Temporary Blip – Or a Total Change?

Now on the basis of all the pre-publicity, thanks to the number of Finns complaining about their entry, I thought that Finnish Rock Band Lordi would probably do fairly well. However, they pretty well walked away with the whole competition, beating the second place song by almost 50 points. Considering that Father Mitro Repo, who appeared on the BBC complaining about the band said that he thought it was a protest by youngsters annoyed that Finland had failed to score highly in Eurovision the previous year, perhaps the youngsters seem to have a better idea of what would go down well than the rest of the country!

In terms of the competition as a whole, Lordi stood out mainly because they were something a bit different. Indeed one of the old ladies at church today commented that she thought they were entertaining as a band – which did slightly surprise me. It did also help that Finland is in one of the many Eurovision voting blocks, which gave it a boost over and above the Russian entry, which as usual was helped by big votes from all the former Soviet Republics (which of course all have large Russian minority populations). Ireland made a big improvement by sending Brian Kennedy, who I first came across supporting the Corrs on tour a few years ago. Their song was really the kind of thing that won them the competition a number of times a few years ago, however with the block votes of the Balkan countries, the former Soviet republics and the Scandinavian countries they ended up in the middle running – enough to keep them in the top flight next year. The UK finished well down the rankings again – better than last year, but still in a spot where if we weren’t paying a large part of the costs of the competition we’d be relegated to the semi-final next year.

So the real question will be whether this is just a temporary blip, or whether the win by Lordi will result in something a bit different next year from the pop numbers and ballads that usually get performed. The thing is that they are not the first to try something different. For example the UK entry this year was a rap number, which didn’t do overly well, and the Germans put in a Country and Western song, which didn’t do much better either. Of course whether it is a change or not, trying to win against the block votes is getting increasingly difficult – and largely it won’t change much until the EBU come up with a voting system that can negate the effect of the block voting.

2 thoughts on “Temporary Blip – Or a Total Change?”

  1. I must defend Lordi and comment that allthough Finland surely gives points to it’s neibouring countries such as Russia, Sweden and Estonia, Finnish entry never seemed to get too many points from them… Some of course… But why is it that Finnish Eurovision entries have had the worst scores in Eurovision, untill this win from Lordi? And quite many null points as well. The “voting block” has never helped Finland to even reach finals. Best result was 6th in 70’s. And to get full score from UK and Greece and other countries giving high scores as well, there must be something else explaining this win than a voting block and publicity. Mayby a catchy tune? Or sexy outfits?
    And how do you explain that Ireland always seems to get good scores in Eurovision? Are they in a block with other countries as well? Like, hmm, UK?
    I did like the UK entry this year and Daz. He had some credibility problems though.

  2. I have to say that I thought that Lordi were a deserving winner, and certainly did do something that stood out. What I am saying is that the size of the victory was helped by the voting blocks. Good songs seem to do well anyway, but in a year when there isn’t anything that stands out, being in one of the voting blocks helps.

    I certainly agree that Ireland and the UK always tend to give each other good scores, however the voting blocks are so apparent now that I can sit there during the voting and pretty well predict the scores in some places. However bear in mind that recently Ireland haven’t scored well, indeed last year they scored so low that they had to qualify this year.

    I have to agree with the comments about the UK entry. Again it was trying to do something different, but to my mind didn’t quite work.

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