April 4, 2010
David Cameron as Gene Hunt? Labour must be living life on Mars (Matthew d'Ancona, 03 Apr 2010, Daily Telegraph)
Alastair Campbell used to joke that when he left Tony Blair's employ he would set up a website called www.outoftouch.com. Now returned to New Labour's inner sanctum and a regular member of Peter Mandelson's election strategy gatherings, Mr Campbell should recall his own gag (originally made at a time when his party still looked more or less unbeatable) and ask himself if it is funny any more. [...]Posted by oj at April 4, 2010 6:16 AM
There is so much wrong with this that one scarcely knows where to start. The principal point is that Gene Hunt, the politically incorrect, no-nonsense, get-the-job-done copper played by Philip Glenister, has become an unexpected national hero and sex symbol, inspiring T-shirts, collections of his best quotations, and other merchandise. Plenty of disagreeable things happened in the Eighties: the miners' strike wasn't much fun, nor the dole queues, nor the sporadic riots. I don't suppose it would have done Cameron and Osborne any favours to depict them as Brideshead's Sebastian Flyte and Charles Ryder from the great 1981 television adaptation, with William Hague as a bald Aloysius the teddy bear.
Instead, New Labour has decided to associate Cameron explicitly with a fictional character who personifies all that was best, most gleeful and is most fondly remembered about the Thatcher decade – when the nation began to feel proud of itself once more, when it sensed the possibility of greatness afresh, when it started to pump testosterone again.