Spain has risen to the Eurovision challenge laid down by Dustin the Turkey and chosen a reggae-rapper with a grotesquely inflated toupee and a minuscule plastic guitar to represent the nation. Rodolfo Chikilicuatre’s "Baila el chiki chiki" (Dance the chiki chiki) romped home in a televised contest watched by two million Spanish fans who voted by text and email.
The Elvis-parodying performer, flanked by two cheesy dancers, has had to remove mocking references to Spain's recently re-elected Prime Minister, Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, his conservative opponent Mariano Rajoy, and the Venezuelan President, Hugo Chavez, to meet Eurovision rules that ban songs with any political content. But the names Jose Luis and Mariano survive, along with Chikilicuatre's grandmother, his nephew and "my mulatta waving her knickers in her hand", who like to "dance the chiki chiki".
Unfortunately many Spaniards take Eurovision seriously: "State television is irresponsible to let Spain be associated in Europe with Chikilicuatre," lamented El Mundo, whose editor called upon Spanish television's director Luis Fernandez to answer before a parliamentary committee for the damage caused to Spain's image. El Pais newspaper commented: "His humorous fabrication sums up the grubbiest of so-called popular music... the painful rubbish Spain has taken to Eurovision in the last 20 years. Let's see if our contribution blows up this deplorable festival of sequins and grinning presenters. We wish him luck."
Chikilicuatre is comedy actor, David Fernandez, 38. His act's all-but-meaningless lyrics and tacky image is the brainchild of the singer-songwriter Pedro Guerra and the comic actor and film director Santiago Segura.