Sunday, 23 May 2021

It's over. Goodbye!

So it was quite predictable in the end and our team all guessed the winner and last place correctly (except Jordy. You're fired). But what a fantastic two weeks it's been.

Thank you Netherlands, participants, the EBU and coffee for making all this possible.

Thank you Ben, Roger, SamB, Sild and Jonas (on standby) for blogging in ridiculous hours of the day, and mostly to Jordy for running around between the press centre, the arena and the PCR station to keep you up to date with reports and performances.

Thank you other fansites (particularly escgo.com) for covering what we didn't and sometimes agreeing with us, sometimes having a completely different opinion as if we've watched different things.

And most of all, thank *you* for reading and commenting.

Until next time, Goodbye!



Saturday, 22 May 2021

Predictions are getting old

But as the rest of the team are doing this, here's a ranking to either gloat on or be embarrassed by later:

1. Italy | There are many rational reasons against this winning, between lack of mass appeal for this genre and language, and a potential split with Finland. And yet, it's the only thing I've seen that felt like a winner, which is presumably why the punters are backing it.

2. Switzerland | Really stood out last night, and I suspect can attract a lot of televotes.

3. Malta | It's easy to overthink the draw and put it down to 17th or so, but it's still a fun song, it's still Destiny, and it's still Malta and their jury support. They're probably doing a lot of promotion as we speak.

Don't you ever dare to wear my Je Me Casse t-shirt

4. Ukraine | Too captivating to not get a bazillion televote points. Juries could be split on this.

5. France | This seems to have its fans who aren't bothered by the title repeated 8,537 times and the seizure in the end, so should do quite well.

6. Lithuania | It's become easy to forget, having been exactly the same since January, but it's still pretty good and let's not forget the 100+ televote points it's starting with.

7. Iceland | Assuming that sympathy votes will compensate the awkwardness of not being there, it's about where it should end up - cute and silly and rather amateurish doesn't tend to do much better.

8. Greece | Still far from the strongest song and the staging might put some off, but never underestimate a pretty girl in a stunning suit singing competently.

9. Russia | I would have wanted it higher, but have already accepted that it's too messy and too early on to do any better than this.

10. Azerbaijan | Benefits from being the last straightforward female Pop in the final, and from, well, representing Azerbaijan

11. Belgium | This stood out in the semi, but kinda gets lost here - not so much by the draw than the overall competition.

12. Bulgaria | A rather effective staging will give this its best result possible, but it's hard to believe now that she was favourite last year with an almost identical (perhaps slightly better) song.

13. Finland | I'm not sure how this went from a "shock qualifier" to a "potential top 5" even though the performance was the same as we've always seen. It's going to score what it was always going to score.

14. Sweden | Oh, they're in it?

15. Serbia | Most of its fans (like myself) will probably be happy to see this in the final, but not necessarily vote for it in the end.

16. Portugal | Did its thing in the semi and will have its fans. But not that many.

17. Netherlands | I would love it to do better, but it's not exactly instant. Thankfully the performance last night should give it some jury love.

18. San Marino | It was a fun opener and an obvious qualifier in the semi, but in this field, and especially in that draw, it feels more like the interval act has started. Plus, she looks like Alice.


19. Spain | A pleasant surprise in the rehearsal, and now the only straightforward pop ballad in the final, might not be ignored as I'd initially thought.

20. Norway | Another one that made sense to qualify, but there are mightier angels in the running tonight.

21. Moldova | History taught me that if something was a surprise qualifier, it probably won't do too well on Saturday.

22. Israel | The last 20 seconds of the song being used as recap should save this from a televote 0.

23. Albania | I cannot see anything but a similar scenario to Ktheju Tokës.

24. Cyprus | A bit of a daring guess, but I was never really impressed with this to begin with, and it came off quite weak in the lineup yesterday.

25. Germany | I can imagine one or two televote points from a few regional countries.

26. United Kingdom | I can't imagine one or two televote points from a few regional countries.

Enjoy tonight and post your own predictions on our message board!

Fishy Prediction for the Final

I was hoping new haircolour (is mix of Edsilia dress and Ukrainian fur, you will enjoy) would put my head in a sense of clarity, but nope, still as clueless! But I'll give it a go anyway!

1 Italy | Great start, medium middle, KICKASS ending, could it be enough? Or am I just getting carried away by the betting? Can it be called getting carried away when I'm not even that keen myself? I hope you didn't come here in search of answers, I clearly mainly have questions.


2 Malta | It’s been my default winner for a few months, more in lack of another than due to strong conviction, so now there is something else I suppose second makes sense. She’s nailing it though!
3 Ukraine | This feels like the buzzer from Semi 1, and rightly so. I'm expecting a mad audience reaction and a top 3 televote, but maybe some juries will be a bit more doubtful, even if there's absolutely no sensible reason they should. I think this has emerged as my personal favourite tonight, after Denmark was so rudely kicked out on Thursday!


4 Switzerland | Despite the initial reports this was looking weird, this is one of the favourites I've actually had increased faith in after rehearsals/semis, and I think I like it a bit more myself too.
5 France | Whereas this I'm getting increasingly bored of, gradually ever since January. Partly because it's been exactly the same all along, but on the other hand I wasn't even wowed the first time, so instead of going from yay to okay, it's rather gone from okay to excusez-moi, could you zip le mouth, s'il vous plaît. Still, a French victory after 44 years would be quite cool, I must admit!


6 Finland | I assumed this was a solid top 10 for ages, until it somehow just disappeared completely the last few weeks and I even vaguely played with the thought of it missing the final. But then it seems to have become a bit of a thing after the semi after all, somehow! I wanted something to split up the "obvious" top 6 with, and couldn't really find anything else, so let's consider this my little risky thing.
7 Iceland | Can't see the non-live performance hurting it, as it looks seamless, and they were always going to do exactly this anyway, but I can see various areas of Europe not fawning over this in the same way my surroundings are.


8 Russia | Disappears a bit, but it's still that good and it's still Russia.
9 San Marino | I considered throwing this into the ring as my risky 6th place, as I think it will appeal to viewers as a silly and sparkly bit of fun at the end of the line-up, but I suspect the juries had limited patience for it last night.
10 Lithuania | Would've won if it wasn't for the yellow, clearly.
11 Azerbaijan | Would've won if it wasn't for the snake, clearly.
12 Bulgaria | Would've won if it wasn't for all the brown sweet soup, clearly.
13 Portugal


14 Greece | If you'd asked me a month ago I'd say this was a solid 4th place. But then something happened.


15 Albania | I suspect all hope of any televote points out of its core audience in Switzerland and Greece is gone, but that alone should secure them a nice little bundle, and if she doesn't get some jury love too I'm rioting.
16 Serbia | Not expecting much jury love here, but RAM-BA-BA-BAM SAM-SAM-SAM LOM-LOM-LOM.


17 Netherlands | Very glad this is here, even if I rarely actively listen to it or don't expect it to do much at all. But I sincerely hope it gets some jury love!
18 Cyprus | Where did Tamta end up, around here, right? 13th?!
19 Moldova | Really should end up lower tonight, but then she's with Kirkorov, she's better off with him. I want her to come back again without Kirkorov, she'd be better off without him.
20 Belgium | It's in the right place.
21 Norway | I've been thinking 22nd in the final all season, but I'm feeling risky again, can we finally manage to beat Sweden again, as if it was the 90s?!


22 Sweden | Wishful thinking, you say? Tussé.
23 Spain | Speaking of wishing, I wish there was room for this higher up, as it's really nice, Blas seems great (and frankly rather gorge), and they've really done the most of it. I guess we'll just have to be happy that with the quality of Eurovision these days, all these things may still "only" add up to a 23rd place.
24 Israel | Is it a bird?



25 Germany | I do feel hate, and I want to keep feeling it, thankyouverymuch.
26 United Kingdom | It's just a bit pointless, isn't it.

Have a glorious Eurovision, everybody!!




D-Day! Final predictions:

ZOMG, THIS IS HARD!

(Edited at 18:01 CET). This is the final one. I think. Yes. No. Yes... yes. Final.

1. France
2. Switzerland
3. Ukraine
4. Italy
5. Portugal
6. Finland
7. Lithuania
8. Azerbaijan
9. Russia
10. Malta
11. Norway
12. Iceland
13. Sweden
14. San Marino
15. Bulgaria
16. Serbia
17. Cyprus
18. Greece
19. Albania
20. Belgium
21. Moldova
22. Israel
23. Netherlands
24. Spain
25. United Kingdom
26. Germany

ESC week | Friday | Final | Jury Show

So you already know the proceedings if you've read Sild's earlier post (and if you haven't, you should), so I'll try to focus on how they played for the juries and my general 'feel'. I've even stopped a dishwasher half way (sacrilege!) to be able to hear vocal performances.

Televote reveal is done fairly professionally, although Chantal does a 2018-style mistake and reveals points before she needs to. That's what rehearsals are for, right? Norway also wins the televote and therefore will host the jury final next year. The woman who's supposed to be TIX is obviously fake because the winning speech is less than 10 minutes. Thank you for reading!

Jury voting and obviously some of the spokespersons aren't the ones who will be on tomorrow (pretty sure the Israeli "Lucy" is a guy, but not going to assume anyone's gender). The singers are no longer there. The Slovenian spokesperson taught Chantal how to say dober večer properly and she recited it, let's all hope she gets it right tomorrow. Also, note to spokespersons:

STOP SAYING GOOD MORNING AUSTRALIA THEY'RE NOT EVEN IN THE FINAL THIS YEAR AND WILL WATCH THE RETUN IF AT ALL

Barbara is still fabulous. Schöneberger that is. Daði at the hotel room is quite fun when he gets fake 12s. And Norway is the fake jury favourite.

Countdown wait, the votes are still open?? Ok but it's made of people and is the best countdown ever (at least since Nana Muskhuri got hit by an hourglass). Very very cool.

Pre-infection Duncan has a nice new song, unlike Sild I think it would have finished about 17th if it competed tonight.

More interval act and Måns (oh, you again) is on some roof. As are some other winners that we haven't seen in every Eurovision event ever since they won. This is quite well done. And Lordi have new masks.

More interval act and Nikkie's tips video is quite fun, although it's already starting to feel like a very long night. Also, Ruslana is hilarious.

Interval act is pretty effective DJ stuff aimed at the general population watching ESC. The producers know their audience well, like they did yesterday for a the semi viewers...


Snabbis and clips that draw my attention from the computer are Eden's whistle, Malta, Switzerland, Natalia's YeEeEeaghgh, Lithuania, Ukraine, France, Netherlands, Italy and San Marino. Make of it what you will.

San Marino that was an obvious qualifer feels a bit weak after so many strong entries. FloRida must have mistaken himself with FloRea because he tried to eat Senhit's cheek in the end.

Sweden's Tusse is still a nice kid and still pronounces very long Ns. Mostly good but missed a note in the keychange. Tix liked it (or, liked to show himself given the chance)

Italy and it's hard to type because it's just so engaging. This is the energy the night needed. They added a "put your hands up Rotterdam" which I don't think is necessary. Massive reaction.

Netherlands I missed the postcard (forgive me), but Jeangu looks ecstatic to perform and is once again vocally perfect and oozing charisma. Audience somehow managed to get some flags blocking our view. I didn't miss that.

Norway is hard to make sense of - feels a bit out of place in this grand final, and yet feels like something every Eurovision final needs to have. He sang fine and took off his shades again. Audience wasn't impressed, but Hurricane waved their flags to it.

Azerbaijan after 3 vocally perfect entries is a reminder that not everyone is. I'm having fun and so is the arena, but pretty sure jurors without dishwashers will be more critical about this.

France could just as well be live-on-tape with this intimate staging. Fans of this song will be happy to know that Barbara was perfect vocally. I still think it's too repetitive and over-the-top, but there's an applause in the end, including by Jendrik & co.

Ukraine stands out a mile from everything we've seen. Their jury result is difficult to predict but televote-wise this is very, very dangerous. Roar in Ahoy, standing ovation by Manizha.

Lithuanians are competent as ever, but feels kind of tired and weak surrounded by giants. Hard to tell if it's because it's the same as it's been since January or is it because that's what it is. Still, big audience reaction. Blind Channel weren't very impressed.

Bulgaria is still very brown and very sugary. Not perfect vocally and she still says "growing hup". But this will have its audience. Eden liked it.

Break and Edsilia is up in the commentator boxes. Sadly not in the Belgian one to inspect the broken plexiglass.

Finland is a contrast to Germany in every aspect possible. Sounding the same as it always did, big in the hall. Not sure if in the end it was a thank-you or a cough.

Germany's postcard has a lot of sand. Jendrik is singing better than most of the earlier rehearsals I've seen (or did Natalia lower my standards?). The song still exhausts me after 10 seconds. Near mute audience. In the end, Jendrik adds "Thank you! Thank you for slkadlaklshfdkajdfhkhasf"

Moldova qualifying probably means that some jurors still had their dishwasher on. We're getting some Chantal after the postcard. Natalia is still nowhere near a tune, but visually does the job.

Spain's postcard has puppies in Blas's arms and that's surely worth 50 televote points alone? Spot-on and emotional performance, although with some camera angles the moon looked like it's about to hit him.

Iceland gets a very loud supportive audience reaction. The rest, you know.

Switzerland's Tears still looks like everyone's aunt and is singing brilliantly. This is really standing out in this draw after so several ordinaries.

Greece still has the best colour scheme. Stefania swallawed a few words at the start but otherwise good enough. Huge audience reaction as expected.

United Kingdom's James is once again in black leather and vertical stripes. Not fully in tune and quite breathy at times, but this does have good energy. Destiny sees herself on the screen and then decides to show an applause.

Break has short clips of fans lipsyncing to some clasic ESC songs as well as El Diablo, which already feels like it was on forever ago.

Serbia may be separated by Portugal from Malta, but is still a bit too close for comfort. Will one of these suffer? This is still competently performed glorious trash with all the hair.

Portugal still sounds like it does and and makes a perfect contrast to Malta musically and visually. Polite applause by Hooverphonic.

Malta is on and any rumours that they don't need to put an effort tonight because their jury score was guaranteed months ago are not true, or they are and nobody told Destiny, because she's fantastic. Great audience reaction too.

Russia brings back the party that Israel started, the audience is clapping along the intro. Manizha's on top form, this feels like something many viewers will enjoy but not necessarily vote for.

Belgium, just like in the semi, draws my attention off the blog editor as soon as the first notes kick in. Geike is once again great and this is hard to ignore, even if it drags on a bit.

Israel is first to get a big audience reaction when the song starts. Good vocal performance by Eden, but she still can't pronounce the letter R. General feel: Eurovision has properly started, and this is the buildup for something better.

Albania I can see why bloggers complained about the overload of red in the first two songs. At least the blue (turquoise? green? teal? mint? Linda Martin-dress?) smoke effect makes for something different visually. And once again I cannot fault Anxhela's vocals. I think she said "Thank you Eurobash" in the end 🤔

Cyprus sounds about the same as in the semi (mostly competent vocally, poor diction). General impression: rather ordinary.

Intro is a short video and straight to the flag parade which starts after less than 3 minutes. Quite efficient, so have your snacks ready. The real Senhit and Flo are here. Presenters are dress very festively Chantal's dress kina looks like this year's Eurovision logo, but in gold.