Cleo—Poland’s Eurovision 2014 singer—is a master satirist. In “We Are Slavs” she and her scantily-clad back-up dancers sent up Polish stereotypes by washing clothes, churning butter, and flashing a bit of breast. European televoters got the joke, and they placed Poland fifth out of the 26 finalists. Sadly the juries went all prudish and ranked Poland 23rd, resulting in an overall placing of 14th. In the UK, the public ranked Poland first and the jury ranked it dead last. The same thing happened in Ireland. It all leads to one conclusion: the jurors are total boobs.

jury-televote split for Poland

Note: The Georgian jury vote was declared invalid because all jurors awarded the same scores from 3 to 12. The EBU determined that this was statistically impossible, so only the televote was counted. In Albania and San Marino, only the jury score was counted. Within each country the EBU must receive a certain number of votes, and those votes must go to a minimum number of countries or they are deemed insignificant and invalid.

Albania – 22 jury
Armenia – 11 jury, 16 televoting
Austria – 24 jury, 3 televoting
Azerbaijan – 11 jury, 12 televoting
Belarus – 8 jury, 5 televoting
Denmark – 18 jury, 10 televoting
Estonia – 26 jury, 17 televoting
FYR Macedonia – 12 jury, 3 televoting
Finland – 24 jury, 11 televoting
France – 15 jury, 3 televoting
Georgia – 13 televoting
Germany – 4 jury, 3 televoting
Greece – 17 jury, 5 televoting
Hungary – 15 jury, 7 televoting
Iceland – 23 jury, 2 televoting
Ireland – 26 jury, 1 televoting
Israel – 18 jury, 12 televoting
Italy – 6 jury, 3 televoting
Latvia – 24 jury, 10 televoting
Lithuania – 24 jury, 4 televoting
Malta – 18 jury, 9 televoting
Moldova – 12 jury, 8 televoting
Montenegro – 7 jury, 11 televoting
Norway – 19 jury, 1 televoting
Portugal – 23 jury, 16 televoting
Romania – 23 jury, 21 televoting
Russia – 24 jury, 13 televoting
San Marino – 23 jury
Slovenia – 10 jury, 14 televoting
Spain – 15 jury, 6 televoting
Sweden – 17 jury, 3 televoting
Switzerland – 18 jury, 7 televoting
The Netherlands – 25 jury, 2 televoting
Ukraine – 8 jury, 1 televoting
United Kingdom – 25 jury, 1 televoting

In defence of Cleo & Donatan

We said it back in February, and we’ll say it again now. This song is genius. You have to read it in the context of Poland’s economic miracle, and its 10th anniversary as a member state of the EU. We’re re-printing our analysis of the music video below. We seriously hope the jurors are reading!

What did you think of their performance? Did it deserve to be treated so harshly by the juries?

The opening scene of the video shows Donatan—lazy and clearly oversexed—struggling to get out of bed. His antiquated mobile phone and rural farmhouse smack of a man—indeed, a nation—behind the times. The suggestion that Warsaw is stuck in the dark ages continues with the video’s depiction of women, who churn butter while men rate their performance. Milk running down their cheeks and over their thrusting cleavage isn’t just there to titilate. It plays on the supposed role of women in traditional society: to be angels in the kitchen and wantons in the bedroom.

In Britain, where I’m writing this post from, Poles (and Romanians and Bulgarians and any other immigrant from Eastern Europe) are too often portrayed as scroungers who come to live on benefits. It’s a tired storyline born of fear and xenophobia, and frustration over Britain’s own economic shortcomings. In fact, in recent years Poles have actually been fleeing Britain and returning home in search of better opportunities. Poland 2014 is not the Poland of ten years ago. Much of the world already knows this: Businessweek recently described Poland as “Europe’s most dynamic economy” and Poland is among the nation’s leading the economic recovery in Eastern Europe.

That puts a different slant on Donatan and Cleo’s clever stage show. It’s slick, colourful and well-choreographed. And the song, produced to perfection, gets stuck in your head, regardless of whether you’re into hip-hop or not. Given all that, the strongest message of their act is an implicit one. You can’t call a nation backwards when it produces something as strong as this.

Willy Lee Adams contributed this report from London. Follow him on Twitter @willyleeadams. You can also keep up with the latest Eurovision news and gossip by following wiwibloggs.com on Twitter and Facebook.

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Jordan
Jordan
6 years ago

@Laurel S

At least Poland showed their sense of humour — something you’re lacking.

Jordan
Jordan
6 years ago

I just find it quite amusing that people are blaming the Polish diaspora for Donatan & Cleo coming 5th in the televote. Are you forgetting that Poland failed with the televoters in… 2011 – 17th 2010 – 13th 2009 – 12th 2008 – 24th 2007 – 14th 2006 – 11th 2005 – 11th 2001 – 20th 1999 – 18th 1998 – 17th 1997 – 11th 1996 – 15th 1995 – 18th Hahahahaha, I can definitely see a problem with the Polish diaspora. Morons… Face it, Poland broke the Eurovision cliché by sending something original, modern and fresh. Besides Austria, Poland’s… Read more »

Jordan
Jordan
6 years ago

@Laura

Actually… Ola’s boobs are natural. I’ve seen them…

As for the song being “total crap”, I think we should agree to disagree. At least Poland broke the Eurovision cliche by sending something original, modern and fresh. It was better than some of the outdated rubbish that has plagued the contest in the past…

Laura
Laura
6 years ago

@ flower crown Natural beauty my ass! Even the daftest person could see that at least the other one kneeling had implants. As for the song, it was total crap.

Laurel S
Laurel S
6 years ago

@Jordan Not buying it, sorry. Especially not with the added “fortunately I don’t speak English” reply (direct quote) in answer to a question of would he be embarrassed if Conchita wanted to talk to him. Not to mention his later comment about how he has “no problem with gays or lesbians (especially no problem with them) or transvestites” (also a direct quote). Gee, he particularly has no problem with lesbians, wink wink nudge nudge I wonder why. Just. No. Also, I enjoyed the erotic butter churning as much as the next person, and I am intensely weary of any sort… Read more »

Jordan
Jordan
6 years ago

@Laurel S Donatan wasn’t being an asshole, he was merely stating a fact. A lot of people (especially from the West) were attacking Poland for being “extremely sexist” and don’t want their children watching their performance. However, it’s okay for a man wearing a dress? I do agree he shouldn’t have posted it before the Grand Final, but why shouldn’t he? After the amount of criticism Poland has endured over their song and performance, I don’t blame Donatan for being honest and speaking his mind. Poland was making their Eurovision comeback and the hosts barely acknowledged it, yet they were… Read more »

Anthony
Anthony
6 years ago

@paparipazupa,
Just send a song that BOTH the juries and the televoters will like. Emmelie de Forest and Conchita Wurst have done just that under the new ranking-based system. Simples!

Laurel S
Laurel S
6 years ago

Thing is, I might even have bought the “it’s sarcastic” bit about Poland’s song, were it not for Donatan being an asshole on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=771748216182019&set=a.244529105570602.59940.190779550945558&type=1

Vladimir
Vladimir
6 years ago

Poland was in my top 5 and I think it definitely deserved top 10 in the final.

paparipazupa
paparipazupa
6 years ago

I so hope Greece will withdraw from that ridiculous contest, along with Poland and France.
Poland presented really good songs in the mid-1990’s, and what they got from jury voting?
I think Poland is one of the most heavilly underrated countries in the whole history of ESC.

David Thielen
6 years ago

It definitely made the song memorable.

beccaboo1212
6 years ago

So basically it’s because of the whole “cleavage” thing. Other than that, Poland had an awesome song!

Sam
Sam
6 years ago

As I have mentioned before on here, the system used to calculate the points was changed (this year or the year before, not sure) to one in which ranks are calculated. Under the old system – in which I believe jury members simply chose their top 10 which was overally added to the top 10 from the televote – things look slightly different… Here is how the UK voted this year: 12pts Austria 10pts Malta 8pts Netherlands 7pts Sweden 6pts Finland 5pts Spain 4pts Iceland 3pts Denmark 2pts Greece 1pt Switzerland Under the old system it would have been as… Read more »

Anthony
Anthony
6 years ago

Before we’ve even had the rehearsals in Copenhagen, let alone getting there in the first place, I knew that Poland would be one of the countries that could struggle with the juries this year. Along with Greece, Iceland, Latvia and Belarus.

Thiefo
Thiefo
6 years ago

This song may be “genius”, but it seems these “clever” songs, like My Slowianie or Moustache are not always that effective, the message is so buried in a sarcastic (and sometimes just plain crappy) tune not all people get it, specially those who only hear the song once or twice, during the actual shows… and I can’t blame them. I bet most of casual viewers only saw boobs on stage with My Slowianie and just a messy performance in Moustache… and we know boobs sell, that’s the reason why Poland didn’t end up right next to France in the final,… Read more »

adriana_gabriela
adriana_gabriela
6 years ago

The most rankend song in the United Kingdom was the Slavic Girls -Donatan and Cleo ,or should i say the most voted boobies was the Polish ones in the Uk 🙂

Julian
Julian
6 years ago

If it is to count number of votes Poland was very probably top 3 if not maybe even no 1. The only sizeable countries where it didn’t do well are Romania and Russia. If this is not success I don’t know what else can be.

Jarsi
Jarsi
6 years ago

Are you guys really saying that this was a genius song? It was just boobs all around the place.

Eurofan
Eurofan
6 years ago

no, i think the juries did what they were there to do. It’s fun, but it was always a joke song, it wasn’t a winner. Everyone knew that it would be more popular with the televote than the juries. The point of the juries is to help raise accomplished songs like the netherlands, and keep down the jokes. The end result is something both sides like – like Conchita

ESCaddict
ESCaddict
6 years ago

It was not the best song in the competition so the juries did their job bringing in some balance to the Polish diaspora but throwing it to the bottom was too harsh. It is a great song.
The boobs on stage were a joke. There have been plenty of man boobs on the Eurovision stage. Seriously this should not be an issue.

Al
Al
6 years ago

You people are incredible. UK and Ireland voters ranked it 1st BECAUSE there are more Poles in those countries than in Poland! Yes, they are like 1-2% of the total population, but what happens if 2% vote and half of those are Poles? The song is moronic and total crap. I as a slav person hate it. This is a SONG CONTEST and there is no quality singing in this, there is no hidden meaning to it and the sexy cards proves it. You try so hard to find meaning in it that it gets pathetic. This is just total… Read more »

Franco
Franco
6 years ago

I should have emailed your review to every single juror, when their names became public. But I assumed that they were smart enough to draw the same conclusion themselves.
I was wrong, apparently (at least for a number of them).

sven
sven
6 years ago

Yeah, but the UK and Irish juries were clearly judging the staging, not the song.
German, French, and Italian juries weren’t bothered by the boobies, and think that the song was quite good.
And please all tell me more about glorious, not-sexist, Western music.
http://asset-4.soup.io/asset/7276/3390_4ae1.jpeg

Eugene UK
Eugene UK
6 years ago

Hi Robyn – You said :- “It gives the jury the ability to punish a song by ranking it last – in effect, a negative vote. The televoters don’t have this ability. They can only vote *for* a song, not against it.” Yes that is true in the main, but in theory all of the 5 jury members for one country are independent and to do what you suggest, there has to be collusion of the 5 and then this has to be multiplied by 37, that’s major collusion don’t you think? Simple fact, the juries from 37 countries collectively… Read more »

Physalis Franchetti
Physalis Franchetti
6 years ago

@Robyn You need to consider the ethnic majority voting (e.g. in Germany this would be Germans) in a different way. The ethnic majority can’t vote for their own country, so their votes are placed around the other 25 songs, some have a bit more and some a bit less, but the point is that the ethnic majority vote has been split up across 25 songs. The ethnic minority voters though are allowed to vote for their perceived country of origin. So, Votes for Country B from country A = (home vote/25 approximately) + votes from people from Country B living… Read more »

HKD
HKD
6 years ago

I think the juries got it almost right here. Undoubtedly the Polish song was fun and certainly eye-catching but for quality of music? It was poor.
That’s what the juries are for, to judge on the song, not the performance.

Fatima
Fatima
6 years ago

Did you hear that a Polish construction worker is going to join the Village People ? They’re re-recording their biggest hit, which will now be called YMZCZA.

Fatima
Fatima
6 years ago

Let’s not forget that they were voting on a different performance of the same song, so it’s possible it was not sung so well in the jury final, or other songs were performed better. They should all vote on the same performance, but I realise that is easier said than done.

Anaconda
Anaconda
6 years ago

Yeah, sure, it was catchy, fun, and colourful. But it was also BAD! Don’t tell me about Eastern Europe, I come from there, so I don’t need to rediscover it in light of 10 years since EU accession etc. The type of video, stage performance and song are VERY popular in Eastern Europe, so completely unoriginal to us, not to mention very distasteful, and not because of the boobs. It was just a very cheap performance, Cleo shrieks the entire time, I found no merit to the composition, and the staging was bad.

Henrik
Henrik
6 years ago

Someone said a return to juries ranking with points 1-10 I’m for that. But I didn’t like the song. Thought it was awfull.
The system is constantly undergoing scrutiny but there can never be a totally fair system as taste is impossible to rate fairly. If it hadn’t been Poland it would have been Another country people would be getting angry about.

Eugene UK
Eugene UK
6 years ago

On the 21st of March, on another site, I gave my 5 contenders and I said this :- “I would watch very closely what happens in the next few weeks to AUSTRIA and POLAND. If you are looking for a surprise it could well come from these two. Too early to tell yet. Stranger things have happened!!” (We know what happened to Austria.) As for Poland, I thought the song was good, original and contemporary, but for me lost the marketing/staging by going for the “Booby” route rather than focusing on the song. I think 5 dancers would have been… Read more »

Jordan
Jordan
6 years ago

What he said… v

Robyn
Robyn
6 years ago

@Cian According to the 2011 Irish census, there are 122,585 Poles in Ireland – 2.7% of the population. That means 97.3% of the Irish population are not Polish (it’s about 1% in the UK). It might seem like Polish people are everywhere (and they are indeed the largest minority group in Ireland), but there are far more non-Poles in Ireland. Face it, dude – the Irish and British love Slavic girls!

EUROFAN MEXICO
6 years ago

POLONIA SE LUCIO, OPTO POR LO BASICO DE SU VIDEO Y LO SUAVIZO CON LOS BAILES TRADICIONALES, NO LOS JUZQUEN PARA QUE QUERIAN AL PANZON DE DONATAN ARRIBA HACIENDO NADA, LA LABADA Y LA BATIDA FUERON FENOMENALES Y ATRAJERON MAS HETEROS AL SHOW, QUE MERITO EN EL TELEVOTO, MERECIAN ESTAR EN TOP 5

Jordan
Jordan
6 years ago

I think the jury needs to have their power revoked by 25%. People are spending money to vote for their favourite, but their money is going to waste…

Mordecai
Mordecai
6 years ago

So unfair. Poland deserved more than they got. Juries have way more power than they need, so why not have an international jury?

Jordan
Jordan
6 years ago

Cian, there are no words to describe how ignorant you sound…

Cian
Cian
6 years ago

Sorry to disagree but yes Poland won the Irish televote because of Polish diaspora,which as I stated is HUGE in Ireland.If you’re not from Ireland then you wont understand where Im coming from.But Ireland is full to the brim with poles,left right and centre.Theyre everwhere,they drive our public transport,the cut our hair,they serve us our food,they work in our shops,they clean our streets,almost every bar and club in ireland will have a polish security gaurd on the door.They work behind our bars.Theres so many polish people here there was even talk some years back to have polish tranlations over our… Read more »

flower crown
flower crown
6 years ago

In seeing all this, I fear countries like Poland and Portugal will not even bother entering in years to come. The people loved them, but at end of day the juries silenced any say the voters had. What the incentive would be to vote next year I’m not sure. System has serious flaws.

I’m proud of my fellow Slavic girls. They killed it. Good to know some people aren’t afraid of Polska boobs and natural beauty/talent 😛

Huh
Huh
6 years ago

And they say that Moje 3’s outfit during their national final was too provocative…

Robyn
Robyn
6 years ago

There’s no way this song could have won the Ireland and UK televote by Polish diaspora alone. There may be a lot of Poles in the British isles, but they are still very much outnumbered by non-Poles. As well as being a catchy song, the performance seemed to tap into that very British booblicious kind of humour that you see in Benny Hill and Carry On films. Old fashioned, yes, but still a fun experience. To me, the massive difference between the televote and the jury vote is evidence that the full ranking of songs by the jury isn’t working.… Read more »

Paige
Paige
6 years ago

I read this statement somewhere which made a lot of sense to me. 5 people (the jury) should not have as much power as thousands of people voting (televoting). These people are also using their money to vote for a song, and then ends up getting 0 votes from your country just because of 5 people. I think the jury should have less control, have more members, or just be cut out all together.

Dan RO
Dan RO
6 years ago

It was pure crap, hated it!

Jordan
Jordan
6 years ago

@Cian

P.S. I know there is a large Polish community within the UK and Ireland, but to say that Poland was #1 in the televote because of a diaspora just makes you sound extremely ignorant and naive. Poland was a favourite among non-Polish fans.

Could there have been a bit of a diaspora vote? Maybe.
Was the Polish diaspora the reason why Poland came #1 in the televote? Certainly not!

Jordan
Jordan
6 years ago

@Cian

As I previously said…

Having followed the live Twitter feed during the European and Australian broadcast, Poland was actually a favourite among non-Polish viewers. During the unofficial voting, Australia ranked Poland 5th with over 25,000 votes during the broadcast of the Second Semi-Final and 6th with over 24,000 votes during the broadcast of the Grand Final. Major Australian networks actually acknowledged Poland’s performance during their Eurovision 2014 segment. It just proves to show that Poland left an impression with viewers…

Cian
Cian
6 years ago

The reason Poland was #1 in the UK and Ireland televote is because Polish diaspora is MASSIVE in those two countries.Im Irish and we are over run with Polish people here in Ireland since 2004.In fact here in Ireland Poles are the largest non national group living in Ireland.There are over 200,000 thousand Polish people living in Ireland, a 97% increse since 2004 when Poland joined the EU.Thats why Poland won the Irish televote.Because possible 200,000 polish people voted for it.As I said Polish diaspora is massive here.You cant go about your day in Ireland without encountering at least 20… Read more »

Jordan
Jordan
6 years ago

P.S. Poland was trending worldwide on Twitter during the European and Australian broadcast of the Second Semi-Final and the Grand Final. The hashtag #SlavicBoobs was somewhere in the mix…

Jordan
Jordan
6 years ago

Having followed the live Twitter feed during the European and Australian broadcast, Poland was actually a favourite among non-Polish viewers. During the unofficial voting, Australia ranked Poland 5th with over 25,000 votes during the broadcast of the Second Semi-Final and 6th with over 24,000 votes during the broadcast of the Grand Final. Major Australian networks actually acknowledged Poland’s performance during their Eurovision 2014 segment. It just proves to show that Poland left an impression with viewers…

Marco
Marco
6 years ago

Three syllables: in-jus-tice. Power to the People!

R
R
6 years ago

They should bring it back to 100% televotes. At least there’s a wider consensus with that. Jury votes are incredibly biased and rigged for some countries. Would’ve loved to see Poland finish 4th!