Serbian Pipes

Yep, it’s that point of the year where we closely examine the respective chances of all this year’s aspiring Eurovision songsmiths to ascertain what their chances are of actually winning the thing. And surprisingly we’ve come to the conclusion that not one of them is actually going to. I know, it surprised us too. But be warned, I’m rapidly running out of ideas, so it’s nowhere near as funny as last year…

Azerbaijan
Because the lyric police have been alerted, and they’re staking out the Azerbaijani hotel as we speak.

Iceland
Because nobody really cares about the song. They just love his little cheeky face. Aww bless.

Albania
Because when was the last time that a serious-yet-uplifting guitary one sung by an intense, good-looking man ever even came top three in this contest? And no, Lordi don’t count!

Belgium
“Ahh Miss Sennek, we’ve been expecting you,” said a bald man in a safari jacket, menacingly stroking a fluffy white cat. “We have a job for you that is far more important than this silly contest. And Adele didn’t want to do it again…”

Czechia
Cute boy, upbeat chartworthy song, questionable lyric - sounds like jury kryptonite to me.

Lithuania
The very definition of that song and singer that everybody absolutely loves, but completely forgets to vote for when it all gets exciting on the Tuesday night. Dang shame.

Israel
Because I bagged her at the bookies at 50/1 and I could surely never be that lucky two years in a row.

Belarus
It’s not so much a song any more. It’s more of an ever-evolving amoeba that appears to shape-shift on a daily basis. Heck, it was a different song for every one of its rehearsals, so who knows what bit they’re going to pick for the reprise. And will we even recognise it when they do?

Estonia
Because, and we say this every year, despite displaying admirable vocal skills, in the real world no bleeder actually likes popera.

Bulgaria
Because songs by committee bear results that ain’t pretty. (Add your own rhyme, if appropriate).

Macedonia
One song at a time please. Actually just the two would do us. (And if she wears that pink camel-toed thing on stage they’re coming double last!)

Croatia
We keep getting this mixed up with the Cypriot song in our crumbly ageing head - so how can you expect the once-a-year punters to remember who's who?

Austria
Nice singer. Nice song. Nice is dull. Nice never won nothing. Apart from cake shows.

Greece
The combined contests of the eighties have called. They want their ambient quasi-political noodlings back.

Finland
Because it’s written in stone… Saara Aalto always comes second! *cough*

Armenia
Terrifyingly, on the big night, Sevak revealed that his big leathery chest piece wasn’t actually a costume but actually his real chest by ripping off his stage face to reveal the head of a rather angry forest bear. And that never goes down well with the televoters. You know the rules - no livestock!

Switzerland
You know those songs that get picked early on that everybody really loves for about three weeks until all the other stuff comes flooding in and then they get forgotten? Yeah, that.

Ireland
What year is this again? Are we trapped in some kind of eternal underachievement loop.

Cyprus
Hang about, which one is she again? Eleni? Or Franka? It’s a bit of luck they’re not in the same semi. Wait, what’s that? Oh…

Norway
Because somewhere up in the rafters of the arena an Irishman sits. Balding, around 63, he could be heard muttering: “You won’t take my record, will you now. Because I’m Mr Eurovision!’ before peeling off a couple of shots with a high calibre assault rifle right between the boy Rybak’s ample brows. It didn’t end well for anyone.

Romania
Nope, still can’t remember how it goes - and I’m watching the actual video as I type. There surely must be a market for this kind of mid tempo plod rock somewhere though. Romania, probably.

Serbia
Trust us. Not one man or woman alive will be able to take their eyes off that little fella with the tooty pipe. So if the reprise people just happen to forget to put him in, no one will be able to recall a damn thing about the actual song come votes time.

San Marino
Them robots, see. Some evil genius up in the stalls managed to intercept their control beams and turned them into murderous strangle bots, flailing their little metallic arms like threshing machines, and tangling up the flowing locks of our two (non) Sammarinese heroines into one heck of a mess. I didn’t see the interloper’s face, but he sounded German and smelled of songs.

Denmark
Holy heck, have we just stepped into some hokey new viking theme world at Epcot? Where’s the log flume?

Russia
Because they’re playing the long game, and this is only one small constituent part of the mischief…

Moldova
And could the next chapter of the long game be this? What splendid irony it would be should agencies unknown carefully, erm, arrange a win for happy-go-lucky Moldova, and put the EBU’s plans for 2019 into an absolutely bonkers cocked-hat. “No,” you cry, “It could never happen!”. But of course not…

The Netherlands
Because despite what anyone might claim, he was probably the least important of the contributing factors to Calm Against The Storm’s unexpected success.

Australia
Lions with the punters, lambs with the juries.

Georgia
One year for Georgia, one year for Europe. We’re on a Georgia year, it seems.

Poland
Wait a minute… isn’t that the creepy body artist Gunther von Hagens on the keyboards? You know, that fella that makes statues out of real corpses. Isn’t he wanted in a number of countries for buying the bodies of executed Central Asian criminals on the cheap? Never a good idea to go on public telly with a price on your head, son.

Malta
She’s just happy to be there, bless her.

Hungary
Because in Eurovision, the things that you really, really want to happen almost never actually do. That and the fact that the song will have probably seen your Nan off before the massive key change, and the phone will be too busy ringing the hospital to use it to vote.

Latvia
(Friday morning in the Lisbon Hilton) “I hope you enjoyed your stay, ma’am. Checkout’s after breakfast at eleven. Doing anything nice this Saturday?”

Sweden
Those Lisbonian stagehands put their collective foot down and flatly refused to cart that oversized sound and light maguffin onto the stage - and poor Benny boy ended up looking a little exposed up there, prancing about on his tod against a bare wall. He still managed to come fifth despite all that.

Montenegro
Sometimes you don’t need to make up an ill-advised gag or a witty quip. You just know in your heart of hearts that it’s never going to happen in a million years.

Slovenia
Because as much as I utterly love every second of this song, it appears to be wearing some manner of invisibility cloak and not a single soul but me is even thinking about it. It’s like some kind of confusing sci-fi drama where people train themselves not to look at parallel worlds.

Ukraine
Flames? Ladders? Great heights? Comedy contact lenses? Sounds more like the start of an episode of Casualty than a Eurovision check list. (Our international readers can add the name of their own favourite local medical drama to replace Casualty if it works better for them).

Portugal
Perfect home entry fodder. Gorgeous, heart rending, never going to win in a million years. Splendidly cast!

France
Because that song that all the clever people insists is going to win usually only ever manages to scrape the top five at best. At best!

Germany
Beige in human form. Is it actually possible for something that is not quite a colour to win an international singing show?

Italy
These boys are just so darned intense that any children under three watching will spontaneously catch fire by the second chorus. And that kind of business doesn’t exactly encourage the votings.

Spain
Because despite being in the first blooms of true love in the Spanish final, they’ll have got a bit tired of each other now - especially after he tried to have a go on her mum (possibly). So those coy hand holds and delightful embraces might come over as perhaps a little more awkward and jaded by the time finals night comes around. Get the popcorn.

United Kingdom
Because there are some things that you just can’t blame on Brexit.

So there you have it. It seems like we'll have to go without a winner this year - again. You would almost think that nobody actually wants to win the thing anymore...