Eurovision Song Contest
(Saturday, BBC1, 8.00 p.m.)
If, like me, your plans for Saturday night sit somewhere between ‘hee’ and ‘haw’ then dig out the Union Jack bunting, scramble in the cupboard for some discarded party poppers and serve yourself a tray of nibbles and drinks ... it’s Eurovision time.
Yup the only contest more pointless than Jasper Carrott’s ‘Goldenballs’ takes centre stage for three hours 15 minutes of musical torture, dodgy voting and some very tedious tourism promo videos fronted by two cheesy hosts whose relentless enthusiasm will simply wear you down.
I’m rooting for nul points for Royaume Uni once more in the hope that someone in the BBC will finally get the message that no-one really, truly, honestly cares about Eurovision.
We only watch because there is, literally, nothing else on (‘Dad’s Army’ or ‘The Cube’ are your options - told you!), and it reminds us vaguely of the glory days of Bucks Fizz in their rather naff C&A jerseys, and Brotherhood Of Man’s daft wee dance routine in ‘Save Your Kisses For Me.’ Oh and Cliff doing ‘Power To All Our Friends.’ ...
Ah, back in the day we used to finish fifth and Terry Wogan’s chest swelled with pride.
Remarkably, Britain remains one of the ‘Big Five’ - countries which are spared the humuliation of elimination at the semi-final stage (who even knew such rounds existed?) - but clearly the rest of this strange land called Eurovision doesn’t really like us that much. Just look at the way it treats our boys when it comes to voting!
This year we’ve unleashed the big hair and roaring voice that is Bonnie Tyler - go get ‘em girl!
We lulled them into a false sense of security by sending over Engelbert Humperdink, the sweetheart of the Saga brigade, and the poor boy sank without trace, but woe betide any nation handing out a poxy one or two votes to the lass from the Valleys with turbo engines for lungs!
And she’s singing a country ballad -what more could Eurovision want? I fear the answer is dancing Russian grannies doing Gangam style whilst channelling the spirit of 70s’ glam rock - suffice to say the UK won’t win, probably won’t trouble the top ten and will be so far down the scoreboard you’ll end up having to pause the telly and move closer to even see where they are.
Graham Norton is your host live from Sweden.
The Voice UK
(Saturday, BBC1, 7.00 p.m.)
And just to get you in the mood for Eurovision, BBC chucks in another show of head to head singing battles between people you’ll probably never hear of again.
The very fact they’re bigging this one up as the most ‘explosive’ yet - that translates as ‘judge has mild strop and leaves spinning chair for a wee while before getting a hug and coming back’ - feels a bit desperate.
The contestants are nice, enthusiastic , and can hold a tune, but I don’t see the sign ‘‘star quality’’ flashing anywhere yet.
Maybe we should bung them into Eurovision as one giant group... hang on, that will probably mean an entire spin-off series of The Voice. Maybe not ...
Rock ‘n’ Roll Britannia
(Fiday, BBC4, 9.00 p.m.) To conclude a musically themed TV column, get thee back from the pub early to savour another Beeb4 gem as it celebrates the UK’s original rock ’n’ rollers.
That gap between Elvis and The Beatles produced stars such as Cliff Richard and Tommy Steele, not to mention some quifftastic hairstyles.
Great music never dies.
That’s where Eurovision is going wrong ...