Peter Brookes’ depiction of Ed Miliband & Ed Balls as Wallace & Gromit makes for an undeniably striking and amusing image. Yet there’s no point in trying to belittle Miliband with such a comparison, given that Wallace, for all his mistakes and blindspots, is a decent, ingenious and beloved character who always ends up doing the right thing. Similarly, only an idiot would attempt to mock an already-unpopular politician by portraying him as the smart, heroic Gromit. No matter how intense the scowl and pronounced the fangs, the resemblance can only work to Balls’ advantage. (If Gromit is glaring malignly at Cameron in the X-Mas cover above, then the implication is that the PM deserves it.) Just as with so many other misjudged appropriations of cartoon icons - such as Vicky’s brilliant and yet ultimately counter-productive portrayal of Macmillan as Super-Mac - the result works in the target’s favour while undermining the satirist’s credibility.