Tony Blair: Don’t Let the Door Hit Ya…

So, Tony Blair‘s stepping down on June 27th, ushering in a whole new era in British politics. You might think today would be a moment of reverence and thoughtful reflection, but mostly, British papers are focusing on what a sh*t he was and how they can’t wait to see the back-end of him getting smaller and smaller as he clears out of his office. Here are some of the day’s highlights:

The Guardian, The Times, and The Daily Telegraph all have multimedia timelines of the Blair years.

Tony Blair’s not the prime minister, he’s a very naughty boy.(BBC)

How Blair’s legacy will be viewed around the world.(BBC)

“I’m not a real PM, I’m a cool PM.”(BBC)

Daily Mail readers have already broken out the champagne.

Cartoonists will miss him…sorta: “I detest the man and what he’s done. But he’s great to draw. You put all that bile, hatred and angst into drawing.”(Reuters)

Even though today’s ostensibly about the Prime Minster’s track record, Alice Thomson can’t help pointing out wife Cherie Blair‘s failures in her hilariously bitchy piece in Telegraph. She compares her unfavorably to other PM spouses:

“Denis Thatcher was loved as a national icon. Norma Major was treasured for keeping her left-over cheese gratings in the deep freeze. But Cherie is seen as having no redeeming features. She is the grasping career woman, the wife who can’t say no to a freebie.

When she buys her shoes on eBay, she is chastised as miserly; when she borrows Cliff Richards’ house, she is sponging off the rich. Early on, when she tried to do the mumsy bit and talk about her favorite recipes and knitting patterns, everyone laughed. (…)

The pictures of her in her nightie on May 2 a decade ago show just how unprepared she was for public life.

From that moment on, everything about her was scrutinized. She didn’t have a perfect figure and her dress sense was bizarre.

In his diaries, Piers Morgan, then editor of the Mirror, says she pleaded with him: “Please don’t put in pictures of my cellulite when I go on holiday.”

Of course, she only has Ms. Blair’s best interests at heart…

Kevin Wicks

Kevin Wicks founded BBCAmerica.com's Anglophenia blog back in 2005 and has been translating British culture for an American audience ever since. While not British himself - he was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri - he once received inordinate hospitality in London for sharing the name of a dead but beloved EastEnders character. His Anglophilia stems from a high school love of Morrissey, whom he calls his "gateway drug" into British culture.

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