By Luke Voogt
“One foggy morn, sometime in September of 2013,” Jordan Shanks was walking bleary-eyed along a Sydney beach – when he bumped into Malcolm Turnbull.
“I recognised the sound of someone yelling at their assistant through their phone,” the prolific Youtuber known as Friendly Jordies said.
Shanks re-enacted the event in his Youtube portrayal of Turnbull as a 1700s plutocrat.
“No Margaret! You’ve put me in awful position and I don’t think you understand the ramifications of it,” a foppish ‘Malcolm’ yells into the phone.
“How could you empathise? You don’t understand the burdens of power, you’re nothing but a pack mule!”
The two collided and Turnbull reportedly moaned “bah!”
“The best way I could describe it was (a sound of) disgust and fear,” Shanks told the Indy.
“I was transported back to the 1700s!”
The two stared in stunned silence before Turnbull went back to his phone.
“He was disgusted that a commoner had touched him and for that I loved him,” he laughed.
“I think that’s the soul of Malcolm – an extremely removed plutocrat.”
Now Shanks brings ‘MT’ to Geelong stages “so you don’t have to read his books”.
“It took me a year to muster the energy to read three of his biographies,” he said.
“Probably about four fifths of that man’s life was sitting in an office.”
Shanks began to notice a pattern in Turnbull’s life.
“He’s extremely intelligent and ruthless but when he gets to the top he doesn’t know what to do,” he said.
“He’s like a dog who chases your car but when he gets it he doesn’t know what to do with it.”
Turnbull’s lack of genuineness led to his downfall as Prime Minister, Shanks reckoned.
“He’s clearly an extremely arrogant toff, which is OK, just be honest about it.”
The most “lower class” person Turnbull would have associated with was probably his doctor, he added.
“He’s not rubbing shoulders with the schmos down at the coalmining pub.”
Shanks, who has 192,000 Youtube subscribers, makes no secret of being a Labor fan.
“I support them because I read,” he said.
“You can say a million things as to why they’re bad or inefficient – and you’d be right.
“But every good program that has made this country… these are all things that the Labor party initiated.”
Shanks reads between casting as a model and various radio and stage gigs.
“As a male model you get paid as much as a MacDonald’s worker until you’re 40,” he said.
“Then you start doing cigarette and car ads and can start living in relative luxury.”
Watching countless Noam Chomsky documentaries on a Korean exchange trip during his International Studies degree also shaped his views.
“My entire $20,000 degree was worth it just to watch a bunch of documentaries I otherwise wouldn’t have,” he said.
Shanks’ most popular videos mock cashed-up hipsters, bogans, festivals and Aussie stereotypes.
“All I do is put on a crap wig and say what they say themselves in videos,” Shanks said.
“The difference is they are serious.”
He looked forward to his latest Geelong Performing Arts Centre gig on Sunday night.
“I love Geelong. It gets such a bum rap from Melbourne people,” he said.
“Your former mayor was that guy from Big Brother with a Mohawk and six-pack, right?
“I personally would rate this show an 11 out of 10 – if you’ve done any show 50 times it’s going to be good.”