Series 4, Episode 42: RAF Banter
BOVRIL Terry Jones
SQUADRON LEADER Eric Idle
WINCO Graham Chapman
PILOT Michael Palin
The sketch:A squadron leader, just off on a mission, runs past, and dashes into a Nissen hut
CAPTION: Somewhere in England, 1944
The squadron leader enters an RAF officers’ mess and takes off his helmet
Bovril Morning, squadron leader.
Squadron Leader What-ho, Squiffy.
Bovril How was it?
Squadron Leader Top hole. Bally Jerry pranged his kite right in the how’s your father. Hairy blighter, dicky-birdied, feathered back on his Sammy, took a waspy, flipped over on his Betty Harper’s and caught his can in the Bertie.
Bovril Er, I’m afraid I don’t quite follow you, squadron leader.
Squadron Leader It’s perfectly ordinary banter, Squiffy. Bally Jerry … pranged his kite right in the how’s yer father … hairy blighter, dicky-birdied, feathered back on his Sammy, took a waspy, flipped over on his Betty Harper’s and caught his can in the Bertie.
Bovril No, I’m just not understanding banter at all well today. Give us it slower.
Squadron Leader Banter’s not the same if you say it slower, Squiffy.
Bovril Hold on, then. (shouts) Wingco!
Bovril Bend an ear to the squadron leader’s banter for a sec, would you?
Wingco Can do.
Bovril Jolly good.
Wingco Fire away.
Squadron Leader (draws a deep breath and looks slightly uncertain, then starts even more deliberately then before) Bally Jerry… pranged his kite… right in the how’s your father… hairy blighter… dicky-birdied… …feathered back on his Sammy… took a waspy… flipped over on his Betty Harper’s… and caught his can in the Bertie.
Wingco …No, don’t understand that banter at all.
Squadron Leader Something up with my banter, chaps?
A siren goes. The door bursts open and an out-of-breath young pilot rushes in in his flying gear.
Pilot Bunch of monkeys on your ceiling, sir! Grab your egg and fours and let’s get the bacon delivered.
General incomprehension. They look at each other
Wingco Do you understand that?
Squadron Leader No, didn’t get a word of it.
Wingco Sorry old man, we don’t understand your banter.
Pilot You know … bally ten-penny ones dropping in the custard …
(searching for the words) um … Charlie Choppers chucking a handful …
Wingco No, no … sorry.
Bovril Say it a bit slower, old chap.
Pilot Slower banter, sir?
Pilot Um … sausage squad up the blue end!
Squadron Leader No, still don’t get it.
Pilot Um … cabbage crates coming over the briny?
Squadron Leader No.
Wingco, Pilot and Bovril No, no …
Stock film of a German bombing raid.
Voice Over (Michael) But by then it was too late. The first cabbage crates hit London by July 7th. That was just the beginning…