Two weeks ago, who’d have ever predicted that three blokes, in different coloured ties and undertakers' suits, squabbling behind lecturns could bring about the most exciting election fight in decades?
Last night’s leaders’ television debate, the second of three, upped the ante even further than last week, as both Gordon and Dave shifted to a new tactic – not agreeing with Nick. It got serious, it got nuclear, it got dirty, and David Cameron claimed to have that morning been running with a man just back from Afghanistan. Ahem.
Post-debate polls variously put Clegg and Cameron (how? He looked like a startled deer, caught in the hunting lobby’s crosshairs) in front, while each party’s spin doctors destroyed their previously-stated stance on climate change, by pumping out more hot air than an ill-fated Virgin balloon.
Of course, they all claimed their boy had won the night. Well, they wouldn. wouldn't they?
So thank the lord for Tim Berners-Lee (architect of the internet) and for Twitter. Social media might not decide the election, but it does mean we can filter it through the clear, cold eyes of the common people. Why, the Twitter commentary is even more engaging than the debate itself. Twitter user hashed out the most important issues of the evening: Cleggmania, Dave Cam’s complexion and Gordon’s new haircut… Here’s a selection of the best tweets from last night, kicking off with our Associate Editor’s commentary (toast the leaders with a glass or two of vino did you Vicky Harper?)…
@Grazia_Live: Politics is the new meow meow. Fact!
@simonpegg: David Cameron just told an 84 year old woman he was going to do something in 2016.
@the63336: Brown won on jaw gulps (174), Clegg on licking lips (10), Cameron on puppy eyes (16)
@chakrabortty: We DON'T have a deficit the size of Greece. Why does Cam keep exaggerating?
@caitlinmoran: Is it the HD, or does Cameron look like he's laid off the Botox, to "de-buttock" his face, this week?
@philjupitus: Is wrong to want Clegg to sing 'Wind Beneath My Wings' as part of an answer.
@alannucci: Now’s the rime to burgle Nick Clegg’s house
@Akilburnmat: I’m guessing Dave’s social life has taken a bit of a plummet as he hasn’t mentioned anyone he’s met lately.
@mrchrisaddison: ‘I’ve been to Afganistan a few times. Every time you’re blown away.’ Nice phrasing Dave.
@farhanially: wonder if Sky producers cut to the guy yawning right when Gordon was speaking on purpose
@charltonbooker: The debate loser should hand their shoes to Boulton and fly out on a song like in 'Over The Rainbow'
@stevedaley: my daughter just joined me watching #leadersdebate on BBC and asked: why's Cameron on, I thought he was voted off last week!
@josarcher: Brown is doing much better this time round, he got a hair cut for god’s sake, he’s gonna storm it!
Whilst Cleggmania is still in full swing, there’s a contending (tongue in cheek) hastag trend badmouthing the Lib Dems. From broken nails, to overdue babies, according to these tweeters it’s all #nickcleggsfault.
@michaelpullin: The wife is now 7 days overdue and there is no baby in sight. I know who I’m blaming #Nickcleggfault
@Jothedough: You know that girl you fell in love with when you were 13? The one who'd never be yours though your heart ached for her? Yep: #cleggsfault
@twmercer: Apparently Apple gave Nick Clegg the prototype iPhone 4 to look after.. #nickcleggsfault
@Alannucci: Nick Clegg lived in same town as a seriously ill man and never visited him, though he knows he has a spare kidney. #nickcleggsfault
@daraobriain: God, I really hate it when I arrive at a joke waaay too late when other people have done all the good ones. #nickcleggsfault
Go on, add your own below. You know you want to…
By Amy Molloy and Jane Mulkerrins