To think that the Eastern Bloc have ruined the Eurovision Song Contest?

(85 Posts)
CelticPixie Sat 18-May-13 23:09:56

Call me sad but I have always loved the Eurovision and indeed look forward to it each year. Its always been good fun, but in the last ten years or so since the former Eastern Bloc nations were allowed to enter its changed and not for the better. The fun has gone now.

There has always been some political and neighbourly voting but now its got to the stage where the Western countries are at a massive disadvantage and struggle to get the points needed to win.

Is it wrong the hanker for the old days?

StuntGirl Sat 18-May-13 23:11:41

YABU. Eurovision is brilliant, the more batshit entries we can shoehorn into it the better.

CSIJanner Sat 18-May-13 23:12:35

YANBU - Graham was correctly predicting who was getting the 10 and 12 points before the countries had even announced their top 8!

dontlaugh Sat 18-May-13 23:13:05

Not to dismiss your concerns Pixie, but it's the Eurovision. I wouldn't over think it. I think the Eastern bloc countries have brought a very dance/trance element to it, which appeals to my inner 90's child.

marriedinwhiteagain Sat 18-May-13 23:14:03

Didn't Denmark stick up two fingers to Europpe. Yay they are in the lead!!

AgentZigzag Sat 18-May-13 23:14:41

You need to be getting onto The Fail about that Celtic grin

I'm not persuaded by your OP though, starting on the premise that it was good at some point in the past is never going to make for a strong argument.

There's no way I'd watch the voting, no way on earth, no siree

CelticPixie Sat 18-May-13 23:15:22

Graham is brilliant. Didn't think that Terry could be beaten doing the commentary, but Graham more than holds his own.

Bunbaker Sat 18-May-13 23:16:33

It would be interesting if the countries competing were anonymous and the voting was about the song rather than politics.

YABU. That's a very uk centric view point.

kim147 Sat 18-May-13 23:19:31

Not watching but I assume Greece gave Cyprus 12 points?

And Norway likes Sweden

HollyBerryBush Sat 18-May-13 23:19:38

But the songs will appeal to regions - ie the Greek song wouldn't appeal to western Europe, but it will to Mediterreaneans, ditto, the Scandanavians seem to like the same odd stuff.

Fluffypinkcoat Sat 18-May-13 23:21:42

YABU. Countries near to each other will have similar music tastes. Some musicians even do different versions of songs for Western Europe and Eastern Europe because slight changes make the songs sell better.

DontMeanToBeRudeBut Sat 18-May-13 23:23:27

YABU because it is Eurovision, not the UN.

Hiphopopotamus Sat 18-May-13 23:23:51


Denmark have just won, Sweden won last year, Germany the year before...

It does seem to be, float a decent song, with a decent artist, promote it before the event, and you win.

Keep putting out very older,' past it' artists with a sense of cynical irony, perhaps not do so well!

Mamf74 Sat 18-May-13 23:24:55

I think it's an odd one really! DH used to do a lot of work in Greece and Albania and the Eurovision entries were being played on radio MONTHS ahead of the contest, by the time Eurovision came about these were established artists and songs.

A lot of the entries now are also collaborations with established writers who are employed to write commercial songs rather than historic "novelty" songs like in the past.

I think possibly the UK are slightly behind the curve in this, I know Blue entered a few years ago but if it was seen as more commercial and less kitsch here I think more serious people would enter and we'd get more out of it.

CSIJanner Sat 18-May-13 23:24:58

The Greek song was fantastic, as was Romania and Malta. Instead tin pipe and drum Denmark has won.


No, it's always been a complete pile of shite.

Bunbaker Sat 18-May-13 23:26:36

I thought the best act was the presenter at the end grin

marriedinwhiteagain Sat 18-May-13 23:28:12

Hopefully now she's won she'll be able to stretch to some shoes smile

Bobyan Sat 18-May-13 23:28:20

who grin

Snazzywaitingforsummer Sat 18-May-13 23:30:15

I don't like the bloc and obviously political voting. but the overall quality has got better I think. I have liked quite a few of tonight's entries a lot, though tbh I thought Denmark's winner was just OK. Agree with Mamf above that we always seem slightly behind the curve.

Snazzywaitingforsummer Sat 18-May-13 23:31:17

And Graham is great. For my money he's better than Terry, whose ever more bitter cynicism got very wearing towards the end, especially in the light of his massive pay packet.

AgentZigzag Sat 18-May-13 23:31:50

They keep very quiet about the amount of diplomatic incidents provoked by Eurovision Dontmeantoberude wink

They don't want anyone knowing they've watched it for starters grin

Kneebeefjerky Sat 18-May-13 23:33:30

YANBU, they all actually take it seriously which is wrong. But most of them were deliberately booted out in the semis for exactly this reason. And Denmark, a western (ish) country won. As did Sweden last year.

And our song was shit.

Kewcumber Sat 18-May-13 23:35:51

You think it was possible to ruin the Eurovision song contest. Really?! You think it was previously great and now has deteriorated confused

You don't think it's just possible that you have matured a little?

MaryMotherOfCheeses Sat 18-May-13 23:36:03

Ireland always vote for UK.

Block voting isn't limited to Eastern European countries and therefore YABU.

Fluffypinkcoat Sat 18-May-13 23:36:52

Looking back at the past ten years, it was 50% eastern type countries winning and 50% western. Can't say fairer than that!

It doesn't really matter that much - if it did the same blocs would win every year.

It's also partly to do with actually having similar taste in music, whereas western Europe don't really like as much of the same things.

AgentZigzag Sat 18-May-13 23:37:43

'You don't think it's just possible that you have matured a little?'

And maybe a little less sloshed?


PuppyMonkey Sat 18-May-13 23:39:24

Our song was terrible. Denmark, Sweden, Finland have all been big winners now in recent years. The Eastern Bloc voting thing is a big of a myth.

Panzee Sat 18-May-13 23:40:12

It was exactly the same when it was juries hundreds of years ago. You can't blame the newer entrants.

Terry's nasty, bitter comments were one of the reasons I stopped even making a token effort to watch it about 10 years ago (DH loves it so I feel a bit bad for hating it so much).

apostropheuse Sat 18-May-13 23:48:55

You do realise it's not meant to be taken seriously OP? That's the whole point of the "competition" - it's a laugh.



I am now more than ever sure that the reason Norway hardly ever manages to get into the top three is because we have so few neighbours!

Russias vote is tied up with Estonia, Serbia, Ukraine, etc. Finland is usually giving top marks to Sweden and Hungary. Denmark and Iceland is the only of our neighbours ever giving us points. Sweden outdid themselves this year, as they never vote for us.

I just wish they could live politics aside and vote for songs. Maybe it should be "blind votes" - nobody should know which countries the songs represent! (And they should all sing in Klingon)

Snazzywaitingforsummer Sat 18-May-13 23:57:51

WhoKnows You should give it a chance again - Graham is loads better, and I really think the quality of the songs has improved. Plus this year it actually felt like it all moved along a lot faster.

For goodness sake Britain, if you keep putting retired has beens on stage, you are treating the competition like a joke, and wont be taken seriously. I think it is quite obvious that Britain puts non-starters whose Careers wont be harmed forward as they cant afford to host the ceremony!

Fluffypinkcoat Sun 19-May-13 00:00:45

Might be because the songs aren't good, quint! Look what happens when Norway sends a great song! The biggest score ever in Eurovision. That wasn't politics surely?

I think todays song was actually good. Not as good as Denmarks entry, that is a given!

Was that the boy with the fiddle? Yes, that was a good song.

Fluffypinkcoat Sun 19-May-13 00:05:06

That's the one. Can't be blaming politics when that song got votes from every single country (excluding Norway of course). Good songs win.

MrsSchadenfreude Sun 19-May-13 00:06:23

Eastern Bloc? What are we, back in 1989?


Mimishimi Sun 19-May-13 00:13:26

YABU. The only Eurovision songs/bands I've bought through iTunes after seeing them on the competition have been from Eastern Europe ( with the exception of Israel). Moldova (Pasha Parfeny), Russia (Peter Nalitch), Czechoslovakia ( and Greece (Giorgos Alkaios). Sometimes I don't like the actual song they've entered but like the potential enough to check out their other stuff, which is often a lot better.. Hate the competition and it's winning songs usually. At least a lot of the East Europeans sound original albeit they often have peculiar stage acts.

CelticPixie Sun 19-May-13 00:19:37

I agree our song was complete and utter shite. We definitely didnt deserve to win, but I'm glad Denmark did. They deserved it because it was the best song. But Azerbaijan second? Really? Ukraine third?! Neither song stood out to me. I liked Belgium Finland, both struggled. Italy's song was nice but came nowhere. Ireland definitely didnt deserve to come last either.

CouthyMow Sun 19-May-13 00:35:47

I liked Iceland's entry. Obviously not to most people's tastes, but I'm going to get it on iTunes. Having said that, Denmark's ditty was quite catchy, I found myself singing along to it at the end.

Tbh, I liked quite a few.

But why the fuck did we drag Bonnie Tyler out of storage - there's plenty of other great artists in the UK...

We were never going to get very far with Bonnie Tyler's song.

Myliferocks Sun 19-May-13 00:42:08

I've had Cascada's entry for Germany on my iPod for the past few weeks and last year when I went to Spain the winning Eurovision song 'Euphoria' had been playing out there for weeks before the competition as well.
I couldn't tell you what the UK entry was even called this year never mind what it sounds like.

Leavenheath Sun 19-May-13 00:44:37

It stands to reason though that if the UK or Ireland splintered into 10 separate regions and then called them countries (a la former Yugoslavia and USSR) and those countries all tactically voted for eachother, it would make a difference. But although I thought Malta and the Netherlands had the best songs, it's good to see that despite all the usually hilarious political voting, none of that seemed to have an impact on tonight's choice of winner. The results seemed reasonably fair to me overall. Bonnie Tyler was dreadful, Ireland's entry reminded me of the Father Ted Eurosong episode (preferred My Lovely Horse to tonight's dirge) and Spain's was a shocker.

Graham Norton is just brilliant though, isn't he?

Mimishimi Sun 19-May-13 01:11:17

Couldn't stop singing "I'm a leaf, I'm a leaf, growing on a tree" to Iceland's song unfortunately. It was a really nice song though and he was very handsome in a completely down to earth looking way ... Hope he does well with his music career.

SolomanDaisy Sun 19-May-13 09:16:10

Voting for your neighbours/chums happens across all the countries. We just don't have enough mates to gain points that way, so would need to submit a decent song to have a chance. We can usually bank on a few points from Malta and Ireland though, unless we actually enter 'my lovely horse'. I don't know why we don't just accept who is still genuinely really popular across Europe and persuade Iron Maiden to be our entry.

I thought Greece's entry was brilliant. Presumably winning would have tipped them over the financial edge and Germany would have had to host instead.

NinaHeart Sun 19-May-13 09:18:40

I think we (as in the UK) should attempt to get "nul points" instead of pretending we are trying to win.

Snazzy - I do try (DH loves it), usually watch the first 15 mins or so, get irritated and leave the room, maybe wander in and out a bit later, from what I have seen Graham is better than Terry, but I still find the whole thing excruciatingly awful. If I stay in the room I only end up slagging it off which isn't fair on DH so I just leave, he chats with people on another forum about it. I rememember it being exciting as a child (I grew up in the Abba era) but I can't see me ever watching the whole thing again, it's well past its sell by date as far as I am concerned.

ChasingDogs Sun 19-May-13 09:44:30

If we entered 'My Lovely Horse' I would definitely watch.

I didn't know who Bonnie Tyler was, and thought from the music video of her song that it was some sort of spoof. I wasn't really sure what to think when I realised that all that swaying and air-clutching whilst crooning "believe in me" wasn't done for comedic value.

Unless it was, and I've fallen for a double bluff. confused

I'm not sure but maybe it's to do with music styles? I've lived in Sweden, Poland, Russia and now the UK and spent time in Norway and studied in Denmark. Sweden and the UK have different music preferences, as does Poland (different to Sweden) and so on. This often goes in area, so our preferences may be more similar to say, that of Ireland, and vastly different to Romania, but Romania may have similar preferences to Moldova as, due to region, the culture would be more similar and therefore would have developed along more similar lines. Or something.

SolomanDaisy YY to Iron Maiden for our entry, although I suspect they would decline in case it ruins their street cred grin

Bunbaker Sun 19-May-13 10:04:47

Am I the only one who actually liked our song? I heard it on the radio before I knew it was our entry and thought it was a nice little ditty.

I did like the winning song though.

I did like the song from Greece, it really made me smile. DD fancied Denmark, she's happy now. I hadn't heard Bonnie's song previously, but as we can't vote for our own country maybe that's why they don't bother to promote our song in Britain. I understand it did get some promotion in Europe.

DD and I were a bit confused by the chap who sang just before Bonnie, especially when his vocals soared into the stratosphere.

I did notice the person reading votes out from (I think) Slovenia had a flashing badge that read "songs not flags" so I guess some people are beginning to realise bloc voting is ridiculous.

And I was glad there was only one presenter this year, none of that stupid scripted banter we frequently seem to get. And the song she did was really fun to watch.

redexpat Sun 19-May-13 10:18:05

Has anyone read this on the beeb?

Eastern Europe brought some badly needed energy to the contest. And as everyone else has said, it's usually about similar tastes in music than politics. Plus, according to the article, the individual countries had to pay for their own effects this year, so there were fewer gimmicks and what not. I have to say that there weren't any songs I thought were absolutely terrible. And the timing has improved massively.

Bonnie TYler didnt do very well because she was straining to hit the bottom notes.

Ilikethebreeze Sun 19-May-13 10:24:11

I thought is was yawnville.
I dont watch it every year, but I think this was the first year, having watched bits of every song, that I didnt care who won.

HazleNutt Sun 19-May-13 11:47:09

YABU. People always remember the "ooh look at the bloc voting!" examples when there's someone else doing it. Take the complaint earlier that Norway doesn't have such neighbourly relations - guess what countries Norway has received most points from? Sweden, Iceland, Denmark. And given most points to since the eastern bloc joined? Sweden, Iceland and Denmark.

In the past decade, we've had winners from Sweden, Azerbaijan, Germany, Norway, Russia, Serbia, Finland, Greece, Ukraine and Turkey - not exactly eastern europe only.

Jan49 Sun 19-May-13 15:18:29

And Israel has won 3 times.

I think the Eurovision is quite appealing when you're about 9 years old and like jigging around to music.grin After that it is all very forgettable. I didn't watch it but I played the winning entry and the UK entry using youtube and I thought they were both very so-so songs.

kotinka Sun 19-May-13 15:21:25

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

jellybeans Sun 19-May-13 15:24:01

I like it. The politicial voting has always been part of it. I did miss Terry Wogan but Graham was on form this year. First year I have liked him. We need a good entry though. What about Gary Barlow?

honeytea Sun 19-May-13 15:25:15

Yabu, here in scandinavia the radio plays eurovision songs, so we are very familia with norways and denmark's song even before the night, I guess maybe it is the same in the eastern countries.

Is scandinavia ruining it also?

kotinka Sun 19-May-13 15:31:41

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

UK have finished top 5 twice in the past decade or so - we could definitely win with the right song, just like Germany did. Belgium and the Netherlands have done disastrously over the last few years, not even making it to the final, but this year they both had attractive songs with charming singers and did pretty well.

The blinkered insistence that the song and the performance have nothing to do with it is what made me want (the otherwise lovely) Terry Wogan retired with extreme prejudice for decades. It's hardly surprising that if we are one of 39 rather than one of 16 or so like in the old days, then it will be more difficult to come top.

kotinka Sun 19-May-13 15:41:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

RedToothBrush Sun 19-May-13 15:53:14


The countries that were the best yesterday, almost without exception, were at the top of the leaderboard.

The shit ones - like ours - were at the bottom.

So even if there is tactical voting going on, how come the better songs are still fairing much better?

Or are you just bitter that we aren't winning? Or just utterly blind to the fact that we've not had a decent song in years?

kotinka Sun 19-May-13 15:56:09

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

YABU, but I think you know that.

Though last night's result made me make this face confused as the popular choices were barking. Azerbaijan managed to get points for the man-in-box gimmick, which was admittedly cool, but the song was shit. I can't even remember Ukraine's song tbh, which shows how good it was!

If it was done purely on song quality, Malta would have won. That song was amazing, even if Mr. Singing Doctor kept pulling some rather odd faces grin

Decoy Sun 19-May-13 18:13:49

It's a load of Eurotrash. It's very rare you get a good song on Eurovision.

ImTooHecsyForYourParty Sun 19-May-13 18:15:26

It's only a singing competition. I don't think it matters at all.

spanky2 Sun 19-May-13 18:33:49

There is no way I want them excluded after the Romanian entry . Graham Norton - just because you can doesn't mean you should . Fantastic !

clicketyclick66 Sun 19-May-13 18:47:46

I thought Ireland's song was the best, but it came last!

PimpMyHippo Sun 19-May-13 19:00:15

When I was six I hid under the table and refused to go to our neighbour's Eurovision party because I'd somehow decided that it was going to cause a war and we'd all be bombed.


PiggyPlumPie Sun 19-May-13 19:09:29

I don't think we can complain about the political voting as we have historically been guilty of it ourselves by giving Ireland 12 points.

We, as a country, seem to be voting along similar lines to the rest of Europe so it seems that we are just putting in shit songs!

I also thought Eurovision without Terry would be awful but am loving Graham Norton. He doesn't take it personally.

DontMeanToBeRudeBut Sun 19-May-13 20:43:31

I used to think that everyone treated Eurovision as a bit of a joke. Then I -(briefly) moved to Sweden. shock They took it so seriously! It was huge news, everyone was talking about it for weeks, everyone watched the actual contest. I just couldn't understand it. So it's no wonder the UK never wins really is it?

Last year I did wonder whether Spain would send a rubbish entry this time to make sure they didn't have to pay to host it twice grin

Mimishimi Sun 19-May-13 22:24:56

The singer from Spain was awful but they had a bit of my sympathy when our pig-ignorant TV commentator here in Australia said sarcastically "Because nothing says Spain quite so much as a bagpipe does it?". Well, actually, you idiot, Spain has one of the oldest continuous Celtic cultures in the world in the northwest (Galicia mainly) and it is thought they introduced the pipes to the British Isles. It annoys me that everyone just sees Spain as the land of castanets and guitar culturally and musically (as lovely as they are).

WafflyVersatile Sun 19-May-13 23:31:37

There are approximately eleventy-one competitors. Statistically you can only hope to win once in every eleventy-one years. The countries which have won more than once in the past 20 years have not been Eastern Bloc. A good song will make sales whether it wins or not.

Norway was robbed though.

kotinka Sun 19-May-13 23:34:23

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Who select the British entries, though?

Norway has "mini eurovision" where local talent compete, much like in X factor, and then the people vote by phone, along with "professional juries". I think it is the same in Sweden, but I am not sure?

Bramshott Tue 21-May-13 10:26:43

Isn't it just a bit of fun confused

And what could have been more fun than that Romanian entry grin???!

We tried that quint, but the great British public kept voting to have complete bollocks to represent us - we voted for that Daz bloke with the school girls and the rapping <shudder>

So then Andrew Lloyd Weber started writing the songs and we just voted for who would sing them. I'm not sure why anyone thought that was a good idea hmm

And now I think there is a panel who recruit ageing popstars once vaguely popular in Europe and try and convince them it won't kill their careers.

Nobody in Europe would understand British School girls.

Heck, it took me living here more than 10 years before I vaguely understood references to St Trinians. grin

Heck, this was a very fun Norwegian Entry that was rightly given a very un-mozartly treatment!

Excellent dancing grin

This is Daz, aka why the public don't get to choose anymore.

I think we could do really well if we could convince a currently popular UK artist to do it. Our music industry is really good, and very popular worldwide. But we don't take it seriously so that won't happen.

I don't really mind, I enjoy watching regardless of how many points we get.

kotinka Tue 21-May-13 10:54:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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