat it. I'm sorry, but it would have been rescued if it were me.

I mentioned that it would be highly appreciated if he could go back tomorrow and get it, ask whose it is, or whatever is necessary. I doubt if that will happen.

Actually, I'm surprised he knew who they were, even with the words on the cover (he's functionally illiterate and The Beatles are pawns of Satan, although he tolerates my admiration of them similar to the way I tolerate his hunting).

BTW, if you are wondering why I'm married to him and haven't read THIS before ... well, that's why.

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