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Lena - "Taken By A Stranger"

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This would have gotten more points if Lena didn't believe her own hype.

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When the Eurovision Song Contest airs, I am always happy if two particular events occur - 1) something inherently modern and retro comes together at the same time in a song and 2) the performance is quirky, goofy and over the top. When Lena Meyer-Landrut appeared at ESC 2010 with her song "Satellite", this totally new face from our of nowhere managed to capture all of the voting countries' hearts and secure a victory with her modern/retro/goofy song. The 12points.tv staff went to see her perform at Stockholm Pride in 2010 and she was even better live. But her return appearance in 2011 was showing off a different kind of Lena - serious, moping and more moody. You can argue that the song lent itself to a more serious presentation, and no singer has to keep appearing as they formerly did. But with reports that she was unapproachable backstage at ESC 2011 (probably because her management kept it that way) - did she start to buy into her own hype and take herself too seriously? This is our theory, as demonstrated by this performance.

Here's the result of the 12points jury: were we taken by a stranger, or just kind of dropped of by the side of the road?

Song/Lyrics - 10/12
That drum sound you hear at the beginning of the song is emulated probably from one of the first drum machines available in the 70's, and by keeping the instrumentation basic and bass-y, the song sets an interesting mood from the first seconds.  The lyrics are about being seduced by a stranger, but they are weird enough to be about anything. Maybe they are about a parrot.

Performance - 10/12
Lena is still quirky as ever with her mix of American and cockney pronouciation, stressing certain words that don't need stressing, and giving evil looks to the camera. But the adventure and fun from her 2010 performance is gone here. Although confident, it's lacking something for me - I think the whole thing is being taken way too seriously. 

Choreography (including Arm-ography and Hair-ography) - 8/12
Cool and collected, with silver suited women prancing around. Is this just to add to the mood or does it represent something? If I was smoking a joint right now I would probably find the meaning a bit quicker.

Camp Factor - 8/12
Well, everything works perfectly in this performance - the mood, the amazing lighting, the choreography, the visuals - but camp? Not really. To get points in this category, you need more colour and glitter. Sequins also help.

Would My Mother Like it? - 6/12
I think she would give it a 'meh'. She tends to go for the entries with tall, skinny guys of a questionable sexuality. In other words, gay.

 

TOTAL: 42/60.  Take a look back at Lena's first surprise entry. I was at a party when she appeared and we all agreed that this was an immediate winner.

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