As far as modern cliches go, responding to any political development with  ‘this is just like The Thick of It!!!’ is down there with the worst of them. 

As with any cliche, however, it perseveres because there’s an element of truth to it. Just as a football manager will instinctively reach for ‘a game of two halves’ when a first-half lead is followed by a second-half collapse, rarely has a Tory story in the last few years not led to ‘The Thick of It’ trending on Twitter. 

The final episode of Armando Iannucci’s political satire aired 10 years ago today, but it’s as relevant today as it was when spin doctor Malcolm Tucker ranted his last on October 27, 2012. 

During Donald Trump’s presidency it was repeatedly claimed that satirists would go out of business on account of not being able to come up with anything more bizarre than what was actually happening on CNN every day. Similar suggestions have been put to Iannucci during the Theresa May era, Boris Johnson era and Liz Truss lunch break. 

Asked in 2018 by the NME if he would bring back The Thick of It, Iannucci replied: “It’s not on my agenda, no. If we came up with an episode where the Prime Minister was coughing throughout her speech while the letters on the wall behind her were falling off, you’d think ‘no, that’s just basic’. We’d shred that storyline”. 

Read more: How Graham Norton got dragged into the cancel culture debate

As one of the writers behind Alan Partridge, Iannucci knows how to craft an iconic character. In the 21st century, few fictional personas are invoked as often as that of Malcolm Tucker, played to perfection by Peter Capaldi in both the TV series and big screen spin-off In The Loop.  

A Director of Communications for the government in early seasons and later the opposition, the Scotsman was a firebrand whose profanity-laden streams of invective are endlessly quotable. 

Here are 10 recent political moments where, for all the opinion pieces and in-depth analysis, no-one has put it better than Malcolm Tucker. 

Please note, with this being Malcolm Tucker, some of the videos below may contain 'colourful' language...

‘Boris must go’ protests outside Downing Street following ‘partygate’

“Look, people really like it when you go just a bit early. You know; steely-jawed, faraway look in your eyes! Before you get to the point where they’re sitting round in the pub saying ‘oh, that f***er’s got to go’. You surprise them! ‘Blimey, he’s gone! I didn’t expect that. Resigned? You don’t see that much anymore. Old school. Respect. I rather liked the guy. He was hounded out by the f***ing press!’. 

“How about that, eh? What a way to go!”.

Conservative MP Conor Burns attempts to defend Boris Johnson over ‘partygate’, only to be ridiculed telling Channel 4 News “he was, in a sense, ambushed with a cake”

Malcolm Tucker: “The Prime Minister is the right man ‘FOR’ the moment?

Nicola Murray: “Yeah, that’s what you told me to say”

Malcolm Tucker: “OF the moment. I said ‘OF’ the moment. There is a huge difference between me saying ‘Nicola, I’d like to go FOR a lovely walk with you and ‘Nicola, I’m going to make a hat out OF your f***ing entrails”. 

Boris Johnson resigns

“You off to clear your desk? Don’t forget your lucky gonk and your ‘world’s s***test dad’ mug”. 

Liz Truss resigns

“See you, you’re a f***ing omnishambles, that’s what you are. You’re like that coffee machine, you know: from bean to cup, you f*** up”.

Channel 4 journalist Krishnan Guru-Murthy taken off air for a week for saying “what a c***” after a ‘robust’ exchange with Northern Ireland minister Steve Baker

“I just wanted to say to you by way of introductory remarks that I’m extremely miffed about today’s events, and in my quest to try to make you understand the level of my unhappiness, I’m likely to use an awful lot of what we would call ‘violent sexual imagery’, and I just wanted to check that neither of you would be terribly offended by that”.

Boris Johnson claims to have “cleared the very hurdle of 102 nominations”, only to drop out of the Conservative party leadership race shortly after

Ben Swain: “Where does it leave me?”

Malcolm Tucker: “I guess it leave you standing in a chamber in the House of Commons with your big flaccid d*** hanging out, with a ‘vote for me’ sticking on the end”. 

Penny Mordaunt failing to receive enough nominations to challenge Rishi Sunak for the Conservative party leadership and then failing to land any of the high-profile jobs in his cabinet

“I’ll tell you exactly what people say about you…f*** all. People have got no f***ing opinion about you. You’re like f***ing Special K or f***ing the Moody Blues”. 

Read more: Liz Truss mocked in response to Suella Braverman tofu rant

Suella Braverman breaches ministerial rules by sending an official document from her personal email to a fellow MP

“You got ‘on the record’ and ‘off the record’ f***ing mixed up! What would have happened if George Martin had done that? We’d have no f***ing Beatles, that’s what”. 

Suella Braverman resigning as home secretary last week

“I’ve also drafted you a letter of resignation. You can say you’re jumping before you’re pushed, although we’re gonna be briefing that you were pushed, sorry”. 

Suella Braverman returning as home secretary this week

“Oh, he’ll be back. Like a s*** Terminator”.