Baillieu is no Helen Mirren #vicvotes
Do you recongise this move scene archetype?
At the three quarter mark of a war or action film, one of the key characters suffers a knife or bullet wound. He (almost always a man, although Helen Mirren fits the bill recently in Red) survives but spends the rest of movie getting weaker and weaker, paler and sicker, as he bleeds inexorably to a touching death that acts as an emotional counterweight to the otherwise triumphant ending.
In the grand, unfolding narrative of Victorian state election, Coalition leader Ted Baillieu has the role of the staggering wounded dude locked in. The twist is that the injury is purely self-inflicted: the bizarre and nihilistic decision not to get his election promises properly costed.
The effect of this is that every single time Baillieu puts his head up – more money for trams! New rail links! Hospital beds! – is immediately discounted by the media and the public because his fiscal credibility is chronically impaired.
Smart-arses within the Coalition will point out that Helen Mirren’s character in Red emerged alive and healthy in the last scene of Red.
But I have known Helen Mirren for a long time. I wish very much that she were a friend of mine.
And, Mr Baillieu, you are no Helen Mirren.