Sunday, March 14, 2010

Camerons Impress in TV Docu-Love In

It's been a hilarious hour watching many leftish Twitterers banging on about how outrageous it is that Sir Trevor McDonald has given David Cameron such a soft interview. Where's the policy? they moan. Er, about the same place as it was in the Piers Morgan interview. In the green room, safely out of sight.

I may be a partisan Conservative, but at least I recognised that Gordon Brown emerged well from his interview with Piers Morgan (see my review HERE). I wrote...

I think there was little doubt that he came over well. Much more human than we've seen him before, but then again, with the standard of questioning he got, it would have been hard to have come across badly. He spoke movingly about the death of his daughter and his son's illness. It seemed genuine to me, with no hint of an onion being present. He managed to brush aside easily any question he didn't want to answer (like his sexual prowess at university) but at the end I wondered if I had really learned anything new about him. As an interview it stank. And I say this with some regret because I actually think Piers Morgan can be a very talented interviewer. But there was no probing, no exploring, nothing. It was just an hour long party political broadcast on behalf of the Gordon Brown Party. If I were a Brown adviser this evening I'd be patting myself on the back for a PR job well done.


Frankly, I could write exactly the same words about the McDonald/Cameron programme. As an interview it was so sacharine filled as to give the word interview a bad name. Richard Bacon tweeted...
Trevor McDonald is a Jedi Master at getting no revelations out of his guests.

But that's hardly the point. Cameron came over well and so did Samantha, who I actually thought was the star of the programme. More please. Far from being the rather posh, aloof person some had thought she was, she came over as warm, funny, intelligent and slightly cheeky.

To a signed up Conservative like me, it was a great programme. It gave me a warm feeling inside. It confirmed my respect for David Cameron and made me want to redouble my efforts to get him elected.

But they key thing is what floating voters thought if it. I phoned five non political friends this evening to ask them to watch it and then email me their thoughts. I wanted to wait for their reactions before posting this mini review. Here are a selection of their comments...

  • "I never thought Cameron could make me cry, but I was genuinely moved by his words over the death of their son"
  • "Made me far more likely to vote for him, but was a bit disappointed by the total lack of policy on show"
  • "Loved SamCam. Why on earth haven't we seen her before? Loved her slight Essex style of speaking!"
  • "Is Trevor McD the worst interviewer on TV or what? But in a way, I didn't mind that. I learnt far more about Cameron in that hour than I have in the last two years. And it was mostly good. Glad to see he has a temper."
  • "Would I vote for him on the strength of that programme? No. Am I more likely to vote for him having watched it? Yes."
  • I wanted to see more of Cameron's mother. He clearly takes after her.

I wonder what the audience figures are compared to the Brown programme with Piers Morgan. Initially, I was disappointed this wasn't filmed in front of a studio audience, but maybe it was right not to do a programme which was a direct comparison to Brown's.

I have to say, that if it were possible to send a DVD of it to every floating voter, it would probably be money well spent.

In short, a triumph.

UPDATE: If you missed the programme it is now on ITVplayer HERE. Other reviews from...

Ben Brogan
Tim Montgomerie

30 comments:

Bird said...

Ccameron came across very well, albeit with a sympathetic interrogator. well done ITV, the only channel without an anti-Tory agenda.
Samantha also did well. Hopefully the women columnists will compare her natural support for her husband with the more calculated efforts of Sarah, the experienced PR pro, to rebrand Gordan as a normal human being.

Jimmy said...

"I have to say, that if it were possible to send a DVD of it to every floating voter, it would probably be money well spent."

Yes but how many people do you know with that sort of money to throw around?

hafod said...

This was a PR triumph for Cameron but SamCam is a mockney fake who did not impress. No sign of the nanny in all those family shots.

Jack Adlam said...

"well done ITV, the only channel without an anti-Tory agenda" - you really must change this record!

I thought it was great to see a more human side to DC - it certainly won't do him any harm.

Uncle Bob said...

The best review came from my mother who was happy to declare that she'd happily spend time talking to Cameron but would run a mile if she ever caught sight of Brown. And she's from the Rhondda and voted labour all her life.

jbw said...

"I have to say, that if it were possible to send a DVD of it to every floating voter, it would probably be money well spent."

But that’s not to say anyone will watch it. All my junk mail gets binned after a very cursory look to ensure its not proper mail in disguise.

Lady Finchley said...

Delighted that they both came over so well. I am old enough to remember Kennedy's election and I remember my mother and all her friends voting for him not only because they wanted a change from the old guard but because they were utterly charmed by him and Jackie. My mother and her friends were not political-they just liked what they saw.

Guthrum said...

This is not repeat not anything to do with politics- it just shows that the political classes think folk are just dumb enough to be taken in by this crap from the Brown and Cameron camps.

Utterly pathetic and shows the utter contempt they hold us in

wv nests- how apt

gravenimage said...

@Jimmy,

"Yes but how many people do you know with that sort of money to throw around?"

I know, you'd have to be some sort of mad James Bond villain-esque billionaire with his own private Carribean island...

spencer said...

Seeing the previews from the Brown interview, I chose not to watch and was glad that I didn't.

Seeing the previews from the Cameron interview, I was enticed to watch. It was enjoyable viewing, NOT EMBARRASSING and both Camerons came over as very nice people I'd actually like to meet - can't say the same about the Browns.

skynine said...

GoBro will be throwing his Nokia. McDonalds knighthood is recinded.

And Hafod. Are you saying that the Blairs and Browns don't have a Nanny?

DespairingLiberal said...

Jimmy - could you be thinking of Lord A$hcroft? What a thought. There would have to be some sort of national recycling scheme for the DVDs of course. Perhaps they could be sent to China as educational tools - how to not challenge a politician?

DespairingLiberal said...

There is such a fiercely concerted effort from the CCHQ machine to prove that daveandsam are not posh that it is almost beyond satire. What next? Will they appear on Ant and Dec? Get sweary on a cooking show with Gordon Ramsay? Sheesh.

One thing that really struck though was how different Dave looks in real life now compared to those posters - they weren't just "airbrushed", there was some definite facial manipulation there. I think the nose was quite heavily altered for example.

Despite all this, I actually quite like Master Cameron and he came over well. But I suppose it's not too difficult in such a flattering interview context.

Can you comment on your yet further slippage in the polls today Iain? What is your maths saying the result will be now - Labour as the largest party?

Westerly21 said...

If the next government is to be formed on personality and not politics, why don't we change the format and hold a political version of X Factor? Style over substance seems to be the new order!

David Boothroyd said...

However well Cameron came across (and there were no great gaffes), it won't do him much good. Cameron doesn't have a problem with coming across as likeable; he's already got all the support he's going to get on that ground. (Brown did, which is why he had to do the Piers Morgan programme)

Cameron's problem is different - the public are not convinced, and are becoming less convinced as time goes on, that he has a fully worked set of policies which would work better in helping Britain than the policies we are presently following.

There is a danger that the Trevor McDoughnut programme will backfire if it convinces the public that Cameron is just a likeable lightweight.

Letters From A Tory said...

I just wish that all this 'Wife Wars' around election time was accompanied by policy debates rather than replacing them.

Cardinal Richelieu's mole said...

Was it realy a triumph though if he did not cry? - or was he being neo-post-modern, the sly fox?

Weygand said...

Will Michael Aspel be hosting the bathing suit round of this contest?

cyberboris said...

Sam Cam and Sarah Brown are both going to campaign in support of their husbands and some journalists have said that since Sarah is a seasoned PR, she will make mincemeat of Sam.

http://cyberboris.wordpress.com/2010/03/14/sam-v-sarah-in-the-war-of-the-wives/

I don't agree. Mrs. Cameron has a very shy, natural manner, and the hard sell of Sarah Brown is beginning to grate. At first I liked Sarah, because frankly anyone who endures Gordon has my sympathy, but all the schmoozing and spin are repellent in the end. The public is savvy enough to know the difference between a hard sell and a more natural approach. Even if Mrs. cameron does make a few slips, she is so lovely, she is bound to win people over.

Moriarty said...

I see that Jimmy and Despairing Drivel are turning into a double act. A half-wit kowtowing to a non-entity.

Nigel said...

>>Yes but how many people do you know with that sort of money to throw around ?<<

Willie Haughey ?
Charlie Wheelan ?
Lord Paul ?
Lakshmi Mittal ?

But of course, that would be ridiculous. After all. it's the sort of thing that the government advertising budget is for.

Gerry57 said...

Cameron showed he had a warm sense of humour in contrast to the dour Scotsman. The fact that he had a great education should be a plus not a minus. Having watched the tv programme 'Too poor for posh school' it's clear that many working class parents would dearly love to send their children to Eton/Harrow - a doorway to Oxbridge and a good career. It must have been tough though for the young Cameron to board at the tender age of seven, but maybe good experience for his life ahead.
All this class war is rubbish anyway as Gordon Brown comes from the Scottish Elite - he's no Rab Nesbitt.

Moriarty said...

@Gerry

I now have a mental image of him in a string vest.

Thanks for that.

Moriarty said...

Nigel

You forgot to mention one Anthony Lynton Blair, currently non-domiciled in Eaton Place and Buckinghamshire.

norman said...

Jimmy and Boothroyd

Only voters with a strong masochistic tendency will vote for the so called heavy weight clunking fist bully Brown. Wait after the election, which he will lose no doubt whatever youGov Kellner the husband of really lightweight Labour EU foreign secretary wishes, his so called friends will speak about his mental state.

DespairingLiberal said...

Gerry57 - one of the (several) laugh out loud moments in the Brown/Women's Hour bash today was when he started going on about how very ordinary his background was. In fact he is not just not very ordinary but actually rather peculiar in his background, the more you read about it. However, despite the inevitable critique of his performance in this blog, he actually I think did rather well, making a well-thought out and much more calm and intelligent-sounding than usual (for him) rebuttal of the bullying allegations and making mincemeat of several of the sillier allegations.

Gordon is on the way back, despite Murdoch's best efforts. I think we can expect the Sun to go into overdrive mode in the next few weeks - I wonder what the allegations will be? I am assuming the race card will be brought out and played bigtime by both the Tories and Murdoch. Immigration scandals. Burkhas compulsory in schools. Tagging for all white boys. Kosovans selling cocaine to four year olds in country towns. What will the story be I wonder?

(My apologies if I have accidentally given a good idea to the tabbo reptiles. They are at best an uninventive lot, left to their own devices.)

Jason Myers said...

Really enjoyed the show. Thought it was better than the Brown one but then I am a Conservative. Cameron seemed really natural & honest, whereas Brown looked a bit like he'd been coached for weeks.
I like the way David puts himself down now & again. He admits mistakes unlike Brown. His life isn't just politics, unlike Brown. He is a real person.

I thought it was right to tackle the posh issue. What he said was basically if voters don't want a posh PM he wont get in. But if they engage their brains & check out the policies/teams/character then he will win. How is it OK for people to use class against Cameron? No-one ever attacks anyone for being uneducated & working class. A lot of jealousy going on.

Pogo said...

@David Boothroyd, March 15, 2010 9:38:-

There is a danger that the Trevor McDoughnut programme will backfire if it convinces the public that Cameron is just a likeable lightweight.

Maybe better a "likeable lightweight" than a throroughly unlikeable lightweight... Brown, is nothing but a "lightweight" despite all his supposed gravitas etc etc. Being singularly unqualified for the job, he managed to be possibly the worst Chancellor that we've had since that nutter who threw the Crown Jewels into the Wash and is without doubt the worst Prime Minister we've ever had to suffer. Sorry, I don't see him as a "heavyweight" - except in the waisteline division.

Johnny Norfolk said...

I think Cameron IS who purports to be. I think he is genuine in what he says.However I see him more as a Heath, and he carries the rich mans guilt, and that can be as bad as Labours hate for working middle classes. I think he may win but i am not sure he will be hard enough to do what is needed.

The Labour party is and always has been THE nasty party. My fear is tha Cameron will turn the Tories into the wets party

David Boothroyd said...

Overnight viewing figures are in. 1.689m watched Cameron. That's less than half the 4.2m who watched Gordon Brown's interview.