In The Thick Of It, when referring to a woman he finds insane, Malcolm Tucker says:

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I've seen the Tom Cruise meme of him going nuts on Oprah, etc. But what is the "brush" reference about? Is this some British-specific humor?

1 Answer 1


Daft as a brush is a colloquial British phrase meaning crazy or foolish.

I would take Malcolm's phrase as a joke to mean particularly mad as she is as daft as Tom Cruise's favorite brush.

  • 4
    So happy to be able to answer a Malcolm Tucker question. As 'swearer in chief' he is one of my all-time favorite characters.
    – iandotkelly
    Mar 22, 2018 at 18:01
  • 2
    I didn't answer it because it's not in my purview ;) Mar 23, 2018 at 2:39
  • 1
    @LaconicDroid ...... allow me to pop a jaunty little bonnet on your "purview" ....
    – iandotkelly
    Mar 23, 2018 at 3:01
  • @iandotkelly - are you british by chance? I may have a lot more of these questions...
    – JacobIRR
    Mar 23, 2018 at 16:33
  • @JacobIRR ... I am yes, but I live in the USA so I know how to translate :)
    – iandotkelly
    Mar 23, 2018 at 17:43

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