As much as I would like to only concentrate on the positive things about UMK sometimes I can't. This third season of UMK was clearly the best what comes to music and it has proven succesful at least in getting new artists record deals and even hitsongs as Mikko Pohjola hit number one in iTunes right after the final and has one big hit in his hands for sure.
The final show was great with fabulous opening and interval acts by Krista Siegfrids. If you like her is another matter altogether but there was effort and hard work behind them. The arena, the stage, the presenters and the final songs, all was there in theory. The TV-viewers interest wasn't. 423.000 people tuned in to watch, when with Euroviisut it was doubled and sometimes even tripled. But who can blame them? This blogger has already got the idea of UMK but I can also easily see why general viewer aren't interested to see the same songs over and over again and very little action: first three presentaion shows where nothing really happens, then two heats where only one (1) unknown act of each show is sent packing. Then reprise of all that again with semifinal where two (2) are sent home. Then again the same songs, 8 out of original 12, staged again but just bigger.
It is said UMK is inspired tof Eesti laul, but there they have only two solid semifinals and the final and every year a few wellknown artits in the line up... UMK has a lot of good, but something is not working. The most common comments I hear from my friends who aren't big Eurovision fans is "Oh, I didn't watch it, can't stand the jurors, I'll watch the final only". Maybe they have a point. After all, what did they say in the final that was new or different from all the shows before? Nothing. Just repeating what they had said before. Of course that's new and fresh to those who didn't bother to watch any of the previous shows, but.... I don't think that was their intention at first place.
YLE, move UMK back to YLE1, cut the shows and add drama, make it interesting. Invite 4-5 wildcards to the final line up (could be even among the songs sent in, like Paradise Oskar's case), fill the rest 5-6 places with songs from the selection shows with more songs, less repetition and more eliminations making it a real fight to get to the final. Save us from the documentary feel and artistic growth, or move it to internet where those who are interested will watch and find it, and not ruin the viewing figures on TV and make general public tired of UMK before it has even started...
The presentation show one was watched by less than 240.000 or not in top-20 most watched shows on YLE2 in that week. The presentation show two had less than 245.000 viewers as well. First live less than 231.000 and second live less than 265.000. None of these made the top-20 of the channel's weekly.
Semifinal got 248.000, being 14th most watched. In comparison Siskonpeti, a comedy series with Krisse Salminen from Helsinki 2007 Eurovision hosting trio was the most watched that week by 453.000.
The final was the third watched with 423.000 viewers and 46% share on YLE2 and 40th of all channels making it apparently the worst result ever for the Finnish final. As said earlier, a far cry from the way over one million the good old days... Or the nerly 3,4 million Swedes watching Melodifestivalen semifinal.