It’s that time of year again. The 2014 Eurovision song contest kicks off in about an hour’s time from Copenhagen. It’s marmite quality undeminished, this year’s competition probably doesn’t have the strongest line up of songs (if that’s actually unusual) but for me is stll one of my favourite nights of the year. Here’s my view on what to look out for from each country:
1. Ukraine – The song is likely to be annexed by Russia as masked forces impound their hamster wheel.
2. Belarus – Discounted by the bookmakers at 300-1, I think this might actually be worth an each way bet. It is lyrically terrible but has an annoyingly catchy tune. Hey! This is Eurovision for goodness sake! Incidentally, replace the chorus with the lines, “Catchy tune, terrible lyrics” and you’ll be singing it for weeks!
3. Azerbaijan – Dull ballad not made any more entertaining by the trapeze act.
4. Iceland – It’s The Wiggles meets Show Waddy Waddy! Mid-table alternative vote.
5. Norway – This is a tip for some. Personally, I think it’s a dreary, monotonous ballad. Good opportunity to put the kettle on.
6. Romania. – It’s Ovi and Paula again! They came 3rd three years ago but I don’t think they’ll do as well this time around. You can always rely on Ovi for a gimmick piano and Paula for a ridiculously long and high note. Show offs!
7. Armenia – This guy could be the Armenian Dr Who! Decent chance in a Euro-phoric dance kind of way.
8. Montenegro – It’s like Dancing on Ice, except there’s no ice or Torvill and Dean or Phillip Schofield. The song? Just concentrate on the skater!
9. Poland – I don’t think the “everyday sexism” movement has hit Poland yet. Terrible song and soft porn style staging. Where’s my washboard?
10. Greece – Beware Greeks bearing songs already popular across Europe featuring a bloke from Hackney! Features the world’s first Plinth-o-lene!
11. Austria – Eurovision has to have a central talking point. In the past we’ve had the unstable transexual, the Russian faux lesbians and of course, Jedward. This year Austria present “the bearded lady”. Ok, it’s a man, in a dress with a beard, but this Bond theme styled ditty is one of the hot favourites.
12. Germany – Taking it seriously this year but the song is only OK and the singer can have tuning issues. No Bayern Munich!
13. Sweden – Powerful ballad and another hot favourite with the bookies. Went down very well on Tuesday’s first semi-final so hard to see past this one.
14. France – Ah! The French. The hilarious French. The zany, witty, comic land of France. Nul point!
15. Russia – Twins! Everyone loves twins don’t they? Well, apparently not if they’re from Russia these days! Boooooooooooo!
16. Italy – Pink tribute act.
17. Slovenia – An angry looking woman with a flute. She could have someone’s eye out with that!
18. Finland – Bland identikit boy-band probably looking forward to avoiding paying tax in the near future, as I believe is the boy-band tradition. Allegedly.
19. Spain. – Dark horse entry from Spain who usually enter a joke act of the unfunny variety. Not a bit of it this year. Well worth an each-way bet on a strong ballad.
20. Switzerland – Roger Whittaker meets Mumford and Sons.
21. Hungary – Running, running, running to make another cuppa. Two sugars please!
22. Malta – The Corrs meet Mulligan and O’Hare. Next!
23. Denmark – Nice enough but stinks of not wanting to win and being to forced to host this money sapping contest again. Look what happened to Ireland!
24. The Netherlands – It comes to something when one of the best songs in the whole contest is a Dutch Country & Western duet!
25. San Marino – Have a lie down. You’ve come this far and you’ll need all your energy for the voting. Dull!
26. United Kingdom – Last up it’s us plucky Brits. At least this year, the Russians have slammed us in the most hated country in Europe stakes. Mid-table respectability beckons.
So, there you go. Sadly there is no man in a perspex box this year and the Belgian Go Compare man didn’t qualify. Take it easy. It’s going to be a long night!