Loves me some Eurovision, 2017 pt. 2: first semi-final notes

Just a couple of notes on the semi-final and on Eurovision in general.

The logo is kind of blah and the slogan “Celebrate Diversity” sounds old and tired. It might be needed in Ukraine at this particular time, but… still. That was all they could do? They haven’t explained the different circles yet (or I missed it) are they beads? Easter eggs? Something else Ukrainian? Random?

Eurovision Weirdness is Back?!?

Znalezione obrazy dla zapytania eurovision 2017 azerbaijan horse

Welcome back, my old friend!

Hopefully there’s a return to the weirdo eccentric Eurovision that I love. The absolute last thing I want from Eurovision is good songs that are competently and tastefully performed. Give me ethnic weirdness or horribly wrong-headed high concepts or terrible gimmicks with off-kilter vocals every time. Recent years have been getting blander and blander but the first semi-final had some pleasantly strange weirdness going on so I’m hopeful there will be more.

The Semi-Final Show
The announcers (missed their names) seem kind of uninterested and flat. I think they’re being too cynical for their own (or the audience’s) good.

The sound quality was very bad, blanching out many singers’ voices and making them sound thin and toneless. But this has happened before during semi-finals and gotten fixed by the final. We’ll see how the second semi goes.

They are including Verka Serduchka!

Znalezione obrazy dla zapytania verka serduchka

The perfect symbol of Eurovison, my girl Verka!

I have no idea what the character represents to Ukrainian or other Russian speaking audiences in general, but I agree with Camille Paglia, who back in 2008, wrote that Verka “seems to have fused Carmen Miranda with Harvey Korman’s Mother Marcus, the town yenta in the soap opera parody “As the Stomach Turns,” on “The Carol Burnett Show.” The mad Rabelaisian imagery and rhythms of all of Verka’s videos make one want to eat! drink! dance! What a tornado of ethnic hedonism!” The More tasteful and restrained my roll their eyes, but Verka is the perfect symbol of Eurovision, loud, weird, unapologetically ethnic, combining artifice with yet more artifice for an uneven and wild carnival ride, like a shaky roller coaster with some of the railroad ties missing….

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