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Characters: Monty Python and the Holy Grail

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    Knights of the Round Table 
King Arthur

Played by: Graham Chapman

The main character. He is the king of the Britons. God sent him and his knights on a quest to find the Holy Grail. Acts very stoic considering the amount of strangeness happening around him.

Tropes associated with this version of King Arthur:


Sir Bedivere the Wise

Played by: Terry Jones

The wisest of the knights. Unfortunately, that still doesn't leave enough wisdom to be detected without the aid of powerful instruments.


Sir Lancelot the Brave

Played by: John Cleese

An Ax-Crazy knight. He always tries to solve his problems through violence. Is also very dramatic in his way of acting.


Sir Galahad the Pure/Chaste

This knight does not do much in the film. Like his title says, he is a chaste knight.

Played by: Michael Palin

  • Adorkable
  • Deadpan Snarker: "What a strange person."
  • Chaste Hero: He tries to be this, but after being in Castle Anthrax for around 10 minutes, he gives up.
  • Incorruptible Pure Pureness: Parodied. He tries to resist the allure of one hundred and sixty nymphomaniac blondes and brunettes between the ages of 16 to 19, but eventually starts to succumb to their temptations and actually decides to give in, just as Lancelot comes in and drags him away. He then begs to be allowed to go back and face the "peril."
  • Messy Hair
  • Too Dumb to Live: His inability to decide whether blue or yellow is his favourite colour leads to rather fatal results.


Sir Robin the Not-Quite-So-Brave-As-Sir-Lancelot

Played by: Eric Idle

Sir Robin claims to be very brave. He also has a band of minstrels singing about his bravery...but is an enormous coward. He is fully designated as "Sir Robin the Not-Quite-So-Brave-As-Sir-Lancelot who had nearly fought the Dragon of Angnor,who had nearly stood up to the vicious Chicken of Bristol and who had personally wet himself at the Battle of Badon Hill".


Sir Not Appearing In This Film

This is not a real character, but more of a gag when the narrator introduces the Knights of the round table. When his picture is shown, he appears as a baby wearing a chainmail coif that's too large. This is actually Michael Palin's son, William Palin. He is the Trope Namer to Sir Not-Appearing-in-This-Trailer and Lady Not-Appearing-in-This-Game.


    The villains 
The Black Knight

Played by: John Cleese

A black knight that won't let Arthur pass. He loses all his four limbs in the following battle and still wants to fight.


The French

Played by: John Cleese, Terry Jones, Michael Palin

A bunch of French soldiers that like to insult 'English types' with random insults. Reappear in the end where they claimed the Castle Aaargh as their own.

  • Abnormal Ammo: Subverted. The French try to scare the Knights of the Round Table away by throwing living animals at them. While the scene looks strange, the DVD commentary reveals it has really been done in history, but not with the kinds of animals used in the movie.
    • They also catapult the Trojan rabbit at the knights.
  • Blowing a Raspberry: The leader of the French soldiers does this every encounter.
  • Cool Helmet
  • Flowery Insults: It almost seems they live for this trope.
  • French Jerk
  • Gosh Dang It to Heck!: Despite their constant insults, they never actually swear. The gag is that they pretty much use the most colourful insults possible without outright saying anything profane (at least by modern standards).
  • I Shall Taunt You: Trope Namer. They seem to do it just for fun, ironically.
  • Jerkass
  • Just a Stupid Accent: At least one of them cannot even speak French.
  • Poirot Speak
  • Sir Swears-a-Lot
  • Verbal Tic: They cannot pronounce the word 'knights' correctly. Instead, it sounds like 'k-nnniggits'.


The Three Headed Knight

Played by: Graham Chapman, Terry Jones, Michael Palin

A large three headed knight who seems to be a formidable fighter, were it not that the heads first must agree before an action can be taken.


The Residents of Castle Anthrax

160 blonds and brunettes, between 16 and 19 and a half years old. They light a grail-shaped beacon to lure knights to them in order to tempt them.



The Knights Who Say Ni!

Played by: Michael Palin

An order of knights based on protecting the sacred words of Ni, Peng and Nee-wom.Like it says on the tin, they frequently say 'NI!' as a Brown Note of sorts. Their leader is a very tall man who wears a large helmet with antlers. He is the one who speaks in behalf of the whole order. The rest of the knights only say 'NI!' and mostly repeat what the head knight is saying.They live in a spooky forest and coerce every traveler into buying a shrubbery for them.

  • Badass Beard
  • Brown Note: Known for terrorizing people this way, just by saying the word "ni."
    • Their leitmotif as well.
  • Cool Helmet: The Head Knight wears a bucket-shaped helmet with antlers on it and the other knights wear horned helmets that cover their faces.
  • Dark Is Evil: They are dressed in black/dark brown and their leader looks like a typical Evil Overlord.
  • Impossible Task: They tell Arthur that in order to get past them, he must cut down the mightiest tree in the forest with a herring. Luckily, Arthur discovers their weakness, so he doesn't actually have to go through with it.
  • The Dreaded: The Knights who say Ni! appear to have a terrifying reputation, considering the fact they inspire fear within nearby villages, maybe even the whole country, cause the shrubbery-economy to collapse and make a fearful king Arthur do their bidding. Anyone who terrifies King Arthur like that is worthy of being called 'the Dreaded'.
  • Large and in Charge: The leader is twice as tall as the average man.
  • Large Ham: Especially their leader.
  • Totem Pole Trench: The leader was originally supposed to be portrayed this way, but Michael Palin settled for a stepladder instead of John Cleese's shoulders.
  • Trope Namer: for The Knights Who Say Squee and With This Herring
  • The Unpronounceable: The phrase they switched to after they stopped using "Ni!" Something like "Ikki-ikki-ikki-p'TENG-zoop-BOING-nawumbbawobba.."
  • With This Herring
  • Weak Sauce Weakness / Achilles' Heel : Despite being so powerful in that they can even force the great King Arthur to do as they command, the Knights of Ni can be defeated by saying the word 'it'.
  • Why Did It - Argh!


The King of Swamp Castle

Played by: Michael Palin

A corrupt king that tries to use an arranged marriage to gain more huge tracts of land. He hates it when his son attempts to sing and rudely interrupts him when he does.

  • Badass Beard
  • Dodgy Toupee
  • The Determinator: He built a castle in a swamp just to show the other kings it's possible to do so. It sank into the swamp. The same happened to the second castle. Guess what? He built a third castle in the swamp...which burned down, fell over, then sank into the swamp. But the fourth and current one stayed up.
  • Fantasy-Forbidding Father


The Killer Rabbit of Caerbannog

A cute white rabbit who guards a cave. Trope Namer and Trope Codifier to Killer Rabbit... if it wasn't obvious already.

  • Badass Adorable: A very cute white rabbit capable of defeating a group of armed knights
  • Hair-Raising Hare: Has apparently killed a fair number of people, and is possibly carnivorous("Look at the bones!").
  • Killer Rabbit: The Trope Namer, the Rabbit of Caerbannog is highly aggressive and deadly, tearing out the throats of several of Arthur's knights.


The Black Beast of Aaaaarrrrrrggghhh!

A cartoon monster that appears out of nowhere. It quickly devours Brother Maynard and chases Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table.


The Bridgekeeper

Played by: Terry Gilliam

He guards the Bridge of Death and asks each traveler 3 questions. If they answer correctly, they may pass. When answering a question wrong, an invisible force grabs the victim and throws him into the gorge of eternal peril.


     Neutral Characters and other annoyances. 
Guards of Swallow Castle

These guards refuse to believe Arthur is king and instead break the fourth wall, by lampshading his use of coconuts instead of a real horse. After that, they start a useless discussion if swallows are able to bring coconuts to England.

  • Brick Joke / Chekhov's Gun: Their useless discussion does provide Arthur with a means to defeat the bridgekeeper when he starts asking a question about swallows.
  • The Faceless: They're only seen from below the ramparts. The distance, fog and lack of luminosity do not allow to see their faces.

The corpses collector

Played by: Eric Idle

This man collects corpses at a village ravaged by the plague. He gets into an argument with a villager who wants to hand him over a still living man. The collector then solves the situation by killing the 'living corpse'.








Dennis
Played by: Michael Palin

A 37-year-old peasant, whose community is based on a political system thats too modern for the dark ages. It certainly has no place for a mythical king like Arthur, which Dennis openly shows. This starts another pointless discussion in which Dennis wants to prove that just wielding Excalibur is not a reason to boss people around.






Voiced by: Graham Chapman

God appears to the Knights of the Round Table and gives them the task to find the Holy Grail. He finds it annoying that people constantly consider themselves unworthy of His presence. His face is based on the cricket player W.G. Grace.




The Historian

Played by: John Young

This Historian tells the audience about Arthur's defeat at the hands of the French. He also explains that the knights continued their search separately. He is killed by a knight riding on a real horse. His death sets up the events happening in the end of the film.









Prince Herbert

Played by: Terry Jones

The son of the king of Swamp Castle. He is very girly and does not like the fact he is used in an arranged marriage. When he wants to express his feelings, he starts singing, complete with cheesy music in the background, but this is always interrupted by his father, who hates singing. Being fed up with his life, he shoots a message out of the window, which is found by Lancelot. Lancelot thinks the message is from a princess and goes on a rampage to rescue Herbert.


Roger The Shrubber

Played by: Eric Idle

Catches Arthur and Bedivere coercing an old woman by saying Ni to her. After expressing his disappointment in them, he reveals he is a shrubber. This gives Arthur an opportunity to bring a shrubbery to the Knights of Ni.

  • Deus ex Machina: Its very convenient that a shrubber appears when Arthur needs a shrubbery.







Tim the Enchanter

Played by: John Cleese

A powerful and eccentric wizard Playing with Fire. He tells the knights about the cave of Caerbannog and the Killer Rabbit. Naturally, he is called a liar when the knights see the rabbit, but has the last laugh when some of the knights get killed by the rabbit.

  • Badass Beard
  • Cassandra Truth: Tells the truth about the Killer Rabbit, in that it is a terribly dangerous creature, but gets ridiculed by the Knights of the Round Table. Guess what happens next...
  • Cloud Cuckoo Lander: Lampshaded.
    Arthur: What an eccentric performance.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: He comes over as a very intimidating and evil looking wizard, complete with a black robe and horns on his hat, but is does not appear to be malevolent. He honestly warns the knights about the rabbit and only laughs at them when they stop taking him seriously.
  • Large Ham: He even starts to spit drops of saliva when warning the knights about the Rabbit.
  • Magic Staff
  • Nice Hat
  • Playing with Fire: Taken literally with the 'playing' part, since he does not anything useful with his gift. Like roasting a certain rabbit for instance.
  • Some Call Me Tim: Trope Namer, but does not actually use it.
    • Amusingly, this was an ad-lib because Cleese forgot the character's name.
  • Trrrilling Rrrs


Brother Maynard

Played by: Eric Idle

A monk and scholar. He gives the Holy Hand Grenade to the Knights when they need a way to defeat the Killer Rabbit. He also translates the runes inside the Cave of Caerbannog, but is eaten by the black beast of Aaarrrrggghhh.

  • We Hardly Knew Ye: Gets eaten right after guiding the knights to the cavern showing the Grail's location and reading the ancient text on the wall.







Inspector End of Film

A modern inspector who investigates the Historians death. He is something of a running joke, in that he constantly appears at scenes where Arthur and his knights previously were. He later appears at the end of the film, to arrest Arthur and Bedivere for allegedly killing the Historian.



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