THE SECOND EUROVISION semi-final of 2013 was quite a night.
There were bladders, glowworms, eyebrows and a Romanian man who made us all fall in love.
Here’s how it went down.
19.53 – Good evening everyone. Are you wearing your pyjamas? I hope so, it’s the best thing to wear while watching the Eurovision.
Our Eurogasm will kick off in just a few minutes. Presumably everyone in Sweden is up to 90, applying their last minute glitter and fake tan.
Actually, we’re talking about countries that get actual sun so the tans are probably real.
Anyway, they’re probably BRICKING IT.
20.00 – If you were watching the other night you probably know how tonight will go. We’ll see the acts, then there will be a seemingly interminable break during which there will be some sort of musical act and lots and lots of snippets of tonight’s performances. Oh and the voting. That’s when we get a chance to vote.
The results of that vote will then be combined with the national juries’ scores and we’ll find out who will be performing on Saturday.
21.24 – So after Europe votes, their votes will be combined with those of the individual country’s ‘expert’ juries.
In case you were wondering, our jury is made up of people like TV producer Bill Hughes, Linda Martin, Paul Harrington and Emma O’Driscoll who was in Six.
Remember her? She’s on kids TV now.
20.09 – This is a bit like something you would have seen on Fame Academy, circa 2003.
But with added Latvia and some Abs from 5ive flair.
He has a lovely figure, doesn’t he?
20.01 – Here we go now. A lovely bit of dancing to begin.
I believe that was some vogue-ing we just saw there. Ain’t no shame baby, do yo thang.
20.04 – This is all very ‘MODERN’, isn’t it?
20.13 – If I’m not wrong, Valentina is with child. Either that or she’s a Glowworm.
20.03 – Oh look, there’s Seamus on his BMX! Wasn’t he only delighted when he got that for Christmas in 1987. And look at him now.
20.05 – Oh now, would you LOOK at that dress. It’s very…em…structured, isn’t it?
Gotta love a bit of black and gold though.
20.06 – Petra has just grouped herself with Mother Theresa because she is hosting the event on her own. It’s quite a comparison to make.
I’m a lot like Hilary Clinton because I’m sitting at a keyboard. Who are you like?
20.08 – Our first act tonight is PeR, from Latvia. They seem very ‘street’. In truth, we had a look at their video earlier and there’s some very good beatboxing on the way.
20.10 – Oh my goodness, is that man playing an iPad-guitar?
And some drum and bass beatboxing for good measure!
20.14 – Remember Glowworms? They really were great.
20.18 – Esma & Lozano are an unexpected duo, aren’t they? A little bit like one of Westlife singing with…em…well to be honest I really don’t know how to describe her. A magical looking Red Riding hood with a penchant for yodelling?
20.21 – Farid has really perfected the ‘moodily walking down a beach’ buzz, but that isn’t going to help him tonight.
He wouldn’t look out of place in Menudo.
Holy moly there is someone in the box!
20.19 – I’d quite like to see Esma on her own. I can’t help but think Lozana is bringing her down.
20.23 – Confetti, twins, shadows, long trained dresses, perspex boxes – this is a health and safety nightmare.
20.22 – Right so the guy is his shadow…but then not his shadow…maybe his twin? The Jed-effect if you will.
20.26 – No seriously, that was a joke.
20.25 – Oh my goodness. Someone needs to have a conversation with Krista and explain that begging men to marry you really puts them off.
Just ask my ex. HA HA, that was a joke.
20.28 – WAIT A MINUTE! She’s a lesbian! It’s a politically statement! That was actually kind of awesome. Although it’s still probably not a good idea to beg someone to marry you.
I don’t think anyone really likes that.
20.27 – She’s really doing her bit for female empowerment here, isn’t she?
20.32 – Gianluca is doing an amazing version of every song Jason Mraz has ever released in Ireland.
He’s obviously a nice man though isn’t he? And it’s hard to be mad at someone who is singing about someone who works in IT.
20.33 – This isn’t very interesting, is it?
James has just pointed out in the comments section that Finland have done what Tatu ‘threatened’ to do years ago. It doesn’t seem like that big of a deal now, does it? Progress perhaps.
20.37 – Rumour has it the pipe is made out of the bladder of one of the dinosaurs who was in Jurassic Park.
That’s what we heard anyway.
20.36 – Is this our first foreign language entry tonight? I can’t remember. It’s already all a blur. Nice to see some traditional costumes on the backing singers, love a bit of tradition around here.
20.41 – This nice Icelandic man isn’t up to much, so we’re going to take a moment to appreciate what Bulgaria did for us.
Bladders, pipes, drums, sheep, microphones hidden all over the place – it was quite the spectacle, wasn’t it?
20.40 – Fergal has pointed out in the comments that that last performance needed more cowbell, and I have to agree with him.
20.45 – More on this as I get it of course.
20.44 – Alcohol is Free, named after the dreams of a thousand Irish men.
They’re bottom garments are very interesting aren’t they? They appear to be the night’s first skorts – the fashionable blend of shorts and skirts. Or are they just skirts? It’s hard to tell.
20.47 – I wonder how many of the entries will get tattoos of the butterflies adorned with the country’s flags which are flying around the screen before each act? At least 12 I’m guessing. What do you reckon?
20.48 – Not this lady though, she’s not messing around. Anyone who wears glasses on stage is taking things seriously.
They are lovely specs as well. Maybe they’re there to balance out her lovely cleavage.
20.50 – Fergal has correctly pointed out in the comments section that a member of the Greek delegation had the best moustache we’ve seen yet tonight. He asks if there’s an award for that.
Fergal, I don’t think there is, but God dammit there should be.
20.52 – Well now, Armenia’s lead singer is really doing his bit for facial hair. He has a fine thick growth between his eyebrows as well as in the usual beardy area. No wonder the Kardashians are always going on about hair removal on their show.
All the different types of denim being represented here as well. Equal denim opportunity, if you will.
20.56 – This guy is definitely getting a butterfly tattoo. He’s sensitive, and the gentle creature will reflect that.
20.55 – ‘Can’t decide if Armenia looks more than Jonny Depp or the guy from the backstreet boys,’ says James in the comments.
A.J. from the BSB fo sheezy.
20.59 – Trends of the evening noticed so far in the comments section: Glasses and leather.
Marty thinks the Hungarian entry had the same ‘quirky’ quality as Nizlopi’s JCB song…er…ok…
21.02 – Why is it that Scandinavians get to be so utterly cool? They’ve got it all. The looks, the style, the love which they’re willing to feed us…
21.00 – Margaret Berger is not getting a tattoo. She is way too cool for that. And for you. And frankly for all of us.
21.04 – Hands up who’s in love with Margaret Berger from Norway? She placed second in the second season of Norwegian idol apparently.
Look at her – she’s majestic!
Kristina Koroleva/Photas/Tass/Press Association Images
21.05 – Marty is afraid we’re going to get a fright because of the ‘angle grinding’ in this act. Magnificent. A bit of good steelwork is exactly what tonight needs.
21.10 – These two are definitely getting butterfly tattoos. Their song opens up with the line, ‘There’s no me without you’ for God’s sake.
21.13 – John in the comments: ‘Georgia are going to get a butterfly tattoo that joins together when they hug each other.’
THAT IS THE MOST RIGHT YOU HAVE EVER BEEN JOHN.
21.12 – Let’s play Eurovision ballad bingo!
You’re listening for ‘sea of dreams’, ‘wings’, ‘waterfall’, ‘your love’, and flying.
What’s that? EVERYONE HAS A FULL HOUSE?
21.15 – Switzerland’s act are a bit like the really saccharine group in a film about acapella groups. They’re the one who are Savation Army volunteers, and sing about love and castles and stuff, but behind the scenes are sabotaging everyone else.
In the end the group of misfits win the competition and Switzerland are shown up for who they really are…mwah ha ha…
21.16 – Except for the elderly gentleman of course. He is clearly made of glitter and gold and pure love and kindness.
21.18 – This is strange. I appear to be watching a musical version of the fictional film Argo, from the real life film Argo.
21.22 – ‘Every successful man has a woman under his skirt,’ says Petra. That, friends, is something we can all take with us from tonight.
Another thing we can take with us is the fact that dubstep is very EURO right now, and that Romania has a very active imagination.
21.28 – And we’re still recapping…
21.24 – It’s recap time. Feel free to go to the toilet now, because if Tuesday was anything to go by we’ll see this approximately 450 times before the votes are all added up and we get the result.
21.26 – The clever clogs in the comments section have decided that Romania’s act was reminiscent of this moment from Forgetting Sarah Marshall.
21.32 – AH LOOK! THERE’S US! Remember when we were good?
Let’s sing together…
21.31 – Ah the glorious history of Eurovision. It’s certainly colourful, isn’t it? Petra looks great, she truly is a chameleon when it comes to fashion.
21.43 – Agnes, who’s performing right now actually had a reasonably big song here a few years ago. Remember this? It was number 10 in our chart in 2009.
21.35 – The best acts in terms of weirdness tonight have definitely been Bulgaria with the bladders and Romania with the…well…the Romanian guy. Agreed?
21.38 – According to Marty Ryan Dolan is walking around the place ‘like the star he is’. Marty is concerned however, about Ryan’s welfare. Clearly he’s afraid he’ll be overcome by the rock and roll lifestyle we’ve all heard so much about at the Eurovision song contest.
21.37 – Sadly Romania are 150/1 to win according to Boylesports, so it’s unlikely we’ll see that lovely man again. Bulgaria are even less likely at 300/1. Sad times.
21.39 – ‘MALMEEEEUGGH’ the Swedish man cries, lamenting the fact that even he struggles with the pronounciation of the location.
21.41 – Audrey in the comments reckons Norway was the best of the night. I’m with you Audrey. Will we have another look at Majestic Margaret? Ah we will.
Here’s the official video for her song.
21.54 – Iceland…really? BORING.
21.48 – Ah the big five. They envy of every nation. Who doesn’t dream of automatic qualification?
21.46 – Adam Murphy in the comments says:
I don’t care if Romania don’t win the Eurovison because that man has won my heart.
We feel you Adam.
21.52 – Here we go! The really boring guy who is definitely getting a butterfly tattoo is through!
21.50 – Remember how Marty said earlier that Ryan Dolan was doing lots of TV interviews? Apparently he did one with BBC3.
21.51 – Thanks to Eoin Curran for sending us that.
21.53 – Man on perspex box is through, Aladdin and Jasmine (thanks to Debbie in the comments for that), and ROMANIA! Guys, ROMANIA!
21.55 – It’s hard to know what to hope for now that Romania is through, right?
21.56 – The camera is really gazing intently at Israel’s sadness isn’t it? The poor girl.
21.57 – Ah lads, would ya look. Our favourite eyebrows AND our favourite moustache got through, not to mention our favourite humans Romanian guy and Margaret Berger. We’ve done very well really, haven’t we?
22.01 – So there you have it, all of Saturday night’s contestants. Petra is signing off telling us we have a collaboration between Avicii and Abba to look forward to on Saturday. That will be quite something.
The lovely Emer McLysaght will be with you on Saturday night, but for now thanks a million for all your contributions. It’s been gas.
See you on Saturday!