Last night’s Eurovision Song Contest was the first I’d sat all the way through in years. Cheesy pop isn’t my thing, ironically detached or not. What I saw remained not my thing, but it wasn’t the sort of frothy nonsense that exists in the British public’s imagination either. This is something that appears to upset Tim Moore.
The tone of his article is quite obnoxious. There are no fixed rules about what Eurovision is or is not and there is a growing body of evidence to suggest that many for many Europeans the joke is over. Lordi won last year because of a coalition between the Baltic states, people who wanted a wholly ‘inappropriate’ song to win and genuine rock fans. I was bored a few months ago and decided to see how the result would have changed if each country’s vote was weighted by population. Lordi still won hands down. Watching the voting last night it was clear that Serbia won because of more than the blatant ‘bloc voting’ of neighbouring Balkan states giving them top marks – they won because pretty much every single country gave them at least 1 point. They took it seriously and won. We treated it like a joke and were wiped out. It’s as simple as that.
Complaining that Eurovision is no longer about cheesy pop is to attempt to impose a definition of popular culture on the rest of Europe that they don’t share. Tim Moore’s complaint appears to rest on the fact that he doesn’t like power ballads and rock. Such music doesn’t exactly rock my world either, but if Eurovision is evolving into something new and decidedly less western, then we just need to deal with it. You never know, it might even mean that the British submit a half decent entry for once.