Melodifestivalen 2013: A quick analysis
Well. That was a surprise. Robin Stjernberg became the first finalist to win Melodifestivalen, after first missing out on a place in the final in his semi, and being forced to go via the "Second Chance" round.
As I wrote on Saturday, I did have a feeling that Yohio would win the contest, but I changed my mind after having seen all ten songs performed on Saturday night.
I got a sudden gut feeling that Robin would end up winning. And he did, thanks to the international jury.
There has of course been plenty of discussion about whether the jury did the right thing or not, and whether there should even be an international jury. A lot depends of course on whether you thought Yohio should have won or not.
I like Yohio as an artist, I respect his image and his determination. He is a very smart 17-year-old. It's just that the song "Heartbreak Hotel" was very very weak. Part of the point of the international jury is to see through hype and promotion work, unable as they are to follow the Swedish media. And as far as I am concerned, much of the support for Yohio was about him as an artist, very little was actually about the song. It was quite indicative that "Heartbreak Hotel" was not selling very well ahead of the contest on the download charts, and not being played that much on Spotify. And the international jury confirmed that.
I also think this is the best possible outcome for Yohio. He can concentrate on launching his new album here and in Japan, and above all, he can return again to Melodifestivalen soon with a better song that is more representative of his artistry, and then win the contest.
And what will happen to Robin? I think he can expect a decent result in Malmö. I don't think he will win, but a top ten placing won't be out of reach. From the little I have spoken to him, he is a lovely guy. Very self-aware and motivated. And as long as he can keep those nerves under control in the Eurovision he should do well.