A miserable little pleader!
Oh look at the way it is today
Its getting out of hand
There’s no decorum
In the forum …
It struck me recently that the 1971 big screen adaptation of Up Pompeii, a spin-off from the TV series that starred Frankie Howard, had something in common with the current calamitous state of the UK’s governing Conservative party and its erstwhile leader, Theresa May.
In the modern day, the Conservative party is in a state of civil war and meltdown over the country’s absurd referendum outcome to leave the European Union, and its leader has been in a state of constant denial about the chances of getting her exit ‘deal’ with the EU through the UK’s Parliament. Moreover, she has also diminished the status of the UK Prime Minister from one of supposed statesmanship to that of a beggar.
- She has pleaded with Parliament to pass her withdrawal bill;
- she has beseeched her party to support her;
- and she has begged the EU to put the UK’s interests over above its own.
Anyone with an ounce of insight would know that none of those entreaties would accrue.
So what has this to do with Up Pompeii? Well, for starters, fans of the film will know that a bunch of Senators are conspiring to do away with their leader, the Emperor Nero, which rings a very loud bell, but there’s more.
Consider this exchange from the film, something that I apply to the Conservatives (and, in fairness, also to the Labour Party) and to all so-called Brexiteers in general:
Cassandra: Pompeii’s citizens will befall the fate of the sinful men of Gomorrah!
Lurcio: Will they, indeed?
Cassandra: And Sodom
Lurcio: Ooh, I agree, the lot of them!
But what stands out is Lurcio’s similarity to Theresa May:
Lurcio: I know, I’m a miserable pleader!
Here’s the limerick…
There was once a political leader
Who was told that we just didn’t need her.
When she begged: “Let me stay”
We all cried: “Go away”
“You’re nowt but a miserable pleader!”