Monday, May 27, 2024

Bambie Thug ‘angry’ at Israeli Eurovision commentary

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Ireland’s Eurovision Song Contest entrant Bambie Thug has called on the competition’s organisers to address commentary made on Israeli television before their performance in Tuesday’s semi-final.

Contending that the commentary breached the rules of the Eurovision, Bambie Thug said Israel should no longer be allowed to participate in the competition.

“There’s a lot more anger and a lot more drive in me now,” Bambie Thug said in an interview with RTÉ News.

On Tuesday, a commentator on Kan, the Israeli public service broadcaster, warned TV viewers with children that Bambie Thug’s performance of their song, Doomsday Blue, would be “the most scary” of the night.

“There will be a lot of spells and black magic and dark clothing, Satanic symbols, and voodoo dolls, like we are at Cats Square in Jerusalem in the mid-90s,” the commentator said, referring to a well-known public square in Jerusalem that was central to the city’s nightlife in the 1990s and synonymous with goth culture.

The commentator said there was “some controversy” in Ireland about the song, referencing a petition calling on RTÉ to disqualify Doomsday Blue as Ireland’s entry.

He also noted that Bambie Thug liked to “speak negatively about Israel”.

“But we can talk about that later. Prepare your curses,” he said.

In their interview, Bambie Thug said the commentary, which aired on Israeli public service broadcaster Kan, had been highlighted to them.

The Eurovision is organised by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), an alliance of public service broadcasters.

In a statement, the EBU said: “We’ve spoken to KAN, the Israeli broadcaster, about this matter and reiterated the importance of all commentators respecting all the artists taking part in the competition and abiding by the rules and regulations of the event.”

Bambie Thug said the commentary would motivate increased anger in their performance in tonight’s grand final.

“I’m angry with other teams breaching their rules of the EBU, and still being allowed in,” they said.

“So there’s definitely a war drum sounding in my heart to push the performance even more than I have done before.”

Watch: Bambie Thug performs Doomsday Blue in the first semi-final

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The comments, the Cork artist said, were “in breach of the rules” of the EBU.

They said: “So I hope the EBU will address it correctly.”

RTÉ declined to comment on whether it had lodged a complaint with the EBU about the commentary on Kan.

A spokesperson said, however, that RTÉ had not called on Israel to be removed from the competition.

Read: The full transcript of Kan commentary on Bambie Thug’s performance

The following transcript is based on translations of the commentary for RTÉ News by two native Hebrew speakers.

Commentator 1: Wow, what is about to happen now with Ireland? Wow, wow. What is about to happen now with Ireland?

This is the song Doomsday Blue. They [Ireland] have had a more subtle past with the likes of Johnny Logan, who you will see on stage later. But what’s going to happen this evening?

The song is Doomsday Blue by Bambie Thug, and now is the time to get your children away from the TV screens, because we are about to see the most scary song of the night. There will be a lot of spells and black magic and dark clothing, Satanic symbols, and voodoo dolls, like we are at Cats Square in Jerusalem in the mid-90s.

Commentator 2: Wow, there might be 200 people at most that get this reference

Commentator 1: Anyway, there is some controversy about the song in Ireland, too. There is a petition against Bambie Thug, which claims that they are making a mockery of Irish culture.

Commentator 2: You said ‘they’, as Bambie Thug wants to be referred to in the plural – as part of their non-binary identity.

Commentator 1: They [Bambie Thug] also like to speak negatively about Israel. But we can talk about that later. Prepare your curses.

Commentator 1: Wow, this is a very strange entrant compared to what we are used to from Ireland.

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