By Jase Peeples
Originally published on Advocate.com May 12 2014 5:51 PM ET
From butter-churning choreography to politically insensitive lyrics, John Oliver skewered some of the more bizarre performances that graced the stage of the 2014 Eurovision Song Contest during Sunday’s episode of Last Week Tonight. “Basically, 37 European countries sublimate thousands of years of ethnic and religious tensions into a series of bizarre three-minute song-tastrophes," Oliver joked before highlighting the “spectacularly wonderful” win of Austria’s bearded drag diva, Conchita Wurst.
“Is it just me, or between Conchita and Michael Sam, did the whole world feel like it became a better place to live in the last 24 hours?" Oliver asked.
Making Wurst’s victory even sweeter is the fact that several countries with prevailing antigay attitudes, including Armenia, Belarus, and Russia, had launched online petitions aiming to have Wurst removed or edited out of the Eurovision broadcasts in their homelands.
“This night is dedicated to everyone who believes in a future of peace and freedom," Wurst said after claiming top honors with her power ballad performance of the “Rise Like A Phoenix.” “You know who you are — we are unity and we are unstoppable.”
Watch Oliver’s take on the historic moment in European pop culture below.