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Norway: Mørland & Debrah Scarlett – A Monster Like Me

  In the final of tonight's Melodi Grand Prix, the Norwegian public voted for Mørland & Debrah Scarlett to represent them in Vienna. Mørland & Debrah Scarlett will perform A Monster Like Me in the first half of semi-final 2. It was a tense final with an uncomfortably close vote, but don't let the narrow margins take away from what is a beautifully poised ballad. The staging matched my early expectations with the clever switching between Mørland & Debrah before the eventual coming together. It's everything Estonia isn't. While Estonia focuses on the argument narrative of their song in maintaining…

Review Overview

Song Appeal
Vocal Strength
Staging Potential
Likely Televote Appeal
Likely Jury Appeal
Historical Support Strength

Monstrously Good

Out of all of this year's duets, Norway's appears the strongest and most polished package.

User Rating: 3.09 ( 34 votes)

 
In the final of tonight’s Melodi Grand Prix, the Norwegian public voted for Mørland & Debrah Scarlett to represent them in Vienna.

Mørland & Debrah Scarlett will perform A Monster Like Me in the first half of semi-final 2.

It was a tense final with an uncomfortably close vote, but don’t let the narrow margins take away from what is a beautifully poised ballad.

The staging matched my early expectations with the clever switching between Mørland & Debrah before the eventual coming together. It’s everything Estonia isn’t. While Estonia focuses on the argument narrative of their song in maintaining an uncomfortable distance between Elina & Stig, Mørland & Debrah tell a story and take viewers on a journey.

It’s not a perfect package though. The waltz bridge feels empty and slightly stagnant, but it does effectively tee up the climax where the circling camerawork channels last year’s masterpiece from the Netherlands. Furthermore, the waltz segment does successfully invite the crowd to cheer. People at home need subtle cues to tell them how good a song is, and hearing the crowd cheering in support will add to the goose-bump moment the climax delivers.

Out of all of this year’s duets, Norway’s appears the strongest and most polished package. Lithuania has to be respected, but Norway has both the song, vocal quality, staging and could deliver a third consecutive top-10.

The biggest bugbear from Saturday’s final was Debrah’s hair and net-curtain dress, which made her appear too austere and didn’t give her the likability factor. I think the old-fashioned wedding dress is the right choice, but they need to work on the hair.

Will Mørland & Deborah’s Monster scare Europe into submission?

  • Qualification History
  • Final Performance
  • Allies
Since 2008, Norway have failed to qualify once in six attempts. 84% qualification success.

Highest semi-final score: 201 (2009: Alexander Rybak – Fairytale)
Lowest semi-final score: 30 (2011: Stella Mwangi – Haba Haba)
Average semi-final finishing position (since 2008): 7th
Average semi-final score (since 2008): 94 points

Norway has finished in the top-10 five times since 2004.

Highest score (since 2004): 387 (2009: Alexander Rybak – Fairytale)
Lowest score (since 2004): 3 (2004: Knut Anders Sørum – High)
Average final position: 12th
Average final score: 117 points

Average Points Received

Iceland – 5.7
Latvia – 5.3
Sweden – 5.0
Estonia – 5.0
Denmark – 4.6
Poland 4.5
Finland 4.0

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28 comments

  1. I think this is a very strong contender and you were right Gav to give all five stars for vocals. BUT, my God they have a challenge on their hands with the staging as they made “Silent Storm” look like Waterloo! Maybe a “Phantom of the opera” approach…masks?? Azerbaijan 2012 and the glass cube…I dunno. Something as it looks like a 1972 entry at the moment.

    But a special song…..def TOP FOUR and w/e material if the odds have not plummeted already!

  2. Masterpeace!!!!! But something missing…..

  3. I heard the song for the first time today and my first impression is that this is nothing special. I don’t understand why you like it so much. To me this song is as good as “Don’t Deny” of Armenia. I don’t see it getting into Top 10. Maybe Top 15, but no Top 10. What’s bad about this song is that it doesn’t have televote appeal. It’s too boring.

  4. That was close. It wasn’t quite as good as I expected but that’s mostly due to very cheap NRK production.

  5. The raw ingredients are there. The way the camera introduces them both is great, but the chemistry is much stronger than anything we’ve seen so far.

    • I saw the emotions they were great and they are perfectly suited in their roles. I’m just looking forward when this steak get’s some spice cause there really is room too to some epic staging.

      I really thought Pizza were taking this when the final votes were delivered and I saw them celebrating. What a roller coaster.

  6. That voting was TOO CLOSE for comfort…..the bookies has “Pizza” as the main threat, not “Thunderstruck”….as you say Gav, it’s all in the staging now as the vocals and chemistry are there. can someone find an Azerbaijani glass cube or a Common Linnets section of the A6 truck road..??

  7. Gav will tell you we heard this on the reveal many weeks ago and had it as something special backing the back end out of it at 10s.This is superb.Ultimate song writing.Ultimate vocals and delivery.The staging tonight only did this 30% of what it deserves.Drips class.Drips atmosphere.If at Sanremo this would of pushed Il Volo all the way.Just like it will in Vienna.At last,some pure class.It might not quite win ESC,but this is fantastic and lays down the jury gauntlet.Watching Mans?

    • Well done, were did you get the 10s?

      • Betsafe SirMills,opened 10s,then they went 8s for a long time.They seem to of lowered their limits already though.They tend to have books priced way different to Uni so anyone with a clean account with Uni can hedge pretty easy.

        • Nice work Durhamborn, I my self thought 3.5 was a monster value and took a lot on betsson. I tried to open account at Uni last year but they wouldn’t accept my postal code for some reasons.

  8. It’s totally unscientific, but just had a quick look at about ten or a dozen “Youtube” TOP 35 songs so far..Norway is in the top three of nearly all of them…..and most of them above Sweden. But hey, what “douze votes”..??

  9. I was there in the arena, I also got to see the dress rehearsal earlier that afternoon and I was amazed, it’s so simple but so well done, can’t wait to see it with a bigger production! Before the Østlandet votes came at the end I pretty much gave up hope and was so relieved it won, I was screaming and jumping for joy.

    Yup, looks like Norway will be my favourite for a 3rd year in a row, and no I wasn’t expecting it to happen

  10. Gav, how do you comment the fact they barely won? It’s usually not the good sign, especially given the ‘quality’ of the competitors.

    • It was 100% televote and you have to assume that under jury conditions, Monster would have romped home with a bigger margin.

      Also, this year’s final wasn’t as one sided as 2013 and 2014, so I’m wary about discounting it because it only just won the Norwegian televote.

      I think the strength of the visuals are something to take note of for Vienna.

  11. The market will probably drift Norway due to the close finish.Monster being pushed so close by Bratland isnt a good sign for the televote for Esc.However i dont think that tells the full story.There was very little staging last night.A song like this isnt the easiest sell without staging.The vocal delivery was superb.
    To win a televote only contest with a classy number like this isnt easy but the pulled it off.
    Now they need to really work to get the right look on stage.I see the juries scoring this high.

  12. Totally agree about the jury strength of the song. I did think it would have won more comfortably and for so many Norwegians to choose “Pizza” and “Thunderstruck” makes me revise my view a bit as Norway as a Eurovision powerhouse. No doubt that had the Melodi Grand prix echoed Melodifestivalen Swedish structure with a more international role for votes, that Monster would have eased to victory without that nail-biting finish.

  13. I’ve backed Norway @ 24 just now. It really is a great song and likely will get a solid jury vote. With right staging it can capture the audience and bring in the televotes as well. 24 feels way too for such a great effort.

    • Might just add that this performance gave me the first goosebumps of this eurovision season :p It’s a good sign when Archi gets goosebumps ;P

  14. I think the song is absolutely stunning and vocally VERY well-done (looks like they were singing live and they sound fantastic). It is, however, a bit GRIM for an ESC winner. The past few winners haven’t been too happy-clappy but they’ve all had at least something uplifting about them (the exception would be the almost-winner Calm After the Storm but that was more quiet and reflective than DARK). Victory isn’t impossible but it’s not a massive contender IMO.

    Unfortunately for Norway, Azerbaijan seems to have ALSO whipped out a stunning ballad that IS uplifting and possibly more engaging.

  15. Thoughts on the Russian release? They’re shortening pretty quickly, but I’m undecided…

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RgZC886adK8&app=desktop

    • This is the better version of “what if” 2013 sung by a superb vocalist and a really likable performer a la Zlata for Ukraine same year.

    • Could work as back/lay. Maybe.. But I dont see it as a real contender for the victory. Nor do I see Azerbaijan having a chance. Although I’d like to see both of these live before making up my mind. Both of these goes to ‘not bad’ category for me. But leaves me cold, I cant feel “it”. Whatever it is..

  16. A Monster like Me is a cracking song but on the night it just didn’t do it for me. I had my finger ready to place a bet on Norway and quickly took it off and watched Norway drift. So I wasn’t the only person thinking the same way. If that’s the package they take to Vienna it does not come close to winning ESC. Will keep a small green on this just in case they go with something else. I reckon a Carl Espen Finish awaits.

  17. Stronger than last years entry IMO, but this is not a winner; unless magic happens on stage like NL 2014, it won’t trouble the top 5.

  18. Debrah nailed it this time,top drawer delivery.She looks fantastic as well.Really powerful even on that stage.Serious contender for the win for me this.Perfect staging will show its class.
    Superb.

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