I was very saddened to hear of the passing of Ronnie Corbett, 85, the diminutive half of Britain’s much-loved The Two Ronnies.
The Two Ronnies show began in 1971 and ran for 12 seasons over 16 years. But Ronnie Corbett actually began working with Ronnie Barker years before that, most prominently on The Frost Report. Most of the individual Pythons worked with the pair as writers, and one of the most successful ongoing sketches featured John Cleese with the pair as upper (Cleese), middle (Barker), and Corbett (working) class. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K2k1iRD2f-c
It’s a brilliant concept (written by Marty Feldman and John Law), almost works as a sight gag alone, though the writing is brilliant. This clip doesn’t include the punch line(s) however:
Middle: We all know our place, but what do we get out of it?
Upper: I get a feeling of superiority over them.
Middle: I get a feeling of inferiority from him. But a feeling of superiority over him.
Working: (looking up to them, literally) I get a pain in my neck.
I never met Ronnie Corbett (who always reminded me of my pal Tim Kazurinsky), but the first time I visited London, I was staying at Graham Chapman’s house, and was delighted to hear that The Two Ronnies were headlining at The Palladium, and at Graham’s suggestion, scored a ticket. It was money well spent.
We’re losing way too many talented folks lately, and it makes me sad that Ronnie Corbett is gone, but happy that he had such a long, wonderful career and, by all accounts, a happy life.
And now, sadly and for the last time, it’s good night from him.
@johncleese @grahamchapman @montypython #montypython #ronniecorbett