PMQs Sketch: Were Her Strepsils Swapped for Performance Enhancers?

At Prime Minister’s Questions, at six minutes past midday, Theresa May almost began to dance. Jeremy Bernard Corbyn had just tried to catch her off-guard – rather like a mugger – by leading on London’s crime wave. That is, the plague of midnight stabbing and acid-ing unleashed by New Labour’s lost children. Cue Theresa: “He might not have noticed but the Police and Crime Commissioner in London is the Mayor…”

As soon as she said “mayor”, Theresa May started to flick her wrist back and forth, finger outstretched, pointing between the government and opposition benches. This is a new action in a limited repertoire of gestures, a far cry from the ‘nothing has changed maniacal double-hand wave’. Turning side on, she paused, then said: “is he one of ours or one of yours?”

Unusually, her backbenchers roared with glee. Damian Green raised a smile wider than a pornstar’s legs. And then it really started to happen.  Riding the crest of the wave, as stand-up comics call it, Theresa May herself smiled and said: “perhaps the leader of the Labour Party thinks the mayor’s not Labour enough for him.”

Had her Strepsils been swapped for some banned performance enhancing drug? How long could this near-symphonic high last for the Prime Minister? She had succeed in delighting the House more with this attacking first answer than she has at any parliamentary appearance since the election. Put more of this in her Benylin!

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PMQs Sketch: House of Commons? House of Wrong’Uns

Westminster is engulfed in scandal, so it was inevitable Jeremy Corbyn would lead on that sordid three-letter-word ending with ‘x’: tax. Importing 957 corporate jets “seems a bit excessive for any island anywhere”, said the Labour leader, once again trying out his tone of jokey understatement, which definitely doesn’t have the ring of having been constantly delivered in front of the mirror.

Actually, who am I kidding? Let’s not bother going through PMQs line-by-line. We all know what’s on your mind. MPs scanned the chamber, their eyes darting from alleged sex pest to alleged sex pest. On the government front bench sat several individuals who had been named in the newspapers in recent days, one only this morning. On the backbenches on all sides there were others. If only there were some kind of spreadsheet to keep track of them…

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PMQs Sketch: Red Sky at Night, Jez’s Delight

Now we know what the red sky meant. This was the week Jeremy Corbyn (68, MI5 watchlist, 2 E’s at A-Level) would finally win at Prime Minister’s Questions.

Before we begin, might we just take a moment to wonder: what does it say about Britain and its government that this outrageous old fool has come so far? This is the House of Commons at Prime Minister’s Question time. The eyes of the world are fixed on the ancient, near-holy place. Around the globe in TV news control rooms, in bureaucrats’ offices and Ambassadors’ residences, in palaces and parliaments, serious people with serious faces make communion with this weekly High Mass of democracy.

And who do they see beating up the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland? Jeremy Bernard Corbyn, the Frank Spencer of politicians, a man with the intellectual prowess of a peanut and the verbal agility of a concrete bollard. Is this weekly national disgrace behind the fall in the pound? How they must laugh at us in capital cities from Athens to Addis Ababa…

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About “Corbyn’s Best PMQs”…

It only took one of the most disastrous weeks for a Prime Minister in modern British political history to spur Jeremy Corbyn into a barely half-competent PMQs performance. If Jez can install a hard-leftist as May’s ENT specialist, block book the nation’s comic hecklers, get a Momentum plant in a Velcro factory and arrange for Tory conference to be held weekly he’ll be really flying.

Until then pundits are at risk of overstating Jezza’s new-found ‘proficiency’, which entirely consisted in just about managing to ask all of questions on the same half-tricky topic in the right order. Farcically, he still can’t go on Brexit…

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PMQs Sketch: First Dates

PMQs: every Wednesday lunchtime it feels like watching an action replay of the worst first date you have ever been on in your life. Like a cocky sixth-former with horrendously bad chat, Jez always over-plans his opening gambit: this time it was disability rights. Hapless and out of fashion, his first lines hit so far off base that they force May to rely on stock phrases she had mentally planned out for different scenarios. Like an under-confident teenage girl trying to recall what she said to herself in the mirror the night before, May hesitates before every response. Will they ever get anywhere near the hot verbal intercourse we all crave?

The main course seldom goes better. Jez’s material was again worthy and stale; he overcooked public sector pay with statistics. Meanwhile, the bloody difficult date sat opposite might as well have been in a different restaurant. May is a clock-watching woman, she has no desire to be there: the kind of girl who might just vanish from the table while you’ve gone to the gents. This week, the last PMQs before conferences, it was especially clear she could not wait to get the taxi home. She regards every question as an attempt to dishonour her, yet she is dealing with a man who essentially cannot perform. It is painful to watch her act so defensively against Jez who, when it comes to debate, cannot keep it up…

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McPMQs

What do a McDonald’s worker and Jeremy Corbyn have in common? Two E’s at A-Level. But more than that, in fact: as the hot potatoes of Brexit and immigration policy sizzled unattended in the frying pan of politics, Jez chose to begin PMQs with an ardent defence of Britain’s burger flippers. Why?

Because Jeremy Corbyn feels a natural affinity with the fast food operative; he is no less than the patron saint of sausage shufflers. Jez is deeply aware that nothing more should have become of him in this life, he should have been that unwillingly-uniformed delinquent stood behind the McDonald’s counter, red-hatted and forever destined to fill paper cartons full of soggy fries. In fact, Jez single-handedly undermines the message of McStrike. Jeremy Corbyn is exactly what happens when you pay a McDonald’s one-star worker more than £100,000 a year: you get a woefully over-promoted half-wit unable to correctly follow orders, their salary entirely out of step with their abilities and performance. Then again Vegan Jez wouldn’t fit in at McDonald’s…

Tom Watson would be on the burger station, wouldn’t he? Slipping one out of every two beef patties slyly into his capacious gob, chucking the odd one into the mouth of Emily Thornberry, poised on the other side of the grill. It’d be like feeding one of those plastic bins made to look like an animal. Don’t put Laura Pidcock on the tills for God’s sake; she won’t talk to any of the customers. Come to think of it, could any of these jokers make an even half-arsed attempt at running an average fast food outlet? Extrapolate further and you see the whole thing is little more than McPMQs: the same old diet of junk is still constantly served up, the quality improves not a bit. At least a McDonald’s is over quickly…

And like turning a burger, Jez flips from the private to public sector: for him they are two sides of the same steak, both equally deserving to be thrown on the fire. “Warm words don’t pay food bills. Pay rises will help to do that. She must end the pay cap.” Almost immediately, the PM drops the entire dinner on the floor, saying he wants “money for this, that and the other”. Like a group of hoodlums gathered at midnight in the upstairs of a Maccy D’s in the rough part of town, Labour MPs whooped and hollered. She was doing passably well, but as usual impaled herself with one of her own attack lines, coming out like a kebab on a skewer.

No mention of Jacob Rees-Mogg; well, you wouldn’t catch him dead under the Golden Arches. The only actual news to come out of PMQs was a plea for an ancient driving law to be changed. It’s the first PMQs of the new parliamentary year, and that’s the top line. It’s almost like “nothing has changed”: every week, the menu is entirely the same, and, just like a McDonald’s, it literally ends up down the toilet…

DPMQs Sketch: Shadow Cabinet Ladies Night

With the boss otherwise engaged, Damian Green strolled down to the country pub for a quiet pint. He found himself at the shadow cabinet’s all-women lock-in being held at a suburban All Bar One. This was Emily Thornberry’s lunchtime on the tiles; this was her at 3AM at 12 midday. Clothed from head-to-toe in lip-stick-red – a flash of gold from the earrings – Green could not hope to match the entirely unwarranted yet somehow lethal sass of this plump old lawyer as she played the common cougar. Minutes earlier Thornberry is in the Common’s ladies loo, looking at herself over and over again in the mirror (you suspect Green doesn’t ever look). She winks at herself, blows herself a kiss. Don’t you look good darling. You go give it to him; you are the hen at the party. He’s only a man…

Green would confirm Lady Nugee’s long-held views of all those unfortunate enough to have been born with a penis. Like every doddery old bloke in the history of human race, the First Secretary brought his punishment entirely upon himself. Immediately joking about women and leadership when up against Thornberry is ill-advised. He tried this one: “There are many distinguished people – of both sexes – who have done [PMQs] in this party, because we of course elect women leaders.” If there are two things Emily Thornberry is sure of – and there may only be two such things in the universe – it’s that she is a woman and that she is a leader. Instantly she parries: three Labour women had led at PMQs since Theresa May came on the scene. Don’t start with me boy, I’ll make mincemeat out of you… Continue reading

Robot Wars

Tonight on BBC Two’s Robot Wars, Prime Minister’s Question Time! And here come the competitors once again, rolling their way through the tunnel and into the green-plated arena. The audience is packed behind the crash barriers, and as the lights go up and the smoke clears we see them: MayBot and JezBot! The Robot Wars theme plays and the crowd goes wild…

The roboteers up in the gallery have made several changes to their respective machines since last week’s fight. In just seven days MayBot 2.0 has been fitted with completely new weaponry: you’ll notice that huge pair of scissors fixed to her front bumper. That cutting gear is christened ‘The Deficit Destroyer‘: it’s designed to slice through the unlimited spending team JezBot want to deploy. MayBot also now boasts a rear weapon: the ‘Austerity Angle Grinder‘ spins at frightening speeds, slicing through cash. Her critics say she should have deployed these weapons in the heats which preceded this series; if you’re one of our regular viewers, you’ll remember them from the good old days of CamBot and OsBot. Will a return to the old design save the blue team?

Ah! Our cameraman catches a glimpse of Professor Milne, designer of the JezBot, silently watching the via video link from the engineer’s workshop. No obvious changes to his machine this week – but if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. JezBot’s 1970s chassis – which the critics branded useless – has been serving the red team pretty well recently… 
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Jeremy Corbyn’s Greatest Hits

For the final PMQs of this parliament Jeremy Corbyn graced us with a selection of his greatest hits, and of course no Best of Jez Compilation would be complete without him reading out bizarre letters from improbable sounding individuals. Today was the turn of Maureen and Sybil, who apparently aren’t characters in an Enid Blyton novel but are actually 100% non-fictional Labour supporters. Happily Maureen wanted to have a moan about her pension, and Sybil was writing to let Jeremy know that at the age of 88 she was now afraid to go into hospital. Isn’t every 88 year old?

But the coalition of victimhood wasn’t complete just yet. The Labour leader went on to wail about housing (worse now than it has ever been at any time since the Normans invaded and we lived in little mud huts); and of course his favourite myth:an education system that relies on begging letters from schools to maintain employment and books in the classroom”. All the while he painted a picture of a Britain full of downtrodden yet whiny little peasants being repeatedly stamped on by the capitalist jackboot.

That’s how Jeremy Corbyn views the world you see, as some sort of Ken Loach-esque struggle between the plucky oppressed proletariat and the evil capitalist monster let loose by an indifferent state. In this absurd alternate reality 88-year-olds called Sybil are marching hand in hand with non-binary inter-sectional lesbians and coal-stained miners straight out of the pit. Think the Pepsi advert, but more nauseating.

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PMQs & Budget Double Bill


Jeremy Corbyn kicked PMQs off today by bragging about his party’s impeccable record on gender equality, boasting more women MPs than all other parties in this House combined”. One of which he’d even bonked himself and then promoted to the front bench! Now if that’s not equality then I don’t  know what is.

Of course this being International Women’s Day Mr. Corbyn would not be the only person to pipe up with some cheap gender-points scoring. For the Tories it fell to Victoria Atkins who asked the PM if she would “confirm that, when it comes to female Prime Ministers, it is 2-0 to the Conservatives?”. The surprise here was that this honour wasn’t bestowed upon professional brown-nose Chris Philp, best known for asking the Government probing questions along the lines of  “whether or not the Prime Minister would agree with me that the sun does really shine out of her magnificent backside?”. Continue reading

DAB PMQ

Readers of this sketch will remember its recurring and heartfelt concern for the sanity of poor Tom Watson. First chronicling his deepening existential despair here, in subsequent months I went on to speculate it was only a matter of time before he would finally lose it and go the “full Bill Murray and turn up to PMQs stark bollock naked”, all in a desperate attempt to break this cycle of Groundhog Day-style self-immolations by the Labour Leader. Today was that day…

He’d almost made it as well, valiantly surviving most of Jeremy Corbyn’s rambling monologues by nodding his head slowly back and forth in scenes eerily reminiscent of One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest. That lasted right up until Mr. Corbyn finally took the plunge into complete self-parody and used his last question to spit at Theresa May that she needed to “INVEST IN OUR. ENN. AITCH. ESS!”, dementedly hammering his fist on the despatch box like a toddler to punctuate each syllable of “NHS”. At this point something broke in Mr. Watson, and he decided to do what any normal 50 year old politician would in such a situation and throw his arms maniacally in the air, performing an urban youth dance-craze known as a “dab”. Well, at least he didn’t go full Miley Cyrus and twerk on a dwarf in the chamber. Then again, Bercow may have been game…

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Lucky Donald Trump is a Calm and Forgiving Man

This week has been a political wet dream for Jeremy Corbyn. Lefties angry? Check. Popular protests? Check. US President to blame? Check. Hasn’t spilt Cup A Soup down himself on the News at Ten or participated in some other colossal screw up in front of the entire nation? Check! The Labour leader and Seumas Milne were no doubt rubbing their hands in glee preparing for today’s session:

“So, Seumas, let me get this straight. All I’ve got to say is Trump is racist; Muslims are our friends; and call on the Prime Minister to publicly shun the most powerful country in the world and our principal ally and trading partner? And I win? But isn’t that insane? Isn’t what I’m asking for literally insane Seumas?”

“It may be insane but that’s beside the point, Comrade! Look, the PM can’t really disagree because it’s hate speech. And the Guardian and BBC will laud it as a “brave” and “principled” intervention, even though really we’re just beta-males that would happily plunge our economy off a cliff to safeguard our own demented worldview. But don’t worry no one will mention that. It’s a win-win situation!”

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Quote of the Day

Noel Gallagher on Brexit:

“In England, the Brexit thing, it’s like, I can’t believe there’s so much noise about it… It was put to the people as a vote, the people voted. That’s democracy. F***ing get over it.”

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