Guess who, Baku: my action-packed 2012 prediction special!

The delegations have arrived, the rehearsals are well underway, there’s a wind machine repairman on standby and I have bought out my local supermarket’s entire supply of bite-size junk food. What does this all mean?? That Eurovision 2012 is here, of course!

I’ve got my flags and I’ve got my Minipops…come at me Baku!

The first semi final of this year’s contest is on a) tomorrow, b) the day after that, c) at 4am on Wednesday morning, depending on where you are in the world. Basically, it’s so close I could ask it for an autograph. Being down here in Australia means I have to wait until Friday to see this semi on TV, so I’m about to embark on a period of media abstinence to rival that of the Amish. Before I do, though, I’ve got some serious predicting to do, based on what I’ve heard from those on the ground in Baku, all of whom I hate with a passion.

Without further ado, here’s my take on the events to come for both semis and le grand final!

 

SEMI FINAL 1

Who will qualify: Cyprus, Denmark, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Latvia, Moldova, Romania and Russia

I-vi phoooone hooooome…to tell your mum you qualified

Who I want to qualify: Albania, Austria, Cyprus, Denmark, Finland, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Moldova and Romania

Who is most likely to…

Win the semi: Iceland. I could so easily say Greece, because it’s Greece (and I believe they won their semi in 2011 with a song that many of us tipped to get left behind) but with a song that’s at least five years past the Eurovision use-by, an unreliable vocalist and some cringe-worthy lyrics, I can’t see it out-pointing the drama (and pretty lights) and magic (and pretty Jónsi) from Iceland. If anyone can, it’ll be Mandinga from Romania.

Lose the semi: Montenegro. Need I say more? Surely, as “clever” as this apparently is, it’s not getting votes from anywhere.

Get the biggest round of applause: Russia. The grannies will be clap-happy when they shuffle off stage, for sure. If you’re in the Crystal Hall, don’t worry about the volume of your Babushki applause, because I’m pretty sure they’re all deaf (or more specifically, tone-deaf…boom boom tish!)

Sing best live: Denmark, Iceland, Israel and Latvia – 5+ reliable singers with few difficult notes to navigate.

Sing worst live: Cyprus and Greece. At least they’ll give each other a good helping of points whether Ivi and Eleftheria suck or not.

Make the best use of the background: Albania, Cyprus and Iceland. I have high (and quite specific) expectations for Iceland in particular. I think I speak for all of us who’ve seen Greta and Jónsi’s preview video when I say that the aurora borealis better make an appearance on the LEDs.

Have the most boring stage show: Belgium. Let’s face it, what can be done with this? You can’t really use a prop or have a troupe of backup dancers, and a wind machine just isn’t appropriate. Dry ice? No. Pyrotechnics? Yeah, right.

Have the best costume/s: Albania and Denmark. Rona has worn some crazy-cool stuff in her dreadlock mountain since she’s been in Baku, so I can only imagine what she’s going to wear from the neck down. Soluna, I hope, hasn’t decided to get rid of her I-just-raided-the-dress-up-box outfit from the Danish final, because I dug it big time.

Have the worst costume/s: Montenegro and San Marino. I’m envisioning safari prints and rhinestones and nothing that really fits. Who knows, maybe Valentina will come out dressed as Mark Zuckerberg.

 

SEMI FINAL 2

Who will qualify: Bosnia & Herzegovina, Estonia, Macedonia, Netherlands, Norway, Serbia, Slovenia, Sweden, Turkey and Ukraine

“Mwahahahahahaha…told ya’s I’d make it!”

Who I want to qualify: Belarus, Bulgaria, Croatia, Estonia, Netherlands, Norway, Serbia, Slovenia, Sweden and Turkey

Who is most likely to…

Win the semi: Norway or Sweden. I think Scandinavia’s got this semi in the bag, be it via a more traditional extravaganza or a pared-back performance.

Lose the semi: Portugal. This semi is the toughest of the two as usual, and whilst I think Filipa may get votes from the juries, I don’t reckon the voters will go for her song at all – not with powerhouse artists, acts and songs from the likes of Serbia and Ukraine to pick up the phone for.

Get the biggest round of applause: Sweden, for the second year running (probably in a crab-like sideways manner like Loreen).

Sing best live: Bosnia & Herzegovina, Lithuania and Serbia. I’m yet to hear a live solo vocal from Maya, but she was a great backup for Dino Merlin last year. Donny Montell has proven his worth as a singer and showman more than once, as has Željko, who is one of the most reliable.

Sing worst live: Malta. Kurt is adorable, and I admit it was hard to choose a potential disaster from this lot (so I settled on him) however I have heard he’s had trouble in the rehearsals with certain areas of TITN. I hope I’m wrong and he pulls it together on the night…after all, this is the night to not stuff up (see what I did there?)

Make the best use of the background: Norway and Ukraine. I’m envisioning flashing lights and lots of colour – though hopefully not colour that nauseates, as Serbia’s did in Düsseldorf (and I’m not at all prone to motion sickness).

Have the most boring stage show: Bosnia & Herzegovina, Bulgaria and Serbia. I love all three of their songs, but again there isn’t that much that can be done with them when it comes to choreography etc.

Have the best costume: Ukraine. When you’re singing such a summery dance song (and you’re from Ukraine) you’re pretty much required by law to wear something amazing that looks like a rainbow vomited on you.

Have the worst costume: Georgia. I can’t even begin to imagine what Anri will wear. Or do I just not want to?

 

THE GRAND FINAL

Who will win Eurovision 2012: I’ve been through all 42 entries numerous times, hoping not to be blindsided by a random win two years in a row, and finally, I’ve narrowed my potential winners down to Norway, Italy and Sweden. All three countries have in their possession great songs and charismatic artists, and from what I hear have polished up their stage shows nicely. They are bringing it big time.

Norway’s ethno-pop awesomeness and dynamic presentation could be let down by an off vocal from Tooji – but then again, a winner doesn’t have to have the best voice in the competition, do they Nikki? Anyway, I have a feeling he’ll pull everything together.

Italy has all they need to snatch the trophy. Nina and her song ooze vintage cool, and her performance will no doubt be flawless. When you combine the points that will roll in as a result, with the points Italy will get because they’re still being welcomed back…well, you get a lot. I’ll be shocked if there isn’t a win or a top 5 placing in store for Nina.

Sweden has been the bookies’ favourite and the one to beat since Loreen took to the Melodifestivalen stage for her reprise, way back in March. I know the bookies aren’t always right (we have that in common) but I can’t discount Euphoria from my picks. It stands out from the crowd both in sound and staging. Those of us familiar with it will vote for it (well, the 99.99% of us who love it will) and those who are watching/listening for the first time will get it immediately, I think. The juries aren’t as fuddy-duddy as they used to be either, so don’t expect them to rank the ballads higher than this. Sweden are going u-u-u-u-u-up!

Who will make the top 10: Azerbaijan, Germany, Norway, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Romania, Serbia, Sweden and Ukraine. I couldn’t bring myself to put Greece down despite the fact they’ve been in the top 10 every year since the introduction of the semi finals. I just can’t see the dated Aphrodisiac washing with voters or juries in 2012.

Who will be left at the bottom: France, Israel and Latvia. But you never can tell. Didn’t we all think we could be headed to Tallinn pre-Düsseldorf?

How the final 6 will end up: I think Italy, Germany and hosts Azerbaijan will place the highest, in the top 10. Spain and the UK should be somewhere in the 12th – 20th range. As for France…well, you can see just above where I think that one is headed.

 

 

There. I can shove my crystal ball and tarot cards and tea leaves back in the cupboard until Junior Eurovision now, and step away from my computer for the first time since…well, I suppose this time last year. Whether you’re watching the show live or waiting it out like me, I hope you enjoy your Eurovision experience. I also hope you get über depressed afterwards like me so we can all wallow in our misery together. Seriously, don’t make me go through it alone! 

I’m going to attempt some semi wrap-ups over the weekend, so look out for those. For now I’m going to wrap up this long and obnoxious post by saying goodbye, aurovoir, auf wiedersehen, um…

I really need Sofi Marinova to teach me ‘goodbye’ in a few more languages… 

 

What do you expect from Eurovision 2012? Where do you think we’ll be heading next year?

 

 

About Jaz

I'm Jaz, I'm 25, and I'm 110% Eurovision-OBSESSED. The contest is one big party, and I like to keep it going 365 days a year - that's why I write about anything and everything ESC on my blog. Come join the fun, and I promise you'll never have a nul-point experience! www.eurovisionbyjaz.com/

Posted on May 21, 2012, in Eurovision 2012 and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 13 Comments.

  1. Great post! I really enjoyed reading it. I cannot wait for tomorrow evening! It’s gonna be fab!!!

    SF1: I hope that Iceland, Ireland, latvia, Moldova, Romania and Russia make it through. Those Russian grannies are adorable – I actually really enjoy listening to their song too (I just don’t fancy Eurovision going back to Russia)… Romania were fantastic when I saw them in Amsterdam (although she mimed)… Iceland – wow – they stage it well, but Jonsi isn’t great live (as the last time her was in ESC too) – luckily the focus isn’t all on him… Moldova – well I just think he’s yummy. The song makes me smile, although his wrist wiggling is rather dubious (I am not sure what he thinks it looks like)… Ireland – after hating them in Düsseldorf – I love this song! Can’t wait to see them get soaked in that fountain!

    SF2: I hope that Estonia, Slovenia, Sweden, The Netherlands and Turkey make it to the final. Estonia have a great ballad – he is fab!!!! Slovenia – OH BOY OH BOY – I LOVE THIS! I would LOVE Slovenia to win the whole thing! Perfection for me in ESC. Sweden, well I hope it gets Top 3 – I think it’s so different for ESC – stunning performance. I hope that 2012 is the year that NL can finally make it to the final – it’s been a LONG time coming. Living in NL at the moment – I feel their pain! C’mon Indiana Joan. Turkey – well, this is the song that I didn’t like until I saw him in Amsterdam too. Fab & very wacky.

    Final: Well, from the 6 auto-finalists – My fave is Spain – I would LOVE Spain to come Top 3. All the Ss for me this year (Slov, Spain, Swed). She performs amazingly (again – Amsterdam). Spain deserve good points for this. Italy will do VERY well – I think it could be theirs for the win! UK and Germany are great too. Azerbaijan and France have slipped down my list – nope. Although the French gymnasts get votes of their own.

    Who knows what will happen!

    Like

    • I don’t think Eurovision is in danger of heading back to Russia in 2013! Although that may be my personal dislike for their song creeping through. The grannies themselves are pretty cute, so I won’t be annoyed if they qualify.
      Estonia, Slovenia and Spain are all in my top 5. Three amazing ballads from three amazing vocalists (though some are more spectacular than others). Pastora in particular is phenomenal. I’m with you, she should be in the top 3…but sadly I don’t think she’ll make it that far. A top 10 result would be great for Spain though. We know she’ll deliver, and hopefully the viewers and the juries reward her for that.
      Who knows what will happen indeed! I have a feeling there may be more than one shock on the cards.

      Like

  2. Lady Rosa de Vere

    I love reading your posts!!
    Am pretty excited here too 🙂 but not watching it live over the net as some of us have to work!!
    SF1: I really want to see Iceland, Israel and Hungary get through!
    SF2: Serbia and Turkey are particular faves for me along with Slovakia, Norway and Sweden.
    F: I quite like France but then I heard Serbia!
    But then I recall last year sometimes acts surprise you. I wasnt that into Albania last year but when I saw her in the semi, I was so wishing I was there to hear her live!

    I guess I just have to tough it out until the weekend too 🙂

    Like

    • Thank you for reading!
      As great as it would be watch live, I’d rather wait for the SBS broadcast. I don’t have work commitments to excuse me this weekend, I just like my sleep! Plus, the online viewer likes to stuff up when I try to use it. A HD viewing on telly is well worth the spoiler dodge, I reckon.
      It would be nice for Slovakia to qualify this year. I hear their stage show improved a heap between the first and second rehearsals, and the song certianly stands out. I can see it happening!
      Things do change when it comes to the big show. I guess a prime example would be Alyosha, who blew most of us away in Oslo when it came to the live show, even though the same people (including myself) really disliked the song in studio. Maybe we’ll be pleasantly surprised again??
      Good luck with the wait =]

      Like

  3. omg. the first semi was soo bad. ;D really really bad. no beautiful song on the.. eh.. tv.
    but okee.. greece&iceland are in the final!(: so it was okay.
    but in the second semi there will be sooo good songs ._. that makes me a bit sad.

    aaand I think you get a little bit bored [sry ._.] buut;D ZJ Ftw!

    Like

  4. Lady Rosa de Vere

    I had hoped to see Serbia win with that beautiful song. For me it was the most deserving song.

    Like

    • Definitely more deserving than the Babushkis…I will be very interested to see how the juries voted on that one to get it so high. Interested and horrified.

      Like

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