Home / Song Reviews / Eurovision 2018 / France: Madame Monsieur – Mercy

France: Madame Monsieur – Mercy

Following two semi-finals, tonight's Destination Eurovision final delivered the second song for Lisbon. One of the early favourites, Madame Monsieur, won with the song, Mercy having overtaken jury favourite, Lisandro Cuxi, with the televote. When the jury voting is so varied, it suggests the strength of the songs on offer is limited. Each of the top-5 songs had major weaknesses when considering their suitability for Eurovision. Lisboa Jérusalem was too esotric to attract widespread appeal. Emmy Liyana always appeared more popular than she actually was. OK ou KO wouldn't have escaped the bottom-5 at Eurovision. Malo had potential, but without…
Song Appeal
Vocal Strength
Staging Potential
Likely Televote Appeal
Likely Jury Appeal

Meh-cy

Strip away the message and there's not much left beyond a bit of background music. 

User Rating: 4.06 ( 61 votes)

Following two semi-finals, tonight’s Destination Eurovision final delivered the second song for Lisbon.

One of the early favourites, Madame Monsieur, won with the song, Mercy having overtaken jury favourite, Lisandro Cuxi, with the televote.

When the jury voting is so varied, it suggests the strength of the songs on offer is limited. Each of the top-5 songs had major weaknesses when considering their suitability for Eurovision.

  • Lisboa Jérusalem was too esotric to attract widespread appeal.
  • Emmy Liyana always appeared more popular than she actually was. OK ou KO wouldn’t have escaped the bottom-5 at Eurovision.
  • Malo had potential, but without a significant step forward, Ciao would have mirroed The Makemakes’ result from 2015.
  • Lisandro’s Eva failed to deliver a hook, even though it was very well performed.

So overall, the result is hardly surprising given the weakness of Lisandro’s song. To Madame Monsieur’s credit, Mercy resonated with the French viewers and performed much stronger on iTunes than Eva. Nevertheless, the subdued, understated nature of Mercy is a concern going forward.

In a field of 26-songs, how does Mercy attract enough support to challenge for a top-10 finish?

The undeniable suffering of refugees is both an upsetting and raw topic in Europe at the moment and I’m certain national commentators will share the song’s message during May’s final. But beyond the song’s introduction, how do non-French speakers relate to the song beyond the word “Mercy”? If I was watching at home without prior knowledge of this duo, my initial thought would be: why is that bloke with the guitar so prominant when he brings so little to the performance? And why is he bopping to a song about refugees? The optics are not right. 🤔

Émilie does act the song well, but beyond the prominance of the subject matter, I can’t make a case for Europe backing France’s cause. Strip away the message and there’s not much left beyond a bit of background music.

Given this is only the second song chosen, it’s tricky to work out how Madame Monsieur will fair in the final, but at this stage there could be a deluge of emosh ballads vying for Salvador’s affections at the church of ‘Music that Matters’. However, with another political song in the running in Italy, the pews may get a little crowded. Top-10 is a possibility with marked improvement, but in current form 12th-17th.

  • Has a message that commentators will discuss
  • Could benefit from a compelling stage concept
  • Non-French speakers and those outside ESC bubble won’t get it
  • The song lacks a moment or strong connection with viewers
  • France’s most recent staging concepts were dire

Are Madame Monsieur at the Mercy of Eurovision’s televoters?

About Gavster

Owner & Chief Editor   I’m a qualified designer and the official geek in the crew, dedicating most of my free time to keeping the ESCtips show on the road. My family routes allow me to support the UK, Ireland and Italy.

10 comments

  1. The appeal of Mercy went up a whole notch for me when I read the English translation of the lyrics. Its success or otherwise in Lisbon depends on getting the message of the song across to non-French speakers. This will require not only clever staging (piggy-backing on this year’s maritime theme), they will have to do one verse and a chorus in English. If they succeed, given the emotive and politically relevant theme of the song, Mercy could fare very well indeed. Otherwise it is likely to be firmly on the right hand side of the scoreboard.

  2. Not sure about the hype around this song, it’s a nice minimalist electronic popsong but as we clearly saw with Italy 2017, the audience really does not care about lyrics in the slightest. I do not see this escaping the right hand side, even the juries weren’t too keen on it.

    It just plots along nicely and then you instantly forget it when the next song starts.

  3. Staging will need to communicate this song’s message in a tasteful way, because it’s only too easy to think the song is called “thank you” when you just listen to it and have at least a school-level grasp of French.

    It’s quite catchy, easy to listen to and radio-friendly, a touch of early Ellie Goulding to it – which is why I think France went for it above any others. After all, they’re not known for being Europe’s most egalitarian nation, although that is just a stereotype. There’s room for minimalist songs to do rather well as we saw with ByeAlex, but then again that was about his sweetheart whereas this is a lot more emotive but not quite depressing. ‘Wait and see’ approach for this.

    • The song is not called “thank you”, not “Merci”!!!!!!!!!

      It’s called “Mercy”!!!!!!!!!!!

      • Ben knows that.What he is saying is outside of France and a small part of the European population most people understand about three words in French.Yes,no and thank you. When they hear Mercy they will in fact hear merci,so a woman dressed in a black ninja outfit singing thank you over and over again and a undertakers dummy with a guitar is what we have at the moment.

  4. Respectable attempt by France but the song is a step down from the last two years. I agree that in most years this will hover somewhere in the lower middle of the scoreboard. I don’t think the message, whether it gets across or not, is important. It’s not relevant or personal enough to enough of a voter base.

  5. I do see some appeal in this but I struggle to see it matching the last 2 French entries at the moment, I wasn’t France’s biggest fan in the previous 2 years but both times after 1 listen I wanted to replay the song, I don’t get that with this song and I just struggle to see it standing out in a 26 song field. with Jury support I think Mercy will finish like 16th or so but if developed I could see it doing better as I definitely see the potential in the song but at the moment France have the find it for May.

  6. Im glad this won after watching the producers do everything they could to try to get Lisandro over the line.She is just a single mother while grabbing his crotch lost me.
    The problem i have with this is staging.The reason it didnt win the jury was because of the bloke on guitar i think.He has no reason to be there,destroys the image and takes the viewers away from the song.France’s record on staging is terrible so im not sure they will fix that.
    I dont know anyone who cares less about floods of economic migrants in the med,not until they arrive at Calais that is when they all say send them back,however everyone i know isnt the virtue signalling core ESC audience who might very well go for it,as might some of the juries.
    Another note of caution is that we might get a Sanremo winner on the same subject as Gav mentions.Its likely to be far superior to this.A decent entry,but thats all at this stage.

    • He is amazing, he fits the mood of the track and seems really passionate, I hope he will be on stage with her. Completely disagree with you, the presentation would be boring only with her

  7. This is going to land in the top 10.

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