Okay, so Serhat is like the wonderful cuddly (and sexy) mascot of the entire Eurovision community. The outside world may not get why we lose our collective minds at the sight of this Turkish dentist who dresses like he’s cosplaying as the captain of the world’s blingiest cruise line, but we get it. I mean, who wouldn’t want to have a deep-voiced, continental accented man telling you that you’re beautiful and life will be just fine?
(Note to self: Pitch Serhat on an affirmation app after Eurovision. Call it ‘Self-Esteem with Serhat’. It will consist of five minute loops of Serhat giving users compliments to make them believe in their dreams and goals. Platinum members get an actual phone call from Serhat where he calls them Darling. This will make a mint!)
But I think Serhat is laying the groundwork for something bigger than Eurovision. I know – you’re thinking “What could be bigger than being idolized by millions during a three-minute performance on stage?” How about being idolized by millions ALL THE TIME?
We know that Europe is in turmoil. Brexit is like a zombie, lurching its way through British and European politics, no matter how many times we think the Withdrawal Agreement has been killed. Fascism is on the rise, with far-right parties gaining seats in Italian, Spanish, and German elections. I’m not even going to talk about what’s happening in Hungary. The grand post World War Two peacetime experiment is tottering, with Nazis (NAZIS!) now part of the general political discourse.
I’ve already talked about how Hatari represents the dark end of that dystopian spectrum – the acknowledgement that despite all of our songs about love and peace, things are incredibly fucked up in Europe right now and yeah, it’s not off the mark to be afraid that hatred will prevail.
And I think that Serhat represents yet another alternative vision of Europe – one of peace and unity, but under the leadership of a benevolent, all-seeing dictator, who also just happens to be the world’s sexiest dentist.
Yes, Say Na Na Na is Serhat’s propaganda video showing us the utopian world of life under Serhat:
Look, I know this sounds like a farfetched conspiracy theory, but the signs are all there.
The action takes place in an idealised city where there’s complete happiness and cooperation.
Citizens are literally dancing in the streets!
The main duties of the Serhat PD seem to be popping and locking.
Serhat’s image is projected on large screens in town, just like any proper dictator, blasting out positive message of love and support – unconditional support that will be provided at any time by Serhat, our dear leader.
Serhat is so beloved by the residents of this city that they’ll literally press their bodies to the screens where he’s being projected.
And the next generation is being taught from an early age to hail the great Turkish delight.
His propaganda ministry travels with him through the country, literally broadcasting his message from cars:
Or, to be fair, wherever they might find a captive audience:
And when Serhat appears in person, there are frenzied riots of joy.
The citizens of this unnamed city literally hoist him on their shoulders in celebration of their good lives under his watchful eye.
And how does the video end?
On a dark,forbidding street with no one around but an abandoned child – a sign, perhaps, of the dystopian future awaiting us without Serhat?
FINAL VERDICT: I love Serhat. He is a true BAMF who has managed to accomplish wonderful things, but I’m a little worried that after #serhat4saturday, he’s going to go full on #serhat4sanmarino and then from there #serhat4saviourofeurope. I mean, he’d be the most benevolent dictator we could have, but a dictator nonetheless. Still, he’s got a banger that deserves to make it to the final, and I can’t wait to see what he manages to do with only five other people on stage.