The Undertakers Sketch

UNDERTAKER’S SKETCH by Monty Python

Animation: various nasty cannibalistic scenes from Terry Gilliam.

Cut to man.

Man: (T.J.) Stop it, stop it. Stop this cannibalism. Let’s have a sketch about clean, decent human beings.

Cut to an undertaker’s shop 

Undertaker: (G.C.) Morning.

Man: (J.C.) Good Morning.

Undertaker: What can I do for you, squire?

Man: Um, well, I wonder if you can help me. You see, my mother has just died.

Undertaker: Ah well, we can help you. We deal with stiffs.

Man: What?

Undertaker: Well, there’s three things we can do with your mum. We can bury her, burn her, or dump her.

Man: Dump her?

Undertaker: Dump her in the Thames.

Man: What?

Undertaker: Oh, did you like her?

Man: Yes!

Undertaker: Oh well, we won’t dump her, then. Well, what do you think? We can bury her or burn her.

Man: Well, which do you recommend?

Undertaker: Well, they’re both nasty. If we burn her, she gets stuffed in the flames, crackle, crackle, crackle, which is a bit of a shock if she’s not quite dead, but quick. (the audience starts booing) and then we give you handful of ashes, which you can pretend are hers.

Man: Oh.

Undertaker: Or, if we bury her she gets eaten up lots of weevils, and nasty maggots, (the booing increases) which as I said before is a bit of a shock if she’s not quite dead.

Man: I see. Well, she’s definitely dead.

Undertaker: Where is she?

Man: She’s in this sack.

Undertaker: Can I have a look? She looks quite young.

Man: Yes, yes, she was.

Increasing protests from audience

Undertaker: (calling) Fred!

Fred’s voice: Yeah?

Undertaker: I think we’ve got an eater.

Man: What?

Another undertaker pokes his head round the door

Fred: (E.I.) Right, I’ll get the oven on. (goes off)

Man: Er, excuse me, um, are you suggesting eating my mother?

Undertaker: Er … Yeah. Not raw. Cooked.

Man: What?

Undertaker: Yes, roasted with a few french fries, broccoli, horseradish sauce …

Man: Well, I do feel a bit peckish.

Voice From Audience: Disgraceful! Boo! (etc.)

Undertaker: Great!

Man: Can we have some parsnips?

Undertaker: (calling) Fred – get some parsnips.

Man: I really don’t think I should.

Undertaker: Look, tell you what, we’ll eat her, if you feel a bit guilty about it after, we can dig a grave and you can throw up in it.

A chunk of the audience rises up in revolt and invades the set, remonstrating with the performers and banging the counter, etc., breaking up the sketch. Zoom away from them and into caption machine; roll credits. The National Anthem starts. The shouting stops. Mix through credits to show audience and everyone on set standing to attention. As the credits end, fade out.

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