Cries of "where's Boris?" are ringing out across the land, as the self-styled latter-day Churchill is once again conspicuous by his absence, leading many commentators to heap scorn on the hapless PM's attempts to handle a worsening health crisis.
"What? Boris is like a latter day Churchill? Do me a favour. Don't you actually mean Charlie Chaplin?" guffawed one senior TV political correspondent.
However, a source close to No. 10, who wished to remain anonymous, insists Mr. Johnson's absence form the public stage is little more than a cynical stage-managed PR operation to keep him hidden from public view.
He told us: 'Quite frankly its been decided behind closed doors that they daren't let Boris loose again. He's a complete liability.
'I know the Downing Street internal press department has already moved heaven and earth to suppress one farcical incident at a gardening implements manufacturer. Ironically, refusing PPE, after quipping "what could possibly go wrong?", bungling Boris immediately became entangled in a vicious accident loop after stepping between two rakes.
'He was repeatedly smacked in the face and the back of his head by the handles for a full five minutes as he tottered back and forth, before an aide came to his rescue. I kid you not. You should see the video. priceless.
'What's more, extensive risk and gaffe modelling, carried out by a firm of slapstick experts, suggest it would only be a matter of time before his trousers fall down during some important state occasion.'