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Film

John Lennon once named his favourite TV show of all time

John Lennon was inspired by a variety of artistic forms throughout his career. On multiple occasions, Lennon had cited cinematic giants such as Federico Fellini whose works had a deep impact on him. Furthermore, Lennon went out of his way to fund certain cinematic projects that he liked just like George Harrison had.

The Beatles enjoyed the famous Monty Python sketches but it was Harrison who formed the production company HandMade Films that went on to finance the classic Monty Python’s Life of Brian, among other notable projects like Terry Gilliam’s Time Bandits. Lennon was also influenced by Monty Python and had even expressed his desire to be featured in one of their sketches!

“Part of me would sooner have been a comedian. I just don’t have the guts to stand up and do it but I’d love to be in Monty Python rather than the Beatles,” Lennon famously said in an interview when asked about his future aspirations. During that period, Lennon had also been watching a lot of television shows and he even named his favourite series ever made.

Lennon’s favourite film of all time was Alejandro Jodorowsky’s El Topo whose hallucinogenic artistic vision impressed him so much that he directed the manager of the Beatles to provide $1 million for Jodorowsky’s future project. However, Lennon’s taste in television as far as it can get from his love for Fellini and Jodorowsky.

The music icon’s favourite television show was actually a British sitcom called Fawlty Towers which he called “the greatest show I’ve seen in years… What a masterpiece! A beautiful thing.” Critics have come to the same conclusion in the years that have followed, with the BFI naming it as the greatest British show in history.

Since Lennon loved Monty Python, his love for Fawlty Towers is understandable as the show was created by Monty Python co-founder John Cleese. A fantastic, humorous critique of British sensibilities, Fawlty Towers revolves around the inhabitants of a hotel in a town on the English Riviera. It was actually inspired by Cleese’s own experience with an eccentric hotel owner during his stay in Torquay.

Listen to Lennon discuss the projects, below.