May 16th, 2020

Tall ships (porthole)

boggyb's highly inaccurate guide to Eurovision: Shine a Light 2020!

Not even the Coronavirus can stop the madness that is the Eurovision Song Contest! The official console has been cancelled, so instead we've got "Eurovision: Europe Shine a Light" which is a collection of the performances that we would have had if the contest was going ahead as normal.

And, of course, another highly inaccurate liveblog!

We begin with... a wall of Zoom streams telling us it's another year?

Oh, it's going to be rapid-fire songs with 30seconds of each one, followed by a (sometimes very heartwarming) message from the artists. Get ready!

  1. Israel: Very orange
  2. Norway: Checking all the power ballad boxes here - sparkles, fire, smoke, the works
  3. Russia: What is this madness?
  4. Georgia: Another power ballad - this one with something of a film noir style?
  5. France: Nice and laid-back compared to the last few
  6. Azerbaijan: Ah, they've found the wind machine in the desert, guarded by a mysterious cult
  7. Portugal: Shoulders of power!
  8. Lithuania: Wave those hands!
  9. Sweden: Everybody move like this

Interlude time!

First up: an acoustic version of "Heroes" from 2015. This was impressive enough when it won, but somehow the unplugged version is better. And the NHS (and everyone else helping to keep the world turning) are very much the heroes of our time.

The next song... something about this really sounds like it's a Christmas carol of all things. And finally a bit of guitar playing that's all Italian to me. Impressive Italian, to be fair.

  1. Latvia: The future of silver service: precisely arranged carrots and broccoli
  2. Belgium: That looks like one very puzzled guitar player
  3. United Kingdom: Striding through a snowy forest because reasons or something
  4. Belarus: Oops, we forgot the background video
  5. Finland: Very red
  6. North Macedonia: Auditioning for Strictly
  7. Switzerland: Why have I got a piano? Why!
  8. Serbia: Bring on the clone army!

Interlude time!

Serbia get to re-run their 2007 win, carefully socially distancing in the middle of the road. Followed by another zoom video wall, with most playing but the occasional stream of someone looking awkwardly at the screen waiting for their cue as landmarks dramatically switch the lights on

And we get an extra special interlude (because the BBC doesn't do commercials), with a collection of Eurovision party photos.

  1. Spain: We found the BBC quarry!
  2. Albania: Very white
  3. Ireland: It's the story of my life! No, really, here's some old camcorder videos!
  4. Solvenia: See, King Canute would have succeeded if he had a backing track
  5. Austria: Are you sure we booked the right location?
  6. Bulgaria: Thunderstorm? What thunderstorm?
  7. San Marino: Bring back the nineties! With lasers!
  8. Iceland: Erm... just dance or something?

Interlude time!

Unlike Serbia, Germany's 1982 entry has been moved inside. To the middle of a staircase because why not?

  1. Greece: I must only use my superpowers for important things, like saving cats from trees
  2. Czech Republic: What happens if I touch the beam?
  3. Poland: ALL THE FIRE
  4. Moldova: Oops, I seem to have double-booked a photoshoot
  5. Cyprus: Keep on running
  6. Romania: Very blue
  7. Croatia: Are there words, or just random syllables?
  8. Germany: Don't get too close to the portal

Interlude time!

What, no lucky cats? Very different to the usual Netta performances.

Netherlands now with last year's success. And they're scrounged up the EU's entire stock of tungsten lightbulbs for the set design.

And now a collection of short messages from past winners and runner-ups. But no trolls?

  1. Malta: We can't decide if we want a water or a fire theme... so both, then?
  2. Estonia: We couldn't get any lightbulbs so will have to make do with candles
  3. Australia: The hands are coming to get you!
  4. Ukraine: Somehow, this seems like the most Eurovision-like entry this evening
  5. Denmark: Say YES!
  6. Italy: Did we remember to send the tickets out?
  7. Armenia: Unusual style for Eurovision. Confident though.
  8. Netherlands: Awww

And that's all 41! There's no voting, which means no winner but more importantly no "nil points" for UK!

Instead our very own Graham Norton is put on the spotlight (on the UK commentary, after the interview he said "God that was awkward!"). Finally we end with yet another classic rerun - this time a rare UK win from 1997.

Until next year!