United Kingdom, Bonnie Tyler [ELIMINATED]

Earlier this week the Wiwi Jury—our in-house panel of music un-professionals—traveled to Wales to review Bonnie Tyler’s Eurovision 2013 song “Believe in Me”. Did the “Total Eclipse of the Heart” singer score another hit with us? Or were we left searching for a hero ’til the end of the night? Read on to find out…


Deban: One doesn’t court millions of voters by sitting on a window pane, or by being clad head to toe with gloves, scarf and coat. Age-appropriate as some fans may argue that is, Bonnie Tyler may as well have been singing dressed in a bourkha. “Believe In Me” is easy on the ear, but lacks gusto, and remains devoid of a climax. Even without seeing the video, it’s obvious to many listeners that this entry is lazy in it’s approach and delivery. Most of the countries participating aim their eyes on the prize. However, the United Kingdom seems to approach the contest this year with the sole aim of participating. Yes, Bonnie Tyler is a big star, but this country number don’t impress me much!

Score: 3.5/10

More of this, please
More of this, please

Bogdan: Where do I begin? First, I admire Bonnie Tyler. I saw her perform live in a public square in the dead of winter, and she was amazing. Second, I understand the UK’s decision to send her – she still has massive appeal throughout Europe, especially in the East (although so does Patricia Kaas…). What I fail to understand, however, is the choice of song, which is many years and thousands of miles away from Eurovision 2013. It is not only dated, it’s also misplaced, as it totally sounds like an American country song. It’s completely wrong for Eurovision and that’s a pity, because Bonnie Tyler is a true legend and she deserved more than she’s going to get in May…

Score: 3/10

Wiwi: Bonnie Tyler is a legend with an instantly recognizable voice. That’s why this mediocre song is so disappointing. Making someone of her stature sing this tosh is like telling an Oscar-winning actress she has landed a part in the Akron, Ohio production of Cats, or telling Cristiano Ronaldo he’ll be playing for that powerhouse North Korea at the next World Cup. Given the right song Bonnie could have won. With this she’ll be lucky to crack the Top 20. “Believe in Me” is forgettable, disposable, far too mellow, and ultimately quite shallow. To quote her ditty, I’m “reaching out for something and there’s nothing.” (If you’d like to support Bonnie, consider buying one of these lovely “Believe in Me” t-shirts).

Score: 3.5/10

Bonnie Tyler to sing for UK at EurovisionHK Dick: Question: Which country sends stars of yesteryear to Eurovision thinking that because they are well known they will bring Eurovision success but continues to bring abject failure? Well, we all know the answer and despite the fabulousness of Ms Bonnie Tyler the same mistake is about to happen again. I’m sure in all of our hearts there was a flicker of excitement of another Jim Steinman classic, reminiscent of the opening bars “Turn around….”. I so want to believe in Bonnie but she has been given something so distinctly average to sing that the top half of the leaderboard is really the best we can hope for, again leaving the UK holding out for a hero for at least another year.

Score: 6/10

Vebooboo: The UK is such a sensationalist culture, so why they don’t run a dramatic televoting-based national selection simply baffles me. Bonnie’s song is actually quite nice, but it would NEVER win a televoting selection…and that’s a problem. Just as sluts don’t show up to a party without condoms and birth control, the UK shouldn’t send a song to Eurovision that lacks flair and originality. And yet they do…and do…and do. We get it, UK: You’ve got a much larger economy than all the tiny continental countries. But it ain’t size that matters, it’s the motion in the ocean. So start making waves, please.

Score: 4/10

Bonnie Tyler EurovisionMr Häggkvist: I really hope to see Bonnie Tyler deliver a great performance. That’s probably my biggest wish for this year’s competition. It will be heartbreaking to see her finish in 21st position. She’s just too good… and as I say every time somebody asks me, I do believe in her song. It’s a matter of musical taste, and I do prefer to see her performing an adult comtemporary song, not some electronic composition that will be just like Nicki French back in 2000. I have such faith in this entry and this ARTIST.

Score: 8/10

Alexander: I love Bonnie Tyler’s song “I Need a Hero.” However, I’m not really digging “Believe in Me.” It’s just too country for my tastes. People seem to like this, but I’m indifferent to it. It’s alright, but nothing special.

Score: 4/10

Wiwi Jury Verdict: 4.57/10

You can see the latest reviews and standings on the Wiwi Jury pageYou can also listen to all 39 entries on our contestants page.

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Momo
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Momo

This song barely makes the ‘okay’ mark. It’s just too damn bland. Defo not a strong contender. Another UK fail.

Tiggeh
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Tiggeh

@ Anthony

I know that, i was just putting a point across.

Trevor
Guest
Trevor

I am from the UK. I so want to like this song. I kind of do. In the way that I like food when I’m hungry and sleep when I’m tired. And not banging my head against a wall. I wondered what Emma Bunton had decided to do after leaving the Spice Girls – make a country album and steal a track for the ESC, it seems. Just not got enough ‘belt’ for me…..

Leon
Guest
Leon

Believe in me. Great song – lyrics are ageless, most people will have had experience of the sentiments and empathise with it. Video that accompanies it is a bit disconnected from the song. I could imagine 2 people, one serenading the other with changing characters; man/woman, man/man, parent/teenager, etc. I think it is a winner if they get the production right. Different characters blending with Bonnie then morphing in to another as song progresses.

Alex
Guest
Alex

This song isn’t as mediocre as the jury says it is, but the recent live performance on the Graham Norton show sure wasn’t encouraging. They’re going to have to do better than that when they’re in front of the jury at Malmo.

The recent article on Wiwibloggs by the British author extolling this song’s virtues is emblematic of the problem that the UK has in Eurovision: the attitude is that everything that we send is good, because we think it is, and everyone else has bad taste. With that attitude, you won’t get anywhere.

Harriet Krohn
Guest
Harriet Krohn

SQFan: I think you misunderstood me. I’m not saying it hurts to have a big name – just that it’s not enough to win. Neither Andrew Lloyd Webber (or rather Jade Ewen) nor Blue won. And I’m not judging Bonnie Tyler because of Engelbert Humperdinck (I’m not even sure how that would go), I’m judging the BBC for relying on big names of has-beens instead of going all out with a great song. All I’m really saying is that you don’t need a famous singer to win, you need a great song. Of course a big name will score higher… Read more »

Anthony
Guest
Anthony

@Tiggeh: The OGAE fan club poll don’t always get it spot on though. So I wouldn’t take that poll seriously if I were you.

@Harriet Krohn: Loreen is actually quite famous in Sweden and mainly those in Scandinavia. It’s that she wasn’t familiar across the rest of Europe before she made her Melodifestivalen debut in 2011.

Tiggeh
Guest
Tiggeh

@ Natia.

Check out the OGAE fan club poll….you’ll see things differently. The UK came in 8th with 119 points and Georgia came in 13th with only 37 points.

SQFan
Guest
SQFan

@ Harriet Krohn That isn’t necessarily true Harriet – big names, do attract more votes. I won’t go as far back (and say Katrina and the Waves), but what about Andrew Lloyd Webber in 2009, and Blue in 2011? The televotes alone for the UK were pretty high those year (despite Blue’s ghastly live performance), and it didn’t hurt Dino Merlin or Zeljko that they have legend status in the Balkans either. Engelbert Humperdink didn’t do well because he’s a ‘legend,’ but not one that many viewers would’ve heard of, or remembered since it’s mostly beyond their time. It’s a… Read more »

SQFan
Guest
SQFan

@ Natia

I’m not even from the United Kingdom – so don’t assume that just because I don’t like Georgia’s entry, and I prefer Bonnie’s, that I’m from the UK – but it’s obvious from your answer that you’re just a nasty, vile person who can’t stand the opinions of others. You’re not doing your country’s image any favours by spewing comments like that either.

I liked Sofia Niharadze’s entry, loved Eldrine, but “Waterfall” is complete and utter trite, and I’m surprised that it’s coming from a country that used to actually send decent entries.

Harriet Krohn
Guest
Harriet Krohn

The BBC hasn’t been taking the Eurovision Song Contest seriously for a number of years now. Somehow they still haven’t managed to understand what it is really like now, because it has changed a lot since the UK was successful at it. Sending big names may well be enough not to embarrass yourself, but it’s not enough to actually win. Look at recent winners – who of them was a star before Eurovision? Alexander Rybak? Not quite. Lena? Absolutely not. Ell and Nikki? Hell no. Loreen? Not really. You don’t need big names – you need great songs. It doesn’t… Read more »

Bogdan Honciuc
Editor

Makes sense then. He should have given it to Faith Hill.

Alexander
Guest
Alexander

@Bogdan The song sounds like American country music because it actually IS 🙂
It was written by Desmond Child in Nashville, Tennessee (the capital of country music record labels).

Natia from GEORGIA
Guest
Natia from GEORGIA

to the @SQ person who dislikes my country’s “very bland, I’ve-heard-it-many times before, diabetic love song”. i only have this to say this: we are way ahead of your country here, but also with the bookies and most polls. our song is quality. your song isn’t even deserving of 4.57. like bonnie’s face, your brain must be shriveled.

Jordana
Guest
Jordana

@SQFan The jury can’t talk solely about the song BECAUSE IT LACKS SUBSTANCE. Don’t blame them for your country’s bad entry. (And it is bad. Steven Tyler and Bon Jovi would not let this trite, tired, overdone country-esque crap onto their album)

Anthony
Guest
Anthony

And I almost forgot. I might as well brace myself for all the “Europe hates the UK!” excuses, based on those reviews from the Wiwi Jury.

Anthony
Guest
Anthony

Jamaraqueer & Floh,

With all the usual negativity from the United Kingdom and my Eurovision allegiance with Slovenia for obvious reasons, do you really expect big name chart stars such as Adele and Emeli Sande, to represent the UK, knowing they’ll get absolutely slaughtered by the British public and media for doing Eurovision?

The BBC has tried all they can, but it’s like seeing a non-league/fifth tier football club trying to buy the entire Barcelona team on a £1 million transfer budget.

SQFan
Guest
SQFan

I don’t know why the title of ‘jury’ is being used here if most of are you are not even going to judge songs, purely on their own merit. Instead, you rant away about politics, and who-should’ve-sent-what, and how you *expect*, this song to perform, rather, than the song itself. That explains why the very bland, I’ve-heard-it-many times before, diabetic love song #57 that’s Georgia’s entry manages a 7.43/10 with the ‘jury’ – you don’t even judge the songs itself. Meanwhile, Bonnie’s song, which is the type of number one can expect on a Bon Jovi or Steven Tyler album,… Read more »

Sardine
Guest
Sardine

I blame Josh Dubovie and Pete Waterman. If they hadn’t majorly screwed it up in 2010 then maybe the Beeb would stage a national final and good songwriters would take part.

Jamaraqueer
Guest
Jamaraqueer

Seriously. Bonnie is a great artist as you point out. England is a wealthy country as you point out. Yet they simply can’t get their act together. PATHETIC.

Floh
Guest
Floh

The U.K. BBC bosses just don’t get it. Lovely as Engelbert is and Bonnie too, as was said above: “Question: Which country sends stars of yesteryear to Eurovision thinking that because they are well known they will bring Eurovision success but continues to bring abject failure? Well, we all know the answer and despite the fabulousness of Ms Bonnie Tyler the same mistake is about to happen again.”

Seriously, U.K. — STOP IT, STOP IT NOW!