This is a real nice army base you got here, colonel. Be a shame if something were to happen to it.
~ Luigi Vercoti trying to extort an army colonel

Luigi Vercoti is a low-level East End gangster with Sicilian connections from Monty Python's Flying Circus who wears a moustache, sunglasses, and a pin-stripe suit. He is often involved in operations that turn out to be very poorly camouflaged illegal businesses, such as a nightclub "for the gentry" that is in reality a brothel. He is sometimes seen with his brother Dino. He appears in "Ron Obvious", "The Piranha Brothers", and "Army Protection Racket".

He was portrayed by the late Terry Jones.


Ron Obvious

Vercoti appears in "Ron Obvious" as the titular daredevil's manager. He encourages Obvious to try and jump the English Channel and eat an Anglican cathedral, with the latter resulting in Obvious breaking his jaw. He then makes an appearance when he gets Obvious to try and dig to Java, showing a map of how this would work. When asked how it's going, Vercoti attempts to evade the question before eventually giving in and asking Obvious how far he got, causing it to be revealed that Obvious has only got two feet six inches due to not having a spade. In the next scene, Vercoti is with a reporter discussing the fact that Obvious is going to split a train carriage with his nose. The reporter attempts to steer the conversation towards the fact that Vercoti has been accused of exploiting Obvious, but just then a train is heard, followed by the sound of Obvious screaming. Then, the scene cuts to Vercoti explaining that Obvious, heavily bandaged from the last incident, is going to be jettisoned out of the earth's atmosphere in order to run to Mercury. However, this simply kills Obvious and leaves Vercoti with one last resort; he stands by Obvious' tombstone claiming that he's attempting to break the record for the longest time spent underground.

Piranha Brothers

Vercoti briefly appears in the "Piranha Brothers" sketch, when he's interviewed and says he's "seen grown men pull their own heads off rather than face Doug".

Army Protection Racket

Vercoti and his brother Dino arrive at an army base and Luigi tells the colonel that it's a nice base and it would "be a shame if something were to happen to it". When the colonel fails to understand, Dino breaks one of the ornaments. They refuse to sit down and mock the colonel when he fails to realise what they want. They find out the colonel has 500 tanks and tell him that they might break. Once again, the colonel fails to understand, so Luigi crushes something on his desk. Luigi and Dino interrogate the colonel and discover he has 500 tanks, 7000 infantry, 600 artillery troops and two paratrooper divisions, which they state could burn down as "Fires happen". They then finally cut to the chase and tell the colonel to "suppose some of your tanks was to get broken and troops started getting lost, er, fights started breaking out during general inspection, like". Dino mocks the idea that they could be making threats, then Luigi demands money in return for not doing anything to the base. The colonel begins protesting, and Luigi and Dino think he's refusing and begin to cut the amount of money, only to discover that he's actually complaining about the sketch being poorly written, as he apparently hasn't had any funny lines. The colonel calls off the sketch despite the brothers complaining that he can't do that and accusing him of only doing it because he doesn't have a punchline. Despite their protestations, the colonel's request goes ahead and the next sketch comes on.


Michael Palin, who played Luigi, also played The Smuggler, Jack Lint, the leader of the Knights Who Say Ni and the right head of the Three-Headed Giant.

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