Eurovision 2022 Grand Final
It's going to be a long night
Ba ba-ba-ba ba baaa ba baaa! Not only do we have twenty five countries, then a Europe-wide televote, then the announcement of the national juries, and then the announcement of the televote results (which, for dramatic reasons, will take almost as long), I'm sure there will be a half dozen other things - interval acts, welcome acts, flag parades... it is scheduled to run from 9pm (local time) to 1am. That's four hours. The songs themselves last for 75 minutes. Which means 165 minutes of filler. ☺
Of course, it remains to be seen how much of the broadcast I am actually able to watch tonight. Because, as is traditional, it's a Saturday night with thunderstorm warnings.
While my tablet and Pi are running off batteries, and I could if necessary run the Livebox off a battery for a while, the problem is that the Livebox needs to be plugged into the outside world in order to work.
In fact, the warnings are enough that Orange sent me a text.
Thunderstorm alert: Orange invites you to unplug your Livebox
in order that it won't explode into a thousand smouldering fragments
should Him Upstairs decide to smite your pron collection.
Okay, down to business. I got my wild cherry diet Pepsi and I got my Black Jack gum here and I got that feeling...
<fx: record scratch>
Sorry. Wrong script. I have a Sodebo chicken salad (whoo, rabbit food!), and a pack of sour cream and onion Pringles...that should probably be referred to in the past tense. There's also the obligatory San Pellegrino Limonata, and some Bonne Maman lemon biscuits (each one individually wrapped in a little plastic baggie so you too can do your part in buggering up the environment). And to watch it all down, the most moreish of moreish chocolate, Maltesers. One per key change. One per custome change. One per obvious wind machine. And one every time the language currently being spoken/sung isn't exactly clear. Given the peculiar pronunciation of the Italian hosts (if Laowra and that other bloke that isn't Mika), I bought a big bag.
Ready for Eurovision.
As before, I'm streaming using NewPipe on the tablet. Last time I wrote "rablet". That's what happens when you're looking at one screen and typing in the other.
Lots of people clapping in time like the start of "We Will Rock You", only it's not. "Though we are sailing, please give me some chance"? I must be mishearing this.
It's a ridiculously full auditorium. And now for Laura to sing in Italian, on a red-themed set with big drums... and now everything is black and white. Okay, that quick cut to the audience masked an extremely slick costume change by... everybody.
Okay, she's now wearing a flowing blue dress, and so are the backing people.
Okay, now they're extracting urine. A black PVC suit with a yellow raincoat is what she's wearing now.
So it's no surprise that what might be the final costume change (what is is, five now?) is a black PVC suit. Oh, and maybe as many bits of songs as costumes. It might be a Laura Pausini medley, but probably makes more sense to the home crowd.
Whoops, some dodgy camerawork there. Probably wasn't meant to cut to that camera!
The entrants are announced in the order of performance. A big cheer for Norway (the wolves). Massive cheer for Italy, but, yeah. No surprise. Also a big cheer for Spain.
Not sure why they have guys dressed in alu foil dancing with fluorescent tubes. That stopped being cool and futuristic in the eighties.
Big cheer for Ukraine too. And for Greece. And Sweden. Might be an idea of who to keep an eye on?
Big cheer for Australia, and surprisingly, a huge cheer for the UK - could be a good sign, but a bigger cheer for Serbia.
More wasting time
Thirteen minutes in, the introduction of the hosts. The live subs, oh my god, "Make some noise Doritos!". Close, but no cigar.
Explaining the rules, as if nobody knows. Then again in French. But... why not explain why it's 5,6,7,8,10,12? To favour the winners?
At long last, a mere seventeen minutes into the show, we finally make it to the first song.
1. Czech Republic "Lights Off" (We Are Domi)
A darkwave song about getting over a breakup, i guess this is a universal theme. With a lot of noise from the audience. It's good that they are getting so into things (Italians make a noisy audience), but do they have the stamina to make it through all the songs?
Where are you now... changing my bedcovers. Did she look in the laundry basket?
The light show seems vastly more energetic than the stage performance.
2. Romania "Llámame" (WRS)
Sorry, this is just a bit "meh" to me. Synchro dancing and a heavy Spanish theme, with a singer that's Peter Andre with a naff goatee. The low resolution of the streaming doesn't help. But, still, "meh".
3. Portugal "Saudade, saudade" (Maro)
Oh, it's the local coven. Standing in a circle for a calm and emotional song.
"Saudade" is a word that has no direct translation. The site dictionary.com describes the word as "Saudade is a word for a sad state of intense longing for someone or something that is absent.".
Yup. Still like that one.
4. Finland "Jezebel" (The Rasmus)
Opening with him with his trademark hair, a yellow Mac, and that balloon, it's like being sung at by the Child Catcher.
It's about a woman, a free spirit, who knows what she wants, and takes it. It clearly references the Queen of Israel (Kings). The name was associated with false prophets thanks to the book of Revelations, and through time has come to be associated with fallen women. The name can be used to describe promiscuous women, indeed this way of thinking was used to justify sexual assault and servitude in the colonial days of the early United States. Which, I guess, ultimately means it's about being misunderstood.
First time of the night to rock out with the air guitar. But, FFS, put something on!
5. Switzerland "Boys Do Cry" (Marius Bear)
This starts at the time the sun sets here. Actually, it goes down a few minutes earlier as the horizon isn't flat.
Yes. Everybody hurts. Even guys.
Except the British. Stiff upper lip, and all that.
Sometimes airplanes fall down from the sky. I dunno, is it a Boeing?
Didn't The Cure sing a song that was pretty much the exact opposite.
Okay, time wasting for lesser channels to show adverts, so I'll Google.
Yup. Boys Don't Cry. Sorry, I'm more inclined to put my trust in Robert Smith.
6. France "Fulenn" (Alvan and Ahez)
Alvan is from Rennes, and Ahez are three women from Carhaix... which probably isn't a coincidence given that Carhaix in Breton is Ker Ahez.
This is weird celtic fusion that honestly sounds like something I'd expect one of the former Yugoslav countries (looking at you, Serbia) to have entered. It's a strange entry from France.
7. Norway "Give That Wolf a Banana" (Subwoolfer)
Okay guys, here's the gag entry. Even appearing in full getup in the postcard.
I mean, enquiring minds need to know - if a wolf is looking to eat grandma, is he really going to want to be placated with a banana? You know wolves are carnivores, right?
I suspect I'm overthinking this, Keith...
8. Armenia "Snap" (Rosa Linn)
Oh, it's the girl in the paper room song.
The subs think she's saying "slap him".
Have they fixed the big reveal?
Oh, I just noticed from the staging, the first two thirds of the song, she's hidden from the audience in her little paper room.
Some yacking looking back at moments from the semi finals. To set up Italy's staging?
Shout-out to whoever turned the spotlight off in the middle of Laura and Mika's presentation to camera, then turned it back on and probably ran for a change of underwear.
Come on guys, what's taking so long? Wasting many minutes with a lesson on Italian gestures. Can't help but think that Mika is trolling Laura ever so slightly.
My gesture, make a circle with thumb and index finger, turn your wrist so the circle is facing up, then move the forearm up and down from the elbow. Don't do this in front of your parents!
9. Italy "Brividi" (Mahmood and Blanco)
As expected, this is the San Remo winner. Mahmood returning after not quite winning in 2019.
Okay, a reasonable song ruined by some rapping and... what's the guy in what wearing? It's even worse than that awful coat Corbyn used to wear.
10. Spain "SloMo" (Chanel)
There should be a rule where the less a woman wears, the more points that gets deducted from a song. I keep getting the feeling we're supposed to seque into boom boom shake shake the room, only then she spoils it by wailing in Spanish.
"I will remember this for the rest of my life!", she said at the end. Better hope it's not nul pwah, then.
11. Netherlands "De diepte" (S10)
Da da da da da da da da da la da, oooooh aaaaaaahhhh....
I don't know why I like this song, I just do. Maybe it's the fragility in her voice. Maybe it's the subs attempting to interpret this as English (it's Dutch) and coming up with word salad?
12. Ukraine "Stefania" (Kalush Orchestra)
Tipped to be the winner, this. An ode to motherhood, and a guy with a massive orange wooly hat.
If it does win, it will be the first rap/folk fusion to win. And god help us next year when loads will try, like all the Mâneskin wannabes this year.
Still want to know how on earth one plays that whistle. It looks like he is holding it by the end, so... tuning? notes?
13. Germany "Rockstars" (Malik Harris)
How many instruments on stage is he going to play? You know for technical reasons the instruments are not live, only the vocals.
Damn, he starts John Legend and then slides into full on Eminem, and back to Legend again. Still waiting for the rock, though. Maybe that's why he isn't a rock star? ☺
Please excuse any typos. The sun has set, it's dark. The only light is from the tablet and the little Pi display unit. So I'm basically touchtyping. I'm not a touch typist, so I'm surprised at how well I'm actually doing.
14. Lithuania "Sentimental" (Monika Liu)
A jazzy number that you might have heard in an Eastern European speakeasy a century ago, perhaps? Failing that, a Bond theme from the days when Bond was a mysogynistic womanising bastard.
She's trying so hard to be engaging and cute, but... it's a kind of a blah song, isn't it?
15. Azerbaijan "Fade to Black" (Nadir Rustamli)
Oh crap, this one is going to hit me in the feels. Again. It's a rather simple staging, but remarkably effective. Even when lying on the bleachers, and moving them while the performers are standing on them.
Damn, that note.
16. Belgium "Miss You" (Jérémie Makiese)
The singing this time is stronger, not with the parts that sound like incoherent mumbling. But this song just doesn't do anything for me.
Mika and Laura doing a comedy routine to plug the official CD and DVD, plus sone highlights from the semi final to waste even more time. I guess the stage hands bit off more than they could chew when presented with a live song contest with some performers having elaborate staging.
17. Greece "Die Together" (Amanda Georgiadi Tenfjord)
It's supposed to be about a dying relationship, but moves on to the performer wanting to die along with their partner in order that they can remain together. So, your happy Europop bop-along.
Greek's Amy Lee gets a thumb up from me. Better a song about dying together than some naff pop song.
Of course, building to a climax with "take my heart and rip it out" might be a bit heavy for snowflakes. Me? Bring it. And a knife. And some sanitised swabs (have to be careful not to cause an infection).
(I have mentioned in the past that my mentality leans towards the goth)
18. Iceland "Jaja Ding Dong!" (Olaf Yohansson)
That joke isn't going anywhere soon. ☺
18. Iceland "Með hækkandi sól" (Systur)
Three sisters, who performed at Glastonbury back in 2016. No idea what they are singing, but it's kind of catchy.
Don't get the western influence, I mean, Iceland is probably the last place you'd expect to find a country song, isn't it?
19. Moldova "Trenuletul" (Zdob si Zdub and Advahov Brothers)
Just looked up the song on Wiki... it's about a happy train ride between the capital cities of Moldova and Romania. No, really. The release of the music video for the song also accompanied the reopening of the train route that the song is about.
If this is what train rides in Moldova are like, I think I'll take the bus, thanks.
This is like a bunch of dads doing everything in their power to send their children into lifelong therapy, and having a blast doing it.
20. Sweden "Hold Me Closer" (Cornelia Jakobs)
I suppose Moldova's song is the comic relief so we don't get crushed by the weight of all those serious songs, like Sweden's Duffy and a big green circle...that turns red. Didn't they watch Nausicaa? When the eyes turn red, it's A Really Bad Thing.
We've gone from Duffy to Bonnie Tyler. And a good strong song this.
21. Australia "Not the Same" (Sheldon Riley)
Because he's openly gay, or because he's on the spectrum? Not the same, and it's a double whammy, especially if others don't like different.
Childhood is when our personalities form, and if people treat you like crap, it can hurt for a lifetime.
Kudos to this guy for standing up and saying "I'm not the same". Screw all of them, be yourself.
You know, he reminds me of Israel's Hovi meets Conchita.
Laura wearing green now. How many costumes has she gone through this evening?
A rather impressive a capella rendition of Volare by Laura to pass the time while undoing Australia's stage.
22. United Kingdom "Space Man" (Sam Ryder)
This one... is actually rated quite well by the bookies. Not a winner, they peg Ukraine for that, and as I thought back in the semis, Sweden is a bit of a dark horse. But, we all know that the votes are split between the juries (voting on technical ability) and the audience (voting for whatever reasons). Can the UK salvage something from the abysmal mess they've made of the last six years?
Well, those high vocals and the long hair. Is he the missing BeeGee?
This is... actually kind of good. Oh, and some air guitar moments too. Shame that nothing launched when the gantries fell away. Surely a moment for some pyrotechnic goodness?
Well done UK, you've finally entered something that isn't shit.
It's eleven o'clock. Three more songs, and only halfway through the show.
No, Mika, it's not Holland. And they don't call it that. <facepalm>
23. Poland "Ochman" (River)
These vocals, it reminds me of Chris Isaak. But those dancers at the front. I thought they were water spirits, but perhaps they are zombies? Or maybe the whole thing is a metaphor for the afterlife, given the heaviness of some of tonight's songs.
24. Serbia "In corpore sano" (Konstrakta)
A song about health? A song about healthcare? A song about beauty and standards, especially for women? Serious? Satire? Something in between?
Wisely the artist herself has done a Dylan and left everybody coming up with their own interpretations, and there appear to be many.
I like how she's singing in Serb and the Latin is subbed in English. Certainly helps to emphasise how it gets dark at the end. But darkness is a bit of a theme this year. I guess having the former Soviets talking about mushroom clouds might put a bit of a dampener on everybody.
25. Estonia "Hope" (Stefan)
And, as a nice end to the contest, a song about hope. Well, a western themed song about A Town Named Hope, perhaps?
What's changed? He's less Johnny Cash this time around.
Hahah, just after the fade-out, they cut to a granny nonchalantly waving a tiny flag.
That's it. All of the songs have been heard. And we're only halfway through the night.
They're all wearing something different this time. And they're getting photobombed by a wolf. Again.
Europe, start voting!
As a recap plays, here's my selection.
- Greece - eternal love is dying together
- Sweden - hold her closer but watch out for the Ohmu's eyes
- Serbia - bittie zdrava!
- Portugal - the coven
- Azerbaijan - feeling the fade out
- Australia - stand up and stand out
- UK - the guy from space
- Armenia - don't snap, there's always tomorrow
- Germany - Eminem's Legend
- Netherlands - fragile word salad
Iceland - the country ballad
These are my personal preferences. In reality, Ukraine will likely do quite well, if not outright win it.
I have two entries in the one point place, because I had one entry too many in my list, and I really didn't have the heart to boot either of them.
It feels really weird, after all these years, to actually put the UK into my list.
I think it's going to be a race between Ukraine and Sweden, but keep your eyes on Serbia and Australia. I'll keep my fingers crossed for Greece.
Mâneskin doing a song - Supermodel.
Then, a bit of a new song that I think is from a Baz Luhrman film about Elvis? Well, that's a pretty epic leap from winning Eurovision last year to working with a famous director for a film about what might be the most notorious and globally famous performer of all time.
I stepped out front to divest myself of some of the lemon drink. Well, it's quicker than heading to the little room around back, and I didn't need to take my headphone off...though the Bluetooth struggled with five metres. Hmm...
Anyway, I could see Luna. This is good, because if I can see the glowing silvery disc in the sky then it means there are no evil thunder clouds yet.
Oh my god, Laura is in her... what, twelfth outfit?
I don't remember her name, but it's the woman who won for Italy back in the sixties. Did the caption say "Gigliola"? I don't even want to imagine how that's said.
The voice of Eurovision
A look back at stuff. Then a look at the feelings of the vote announcements for who wins and who...doesn't. Announcing the Eurovision stress contest.
Magical Mika - a rather weird rendition of Love Today, with an army in white with heart flags.
A different song - he could be brown, he could be blue. He could be, but he is a world of ham. And another guy losing his upper clothing.
Kind of amusing when Mika sings higher than the women that introduce his next song. A little bit of love. Well everybody seems to be getting into this. So many heart flags. Would it be cheesy to say that was heartwarming?
I am going to die tomorrow
Vince is putting everybody who votes for somebody other than Sweden onto his hit list.
I have Sweden in second place, and yes, it was a good song. But my personal favourite is Greece.
Because it's not yet midnight, so we have all the time in the world, right?
Ouch... During the recap of Lithuania, somebody yelled in my right ear. I guess there are microphones in or around the audience and somebody screamed into one.
I can't vote
I had a look at the official app. Apart from many poor votes over its brokenness and how it doesn't seem able to tell where a person is to sort out their voting rights... it also seems to work by creating text messages. Well, the phone that I have with me (the one that doesn't have a full memory and is on charge) does not have a SIM. So, no voting from me.
I can't vote by phone either, as I'm watching the live stream, so no idea what the numbers are.
Voting is over. And a quick message from an Italian woman in space.
The national juries
Time for the national vote announcements. Oh god, there are forty countries to get through.
Martin, not Jon. "You're good to go".
The Netherlands offer their twelve to Greece. Yes! ☺
San Marino, interesting hairdo. 12 to Spain.
North Macedonia, 12 to Spain. Huh?
Malta. 12 to Spain. Did I miss something?
So far the UK is actually doing well.
Ukraine now. They offer 12 to the United Kingdom. Whoa. 12 to the UK.
Albania and even more points to the UK. Their 12 to Italy.
Estonia, to offer 12 to Sweden. That'll make Vince happy.
But right now, the UK is in the lead. Even if they don't get another point, that's surely the best result in forever.
Martin gives the Azerbaijan votes as they lose the connection. And it's another 12 to the UK.
Portugal now to offer their 12 to Spain. That song is doing unexpectedly well.
Germany give their 12 to the UK. Astonishing.
Belgium, what is he wearing? But who cares, it's another 12 for the UK.
The UK has a 19 point lead at this point. Sweden is third, and Greece fifth. Ukraine, seventh.
Norway offers their 12 to Greece. ☺
Israel have a 12 for Sweden.
Poland, and I'm noting how many points there are for the UK, I bet Norton is losing it on the BBC commentary. 12 to Ukraine.
A cute Greek offers their 12 to Azerbaijan.
Moldova, the lady in red give 12 to Ukraine.
Bulgaria have 12 for Greece. And another 10 for the UK.
Serbia. Is her name Dragana? Is that a female dragon? I see she has a bowl to wash her hands! 12 to Azerbaijan.
Iceland give 12 to Sweden. Not a big surprise.
Cyprus. They will give their 12 to Greece. Yeah, that was... painfully predictable.
Latvia now, with a headpiece to rival Kate Heidke-Miller. The Latvian 12 is for Ukraine. Nothing political there. ☺
Spain with a big big delay. 12 points from Benidorm to Azerbaijan.
Switzerland, with a fluffy nightie, give 12 to Greece.
Denmark, another 12 to Greece.
A quick break, and the UK is still in first place. With Sweden second, and Spain third.
France with a big 12 votes from Élodie to the UK. Oh... wow.
Armenia, a young Robert Downey Junior offer 12 for Spain.
Montenegro with 12 to Serbia.
Romania... no connection... so Martin again offers the results. The 12 points to Ukraine.
Ireland now, with the woman looking unsure whether or not she is actually on camera. Her 12 are for Spain.
Slovenia with a 12 for Italy.
Georgia... and off again to Martin. Wow. Lots of dodgy connections. But 12 for the UK.
Croatia, offering their 12 to Serbia? Yup. That was predictable.
Lithuania. Another 10 for the UK, and 12 for Ukraine. I've just noticed poor Germany (Legend/Eminem) has nul pwah.
Austria. Will they offer anything to Germany? No, it's 12 to the UK and a big glug of bubbly right from the bottle.
Finland, I'm sure they'll offer 12 to Sweden. Yup. They did. Gee, imagine that.
The UK give their 12, from Greater Manchester, to Sweden. I can see Vince has had an effect.
Sweden, dressed as Bird's Custard, offer their 12 to Spain. I guess I missed something in Spain's song.
Australia and... what is she wearing? It's like the creepy version of Pink. Nothing for the UK and 12 for Spain.
Czech Republic, with 12 to the UK. They are confirmed as the winners by jury vote.
The final country, Italy. That's a fake backdrop. It's 12.40am! And to be right off the wall, they give the final 12 of the night to the Netherlands.
The UK, Sweden, Spain, Ukrtaine, Portugal, Greece, and Italy...
Wow. The UK won the jury vote. It could all change now, but... whoa.
One more time, "you're good to go".
They usually announce the results in reverse order, from the country that currently has the lowest number of results.
Germany, with no votes, received... six points. Ouch.
France gets eight.
Finland, 26 points. I expected better.
Romania, 53 points.
Moldova, 239 points. The hell? The embarrassing dads?
Czech Republic, five points. Ouch.
Lithuania, 93 points.
Norway, 146 points. The wolves have a little knitted wolf.
Armenia, 21 points.
Estonia, 98 points.
Poland, 105 points.
Belgium, 5 points. Oh wow.
Switzerland, zero points. Okay, now that must have hurt.
Serbia, 225 points, currently putting them into first place.
Azerbaijan, 3 points.
Australia, oh man, TWO points? Whoa, the crowd is giving him some love.
The Netherlands, 42 points.
Italy now, what will the home team get? 110 points. Temporarily puts them in third place.
Greece, fingers crossed for a good score, but only 57 points, so it wasn't to be.
Portugal, the coven, received 36 points. Good grief, and the dads got what?
Ukraine now, let's see a four hundred point score here. Holy crap, they did it. 439 points blasting to the top of the score board with 631 points, twice what Serbia has in second place.
Spain, the song I didn't expect to do this well, gets 228 points. Not winners.
Sweden now, can they catch Ukraine? With 180 points, they don't catch Spain never mind Ukraine.
And finally, the UK. Will they catch the Ukraine? With a score of 183 points. Close, but not enough. As predicted, Ukraine wins the contest. I rather suspect current world events have played a major part in this.
But, the UK, second place. Oh. My. God.
The winner one more time
Well, that's just effed up Putin's plans to get rid of Ukraine. Time to hear the Ukraine perform one more time.
Lots of thankyous while the winners get ready.
Then, as is customary, a final performance of the winning song. Slava Ukraini.
Some thoughts before I hit the hay
The UK had a real shot of winning this, this year. Their best result since actually winning in 1997. Proof, if any was needed, that - no - Europe doesn't hate the UK. The UK just kept sending shitty songs.
I hoped for better for Greece. I can't believe the embarrassing dads were one place above. Serbiam Sweden, the UK, and Ukraine were up at the top of the board. Spain, too. That was unexpected. France sent in something different, it didn't work out.
Germany... their entry wasn't that bad.
I'm also suprised that Australia didn't do better. A mere two points from the televote is a bit brutal.
But, that's how it goes. There is a winner, and there is everybody else.
Next year... probably not in Kyiv. Not unless something astonishing happens.
It's half one in the morning. Still no thunderstorm, thank god. I'm outta here.
Goodnight, America, wherever you are.
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|Chris Mahoney, 16th May 2022, 04:37|
Re: Armenia, if you look closely you can see the floor moving. She's not hidden from the audience :)
|Rick, 16th May 2022, 18:33|
Turns out there was a reason for the three lost connections.
Six countries had their jury votes annulled due to "irregularities" and replaced by aggregate votes. Three of the countries refused to give these replacement votes on air - Romania mentioning that their 12 actually went to Moldova, not Ukraine.
They have demanded an explanation from the EBU.
(Felicity? Marte? Find out!)
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Last read at 03:20 on 2023/05/30.
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