1. A comedy with Will Ferrell
Scene from "The Story Of Fire Saga"
Photo: Netflix / imago images / ZUMA Wire
For the first time, the ESC had a pop-cult reference point that was outside of its own coordinate system: the US parody "Eurovision Song Contest: The Story Of Fire Saga" is running on Netflix and replaced the ESC there when it could not take place last year Iceland as one of the favorites.
A recurring gag of the comedy is the song "Jaja Ding Dong" (sounds exactly what it's called), which the squat pub hero (Ólafur Darri Ólafsson) wants over and over again.
When Iceland had its points to award, Ólafsson stood in the pose of a defiant, very bearded child again in front of the camera and yelled: "Yeah, DING DONG!"
A bedrock is crumbling
Almost always there: Peter Urban
Photo: Andreas Arnold / picture alliance / dpa
Peter Urban, 73, has been retired as NDR editor for eight years, but continues to moderate the ESC undaunted.
He does this as he did in 1997: with mild knowledge and discreet sottisen.
Now 2021 is not 1997 and the waistline has noticeably slipped up.
After he had blasphemed about Serbia ("The millionaire probably paid for her dress"), Urban associated the black Dutch singer with "The Lion King".
And sounded like the uncle you would rather not invite to the next party - and then do it again.
Everything glitters so beautifully
For people away from the catwalk, the ESC is the only opportunity of the year to find out about current trends in fashion.
You cannot visit prêt-à-porter here, but the really crazy nonsense.
The trend of the hour is therefore: glitter.
Glitter on the eyes, glitter on the suit, glitter especially in the dress (with "crotchlessness", says colleague Anja Rütsel).
Metal-coated synthetic fibers are also used in military technology, where they are thrown off by combat aircraft to confuse the enemy radar.
Here it served a similar purpose - and failed, as the glittering freedom of the top ranking proves.
The return of event technology
The boards that supposedly mean the world have long been multifunctional, playable fiberglass miracles with which you can obviously do whatever you want.
With films, photos, digital columns of smoke and fire, metamorphic effects and shimmering infinities, this performance show of stage technology (impresario: Florian Wieder) gave rise to joy about what awaits us in post-pandemic times.
Brexit is over
The zero must be: James Newman from Great Britain
Photo: Sander Koning / POOL / EPA
Culturally, one hears again and again in a calming tone, the United Kingdom »of course« continues to belong to Europe - even if contractual and economic ties have been severed for the time being.
At the ESC there was nothing to be noticed.
Zero points from the specialist juries, zero points from the Europe-wide telephone voting.
The nation that gave the world pop has always been alienated with the continental understanding of this export good.
This time it was the other way around.
A stroke of fate is not a beat
The custom of competing for sympathy with experienced suffering had prevailed recently.
Just as if pity were just another key like minor.
It is understandable that every appearance also includes a little story - at best a "backstory wound" or injury suffered, which makes the artist understandable in their actions.
Singer Victoria from Bulgaria
Photo: Peter Dejong / AP
At the ESC in Rotterdam, the sick mother, the ailing brother or father (this time even present as a photo in the
with the Bulgarian singer Victoria
One evidently recognized calculating intention when there was not necessarily one, and reacted disgruntled.
irony is over ...
Washed into place by the Vox Populi: Daði Freyr from Iceland
Photo: Dean Mouhtaropoulos / Getty Images
You can't have enough peace and joy, but at some point you can overeat yourself with pancakes.
No wonder that in recent years acts from the totalitarian regime of good humor have fled to irony and applied for asylum there.
In 2021 it was only the Icelandic contribution by Daði Freyr who tried to keep an ironic distance from the action.
The juries of experts took note of this with coolness; the popular vote gave the dissidents enough votes to catapult them from twelfth to fourth place.
8. ... and
authenticity even more
Daði Freyr took on Blas Cantó for Spain, and the contrast could not have been greater.
Artists who apparently approached the matter with a wink of the eye were followed by a singer who seemed to take this matter extremely seriously.
Failed: Blas Canto from Spain
Photo: Peter Dejong / dpa
Great feeling, presented with passion, the will to languish, the turning free of all sentiments that are traditionally rewarded with proud placement on the ESC.
Here you could see how the "too much" got mercilessly under the wheels.
Over-stimulation is prohibited in the future.
9. The limits of Karl Lauterbach
The SPD health expert was overexcited in the run-up to the ESC.
For his role as the tireless Cassandra of epidemiology, which has matured to perfection in countless talk shows, he is, if not loved, respected by reasonable people.
Karl Lauterbach's medical advice, however, that “concerts with 3,500 spectators” “we couldn't afford to yet, it is still too early for that” was ignored by the event itself.
Hygienic hedonism seems to have been an overwhelming need and the order of the day.
Let's wait for the test results.
Democracy remains complicated
After decisions had been banned for a long time in the back room and specialist juries with dubious mandates gave their votes, at some point the pendulum swung too far in the opposite direction - and a Finnish monster travesty like Lordi won,
Hard Rock Hallelujah
In the meantime, the determination of the popular will is carefully balanced.
Experts distribute their specialist favor.
And in the end, in the form of popular votes, the will of the majority comes around the corner and, see Italy, throws everything upside down.
A model for Europe?
The scandalous thing is missing
The very thought that the Måneskin singer could, as a very brief shot suggested, have drawn a line of cocaine in front of around 200 million viewers in an "unobserved moment" shows touching naivety.
So strong is the desire to recognize "real rockers" in the wild Italians that interested and possibly well-trained people are willing to trust them to consume hard drugs on the big stage.
The misunderstanding also shows what the ESC was missing this time - a real scandal.
The return of the undead
Måneskin's behavior during the awarding of the points was both great cinema and psychological study.
Colleague Eva Thöne had already noticed this during the broadcast.
She found it remarkable how the Italians alternate between “Fuck you all” and “12-point overjoy” at the push of a button.
The certainty of winning an event that was secretly ridiculed, but also valued more secretly, led drummer Ethan Torchio to complete perplexity.
Not the charming revenant of Jacques Brel from France, not the perfect Schmalz from Switzerland, no: mangy rock, declared mouse-dead by the specialist audience for a while, wins the ESC, which tends to be hit-heavy for the first time.
Because "the young people" wanted it that way on their apps and telephones.
Now he's doomed to carry on. Until the time is ripe for HipHop at the ESC.