The Eurovision 2018 Review: Day 15

It takes a brave soul to wear a roll-neck jumper. Even a black one. The moment that collar makes contact with your chin, woe betide any excess fat you may have dangling south.

Luckily for this year’s French entrants, they have no such concerns. Being French, they are automatically sophisticated, slinky and a tiny bit sexy – perfect for the stripped back gear they’ve got on to sing this.

Mercy comes from the most involved French national final in years which saw some perfectly brilliant pop navigate a course through to a final where Madame Monsieur charmed the public if not the juries. That said, there was so much quality on show, whatever wound up winning had the potential to do decent things in Lisbon.

It’s always interesting to see a Eurovision song tread the line between commenting on world events without worrying the ‘no politics’ rule. With this being a comment on the plight of refugees who risked their lives – losing them in some cases – in an attempt to reach the comparative safety of mainland Europe, it would take someone particularly stone-hearted to go through the lyrics with a chunky red marker.

The preview video makes this message even more stark as sympathisers are filmed in key locations around the continent, wearing either the silver foil blankets which provide warmth in a crisis or the life jackets that symbolise support in a crisis.

That makes the perfect visual accompaniment to this sombre anthem. It could have been bombastic, overblown and preaching in its delivery but instead delivers its message with admirable restraint.

Mercy may be just that little too simplistic to bring about France’s sixth victory in total and its first in 41 years. While this is undeniably a great blend of electronica production and considered songwriting, the lack of bangs and whistles may make this go over the heads of Eurovision’s Saturday night voters.

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