T-Shock Test 2016
The Almost Epic Gladiatorial Combat of Ireland’s Election 2016
featuring H-enda, Joan from the block, Geri & Mikey
Like the gladiators in ancient Rome, the plebiscite ( that’s us, the plebs, by the way ) of today’s Ireland can now witness our great and not so great ‘wannabe’ leaders prove their prowess in the field of combat in the excellent Fierce Fun mobile free to play game T-Shock Test. As Gladiators are from Rome it might be better to compare our Irish political combatants to the great warriors from Ireland’s own captivating myths and legends.
In all human cultures there is a mythology of heroes and villains, wise folk and fools, greedy and good. From the Viking Sagas to the Folklore of the Far East, all connect in a way that is unique to the human fireside storytelling tradition. Vladimir Propp in his seminal book Morphology of the Folktale pointed out the similarities and common traits in folk memory stories from all over the world. Irish myths share a common bond with all others.
In Ireland Taoiseach means chieftain or leader, the Gaelic word dates back as far as the language can be traced. In many other countries around the world, aspirant leaders like to dress themselves in the flag and look to the future, in Ireland, our lot, like to dress themselves in a kilt and look to the past. They seek to invoke the spirits of our mythological heroes to assist in their quest for glory.
So let’s take our hopeful leaders and put them centre stage in one of the most famous of Ireland’s mythological tales The Tain. A tale from fado fado, (long ago) of heroes, villains, greed, hubris, friendship and betrayal. I like to call it the battle for the cattle as it sets Irishman against Irishman in the pursuit of the great Brown Bull. Sounds perfect let’s assemble our cast of players from T-Shock challenge.
Queen Medb, Cú Chulainn, Fergus mac Róich and Goll mac Morna all provide great examples of celtic leadership and wisdom. But which of the current ‘wannabe’ leaders should we allow associate with these legends? Feel free to let your imagination run wild, I did. I like to imagine, a cross dressing Enda, as the fetching Queen Maeve, they both have great bone structure, don’t they?
What about Gerry as Cu Chulainn, now let’s be honest, he does look a little like an Irish Wolfhound and he is the consummate Ulsterman in the cast of characters. Joan can be Fergus, we don’t stand for gender quotas here. I just think she has the hair for it,and I am sure she could grow a full mustache if push comes to shove. And Michael can be Goll, nobody knows what Goll looked like, so we will imagine him as a bald christian brother teacher type, much like, you know who?
The Battle of the Cattle or The Tain and its modern equivalents featuring –
Enda Kenny as Queen Maeve – Both like to talk a lot of bull. Both have lands in the Connacht. Both want to steal the Brown Bull of Cooley or is that a Red Bull from Clooney, I can’t recall exactly. Anyway suffice to say with Mayo men at their beckon call, they ravish the country while making the population fall asleep (with lengthy mono tone speeches and rubbing of hands ). They manage to set the country into a state of bullish anarchy with the haves fighting the have nots and the medieval money men ( bankers and the bondholder ) getting rich on the side lines. Sadly it sounds familiar.
Enter Gerry our hound of Ulster. Now CuChulainn had a major role in The Tain and has been known to talk some bull himself. Primarily he is famous as a warrior, now the old fighter needs a rest and here he is looking for the Taoiseach’s pension, what better rest can you get? Just like the our Danish friends say – IF Carlsberg made pensions, they would make it a Taoiseachs pension. So CuChulainn has a lot to fight for, and as some folk like to say in the North good luck with that.
Joan aka Fergus also features in this great battle pointedly for her / his backing down and making a deal to save his position. Thats sounds familiar as well. Fergus is a deal maker in the original story and likes to avoid a fight, so is Joan, funnily enough. Fergus also stands by idly and lets CuChulainn slay his good friend and ally Ferdia in the name of peace. For shame Fergus.
I am sorry to say for Michael, that his character, Goll Mc Morna is not in actual fact, featured in the Tain but we have to use poetic licence here as there simply is not a suitable character for you to play. So I picked out Goll, who I think suits Michael perfectly. He is not universally liked, although he is a member of the Fianna (Fail) and a friend of its leader Fionn Mc Cool despite the fact that he did kill Fionn’s Dad. But worse still, Goll then went on to betray his gang the Fianna and in turn the whole country for greed and power, and lead the them into disaster. Also sound all too familiar.
So there we have it, the potential leaders and their inspirational mythological mascots, but do they have what it takes to beat the bondholders, eradicate the euro bankers, and dodge the TD-Rex ? You decide as you take them into the combat arena. Take your favourite politician out for a bit of physical endurance with the T- Shock Test. It is the only game in town where you the voter get to watch your politicians pummel or get pummelled.