Reviewed: The UK's Five Weirdest Euro Election Videos
They somehow manage to be stupid, funny and sad all at the same time.
A screen grab from The English Democrats' party political broadcast
Yes, the build-up to today’s European elections has been dominated entirely by a one-man publicity machine. But that doesn't mean that there aren't other groups of narcissists out there who aren't at least as deserving of your attention. So, before you go to cast your vote for UKIP, let's review some party political broadcasts from other groups – groups who also refuse to adhere to the staid PR conventions of Westminster's "Big Three", like using decent microphones and not putting giant CGI monsters in your videos.
They're all below. Let us know in the comments whether any of them managed to sway you.
As far as tiny right-wing party political broadcasts go, no one’s nailed the re-blog market quite like the An Independence from Europe party. Because what they lack in naming skills, they’ve made up for with this scaremongering B-movie pastiche of a giant killer octopus-type thing with an EU flag on its forehead going HAM all over Westminster and the Bank of England.
The problem, however, is that while the first minute is actually fairly well made – in a Torchwood meets Attack of the Killer Tomatoes kind of way – they blew their budget for the remaining three-and-a-half minutes. Which leaves the rest of the video looking a bit like one of those Colgate adverts where “dentists” stand in shopping centres gormlessly rubbing ice cubes on people’s teeth.
As the clip unfolds, we meet a few of the party’s supporters, including their “Dutch ally” Laurence Stassen, who – confusingly – is also their MEP candidate for South East England. We’re then introduced to party leader Mike Nattrass, MEP for the West Midlands and a man who was elected as a UKIP candidate but de-selected last year after failing their candidate examination. Yep, that's right – he failed an integrity exam that was passed by people who believe in compulsory abortion for foetuses with Down's syndrome and have publicly dismissed all Muslims as "sandal-wearing, bomb-making, camel-riding, goat-fucking ragheads".
Mike subsequently accused Nigel Farage of rigging the process so that only his “cronies” would be hired, before describing UKIP as a “totalitarian regime”. Which seems like a pretty bold statement to make about a party that can’t even organise a political rally, let alone establish central control of an entire country.
The English Democrats video is basically just a bunch of depressing white guys standing in fields, holding blank pieces of card and railing against the non-existent threat of Sharia law. All of which makes me about as proud to be English as the slave trade.
In their broadcast, The Christian Peoples Alliance (CPA) have eschewed peripheral stuff like policies and useful information in favour of just introducing all their European candidates by name, in a list, accompanied by what sounds like something you'd hear on a DJ Koze FACT mix. This is probably wise, given that the last time one of their candidates stood in front of a video camera he told Andrew Neil: "All Christians believe that God does and can do things with nature."
When pushed on whether he thought it possible that God’s anger over gay marriage may have caused the storms at the beginning of this year, he said, "I would certainly agree with that – it is possible [...] A lot of Christians believe that God is angry over gay marriage and God can actually show that anger."
This, unless you're campaigning for mayor in 1920s Bradford, is not a good way to win votes, but who knows: perhaps CPA's inevitable failure to make a dent at the polls will incur the wrath of the Almighty and ruin summer for everyone.
Ah, the BNP. With the rise of UKIP and the emergence of the UK’s new far-right street team, Britain First, poor beleaguered Nick Griffin and his band of tin-pot fascists have had their market share shredded. No surprise, then, that their video opens with an attack not on the EU, or even the coalition government, but on Farage himself.
They accuse the UKIP leader of not being harsh enough on immigration, particularly on Muslims. And what have these dastardly Muslims been up to? Sneaking bombs through customs and using their benefits to buy juicers and washing machines, if the BNP's animation is to be believed. This is all accompanied by the sound of a small girl who's been forced to sing a paranoid, xenophobic song to the tune of “All Things Bright and Beautiful”, which includes lyrics about Muslims who “prey on little girls from takeaways and taxis”, and “beg or sell Big Issues, or kill with knives and axes”.
Which sounds extreme, but after the song, we’re whisked away to a lovely bucolic British setting, where Nick Griffin happens to be hanging out. “I’m sure you enjoyed that!” he grimaces, before asking us to “listen to ordinary people like you”. These "ordinary people" comprise a van driver who sounds like a rejected Lee Nelson sketch, a Scouse soldier demanding capital punishment, a mum who’s unhappy about foreign children learning English and – my personal favourite – a man dressed like a vicar playing with a padlock on a church door.
It’s not immediately clear whether or not he owns a key to the padlock, but after a bit of digging I feel confident saying he doesn’t. It turns out the guy's name is “Reverend” Robert West, a man who appears to have no affiliation to the Church of England, or – in fact – any church other than The Christian Council of Britain, one he set up himself, and that is based in his house, not a church.
This clip from the National Liberal Party is easily my favourite of the bunch. While it might be completely devoid of political nuance, passion and technical ability, it more than makes up for it in brevity and what I imagine is a pretty serious flouting of musical copyright law.
Proving that Windows 98 WordArt is still available for consumer use, this is a great example of what you can achieve if you put literally no effort or money into your election video. The only slight issue is that, having watched it a couple of times, I still have absolutely no idea what their policies are.
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