Simon Carr:

The Sketch: Ed, you are more Gromit than Wallace

Share
Related Topics

Yes, a roller coaster of emotions. You must have felt them too, as Harriet wound up the conference. They'd been disappointed, proud, sobered, fortified and as Lord Prescott would say, optimisticated. Yes, and when the polls come out they might get that lovely whizzy feeling you get going over Niagara Falls in a barrel.

Every post-conference poll gives a party a four-point bounce. Iain Duncan Something got four points after his Quiet Man speech. Ed Miliband will need eight to be a success.

Harriet said 3,000 people had joined the party since news of Ed's assumption, maybe he'll make it.

Already he's stamping his authority. Chief whip Nick Brown woke up to welcome the new generation and found a horse's head in his bed. I hope Ed Balls is avoiding those old, metal-grille lifts.

At any rate, the Sketch is rarely susceptible to optimism but there is a cracking good chance this is going to be a great leadership story. When you pause the TV on Ed Miliband's close-ups it is possible to sense in him a reservoir of ambition, determination, and indifference to cruelty. Let him complete his grip on the Shadow Cabinet, softly softly, gently gently. And let us follow at a safe distance in the knowledge this is going to end in Technicolor.

What were the highlights? We start with Gordon Brown's new communications strategy. It's the Elephant Man idea, essentially, bellowing at people "I'm not a politician, I'm a normal person!" He described his marriage saying: "It is a love affair that will never end." And then, echoing her compliment to him: "My wife. My hero."

We should consider ourselves lucky. If he thought normal people quoted Lady Chatterley, we might have got some of the most purple passages in modern politics.

That this is the last sort of thing normal people say was missed by him because – as 61 million people in the UK know – Gordon is far from a normal person.

The other great moment was Eddie Izzard's debut, chairing a Q and A for the new leader. God he made me laugh.

You know how Ed Miliband sloughed off his nicknames in a plea for "grown-up debate"? Forrest Gump, Red Ed and Wallace? Eddie Izzard took up the theme and interrupted his chairing to do some comedy. "You're not Wallace," he said... "You're Gromit!" Gromit is the non-speaking dog in the animated show. There was a certain lack of reaction in the hall. Izzard went on: "Gromit makes a space craft that goes to the moon and stops the evil penguin! So you're more Gromit than Wallace!"

Ed, with exquisite timing: "Let's have some more questions."

I haven't laughed so much at a comedian for years. Eddie wants to be an MP. Let it be so! We all want Eddie to be an MP!

twitter.com/simonsketch

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Opilio Recruitment: UX & Design Specialist

£40k - 45k per year + Benefits: Opilio Recruitment: A fantastic opportunity ...

Opilio Recruitment: Publishing Application Support Analyst

£30k - 35k per year + Benefits: Opilio Recruitment: We’re currently re...

Opilio Recruitment: Digital Marketing Manager

£35k - 45k per year + benefits: Opilio Recruitment: A fantastic opportunity ...

Opilio Recruitment: Sales Manager

£60k - 80k per year + Benefits: Opilio Recruitment: A fantastic opportunity ...

Day In a Page

Read Next
Our political system is fragmented, with disillusioned voters looking to the margins for satisfaction  

Politics of hope needed to avert flight to margins

Liam Fox
David Cameron delivers his speech on immigration at the JCB World Headquarters in Rocester, Staffordshire  

Cameron's speech was an attempt to kill immigration as an election issue

Andrew Grice
Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Christmas jumper craze: Inside the UK factory behind this year's multicultural must-have

Knitting pretty: British Christmas Jumpers

Simmy Richman visits Jack Masters, the company behind this year's multicultural must-have
French chefs have launched a campaign to end violence in kitchens - should British restaurants follow suit?

French chefs campaign against bullying

A group of top chefs signed a manifesto against violence in kitchens following the sacking of a chef at a Paris restaurant for scalding his kitchen assistant with a white-hot spoon
Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour War and Peace on New Year's Day as Controller warns of cuts

Just what you need on a New Year hangover...

Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Cuba set to stage its first US musical in 50 years

Cuba to stage first US musical in 50 years

Claire Allfree finds out if the new production of Rent will hit the right note in Havana
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Paul Scholes column: I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season

Paul Scholes column

I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
Lewis Moody column: Stuart Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

Lewis Moody: Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

So what must the red-rose do differently? They have to take the points on offer 
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game