I tuned in late, so only got to see the last 6 of the 18 contestants. Some would say this is a good thing, but pshaw! I say. I has a sad, I only caught a third of the semi-final action! Thank goodness for brief recaps otherwise I might have completely missed a) a nelly disco dancer, b) a Czech nerd superhero, c) Belgian Elvis, d) 5 seconds of boring in a white suit from Belarus e) a Swedish operatic diva, f) Armenian riverdance, g) Andorran Girls-Aloud, h) some boybandishness i) Turkish disco bellydance (trans cultural!) j) Israeli worthy drummingness (the sisters are doing it for themselves) k) Bulgarian Lord of The Rings/Dance and l) Iceland, without Bjork...
So far the Russian hosts are doing an awesome job. They're almost incomprehensible!
So, my thoughts on the final 6 of the first Semi-Finals:
FYR Macedonia: cock rock is alive and well and living in the country we now like to think of as The Former Yugoslavian Republic of Bon Jovi
Romania: buckets of fake tan, 4 dancing girls in floaty frocks (wtf, Romanian water nyads?), treacherous dancing in high heels on a slidy glass stage, and a sound like every other Romanian entry I can think of. Borderline awesome.
Finland: Finland still thinks baseball caps turned backwards and fire dancers are rock (and roll).
Portugal: actually kind of nice! Plus, a squeezebox on stage. (No, I'm not referring to the singer.)
Malta: whoa. Power ballad on half wattage. Trying hard not to work in a cheap shot about the Rock of Gib-Malta but suffice to say (and I quote my friend Brendan) "what a lovely big dress, and my... isn't it full!"
Bosnia Herzegovina: first impression, regional touring company of Les Miserables in all white costumes. Second impression (see first impression).
Now we're onto the voting, and can I just say that the hosts are off the hook. And a little drunk I think. Wait, is he holding her up? And why does he keep kissing her? Eww, it's like an office Christmas party in here all of a sudden.
Russian cultural presentation for make good the Eurovision Song Contest! Cossacks! Russian army choirs! That thing where they spin the woman in a traditional costume so her dress twirls up! Hip hop dancers! More cossacks (seriously, they must have exhausted all the red synthetic satin in Russia). A pair of fake lesbians miming desultorily to their 'big hit'!
This year there is much talk of The Magic Button, and frankly the way the Russian host keeps leering about it I'm guessing it's not something he gets to push all that often. Instead it just starts up some graphic that looks like one of those fake email notification they use on tv show computers when they can't use anything by Microsoft. Anticlimax! So the 10 winners are announced. No Elvis! No superhero!
Just pray there are some drag queens in the second semi-finals!