The Wiwi Jury — our in-house panel of music unprofessionals — comes to the end of our journey listening to and reviewing the eight competing acts in France’s Destination Eurovision 2018. Finally we take a look at the duo Madame Monsieur and their song “Mercy”. What did we think of their moving ballad? Read on to find out.
Madame Monsieur – “Mercy”
Antranig: There is a beauty in the simplicity of “Mercy”. Simple can often be boring but that is definitely not the case here. The staging echoed that and brought the song to life. Madame Monsieur are doing everything right and this could go far for France. This feels like the perfect song to follow up on the achievements of “Requiem”. France can’t go wrong with this one.
Robyn: This didn’t seem like a stand-out track coming into the semi-final, but what was flat in the studio version gained some life on stage. The emotional lyrics might be lost on non-French speakers (as might the play on merci/Mercy/mercy), but Madame Monsieur bring a lot to their performance and staging could illustrate some of the song. This isn’t the best France has to offer this year, but it would do well at Eurovision.
Chris: In its simplicity, “Mercy” becomes a standout in the national final season and — hopefully — at Eurovision. It would be easy for the song to become contrived, like so many “songs with a message” have before. But by keeping the staging, production and even lyrics pared back, the mood captured is just beautiful. It’s not a Eurovision winner, at least at this stage, but an incredibly worthy song.
Jonathan: “Mercy” was a deserved winner of the second semi-final, but whether it’s France’s best choice for Eurovision is less clear-cut. Subtle yet sophisticated, this contemporary, electronic track cleverly deals with an important subject matter. However, it would need even cleverer staging for the message to get across to an international audience (beyond that of The Netherland’s 2017) and would rely heavily on the national commentators to explain it’s meaning. If they pull it off though, it could be a bit of a dark horse.
Josh: The quiet quality of “Mercy” is appreciable and it’s easy to see why it’s a favourite amongst many Eurovision fans. However, the lack of dynamism and build towards the end of the song makes it feel very flatlined the whole way through. The lead vocalist has a stunning voice and great stage presence, but on stage in Lisbon — and mark my words — this will get lost in the crowd and will not place top ten. A fabulous radio friendly song, but not right for the stage.
Luis: This is how you tackle social issues at Eurovision. No clichés, no ‘Love Love Peace Peace’, just authenticity and gusto. Madame Monsieur bring the finest entries in Destination Eurovision. “Mercy” is smooth, clever and polished, and you could have it on repeat for ten hours without getting tired. Its lyrics are a punch on the face of Europe and connect with what many Europeans believe: our governments are doing nothing to prevent the Mediterranean from becoming a cemetery. As harsh as it sounds, that’s one of the many strengths of this entry.
In our Destination Eurovision Wiwi Jury, we have 15 jurors but only room for 6 reviews. The rest of our scores can be found below:
Before calculating the average score, the highest and lowest scores are dropped. This is to remove outliers and reduce potential bias. We have removed a low of 6 and a high of 9.5.