So Bad It’s Good: Eurovision Song Contest 17


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I had no idea what the Eurovision Song Contest was until around dinner time last night, here in Dahab. I was doing a little work on the computer at a little restaurant right on the water and noticed everyone intently watching some show on television. It was the finals of Eurovision.

There is no accounting for taste I guess.

david hasselhoff singing blue suit

hard to explain the fascination…

From the continent that has decided that David Hasselhoff can sing and that Jerry Lewis is funny, this music/talent contest is right in that vein.

As I understand it, here is how it works. Each member country of the European Broadcasting Union submits one song to represent its country that will be song on live television (which was last night). Countries are free to choose how they choose their song on their own, but the songs can’t have been previously released commercially.

Then the bands perform their songs on live TV and you can vote for the song of any country other than your own by telephone or text message. As I understand it, the winners are chosen by this public vote making up half the score and five-person expert panels from each country making up the other half.

But let’s forget the rules and such — well first, I suppose, congratulations to Azerbaijan, who won last night. Let’s get to the videos.

The thing for me that makes this whole thing really fun is how completely and totally campy some of these performances can be. Don’t get me wrong, there are some really talented performers, but let’s roll some of the funniest and most amusing videos from Eurovisions of years gone by… enjoy.

These guys are soooo creepy and scary. Not scary in the way they intended though, I bet.

Riverdance comes to the Ukraine… in weird outfits.

Thinking there is something in the Ukrainian water… (and why are they counting in German?)

I don’t know whether to title this one, “The U.K. has a long history of suckage in Eurovision” or “The Ode to the TSA, from the U.K.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NBOnDcmckdc&feature=related

(1) Another pathetic effort from the U.K. (2) White people shouldn’t try to rap, as a general rule and (3) the schoolgirl outfits… really??

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6anJGmPMFtA&feature=related

This is so much more fun than making fun of the horrible American Idol contestants. Those people don’t ever make the finals.  These performances are supposedly the best that an entire country has to offer.

Sooooo bad it’s good.


About Michael Hodson

I’m an attorney that took off on my birthday in December of 2008 to circumnavigate the globe without ever getting on an airplane. After 16 months, 6 continents and 44 countries, I made it all the way back home. Right now, I am back on the road writing about it all.

17 thoughts on “So Bad It’s Good: Eurovision Song Contest

  • Jools Stone

    Haha, I was wondering if there would be a slew of bewildered eurojism posts from across the pond in the travel bloggysphere, this is the first I’ve seen, kudos Mike!
    Yes, it was no worse/better than usual this year, but think most were surprised by (better double check the spelling) Azerbaijan scooping it! I liked Bosnia and poor old Estonia who were in the bottom few. Wonder if hosting it next year will boost their tourism much though? Fun post.

  • Jools Stone

    Oh yeh and not forgetting of course Moldova’s wacky conical hats and deranged answer to the Beastie Boys!

  • Kelsey

    Hahaha! One of your videos (the crazy Ukrainian one) is one of my all-time favourite Eurovision performances. They’re nuts.

  • Katherina

    Frankly, the only thing that one can do with Eurovision is watching it while having drinks with friends and laugh at each of the contestants. I saw Spain (where I come from) and was embarrassed! Where do they actually find these people?

  • Amy

    I love EuroVision, but wow, I totally agree that white people shouldn’t try to rap! It was so painful I couldn’t finish watching. I like that Azerbaijan won! Maybe more people will actually know where the country is now! 😛

  • Foodfreak

    At least for me the whole fun was about the sarcastic live comments on twitter, I wouldn’t watch Eurovision on its own or rath ron my own, but it was quite a fun experience to read my timeline commenting on gross choice of dresses, aging boygroups, terrible songs, too-high high-heels and anything worth making fun of. it’s trash, undoubtedly, but at least trash with very cool stage tech 😉

  • Lauren

    Well, as you didn’t slag it off tooooo much then I can’t leave you a hate comment. But Eurovision is one of my favourite days of the year – I always look forward to it!! The funniest part is all the tactical voting, everyone votes for their neighbours so you can pretty much predict who is going to give who the most points. I LOVE IT. And yeah, England’s entries always suck 🙂

    One day we’ll have to watch it together at one of Lauren’s Infamous Eurovision Parties 🙂

  • Sophie

    Ah, Eurovision. It’s been on for more than 50 years – and is always best seen with a party of friends (live or virtually) and champers. Many terrible songs, but some very good. Everyone gets involved in the voting. Tempers are high and it’s just as entertaining as the performances. Eurovision is where Celine Dion began her career, by the way (She sang for Switzerland sometime in the 80s). And Abba. A 2012 blog trip to Baku is in order 🙂

  • Giulia

    I had no idea of this Eurovision thing, am I so weird? Guess so :p
    Thanks for this video selection … “sieben sieben ein zwei”: I am now a fan!!!

  • Ayngelina

    Eurovision was a really big deal down here in Buenos Aires but likely because there are so many Brits. In fact the pub quiz Monday night asked who won and everyone knew the answer.

  • Tom

    Haha ohmygod I LOVE Eurovision. In the UK, my family would get a Chinese takeaway (a rare treat) and huddle round the TV to watch the spectacle unfold.

    Me & a fellow expat Brit here in Korea decided to host a Eurovision party this year and introduced it to our North American friends. The general consensus was “what the hell am I watching-slash-I absolutely love this.”

    Moldova were our favourites.

    Baku 2012, anyone??

  • michael

    Hey, it’s that time of the year again. Over the years, I must say that level overall has improved, with countries taking it more seriously. but Eurovision wouldn’t be Eurovision without some seriously dodgy songs and/or routines (sometimes both).

  • Ele

    Well, considering neighbours vote for neighbours first and then expats vote for their home country, this is not a music/dance contest at all.

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