Tuesday, May 18, 2004

shi-di-ri-di-duy, shi-di-ri-di-da-na

/ politics / eurovision/
I was trying to skip mentioning the Eurovision pop contest, if only to avoid the embarassing admission that ~4.2 million of my 11 million fellow Greeks actually watched the damn thing on TV, as well as the, even more embarassing, admission that not only did I personally watch the competition, but I actually tele-voted (for Serbia and Montenegro)... It's hard to explain the appeal of this annual celebration of kitsch Euro-pop, especially since my musical tastes run from Rammstein to Sonic Youth, to all sorts of "heavy" greek folk (the latter explains my vote up to a point). Part of it is the opportunity to have fun at the bizzare antics of desperate eurovisionaries regardless of nationality, to sample a taste of regional kitsch. Part of it is the same sado-masochistic impulse that makes us turn around and stare at a car accident. But mostly it's the voting of course. The "La Belgique, trois point", a numerical drama which traces cultural ties and new alliances, while allowing everyone - in a federal sort of equal way (Andorra and Russia have the same voting weight)- to participate.
As I said then, I would rather avoid mentioning the damn thing - but this year, regional developements unfolded on the Eurovision scoreboard, and the voting highlights were mostly Balkan, with Croatia's 12 points to Serbia & Montenegro being the surprise of the evening. Dragan Antulov explains it all in a recent post over at Draxblog...
Check out also this relevant discussion over at Fistful of Euros, where some other interesting voting patterns are highlighted. Let me also add that the eurovision vote probably signaled the first time the massive Albanian diaspora in Greece influenced a major media event (Greece awarding 10 points to Albania), as well as the realisation that Greek pop stars are quite well known over in Albania (12 points from Albania - and it wasn't just the Greek minority)...

1 comment:

talos said...

old comments

Young Fogey:

The degree of snideness about the inter-Balkan voting on British TV was really nauseating. On the other hand, you can use the votes to read the runes a little - in the early '90s, Ireland suddelnly started giving consistently high points to the UK. This paralleled a real sea change in attitudes to Britain in the Republic and also a growing English diaspora there.

I really didn't like the Serbian song although the musicians were obviously good and I wish they'd done something better. I eventually voted for Turkey (ginger hair, lots of guitar and peace signs) although I thought the German song was actually a very good song. Better than Gildo Horn anyway! Nor would I have been disappointed to see Cyprus or the UK win it.

I would like to make fun of the Greek song, but the Irish song was one of the few that was even worse, so I'm not in much of a position to do so. We thoroughly deserved nil points and our meagre 7 points from the UK proved how much of the Irish diaspora couldn't even bring themselves to vote for it. I know I couldn't!

At the end of the day, we all know Eurovision is shit, but we all love it!

2004-05-18 23:44

The Greek Song was created by evil Eurovision experts in a secret location in an undisclosed Greek island. The main idea was to display breathtaking semi-nude stripteasers on either side of a meditteranean hunk, over a silly Latin song with a bouzouki. It almost worked. They didn't count on the Ukrainian horde of wild Xenas and Hercules, who outperformed them in their own game.

2004-05-19 00:20