17 minutes ago
Sunday, 15 May 2011
Eurovision Song Contest - same old outcome but I still love it!
So, Azerbaijan triumphs in Dusseldorf with a song which I'd have placed around 20th out of the 25 finalists. It invariably happens that way for me.
I've just looked up the country in my atlas and though I knew it was somewhere in the Black Sea/Caspian Sea area I wouldn't have had any confidence about giving its exact location - and even harder pushed to have named its capital (Baku) .
Anyway, if that song was what people wanted, who am I to argue?
I got a little consolation in that my second-favourite song also finished second, even though commentator Graham Norton seemed intent on running it down. ("Who would have imagined that a song like that could have finished in the top half, never mind in such a high place!")
My own placings:-
1. Iceland (Actually finished 20th)
2. Italy (2nd)
3. Ireland (8th)
4. Switzerland (25th = Last!)
5. Spain (23rd)
I suppose it just goes to show how my own tastes are largely out of tune with prevailing moods.
United Kingdom came 11th (a considerable improvement on last year's - last) with, for me a run-of-the-mill song performed by resurrected quartet 'Blue', even now reminding me too much of 'All4One's' biggie of 20 years ago, 'I Swear'. (The song's title 'I Can' tells its own story).
With TV audiences this year being allowed to vote from the time before the first song was even performed (why?) it was inevitable that regional rivalries would predominate yet more than usual with countries largely voting for their neighbours as they are not allowed to vote for their own country. We are assured that countries bordering each other do actually have strong rivalries, which I am ready to believe, and that they really vote for the cultural familiarity of a song, though I rarely notice any marked difference in the songs performed. They seem more or less interchangeable, especially when so often the song's composers come from a country other than the one the song is representing in the competition. If it's true that they really do tend to vote for their neighbours, then we in the west of the continent must be at a disadvantage as the break-ups of the Soviet Union and of Yugoslavia have resulted in a myriad of smaller countries, each carrying the same voting weight as the bigger states in the west, Germany, France, Spain, Italy and the U.K.
Well, it's an oft-voiced argument but no one seems to have any idea of how to rectify the balance. But must we get so worked-up about it? It's only an entertainment, a game, a bit of fun, for heaven's sake!
Okay, then. Roll on 2012! The U.K. haven't won for 14 years now so let's see if the the gloves aren't off. Let's show all these 'Johnny Foreigners' how to beat them at their own game. HAH!!!