Of all the bars in all the world, Boris walks into this one

He gets a walk-on part in 'EastEnders', but a rather larger role in a docu-drama on the Bullingdon Club

It was the perfect invitation for a politician who has loved playing the fool since getting his biggest laughs while stumbling over lines in school productions. How could Boris Johnson, Mayor of London, resist the offer of a quick pint in the Queen Vic and a cameo in EastEnders, bantering with Barbara Windsor?

The day that London's two best-known blondes met in Walford will be screened on Thursday night. The mayor insists it's all about supporting "a London icon". But there's a happy coincidence of positive, prime-time exposure for himself.

While some believe, uncharitably, that there is no limit to Johnson's shamelessness, it appears he is less keen for his TV audience to scrutinise the schedules the following week. The reason? When Boris Met Dave, a docu-drama about his uneven relationship with the Conservative leader, David Cameron, to be aired on More4.

The programme dwells on the pair's schooling at Eton and later antics in the Bullingdon Club, the infamous waistcoat-and-tails fraternity at Oxford University. It features old tales that both men would probably prefer to forget. In one controversial piece of dramatic licence, the programme shows a young Cameron with paraphernalia for smoking cannabis in his school desk.

Toby Young, who scripted When Boris Met Dave, has revealed that there are limits to the mayor's love of the limelight. Young put a dramatised Johnson in his play Who's The Daddy?, a farce about goings-on at The Spectator, which Johnson used to edit. Just before the opening night, Johnson sent Young – whom he has known since university – a postcard saying: "I always knew my life would turn into a farce. I'm just grateful it has been entrusted to two such distinguished men of letters."

But when there was a possibility of Who's the Daddy? transferring to bigger audiences in the West End, Young said, "Boris called me on an almost nightly basis. He was very anxious that it should not be transferred."

Johnson has made no effort to restrict When Boris Met Dave, said Young: "When he first heard about it, Boris said, 'He's just winding me up, isn't he?'

"The programme has been portrayed by some as a vicious and irreverent take on our relationship but, actually, it is fairly lighthearted and affectionate. It doesn't matter how many faintly embarrassing stories appear, they don't really damage Boris. Dave's image is a bit more susceptible."

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Media

Recruitment Genius: B2B Media Sales Professional - Work From Home

£20000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Enjoying rapid growth we contin...

Recruitment Genius: B2B Media Sales Professional - Work From Home

£20000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Enjoying rapid growth we contin...

Recruitment Genius: B2B Media Sales Professional - Work From Home

£20000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Enjoying rapid growth we contin...

Recruitment Genius: B2B Media Sales Professional - Work From Home

£20000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Enjoying rapid growth we contin...

Day In a Page

The Greek referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its distinct lack of any genuine popular legitimacy

Gaping hole at the heart of the European Union

Treatment of Greece has shown up a lack of genuine legitimacy
Number of young homeless in Britain 'more than three times the official figures'

'Everything changed when I went to the hostel'

Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
Compton Cricket Club

Compton Cricket Club

Portraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb to be displayed in London
London now the global money-laundering centre for the drug trade, says crime expert

Wlecome to London, drug money-laundering centre for the world

'Mexico is its heart and London is its head'
The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court that helps a winner keep on winning

The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court

It helps a winner keep on winning
Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate
Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Africa on the menu: Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the continent

Africa on the menu

Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'