YMMV: Eurovision Song Contest

  • Awesome Music: A requirement to win. Heck, just count the whole thing. There's a national selection in most of the countries, which means that the best can only precede. What you're seeing is usually the best of the country.
  • Base Breaker:
    • Conchita Wurst, despite her win in 2014. Some feel that she was a brave person for preaching tolerance and being herself through her out-of-the-closet drag act, while others thought that she was completely misplaced in Eurovision SONG contest and claims she wouldn't have won hadn't it been for the dress and beard. Not enough proof? Well, she won, but her youtube video has mountains of dislikes.
    • The band that won Finland's NF in 2015. Either they're a bold choice since they're all intellectually disabled, or they're an upset pick over other, stronger entries. That they won with what's basically a heavy metal song doesn't help matters.
  • Broken Base:
  • Critical Dissonance: Since the introduction of the 50/50 voting format in 2009, it has been essential for contenders to avoid this if they wish to win. Several acts that have fallen into this trap include:
    • 2011 UK representatives Blue were considered to be one of the favorites to win and even received a credible 5th place in the televoting. However, they were ranked 22nd by the juries, leading to an overall 11th place result, barely missing the top ten. In the same year, the inverse happened to Slovenia's Maja Keuc and Austria's Nadine Beiler, who placed 4th and 5th among the juries respectively, but only placed 22nd and 24th (out of 25 finalists) in the televoting. They finished 13th and 18th respectively in the final event.
    • Robin Stjernberg of Sweden in 2013 was ranked 3rd by the juries, but came in 18th in the televotes, ending up with a 14th place result.
    • Poland’s Male Gaze-friendly entry in 2014 "My Słowianie - We Are Slavic", came in 5th in the public voting with 162 points. The juries on the other hand wanted nothing to do with the gimmicks, only placing it 23rd with 23 points, leading to a 62 point overall total and a 14th place result.
  • Dancing Bear: Lots of examples, whenever an act is most remembered for the gimmick than for the song or singer. Just to mention a couple, if you ask anyone, the Russian act for 2006 was about a ghost girl coming out of a piano, Ukraine 2011 was about a woman doing sand drawings and Azerbaijan 2013 was about a guy dancing inside a glass box. In all three cases, the person remembered didn't sing a note.
    • Moldova does this nearly every year. It's gotten to the point that anybody outside of Europe will only remember one of Moldova's performances, the one from 2010. It's not even its proper name, but everyone knows it as "that Epic Sax Guy song".
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
    • ABBA and Celine Dion (although French Canadian, she performed for Switzerland) are the most successful entrants career-wise. Ireland hold the record for most wins (seven), most consecutive wins (three, and the year that run ended it was won by an Irishwoman competing for Norway, the following year Ireland won it officially once again, so if you felt like bending the rules you could say they won it five times in a row), and Irishman Johnny Logan has most wins for a single person (one for singing, one for writing, one for singing and writing).
    • 2010 saw a full-fledged meme: the rise of Moldova's "Epic Sax Guy"
    • And of course, Terry Wogan.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: Iceland's first entry in 1986 is "Gleðibankinn", which means "The Bank of Fun". 22 years later in 2008, economic crisis strikes.
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff
    • The show is quite popular in Australia, where SBS shows it on tape delay for primetime (complete with their own commentators in recent years; they used to carry the BBC's feed). Also the subject of a Cutaway Gag during the Opening Monologue of the 2013 edition, which showed an Australian family staying up to watch it live. They fell asleep on the couch. In honor of the 60th anniversary, Australia will be a Guest Fighter at Eurovision 2015. No, really!
    • There's a small but growing group of people in the US who wish that BBC America would air the contest. Some want to watch it because they truly are fans of European music and would like the opportunity to find more potential artists to listen to, others just hear all the snark that Europe throws at it and are interested due to Bile Fascination.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: In one of the interval sketches of Sweden's hosting of Eurovision 2013, an EBU "reporter" called Lynda Woodruff, mistakes Copenhagen for Malmö when she's going to introduce the Swedish culture to the audience, which she does by counting several of Denmark's specialties instead (geographically, Malmö is really close to Denmark, so it was sort of a common mistake). Guess which country won the contest and got to host it the next year? To most Swedes and Danes, Malmö and the rest of Scania (southern Sweden) is practically Danish.
  • Hype Backlash: Many winners of their respective years usually get thoroughly bashed once it gets popular; usually by those who didn't find the song very appealing in the first place. The biggest example must be 2014's winner, Conchita Wurst. Seriously, just look at the amount of dislikes!
  • I Liked It Better When It Sucked: The hilariously bad acts are often more enjoyable than the half-decent ones.
    • A joke that's often made in the Netherlands (and probably in other countries too) when the contestant of this year is revealed: 'I thought it was impossible, but true, they found a worse singer than last year. Why can't we just send a band like {decent dutch band)?' 'I think it's against the rules to send someone who can actually sing.'
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • The "Epic Sax Guy" from the 2010 Moldova entry "Run Away" by Sun Stroke Project & Olia. They're all quite aware of this.
    • Sweden's 2012 entry Loreen and her "crab walk" seem to be getting there.
    • The smallest of the sweet little old Russian ladies from 2012 developed a fandom on Tumblr due to her dance moves.
    • 2013: "Alcohol is free" became a punchline for jokes about the Greek economic crisis
    • Tumblr users developed a fondness for the 2013 Romanian entry, whom they described as the "gay opera dubstep vampire".
    • In general, every year, Americans who look in at Eurovision tend to react in horror, which causes their European friends to snark at them over this. Usage of Eurovision songs to torture said Americans has yet to be confirmed.
  • Mondegreen:
    • Hungary's entry in 2013 probably got 12 points from Germany, because Kedvesem sounds like "Geldwäsche" (money laundering).
    • A rather... unfortunate (and hilarious) one from Austria: FUCK HIM IN DE POOPOO.
    • A controversial one was Verka Serduchka's "Dancing Lasha Tumbai," which some Russian authorities objected to because the phrase 'Lasha Tumbai' sounded similar to 'Russia Goodbye.' Serduchka claims that it is Mongolian for 'whipped cream,' but this being Verka Serduchka, it's obvious that's it's really just gibberish. The mondegreen caused Serduchka to be banned from performing in the Russian Federation for one year. Lampshaded at the end of this video.
  • Narm
  • No Such Thing as Bad Publicity: The decision for Austria to send in drag queen Conchita Wurst in 2014 was rather controversial for conservative viewers and nations, with some even going as far as saying that she would turn the contest into "a hotbed of sodomy". Ironically, the reason why Wurst’s persona even exists is due to her advocacy towards tolerance, and if anything, the controversy caused even more people to look into and adore her and her song. Especially considering that she won, it’s safe to assume her message of tolerance was heard loud and clear.
  • Overshadowed By Controversy:
    • It's a matter of debate on whether the UK’s Nul Points in 2003 was more because of anti-British sentiment from the Iraq War, or Jemini's horrifying off key singing, but obviously having both factors going against the UK clearly didn’t help.
    • Russia's Tolmachevy Sisters in 2014 received a lot of boos from the audience when they made it to the final and when they received high votes, not because of their song (they came in 7th), but because of anti-Russian sentiment due to the Crimean conflict and its stance on gay rights.
  • Padding - Many entries have lyrics that's just filler to help a song reach the required time limit.
  • Sacred Cow:
    • ABBA.note  May the heavens protect you if you bad-mouth them in the slightest. Then there's of course Céline Dion, winner for Switzerland in 1988, who has become one of the most famous international singers of all time since then.
    • In later years, we have Norway's Alexander Rybak (Winner 2009) and Sweden's Loreen (Winner 2012), who scored 387 points and 372 points, respectively, holding the point records in ESC history. When people criticize them, they often get called out on by at least a handful of people. Loreen is especially a Sacred Cow in Sweden. When she performed in one of the interval acts in Melodifestivalen 2015 (Sweden's national selection for ESC), she was showered with love and adoration from every direction, and everyone practically begged her to send her to ESC again. Let's just say that her win in 2012 will stay in the Swedes' hearts for a long, long time.
    • Serbia in 2007 (Marija Serifovic with "Molitva") counts as well; it's still fondly remembered despite being roughly 10 years ago she won. In fact, when there was a poll counting the best Eurovision entries of all time in early 2010's, she was ranked second. (ABBA was in first).
  • Singer Shipping: Eurovision is not completely free from this trope, oddly enough.
    • There was slight shipping between Alexander Rybak/Lena Meyer (winners of 2009 for Norway and 2010 for Germany, respectively), when Rybak playfully tricked Lena into kissing him, when she was recieving the 2010 ESC trophy from him. There was a few misunderstandings between them too that could come off as Adorkable.
    • In 2012, this trope sparked between Kaliopi/Can Bonomo (Contenders for F.Y.R. Macedonia and Turkey, respectively), when he was complimenting her and vice versa, claiming they're going to work together and sharing a few friendly cheek-kisses. The comments on YouTube is what makes this trope qualify.
  • Snark Bait: The contest itself is considered as this to some, who see it more as a camp pop and political affair rather than a place to find credible artists.
    • The British retrospective comedy Panel Game It's Only TV But I Like It included a round entitled "Let's All Laugh At Foreigners" where the teams were shown three embarrassingly bad Eurovision performances from across the years and had to guess which one got 'nul points'.
    • In the wake of the 2014 contest, the U.S. panel game @midnight did a similar round called "Europe Be Crazy", where the comedians had to guess which textual description was an actual act.
  • So Bad, It's Good: So many it's hard to list them all, but a few notable examples are:
    • Ukraine's 2007 entry Dancing Lasha Tumbai performing silly dances in silver costumes with quite a weird but catchy melody. They ended up in second place.
    • Russia's 2012 entry Party For Everybody of old grannies in traditional Russian attire with a very charming and heartwarming spirit. They ended up in second place, and were absolutely adored by everyone, including the winner.
  • Suspiciously Similar Song:
    • In 2010, Ukrainian entry Alyosha had to change her song after her entry "To Be Free" was judged to be a copy of the Linda Perry and Grace Slick song "Knock Me Out" (and because it was allegedly made available publicly in 2008, which is also a no-no in the Eurovision rules). As if Ukraine hadn't gone through enough ESC 2010 finalists to begin with; they had already scrubbed Vasyl Lazarovych's "I Love You" after fans complained about the singer that the Ukrainian broadcaster had selected for them. Vasyl participated against 19 other performers in a more "open" selection competition; he finished 7th.
    • In 2013, Cascada's song for Germany, "Glorious", was accused of plagiarizing last year's winner "Euphoria" (and yes, the chorus does sound similar); however, its producer challenged the claims by saying that while they had a right to investigate, "if you look at the composition in a waveform, you will see that 10,000 pop songs have similar courses." They were later cleared of plagiarism charges, but some people still think they may have stolen from a clan of mobsters from Sweden instead.
  • Tear Jerker: On the first viewing, you may be moved by Rona Nishliu's semi-final performance of "Suus" for Albania in 2012. However, watching it again after you find out about the horrible bus accident in Albania that happened the day before and after you find out that she dedicated her performance to the victims of the accident makes you realize that she's not visibly holding back tears just because of the mood of the song...
  • They Just Didn't Care: When it was revealed that 70's crooner Englebert Humperdink would be dusted off for the UK entry in 2012, people were convinced that the BBC wasn't even trying anymore. Maybe because they've gotten outvoted by Jedward. Twice.
  • Took the Bad Film Seriously: Long after Western Europe stopped taking it seriously, the fall of the Soviet Union and the breakup of Yugoslavia led to a number of new countries seeing appearing in it as a serious mark of independence, a show of national pride, and even as an advert for tourism. Then of course there's the Misplaced Nationalism between bitter rivals.
  • Viewer Gender Confusion:
  • What Do You Mean, It's Not Political?:
    • The famous "Insieme" ("Together") by Toto Cutugno, also known by its chorus "Unite, unite Europe", won the contest just as the last details were being completed for the forming of EU.
    • To an extent, about half the entries in 1990 definitely count, seeing as this was the first contest held since The Great Politics Mess-Up - as demonstrated with Austria and Norway's entries.
    • Some see 2014's winner Conchita Wurst's "Rise Like a Phoenix" as this. People who critisized the song has admitted that the song itself wasn't very appealing enough to win and even pretty boring - what got her to win was the preaching of tolerance, as she was a drag queen with a beard. This has caused her to become a Base Breaker, since most feel she didn't actually win for the song, which Eurovision SONG contest is about.
    • Armenia's 2015 entry "Don't Deny" had Turks and Azeris up in arms claiming it had to do with the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide and trying to get it disqualified for being political, even before the lyrics to the song were made public and all that was known about the song was the title. For now, the Armenian song has been renamed to "Face the Shadow" to dispel any more of those accusations. They also accused France's entry "N'oubliez pas" (Don't Forget) of being about the genocide, though it's supposed to commemorate World War One.