Saara Aalto Eurovision Review and X Factor 2018 Preview

When Finnish TV tapped Brian Friedman to do the staging for Saara Aalto’s Eurovision 2018 entry, we were fascinated to see how this collision of Sofabet worlds would play out. You would think that Brian must have learned a huge amount about how to stage an act in a way that will maximise public votes, […]

Eurovision 2018: The post-mortem

The chicken wasn’t the gorilla after all. Like Francesco Gabbani, Netta Barzilai lost her status as red-hot, ante-post favourite; but unlike him, she still won. Beyond the animal references, ‘Toy’ and ‘Occidentali’s Karma’ were two different beasts.

The best single lesson of a madcap Eurovision season? Don’t apply the previous year’s lessons too literally. Nonetheless, […]

Israel and Netta Barzilai win Eurovision 2018

After a close-fought battle between the top two in the betting, Israel’s Netta beat Cyprus’s Eleni to take the Eurovision crown. Austria finished third after winning the jury vote. Please let us know your continued thoughts on the contest below. Here are the latest links to the semi-final and final scoreboards.


Eurovision 2018: The Grand Final

The Eurovision betting market has been deranged this year. Had someone told me just a few weeks ago that Cyprus would be hot favourites with Ireland firmly in third, I’d have laughed. Yet here we are.

The potential weaknesses of the early favourites came home to roost: Israel’s Netta wasn’t allowed her looper, instead […]

Eurovision 2018: Live blog grand final, first dress rehearsal

The final has long been a marathon: not only more songs, but more stuff in between too. The first dress rehearsal can can be a slightly ragged affair, working on a completely new running order that was only decided late last night, rather than weeks in advance with the semi-finals.

The show was supposed to […]

Eurovision 2018: Grand final running order

This year’s outright market has been more topsy-turvy than ever, and we now enter the home straight with the announcement of the draw for Saturday’s big finale. The producers had a real job negotiating a worthy first half with many ballads, and a noisy second half full of uptempo stuff.

Let us know how you […]

Eurovision 2018: Second semi-final preview

The second semi-final is upon us, with a largely underwhelming set of songs the puzzle for punters. You’ll excuse me for feeling slightly uninspired by what’s on offer, and I think the market has got this heat more right than the first one.

Let’s start with the Scandinavian titans, because Norway and Sweden are obviously […]

Eurovision 2018: Live blog second semi-final, first dress rehearsal

Having tried it once, I’m continuing with this live blogging malarkey for the first proper run-through of the second semi-final. Quick impressions of each act after they have performed will appear below. Update the page for the latest.