Rab C Nesbitt and the “big la dee da Tory bastard”

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I am pretty sure that the long-running TV sitcom Rab C Nesbitt is a brilliantly witty comic creation full of bittersweet social satire and dark, disturbing humour. I cannot be 100% certain of its brilliance because I cannot understand everything that is said on it. The inclusion of subtitles would perhaps be useful, but part of the fun of watching Rab C Nesbitt is trying to work out what the “sensitive big bastard” from Govan is saying.

Here’s an episode from 1999. The Labour government has introduced a national minimum wage and in Parliament Tony Welthorpe MP – a “big la dee da Tory bastard” – is complaining that the proles have it easy enough already. He is challenged to see what it is like to depend on state benefits and so agrees to temporarily swap lives with someone who “embodies the noble virtues of the glorious working class”. The cheeky MP for Govan decides that our favourite street philosopher from south Glasgow is the appropriate candidate and hilarity ensues.

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