Siobhan Tolland: Jeremy Corbyn and the Blairite Monster - how Labour has become a bad horror movie

Writer and academic Siobhan Tolland says observing the so-called Labour purge has been like watching the plot of a bad horror film unfold

I AM having a bit of a crisis in how I envision the Labour party's problems.

I keep thinking it is just a modern day Macbeth, but then images of pure horror movie flood in and I become all confused.

Perhaps this is a reflection of the struggle and confusion happening in the Labour party. Two directions pushing against each other and one canonical genre assuming the right of leadership.

Labour, oh dear. 'Sovereign sway and martyrdom' indeed. It's this split right down the middle of the party with the right wing just assuming the prophecy that it will be King. Macbeth in its deepest darkest form.

Those in the Labour right are like Macbeth, in all their power hungry ways, willing to cull anything that gets in the way of their assumed power and ascendancy to the throne.

Those in the Labour right are like Macbeth, though, in all their power hungry ways, willing to cull anything that gets in the way of their assumed power and ascendancy to the throne; hacking and slashing at democracy by vetting people who join, making sure they are the 'right sort of people'.

But who is Lady Macbeth, I wonder? Guilt-ridden by such evil abuses of power? There seems to be no sense of regret in policing to root out those who don't support their values. Not even any sense of self-awareness that their 'values' have now become 'believe in democracy unless it doesn't go your way, then enact a coup'.

And this is a coup. Can there be any other way to describe this? Purging those that look like they might vote the wrong way and then telling everyone the cheater's decision is final.

This behaviour is ok, seemingly. The weird sisters prophesised it this way. Unlike Macbeth, however, there isn't going to be much order restored in that party.

I wonder where this leaves the Corbyn supporters, those that joined for hope and a revival of social democratic principles, those that joined to fight the Tories. Where do they go when the election is stolen from them?

The common consensus is that Corbyn will rip the party apart - as if trying to steal the leadership election will bring the party together in perfect harmony. I bet North Korea is taking notes: "Vet the voters? Brilliant idea."

Why even hold an election if the result is already decided? Captain Cardboard 1, 2 or 3.

This is a coup. Can there be any other way to describe this? Purging those that look like they might vote the wrong way and then telling everyone the cheater's decision is final.

Possessed with a love for power, Labour is a party destroying itself with such eye rolling, Exorcist head-twisting proportions, you are left either covering your eyes in fear or laughing your head off.

There is that such fine line between horror and comedy in the Labour party. And talking of horror, the image that keeps springing to my mind about the Labour party is when Ash is attacked by his own hand in the Evil Dead 2.

One body attacking itself in a possessed frenzy, killing the host to regain life. Labour really should take note.

One thing that connects Shakespearean tragedy and 80s gore horror, though, is the audience reaction. Characters tend to have less knowledge than the audience, and even less self-awareness.

Often the result is we are left sitting squirming and shouting, "Don't do it!", "Don't walk into that cottage in the middle of the forest in the dead of night!", "Don't stab your own granny in the back, you are being played".

The audience sees the imminent demise of the characters unfold before it has even happened, as the heroes wander into oblivion.

"Don't do it, Labour party! Don't attack yourself and steal your own elections!" we scream, hiding behind the sofa in fear.

Possessed with a love for power, Labour is a party destroying itself with such eye rolling, Exorcist head-twisting proportions, you are left either covering your eyes in fear or laughing your head off.

The Tories are hard assets though. They revel in the blood and gore of a party ripping itself apart. The Blairites are doing the Tories' job for them.

The sad thing is that this whole saga is not unexpected. The Scottish branch put its stubborn, blinded political suicide on public display. You knew Labour's path was set when it lost the General Election and immediately talked about moving to the right.

Corbyn is that stranger that appears mid-movie only to be culled. The future of Labour is clear, and it is as predictable as the plot of very bad horror movie.

I still wish Corbyn could shock the audience, though, and pop up and kill the Blairite monster.

Picture courtesy of Jessica Lucia