WHEN the original Spamalot opened on Broadway it opened to somewhat mixed reviews, especially from Monty Python fans who either hailed it as another success to add to the Python catalogue or an attempt by creator Eric Idle to cash in on a legendary comedic legacy.

As an original Python fan I took my seat for the New Venture Players' production with an open mind.

Spamalot follows the farcical journey of King Arthur and his merry men and their quest to find the holy grail. It is of a similar plot to Python's 1975 classic Holy Grail but with added scenes that make use of the theatre setting.

While the Players had strong leads from straight-man Mark Cooper as King Arthur and vocal powerhouse Ros Jones-Griffiths as the Lady of the Lake, this Python fan was especially impressed by the performance of Gordon Collins who had clearly channelled his inner Terry Jones to bring a spot-on homage to the original Python's famed Mother character.

Smaller performances like this, as well as visual gags to the side, often brought more humour than the centre-stage jokes.

Saying that, it was the inclusion of Idle's famous Always Look on the Bright Side of Life that really got the audience going and certainly had everyone whistling as they left the theatre.

By Millie Reeves