And so, the day arrives. The final TV debate is upon us. As David Dimbleby wraps up tonight's show, I will let a single tear descend my cheek in tribute to one of the most pumped-up, super-hyped televisual and electoral events of all time. But hasn't it been fun.
Given it's the merry trio's last chance to woo and wow us with their performances (sorry, policies), here are some tips for them to make their mark, to lodge themselves in our minds, as we embark on the final countdown to polling day itself.
1. Gordon. My colleague James Macintyre has suggested a serious speech. An alternative: "You know what? I've had it with pretending I'm relaxed and happy. I actually want to take a swing at most of you. I KNOW BEST."
2. Cambo. You've really got to do something radical after the lacklustre simperings offered up in the first two debates. What about shaking things up from the start and sauntering on to the stage in some surf shorts, flip-flops, a backwards-turned cap and . . . yes . . . a hoodie! It would be like your own little private joke with the population. Look at me! So comfortable with you normal folk that I can even wear a hoodie! I'll hug myself! It would drive Clegg mad if nothing else -- his hands-in-pockets manoeuvre is pure down-with-the-kids stuff.
3. Clegg. DON'T MESS IT UP. You have mostly stormed it so far, so for God's sake don't think you're safe and start busting out leftfield lines for the sake of catching a few extra votes. You can almost imagine it -- Clegg, tired of his "old parties" routine, thinking that he's got it all sewn up and announcing a few off-the-cuff initiatives. Free Spanish lessons for your pets! Release all violent prisoners and send them to work in Gordon Ramsay's restaurants! Cut the deficit by turning the Houses of Parliaments into luxury flats!
4. Dimbleby. Really, after Stewart and Boulton, I think you'll have a good time tonight, showing all that natural chairing authority and silver-foxed cool. Just remember, though, this is not Question Time. There'll be no time for your quippy asides or long interventions. But perhaps he'll have an aide on hand to restrain him physically when Gordon gets out of hand.
5. The post-match analysis. Please tell me you've got someone good doing the interviews afterwards, someone (mentioning no names) who won't look over their shoulder like a bored person at a party while interviewing a cabinet minister. (Kay! Why did you do that?) Also, a profound, heartfelt plea to the BBC to drop their very own initiative -- the worm. Watching the worm chart the audience response (to summarise: "Oh look, Clegg's speaking, I like Clegg" -- yellow worm goes up. "Oh, but now Cameron's speaking, maybe I like him now" -- blue worm goes up) is possibly the most blood-icingly boring and pointless thing I have ever seen on TV. And this is someone who has watched Doctors talking.
Predictions? Brown will try to make light of The Gaffe but will ruin it by smiling. Clegg and Cambo will battle it out for the title of "youthful people-lover King". But Cambo will get lost in his big/broken/brazen society guff and Clegg will clinch it. The worms will win Guff of the Night, though, no doubt about it.