We have granted awards to the semi participants the night before their respective semis, and of course we will do exactly the same with the finalists! Six songs have not received their prizes yet, and tonight we will change that. Get ready for the Grand Final Awards.
ITALY: Award for the greenest stage
It takes some courage to stage your song in a garden, and to follow the theme even in the performer’s outfit. Or a level of “fuck it”, cause this could work well or fail gloriously.
SWEDEN: Award for the biggest lack of a guitar
Whenever I hear this song I hear an acoustic guitar. And then I am surprised there is none.
GERMANY: Award for the weirdest headdress
I had my manga phase a few years ago and I am usually not being mean against dressing different on purpose, but this is weird even by manga standards.
FRANCE: Award for the biggest fall
I have not even seen a full performance of him yet, but all the rehearsal bloggers stated he was terrible and suddenly this winning contender got relegated to “maybe Top 10”. That’s a rather big difference…
SPAIN: Award for the weirdest move
I can see the point in keeping the stuff from your video and all that, but whoever in this delegation thought that falling to the ground onstage is a good idea… it’s not.
UNITED KINGDOM: Award for the least offensive song
Usually Denmark has this one booked, but this year’s effort was so bland and average that this became an offense in its own right. With the UK though, there really isn’t a way to dislike it.
And now, let’s get to something completely different and much, much more important. After a long waiting time robbing us of our sleep, SVT finally finished the draw last night. Time to overanalyze!
01. BELGIUM – Screamed “OPENER” when she took first half. When doing my own order, however, I wasn’t so sure anymore as it’s usable in many places. Should work well though.
02. CZECHIA – Poor Gabriela doesn’t benefit from this… I would have her placed at the end to bring down energy a bit in a Poland-like slot. She must have barely qualified then.
03. NETHERLANDS – This is another odd one. Douwe has the type of song that works great as a fresh breath of air, but it’s not really a good one to come on so early. However, there are not too many spots for him late in the half (I had him on #5), so it makes sense I guess.
04. AZERBAIJAN – I would want to have her over as soon as possible, so this makes sense. As it wouldn’t be a good opener, this is possibly the earliest they could give it.
05. HUNGARY – I was sceptic when reading the order, but it does kind of make sense. Hungary isn’t that easy to place as it doesn’t seem to benefit from uptempo nor ballad predecessors, which is why I had it as another possible opener.
06. ITALY – As long as she wouldn’t battle with a favourite, Francesca was probably going to be fine from any slot. It’s not exactly helped by the draw, but also not hindered.
07. ISRAEL – They missed an oppoortunity by not matching him with Douwe Bob, but that’s as good as any place for him. I assume they would have preferred a faster song before Hovi, but he worked well after an even slower one in the semi too.
08. BULGARIA – It would have worked even better if Israel wasn’t getting started in the last minute, but this is placed about where I’d have put it. It would also make for a good starter, but that slot is Belgian-occupied.
09. SWEDEN – Bulgaria provides a lot of energy and has quite a tech-y feeling especially with the sci-fi theme, so they did well in setting themselves up here. Comes across as a nice break after the rather hectic ending of Bulgaria.
10. GERMANY – I am not sure what to make of this. Coming after Sweden, the mood of the show turns rather dark at this point. I assume that ARD wanted a late draw, because honestly it would have fitted better a bit earlier and not sandwiched between two favourites.
11. FRANCE – Providing a very nice uplifting song after Germany’s mysterious darkness. I think they got a pretty nice buildup here, and it’s probably the best they could ask for in this half.
12. POLAND – With Sweden, France and Australia sharing the last five spots in this half, it was always clear there needs to be someone to separate them a bit. Poland got chosen for this unfortunate task, while I’d have taken Czechia in front of France (and France and Australia back to back – I doubt one would have hurt the other).
13. AUSTRALIA – I was rather confused at the choice of building up Australia with Poland, as both are slow and not very uplifting. But then they announced that the break would be before Dami and it made much more sense. I still think it would have been better back-to-back with France or with an uptempo separating them though.
14. CYPRUS – This is a brilliant spot for the Cypriots as Poland and Australia really bring the energy down. Everyone who is desperate for some power will love this. However, I’m surprised to see them so early. Not the best semi result?
15. SERBIA – I am not sure if this works after Cyprus. Not that they steal each other’s votes, but Sanja’s different kind of energy may be a little overshadowed by her predecessor.
16. LITHUANIA – Donny was going to be fine everywhere as long as he doesn’t have the favourites too close. He was probably happy the moment he chose second half, and he’s placed well enough to do okay.
17. CROATIA – Nina has quite a good setup with Donny in front of her, as everyone will be a little bored by his very average stage act. It’s obvious she’s mainly building up for Russia, but didn’t get too bad a draw herself.
18. RUSSIA – The rule for Sergey is probably easy: The calmer his predecessor is and the less special effects they use the better for him. The ideal song for him would probably be Czechia, but as they’re in different halves, Croatia was about as good as it gets. And I assume that being rather early may help a little, as Jamala or Iveta can’t steal his show.
19. SPAIN – I don’t really get this one to be honest. It’s probably supposed to act as a more charming and less calculated uptempo, but it’s simply not good enough to be sandwiched between two strong acts. I’d have placed her right after Australia.
20. LATVIA – This worked good as an opener in the semi and it will work well after Spain. Spain gets pretty messy in the chorus, with a lot of musical action going on, while Latvia starts very toned down and introverted which is a good contrast. I wonder if the break before it will actually help or hinder it.
21. UKRAINE – That’s the one I don’t get. When I did my own order I tried to keep her, Latvia and Armenia spread out as they all are rather electronic and modern. I assume they won’t really steal each others votes, but I doubt it works as well as it could.
22. MALTA – There’s hardly a really bad spot for Malta in the second half, but they didn’t get a brilliant one either. Malta coming right after Ukraine probably has the viewers still stunned. However those who don’t like Jamala may be relieved by the contrast.
23. GEORGIA – Quite a good one. We haven’t had a powerful uptempo song since the break and energy is not at ist heighest after Malta, so this is a good choice. I had expected them to get an earlier slot, which makes me wonder if they did better than expected in the semi.
24. AUSTRIA – That’s the second best possible draw for Austria in my opinion. Everyone who will be alienated by Georgia will get a breath and some calming sweetness in this. I think, however, this effect would have been even bigger with Ukraine in front of it. Try it out, it works brilliantly, especially as Loin d’Ici is musical antidepressiva.
25. UNITED KINGDOM – To be honest, this may be late but not exactly helped by what comes around it. Austria is providing a not too different mood, and the impact of the UK may not be too high right before Armenia. I get the impression they were mainly building up to Iveta here.
26. ARMENIA – This is another one that seemed quite natural to me. It leaves everyone pretty stunned and therefore isn’t something you wanna follow, but it definitely is something to go out with a bang. And by having the UK in front of it, the impact may even be improved because of the difference between the two.