Eric Idle’s ‘Universe’

(Above: Eric Idle)

Science as only Monty Python can explain it.

Monty Python alum Eric Idle will debut a one-hour variety special, Eric Idle’s The Entire Universe, tonight on PBS at 10 pm ET. (Check here for your local station and time.)

Written and hosted by Idle, the program seeks to “unlock the secrets of the universe” in “a cosmic explosion of comedy, music, dance and (of course) science.”

Guests include British physicist Brian Cox (not be confused with the ubiquitous actor), Willow’s Warwick Davis, comedian Noel Fielding, The Infinite Monkey Cage host Robin Ince, Game of ThronesHannah Waddingham, and European Space Agency astronaut and former Space Station crewmember Tim Peake.

During the hour, Professor Cox attempts “to explain the 138-billion-year history of the universe — including the Big Bang, the space-time continuum, fundamental particles, gravitational fields and more.” Comedy bits include Field playing both Albert Einstein and a Higgs Bosun particle; jokes contrasting Davis’ height with “Pluto’s diminished status in the solar system”; and Waddingham singing “about time and the speed of light backed by dancers from the Muriel Tritt School of Music and Dance.”

Idle and John du Prez, who worked together on Spamalot, wrote the songs for Universe.

And once you’ve explored The Entire Universe, Monty Python would be happy to explain The Meaning of Life for you.

Here Idle sings the “Galaxy Song” in the organ donor sketch from their classic 1983 sketch comedy film:

The Meaning of Life is available for streaming starting at $2.99 from Vudu and other providers.

About Larry Greenberg

A former local beat reporter and film critic, co-founder Lawrence Greenberg has more than 25 years’ experience as a writer and public relations executive.

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