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Dublin: 2°C Sunday 17 January 2021

Valentine's Day Massacre and other assorted debate clichés...

The outcome of tonight’s leaders’ debate isn’t certain – but the likelihood of commentators employing a few lovelorn idioms in the aftermath is odds-on…

Image: Clare Bell via Flickr

WE KNOW MANY of you are enjoying our Election Bingo – and have been ticking off those campaign clichés as they come.

But we don’t doubt that the timing of tonight’s five-way leaders’ debate will be particularly tempting to punsters and idiom fans. What are the chances that some commentator will judge the debate a “Valentine’s Day massacre?” Or that there was “no love lost” between the debaters?

We waited long enough for Brian Cowen to name the date (sorry). Here are some clichés to watch out for when commentators begin to deconstruct tonight’s televised battle:

  • Least likely to be used: Love-in
  • Most likely visual reference: Something including Labour and roses
  • Literary cliché: Romantic Ireland’s dead and gone
  • Musical cliché: My Funny Valentine; Bloody Valentine
  • To describe Enda Kenny and Eamon Gilmore if they team up against Martin: Fling; kissed and made up; marriage of convenience.
  • To describe John Gormley and Micheal Martin: A messy divorce
  • An emotional plea to the electorate: Hearts and minds
  • If Kenny and Gilmore bicker: Lovers’ tiff; we were on a break; all’s fair in love and war
  • Failure to connect with the audience: Cupid missed his mark; Ireland has fallen out of love with X, Y, Z…
  • An unconvincing argument: Lip service; sweet nothings
  • A REALLY unconvincing argument: Passion-killer
Do feel free to add your own…

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