In December 1969, John Cleese and Graham Chapman wrote and performed "The "Dead Parrot Sketch" on the show "Monty Python's Flying Circus". Cleese enters a pet shop, run by Chapman, to complain about the dead parrot that was sold to him. Chapman explains the "Norwegian Blue" parrot is only resting or merely stunned. Cleese yells that the only reason the parrot was on the perch to begin with was "that it had been nailed there!" The irritated Cleese tries to show Chapman that the parrot should "be pushing up daisies" while Chapman continues to deny the demise of the parrot with excuses and reasons for the immobility of the parrot.

After coming up with many ways to describe deceased, (i.e. "this is an ex-parrot"), Chapman tells Cleese to go to his brother's pet shop in Ipswich for a refund. Upon arriving, the shopkeeper's brother claims to Cleese he is not in Ipswich but Bolton. Returning to the original shop, Chapman explains it was a prank and that Ipswich was a palindrome for Bolton. It ends with Cleese saying this is getting "too silly" and a Colonel comes in and yells, "Quite right! Silly! Get on with it!" and another sketch starts.

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