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Ranking Jeremy Corbyn’s Youth Culture Nods from Most to Least Cringey

Where does yesterday's "the man's not hot" fit in?

by Lauren O'Neill
29 September 2017, 11:38am

Image via Wikimedia Commons

It is a well known fact that Jeremy Corbyn fucking loves the kids. At the 2017 general election, 64 percent of registered 18 to 24 year old voters went to the polls (the highest percentage since 1992), and it's no coincidence that this happened at Corbyn's first election as the leader of the Labour party.

"Young people" like Corbs because, quite simply, his policies like them (or, if you're a sceptical commentator, their policies appeal to younger voters' optimism and naivety). Stricter controls on landlords, free university tuition, and the nationalisation of railways are all stances that, for the first time in most of our lives, feel like tangible possibilities rather than commie pipedreams. That's because he dared to put them, front and centre, in the manifesto of the second largest political party in the UK, at a crucial election. So, he has the respect of a fair amount of us.

And he intends to keep it. The way he does so is simple: he tries to properly engage with youth culture (his opponent, Theresa May, I am quite certain, has never met a person under age 30 who wasn't a Conservative Party intern pouring teas). And yes, Corbyn does this in manner of like, a grandad who has just got a "Smart Phone" and texts with one finger, but it's still quite endearing watching an over-60 from north London giving memes a go. While Tories are still wanking on about "hugging a hoodie" or whatever, Jez (or more likely, someone on his team) tries to keep up. Take this few seconds, from the Labour Party conference on Thursday:

Painfully, obviously staged? Yes. Extremely, extremely funny anyway? Also yes, but probably only because it is cringe-inducing, but like, in a nice way like when an uncle does a sentimental karaoke song when he's pissed at a family party, "dedicating" it to your aunt, who is sat at the side, crying. Anyway, loving cringe is the name of the game for Jez a lot of the time, so here are his greatest "down with the kids" hits, ranked from "o god can I peel off my skin" to "I rate you actually":

Earlier this week when he called Architects "The Architects"

You'd be forgiven for thinking that Jeremy only caters to one subsection of the youth, but in reality he's all over this shit. Just before the election he was interviewed by members of Architects and Creeper, and he also had Architects take over his Snapchat and Instagram. Do Tories even know what Snapchat is? Idk. Anyway, because he's a forever dad, he called Architects "The Architects" and though I personally thought it was very sweet, it was also kind of as though someone on the comms team who is only into Sam Smith had to write the tweet real quick. If the 'D:' face were a tweet, this would be it.

"What's the naughtiest thing you've ever done?"

You know it anyway but: Theresa May fucked it during an election interview where she was asked what the naughtiest thing she'd ever done was (she said that it was "running through fields of wheat" because she's a narc). So naturally, the boy Jez was asked a similar question, and the answer was very 'there's life in the old dog yet!!!' I do not like to think of my jam-making Prime Minister in this way.


This was actually class, though slight cringe still abounds in the form of his clearly-just-out-the-packet 'casual' shirt. He was the most-watched act of the weekend, though.

Hanging out with JME before the election

This was legendary and probably responsible for a lot of young voter registration, or at least some first-time votes. What was special about it was that it showed a politician giving the concerns of someone who represented a lot of disillusioned young people the time of day and that is depressingly rare. Jez came off as genuinely interested rather than gimmicky and while the "Man's Not Hot" bit was funny, it's this sort of thing that wins votes.

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