Soap operas, they say, are losing their appeal as viewers turn on the BBC Parliament channel for light entertainment. Small wonder. The antics of our legislators are a pantomime in themselves, with a lively cast of traditional figures.
Anna Soubry plays the pantomime dame with a gusto greater than any seen at the London Palladium. Dominic Grieve is the lugubrious Baron Hardup, and Sir Oliver Letwin is an obliging but ineffectual Buttons. There is no shortage of Ugly Sisters of either sex.
The supporting cast bray and guffaw to order – all animated by Speaker Bercow, whose voice is borrowed from Brian Blessed, and whose costume is straight out of the nursery dressing-up box.
The children all love it…but, alas, as we know, it will all end in tears.