Sunday, May 13, 2018

Eurovision 2018: Final

It’s Eurovision Final Night and Tigger’s back with his review of the Song Contest.
Hope you enjoy it,

Eurovision 2018 — Final

I’m back for the Eurovision Final. I’m pretty excited about it too. There were some really good performances during the Semi-Finals, and while I only managed to get half of my favorites through to the Final, I am hopeful that my favorites will do well. Because we watch a delayed broadcast, a couple of my housemates/friends have seen spoilers so they know which country wins, but they have been nice and not said anything to me so I will be surprised when the results are announced.

As is our tradition, we have some nibbles for tonight’s viewing party. And this year I got to plan the menu. My housemates had a big lunch for Mother’s Day, so they are not terrible hungry, but still want something to nibble on during the show. I’ve decided on popcorn as the nibble. It’s sort of healthy, especially since we use an air popper, though I think the butter & salt we add might negate most of the healthy aspects of the snack. But the real reason I like popcorn is that it bounces! I love things that are bouncy and popcorn is one of the bounciest foods I know. So we’ll have popcorn seasoned with butter and salt and after that, there are some malt cookies and cream-filled vanilla wafer style cookies.

This year the voting allows counties to award 12, 10, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, or 1 points to their top 10 favorite entrants. I’m not sure why they decided on that arrangement but, I know at least part of it is to avoid countries being able to award Nil Points to their rivals. There is a very big political element in the song contest voting, no matter how much the Eurovision Committee tries to avoid it. I’m not getting into the political aspect of it; I’m just going to award 1 to 5 flags to each contestant and then rank my favorite 10 at the end. I think I know who my favorite is already, but there are 6 performers I haven’t seen, so that may change as the night goes on. I’m trying not to be biased, but it’s hard not to judge the other acts against the one that is my favorite so far.

I really do like how creative the graphics artists are with the flags at Eurovision. The representations in the coral is an imaginative way to being in the All Aboard water theme.

I wonder how much what we see at home is meant for voting. Obviously, the split screens and fancy effects are not as powerful in the auditorium. So I wonder how different seeing the performances live, in person, is from watching at home.

1. Ukraine, MELOVIN, Under the Ladder ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ฆ This is a very strange opening. He reminds me of the Phantom from Phantom of the Opera. Yes, it is very strange choreography. Ohh, I do not like the fire, so much potential for things to go wrong. Definitely not a favorite of the night.

2. Spain, Amaia y Alfred, Tu Canciรณn ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ธ This is a new performance for the Final. Ohh, non-English performance, I always like those. This is a perfect song for couples to have their first dance at a wedding reception. It’s a bit plain for Eurovision, I think, but not a bad song.

3. Slovenia, Lea Sirk, Hvala, ne! ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Another non-English performance. I like the poppy, bouncy feel of this one. It’s fun and there are parts that are great for singing as loud as you can and punctuating with bounces. One of my favorites.

4. Lithuania, Ieva Zasimauskaitฤ—, When We’re Old ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡น I don’t really like this one. It’s not a bad song, and the performer does a very good job. I wouldn’t seek it out, but I wouldn’t turn the channel either. It’s lovely background music for a cafe or shop.

5. Austria, Cesรกr Sampson, Nobody But You ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡น It’s not a bad song. It’s singable, perfect for the car to shower. I’ll hold it in reserve for the Top 10.

6. Estonia, Elina Nechayeva, La Forza ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ช She sings beautifully and the dress is impressive, but it’s not one of my favorites.

7. Norway, Alexander Rybak, That’s How You Write a Song ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ด๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ด๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ด There is a pop-music feel to this one, and it’s bouncy. I didn’t really like it in the Semi-Final, but it’s growing on me. Still not a favorite, but a fun performance.

8. Portugal, Clรกudia Pascoal, O Jardim ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡น Another new one tonight. I suppose it’s only fair the host country gets an automatic bid to the final. I like this one, but I liked it better before the music kicked in. It is better as a simple song with simple music.

9. United Kingdom, SuRie, Storm ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง This is the third new song for tonight. I like this one. I was prepared for England to phone it in, but this is surprisingly good. I feel really bad for her with the interrupted performance. I was going to give her 4 Flags, but the performance deserves 5.

10. Serbia, Sanja Iliฤ‡ & Balkaninka, Nova Deca ๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡ธ I don’t remember this one from the Semi-Final. Ohh, wait, yes I do. I remember it being a non-English performance. I gave it full points for that alone. Tonight, it’s good, but not good enough to be a Top Ten favorite.

11. Germany, Michael Schulte, You Let Me Walk Alone ๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ช The fourth new performance tonight. This is a goosebumps song. Definitely a favorite tonight.

12. Albania, Eugent Bushpepa, Mall ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ฑ Albania got full points for a non-English performance in the Semi-Final. I think I like the music better than the lyrics, but then they do work together. I’m only at performance 12 and I have 4 Top Ten Performances! How am I ever going to narrow it down?

13. France, Madame Monsieur, Mercy ๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ท The fifth new performance tonight. It’s a nice song and it was a good performance, but not a favorite.

14. Czech Republic, Mikolas Josef, Lie to Me ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฟ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฟ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฟ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฟ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฟ This is bouncy and fun. I do like this one and more than I did in the Semi-Final. The dancing is fun too. A Top Ten tonight!

15. Denmark, Rasmussen, Higher Ground ๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ฐ I know it’s surprising that this is my favorite, but it is. It’s a darker song and not really bouncy, but it really is my favorite. Number 1 Top Ten; Come on Denmark!

16. Australia, Jessica Mauboy, We Got Love ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ I feel I should put this in the Top Ten because of living in Australia, but it’s not really one of my favorite performances. It’s not bad, just not my favorite.

17. Finland, Saara Aalto, Monsters ๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ฎ She looks fiercer than the vikings from Denmark, but maybe she needs to because of the monsters. I like it it, but the performance scares me a bit.

18. Bulgaria, EQUINOX, Bones ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฌ It’s not one of my favorites. The performance was good, but something was missing.

19. Moldova, DoReDos, My Lucky Day ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฉ This one is so much fun. There needs to be a few fun performances, just silly fun. There weren’t enough silly fun performances this year.

20. Sweden, Benjamin Ingress, Dance You Off ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ช There is nothing special about this song to me. It feels like a generic connect-the-dots boyband song. I feel bad saying that, but that’s how it feels to me - not terrible, not stand-out, just generic.

21. Hungary, AWS, Viszlรกt Nyรกr ๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡บ This is an angry song. The sound of the words, the music, the performance, it’s all angry. There are bounces in the song and the performance, but they are angry bounces.

22. Israel, Netta, TOY ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ฑ I know this is one of the overall favorites this year, but it’s not one of mine. I can’t really say what it is I don’t like about it, but I just don’t like it.

23. The Netherlands, Waylon, Outlaw in ‘Em ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฑ This performance seems far more like Billy Ray Cyrus than Waylon Jennings. the backup singers remind me more of Guns ’n’ Roses. It’s modern country music, not classic country. But it’s not terrible, and there is something fun about it.

24. Ireland, Ryan O’Shaughnessy, Together ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ช This is a nice, simple love song. It’s fun to listen to and the music is nice. I didn’t really like it in the Semi-Finals, but it’s growing on me a little bit.

25. Cyprus, Eleni Foureira, Fuego ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡พ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡พ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡พ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡พ The announcers say this is a favorite. I don’t mind it, but I like other performances tonight much better.

26. Italy, Erma Meta e Fabrizio Moro, Non Mi Avete Fatto Niente ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡น The last new performance tonight. It’s another goosebumps song. It’s an important and powerful message. The graphics really help the impact.

My Top Ten Finalists, ranked in order

1. Denmark
2. Czech Republic
3. United Kingdom
4. Germany
5. Moldova
6. Slovenia
7. Italy
8. Albania
9. Austria
10. The Netherlands

Come on World, 12 Points to Denmark!

Thanks for enjoying Eurovision with me.
I’ll see you next year,

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