The Ministry of Silly Brands

HolygrailaleWe’ve apparently got Monty Python on the brain this week.

Ever see an item in a store that stops you right in your tracks—and not necessarily because you want it? Well, that’s what happened to us while perusing the shelves of our local supermarket recently. We noticed a beer with a rather familiar name: Monty Python’s Holy Grail ale—with the “Gr” in “Grail” crossed out.

Being a fan of TV’s Monty Python’s Flying Circus, which ran in Britain from 1969-74 and gave birth to films like Monty Python and the Holy Grail (the source of the beer’s reference), we just had to ask ourselves what this is all about. Wouldn’t the Python name lend itself better to products more generally associated with sketches from the show? We’re still waiting for “Fresh Out” cheese and “I’m a Lumberjack” flannel wear. (We’d probably draw the line at “Crunchy Frog” chocolate, though—we suspect there wouldn’t be a market for that.) Putting the Python name on a beer just sounds a bit random—it’s hard not to expect something crazy flying out of the bottle when you open it.

The beer apparently has been out for a while—it’s marketed by something called the Black Sheep Brewery. And according to the company’s Web site, this brew was “specially commissioned to commemorate the 30th anniversary of Monty Python.” But we’re purists at heart, like many Python fans. We just think the whole thing’s a bit silly.

—Posted by Simon Butler