François Fillon, the centre right's candidate in France’s presidential elections, is a dead man walking, a lumbering, dangerous zombie who doesn’t know his time is up.
First, there was the scandal over his wife’s job. It is alleged that he paid her out of taxpayer’s money for work she never actually did.
Next was his scandalously juicy contract with insurance giant AXA, and now his spokesman Thierry Solère is being chased by the law for not paying his taxes.
The blows keep raining down on this punch-drunk fighter, who is as shot as his campaign but keeps shuffling back off the ropes for another beating.
All members of the walking dead have one thing in common. They just won’t do the decent thing and die.
Party activists don’t even dare to hand out his campaign leaflets in the Sunday markets anymore. You can hardly blame them, even Fillon's hardcore supporters are turning their backs.
Some have even demanded a refund on their €4 fee to vote in the primary. Plotters in his Republicans party are circling, daggers snug in their togas.
Or, more accurately, they are getting ready to dispatch the zombie in the traditional way – with a fatal blow to the brain.
But Fillon is clinging on and for good reason. His party, split between the supporters of Sarkozy, Juppé and other factions, can’t agree on who should replace him.
Alain Juppé is theoretically the frontrunner after coming second to Fillon but, perhaps wary of zombification, he says he doesn’t want the poisoned chalice.
Even if France elects this denizen of the damned, Fillon won’t be able to deliver on his campaign promises.
He wants to privatise some parts of health insurance but if he does he will face accusation he is only doing it to fill AXA’s pockets.
If he asks the French to swallow a VAT hike, they will rightly remind him that the only member of his family not seemingly employed by the state is his dog.
Aside from transforming France into the laughing stock of Europe’s embassies, Zombie Fillon poses a clear and present danger to Europe.
His voters could desert the undead candidate for the Eurosceptic National Front, which has promised a Frexit referendum on France's EU membership.
Instead of swopping smug asides about the travails of the French right over canapés and champagne, Europe’s elites could find themselves the stars of their very own horror show.