They’re the Estonian duo who gave Shakespeare rhythm during the second semi-final of Eurovision 2017.

But unfortunately for Koit Toome & Laura, their song “Verona” failed to light Europe’s fire on Thursday and the telegenic pair went crashing out of the semis.

As the smoke cleared fans remained in shock that the pair of Eurovision veterans had come up short. A firm qualifier according to both the bookies and voters in our Semi-Final 2 fan poll, the duo now have the unfortunate title of “fan wank”. But what went wrong?

REACTION: Estonia’s Koit & Laura

When Twitter user @EuroGuyXX expressed his dismay over Estonia’s early exit, @jkp66fi offered up an explanation for the result.

“Estonia was way too cheesy a presentation,” he writes. “I liked the song but Laura was like a wax doll and Koit’s facial expressions were hilarious.”

Indeed, we’ve frequently compared the couple — who lack any discernible chemistry — to mannequins. They’re beautiful but somewhat stiff. Yet we were able to look past that in our assessment, and even thought that their lack of fire nicely conveyed the distance in their characters’ troubled relationship.

Twitter user @Tyrone_Jones wasn’t particularly surprised that Europe snubbed the Estonians. He questioned their vocals, their song, their staging and Koit’s face.

Many of the commenters on our Semi-Final 2 results post agreed that something wasn’t quite right — and it usually came down to Koit.

Speaking of the male singer, Aurelian Tamisan wrote: “the guy was hilarious and the song didn’t say too much.”

Jake said: “I LOVE the Estonian song but that performance and the looks he gave the camera were beyond cheesy.”

What’s your assessment? Should Estonia have gone through? What went wrong? Let us know in the comments box below.

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Agnese
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Agnese

I liked the song, but their live performance at semifinals wasn’t good. But I would have still preferred to see them in finals. If I had to choose which songs to add to my mp3 playlist, Estonian Verona would be in my top5, but most of finalists I would never add to any of my playlists regardless of their fancy show or non-cheesy looks. Italy is in the finals, but that guy is even more cheesy – not just his face expressions, but also weird moves. And Italian song – after it ends, you cannot remember the melody. Was there… Read more »

Adam watson
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Adam watson

I loved it , it was such a great performance
It epitomised Eurovision, very romantic and set the mood exactly
Great looking couple
Some say cheesy performance, I say lighten up
It was fun with drama
Traversty they’re not in the finals
We’ll done koit and Laura and thank you
For bringing some happiness into the world of us romantics
Fantastic ,you will be missed tonight

Héctor
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Héctor

Estonia didn’t qualify because the song is terrible, cheesy and dated and they lack of any kind of chemistry between them. That’s all for me. ‘Verona’ was too overrated by some fans. I’m not hating, I loved ‘Supersonic’. This year should have won Kerli or the guy who came 3rd (can’t remember his name), that song was good too.

Daniel
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Daniel

Watched Estonia’s performance again to work out why they did not qualify. The mic not working in the first few seconds probably made Laura nervous and may have put her off. For the first minute and a half of the song both Koit and Laura are singing slightly faster than the backing track. What a shame. Was hoping this would be the “Goodbye to Yesterday” of 2017.

Daniel
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Daniel

If Italy win this year, can we have Verona 2018?

#MarioVision (#VeronaLost < 3)
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#MarioVision (#VeronaLost < 3)

We are Lost In #Verona…… :'( :'(

Iain
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Iain

Why isn’t there an article about Jana Bur?eska not qualifying? Macedonia really went for it this year and I can’t get my head around them staying in the semi-final!

azaad
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azaad

To be fair, and I’m saying this as a fan, Macedonia weren’t expected to qualify. Their best result is 12th in 2006, and the promo performances destroyed her odds, and although she gave good performances in the rehearsals and semi final, those weren’t enough. Not having Albania in the semi final didn’t help. Estonia, apart from having a better track record in the contest, were talked about as a possible televote winner and top 5 finisher. They came 5th in the OGAE voting and had a lot of hype coming into the contest. By beating a pop star with international… Read more »

Denis
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Denis

why focus on Estonia missing out? Finland was much better and missed out on final, why not write about them?
Estonia was expected not to pass but not Finland.

redfox
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redfox

do not blame the singers. They did what the little purple pig Mart Normet asked of them. It was all a production mistake. the worst thing is there was no pre-promotion. The video was just twitching heads that looked like an alien was gonna come out. It had no story, nothing happened! Then they didnt go to a single concert or pre-party. I am not sure if they did any promotion at all. our team assumed everyone has heard the song – but in reality, despite creating some buzz on the internet, most people watching the show saw it for… Read more »

MarThi
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MarThi

I liked the song actually, but this performance was the worst this year. Koit can’t sing and this looks in the camera looked very cheap and ridiculus. Laura was better but seemed emotionless. When I heard the first rehearsal I was sure that this favorite will fall!!!
But deserved when you have the chance to send Kerli and choose this

Eve
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Eve

Song is boring, performance is disaster, wannabe original lyrics, no chemistry, ridiculous overdramatic look already turned into .gif, overall cheap and fake feeling. I never understand hype for this song, no surprise here.

Darth Thulhu
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Darth Thulhu

Estonia failed to qualify for the same reason Macedonia failed to qualify: the live audio-visual performance, unfortunately, was vastly less impressive than the studio version of the song paired with a professional-quality music video. Same happened with Moldova in 2010 … not quite enough of a step Down from the video to prevent Epic Sax Guy from dragging them into the Final, but more than enough of a step Down from the video to slam them brutally in the Final. To this day, I happily listen/watch the studio video of “Run Away” on loop, while refusing to even start the… Read more »

MatthewBof
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The real issue I think was the clip they decided to use for the recap. They picked one of the weakest parts of the song to remind the viewers of what the song was, and thus people remembered the song as being worse than it was.

bayadeparis
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bayadeparis

I agree.

Bgc
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Bgc

They didn’t qualify because their song was a horrible, cheesy, dated mess! “Verona” was absolutely dreadful. And let it be known that I have no ill will whatsover towards Estonia; I loved Mick Pedaja’s “Seis” in 2016 and Winny Puhh’s fantastic entry in 2013. I also think they had a great entry with “Goodbye to Yesterday” in 2015. Even Juri Pootsman had a good song last year but the staging killed him, making him act out something that he was clearly uncomfortable with. =( Estonia clearly has great musical talent for such a small nation! There is so much potential… Read more »

Music is the key
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Music is the key

I agree 100 %!

Zebb
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Zebb

Nice thoughts, Bgc! This flop made me also think if EL tries to push various but often pretty contemporary music but fails to do it third year in a row, people there should be voting with looking up in future. Hope for better sake next year as I extremely enjoyed their last two editions.

Briekimchi
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Briekimchi

Don’t look to hard into it. This is not an outlier but rather the new norm. Amber from Malta, Greta from Iceland and now, Koit and Laura. As long as the overall quality of music goes up every year and as long as certain countries qualify because of who they are rather than what they send, there are not going to be enough places for everyone!

Voxtaylor
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Voxtaylor

Estonia consistently ranks highly for me, but this year they were in my bottom four. The entire act was completely unsalvagable for me. I was so happy they didn’t qualify, but still sad so many of the good acts didn’t qualify either… Serbia, Macedonia, Switzerland…

Mauri Zeurgo
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Mauri Zeurgo

The music is very good, but the candidates do not have much charisma and much less personal chemistry. As for the presentation we clearly saw Laura’s microphone failure early on and the nervousness of both. It could have been better.

Unfortunately it did not work out very well. Good luck next time.

.Andrew
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.Andrew

I just think the song is better blasting it on mp3 then seeing it live simple as that i think plus i like dated music but a huge lot of people hate it .

Americanvision
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Americanvision

I like the song but sadly will live in infamy as a meme!

Thank you #Koitface
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Melow
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Melow

Their non-qualification was a slap in the face of all those Wiwibloggs readers *cof cof* who made a big deal out of the song, which is HORRIBLE, just like any other written by Sven Lõhmus and sang by his puppets. Laura and Koit forced chemistry on stage was beyond hilarious and the performance itself explains this headline.

If it were Kerli, she would probably have qualified and given Estonia a respectable place in the final

Fatima
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Fatima

I think we need to a unified European Cheese scale. The threshold is clearly lower in Tallinn than it is in other countries.

Anne
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Anne

PORTUGAL favourite to win in every bets and odds all over the world. It overcame Italy… Portugal will win

Nikos
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Nikos

When the song was first revealed for Eesti Laul I was like William and Deban in their reaction video, this was my #2! And then it kept slipping away. I agree with the article, the chemistry was nonexistent to make the song connect more with viewers. I do still feel that it deserved to sneak into the final.

too much cheese oh no please
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too much cheese oh no please

I actually liked their faces, they are kind of memorable. The song melody too. But the staging and the flirting with the cameras was starting to look weird, I felt like they were selling me lots of creamy carbohydrates and fatty foods.

Music is the key
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Music is the key

It was not a good song. Overhyped fanwank. Bana, dated, dull, unofringial contrived schalger. The sort of song you almost only hear in ESC….very good it did not reach the final

Pant7
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Pant7

K
E
R
L
I

Hi
Guest

This was my nr 2 in the finsl. 10000000 times better than Romania and Portugal

Lukewarm
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Lukewarm

Why? Because the staging belongs in the 2000s, the camerawork 1990s, the singers 1980s, and the song 1970s.

Lieke
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Lieke

The start was really weak. I think that put a lot of viewers off and they didn’t manage to get them back in later on in the song. I enjoyed the second part of the song, but the first part was just too weak to convince many people. I personally liked the ten that went through, although I would’ve really liked to swap FYROM Macedonia and Estonia in for Croatia and Romania. I liked their songs much better, but Croatia and Romania were much better live unfortunately. Jana’s song is a song I’ll be listening to for the years to… Read more »

Trevlo
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Trevlo

My jaw dropped when Estonia wasn’t selected. I must however agree that this performance was very superficial. The song was incredibly catchy but I suspect with the running order of the final it would have been sandwiched between the top 2 anyway. There were way too many closeups and they were afraid to get too close to each other so it was very awkward especially at the end.

adriana
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adriana

Darling when you are duo you have to give everything chemistry ,etc.They didnt thats why.

adriana
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adriana

The only issue with Estonia was for me the fact that they hadnt had chemistry in any way ..The song was great,their voices was great but the chemistry zero.Thats why they hadn`t qualified.

Bella
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Bella

I wonder if that has anything to do with Koit’s wife (or girlfriend) being madly jealous?….just a rumor that I heard

Emma
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Emma

I think the staging cost them in the end. Laura hardly opens her mouth when she sings, reminding me of a ventriloquist. And the close ups of Koit actually made me laugh out loud during the performance which a song about lost love should not do. I adore the song but can see why people wouldn’t have given this one their votes based on what they saw.

M_K
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M_K

I found Finland not qualifying FAR MORE shocking than Estonia not qualifying. I like Verona, but we have to admit that it’s the kind of kitsch that doesn’t work outside the Eurovision bubble.

Milla
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Milla

It was all an act. I didn’t believe a word they were singing about! They looked ridicuolous. And the song felt dated in the wrong way. That’s why they didn’t pass 😀

Avstrya
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Avstrya

I said it from the beginning that Estonia is a pile of overrated plastic. Fans vote for sincerity, originality, emotion, not for sterile waste. This song is so much worse than both Iceland 2016 and Israel 2014 which I loathed for boring and pretentious as well. So Estonia’s failure is no surprise. Finland’s is.

Charli Cheer Up
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Charli Cheer Up

Not shocked at all. This never really had a chance to stand out since it was selected by Estonians in favor of Kerli(local juries wanted her but televotes didn’t). It probably went because of all the old ladies and housewives at home had a crush on Koite

GG
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GG

I still can’t believe they didn’t make it to the final! I think people didn’t like the staging because they didn’t get the meaning of the song! I have to say though that I preferred their performance on the national final! I also thought they would be in the top 5…So sad and disappointed for them because they didn’t deserve that…

KuhKatz
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KuhKatz

Honestly, I thought they would qualify but I wasn’t really surprised they didn’t. The Staging was not that great, chemistry was far away from Acts like NaviBand from Belarus, Ilinca and Alex from Romania or dutch O’G3NE, and I agree that Laura was like a wax doll and Koit acted like a comedian which really killed it.

Craig
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Craig

He smiled like a gsmeshow host the whole way through and the camera circling around them at the end just upped the cheese way too far

Mehrona
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Mehrona

– Hackneyed music (Modern Talking called and want their song back)
– Trite lyrics (featuring the most cliché trope ever of Romeo & Juliet)
– No chemistry
– Meme-worthy gurning
– Both exhibited charisma less than that of a toothbrush
– Bad staging

bayadeparis
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bayadeparis

This was not mentioned, but the backing vocalists mics were also not working correctly. Verona has powerful chorus and Koit and Laura had to sing their part also. This of course is not the only reason they did not qualify, but one more reason the song did not have the full effect. So sad :(.

Richard Hochuli
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Richard Hochuli

My no 1 out,,disappointed

Chance
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Chance

Because the song was awful and the performance stupid.

Mattias Sollerman
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Mattias Sollerman

Reminds me of Hero in 2008. Great schlager. Won OGAE poll.
Didn’t even manage to qualify without help of the jury.

Rhingo
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Rhingo

Rather then Estonia I would ask why Ireland did not qualify -.-

Colin
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Colin

Agreed. Ireland and Switzerland were amazing and without significant issues. I think they should have qualified.

Karen
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Karen

Brilliant song but they were not Stig and Elina

Marta
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Marta

I listened to their immediate reactions to Estonian press after the semi and Laura said that she didn’t know that something was wrong with the sound, in her ear everything was ok and she didn’t learn of this faux pas before coming off the stage. There are lots of comments in Estonian forums that it was their worst performance – very wooden and fake, with all the wrong moves and emotions, too much makeup for Koit and too little for Laura. Plus sadly indeed their voices let them down this time a bit. However much I loved my country’s entry,… Read more »

Nicholas
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Nicholas

How is it possible for two icebergs to convey the feeling that they had once experienced the fire in their cold hearts?

Kristjan Jättenfeldt
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Kristjan Jättenfeldt

Hi!
You pointed out some problematic issues with the Estonian performance. But song was lovely and certainly earned its place among the finalists. A perfect Eurovision song!
But there is one thing which is not less important – it’s the current voting system at the semi-finals. Estonia did lose the votes from her neighbors and allies as Sweden, Finland, Latvia and the other countries who were participating at the 1st semifinal and could not vote at the 2nd semifinal. There is no sense! Why shouldn’t all Europeans vote for any entry ?

Best Regards,
Kristjan, Stockholm

Justin K.
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Justin K.

Seeing as Finland didn’t make it through the first semifinal, it actually wasn’t surprising Estonia didn’t either. Of course I was shocked the first few minutes, but then I had to think about it again and realise things just didn’t click for both acts. Surprisingly, I thought they were at fighting form during the televised performance, but I’m thinking Koit’s facial expressions weren’t what fans expected from him. Add that to the mic trouble, as well as an overall strong semi, and I don’t think it ranked high enough to garner a good amount of points per country. I actually… Read more »

Escaddict
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Escaddict

I LOVE this song so I am trying to work out what went wrong. Could it have been any combination of the following?

Laura did not look her glamorous self. The close-ups were harsh & unflattering.
Laura’s mic problem.
Laura was unconvincing in portraying the drama.
Koit looked creepy with that smile as he stoked her hair.
Koit expresses ranged from the serious looks to laughing & nodding at the camera.
Koit’s microphone cords around his head were distracting.

These are things are mostly trivial but together, they may have brought them down.

Yellowman
Guest

How about blaming the song itself 🙂 Love!