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Thread: "Up Close and Personal" TV bios

  1. #31
    Custom Title Joesitz's Avatar
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    I do not believe that figure skaters, especially the teenagers have anything to say. "Bun heads", we call them in ballet. They really don't know anything except ballet.

    Some skaters never grow up so there is still nothing for them to say except what their publicity agent tells them. Still others, when grown up, go on to lead productive lives and begin to realize the mysteries of life.

    Joe

  2. #32
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    Jill Trenary's "UCAP" segments were an excercise in narcisstic attitude. They were completely and totally "Look at me, world!" pieces, and, well, they really helped to portray Jill as a self-absorbed person who knew nor cared zilch about anything that wasn't directly related to her and her training.

    One segment had her waxing on her "adult" persona. "I'm a big girl now, and I don't need to have so-and-so telling me what to eat and what to wear." It also showed her throwing a crying jag during skating practice, with Carlo Fassi standing at the rink, perhaps trying to figure out how to connect with this emotional skater.

    UGH!!

  3. #33
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    i live in britain and we dont get anything like bio's. we just get the skating!
    gemma

  4. #34
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    Do the Canadian, British, and other television networks outside of the United States bore their audiences with this "Up Close and Personal" nonsense? If they do not engage in this type of broadcasting -- you folks are very, very fortunate!!

    LET'S JUST SEE THE SKATING AND SKIP THE SILLY BIOS!!

  5. #35
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    no, we dont get up close and personal in britain. we just get the skating!!!

  6. #36
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    You are so LUCKY to get just the skating and not the insipid UCAP segments!!!

    We'll probably have to endure a raft of Sarah Hughes bios, as she
    tries to analyze (for the gazillionth time) her decision to attend Yale University full-time instead of continue with intensive figure skating training. Yawn - enough already.

    Most of the skaters have nothing to say that I care to hear. In my opinion, they are flattering themselves bigtime if they think that most of us really care what they like to eat, read, etc..!!

    WHO CARES??

    Let's just watch the skating!! Let the skating speak for the skaters.

  7. #37
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    Originally posted by SkateFan4Life
    Do the Canadian, British, and other television networks outside of the United States bore their audiences with this "Up Close and Personal" nonsense? If they do not engage in this type of broadcasting -- you folks are very, very fortunate!!

    LET'S JUST SEE THE SKATING AND SKIP THE SILLY BIOS!!
    I can't speak for the British networks, but Canadian stations have definitely shown more than their fair share of "fluff pieces" over the years. I'm already bracing myself for the number of fluff pieces about "Elvis' big comeback" CTV is undoubtedly preparing for next season!

    And the comments about Sarah Hughes just reminded me of another pet peeve: fluff pieces about skaters who aren't even skating in a particular event!

  8. #38
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    Jill Trenary's UCAP bio from the 1989 season (shown at the 1989 Worlds broadcast) really made me want to use my bucket. She complained about all of the attention that Kristi Yamaguchi received (who had won the pairs title with Rudy Galindo and had won the silver medal in the ladie's singles at the 1989 US Nationals). Jill said, "There I was, standing on the gold-medal podium, and there was Kristi, who was positively glowing. Everybody was looking at her. I felt really bad, and I felt jealous of Kristi."

    UGH!! Does this kind of junk really have to be aired on television????


  9. #39
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    Originally posted by astimegoesby
    I'm already bracing myself for the number of fluff pieces about "Elvis' big comeback" CTV is undoubtedly preparing for next season!
    With any luck he'll change his mind and not return after all.:(

  10. #40
    Custom Title Joesitz's Avatar
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    I think ideally, the fluff pieces should be a half hour segment before the actual competitions. But will that happen without sponsors?

    If my ideal situation were to exist, there is that time between a skater's finish, marks, and next skater to deal with. How can we fill that time period of no skating?. Maybe some gossip?

    Joe

  11. #41
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    As you said Joe, the younger skaters really don't know anything except skating and what their publicity folks coach them to say. The older skaters tend to keep quiet about what they're really thinking, so then we get tortured with redundant stuff --- MK "I really just love to compete", Irina in shopping malls, etc. I could live with no fluff on TV - leave it to the skating magazines.

  12. #42
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    One of the few UCAP segments I actually enjoyed was the one filmed on Elaine Zayak when she made her wonderful return to competition at the 1994 US Nationals. Elaine explained how she wanted to show the figure skating world that a 28-year-old woman could still be competitive. She said her comeback was a month-by-month process, and she wasn't at all sure when she resumed intensive training in the summer of 1993 that she would be ready to compete at Nationals -- but she wanted to challenge herself and try. I thought, "Good for you, Elaine. You go, girl!"

    And Elaine skated two terrific programs at Nationals and won the pewter medal.

    :D

  13. #43
    Tripping on the Podium
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    Being older than many of you gives me a particular pov on these things and I do agree. Keep it short if you have to do it at all. Frankly, most of these people are not bright enough, well-educated enough, interesting enough, mature enough (pick any of these) off the ice to merit much examination at all. The American (and yes I'm very American) celebrity culture that speaks to the 'live through the celeb of your choice' pathology is operating full-time here. Where there is a real story (I thought Baiul's story in Lillehammer was really a story worth telling or, not skating related, Lance Armstrong's story of fighting cancer or Katarina Witt's story of coping with the East German political system) then I think it's great to tell it. Anything else is just a waste of space - but that's so much of TV and magazine journalism isn't it, filling up space with the meaningless and banal.

    The great skaters speak to us during their performances and send their message most eloquently with their skates. They don't need to say much more. Unfortunately the media asks them to.
    Last edited by Brandenburg; 08-21-2003 at 09:04 AM.

  14. #44
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    Hmmm...just wondering....did Dorothy Hamill or Peggy Fleming ever film an "UCAP" segment prior to their competing at the Olympics? Did Elaine Zayak, Roz Sumners, or Tiffany Chin have these bios prior to the 1984 Olympics? I don't think so.

    I think this fluff-stuff really took off after the 1988 Winter Olympics. Such a big deal was made of Debi Thomas - the first African-American to win a World and US title, and her Stanford pre-medical studies. She was an interesting subject, and the media somehow assumed that all of the other top skaters would prove to be "interesting" interviews.

    W-R-O-N-G!! These young skaters are experts on figure skating, but they're still kids. They lack the maturity and life experiences to really have anything to say that is worth listening to.

  15. #45
    Keeper of Michelle's Nose berthes ghost's Avatar
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    "The American (and yes I'm very American) celebrity culture that speaks to the 'live through the celeb of your choice' pathology is operating full-time here."

    It's operating full time everywhere. The only difference is that US celebs tend to more often be world wide celebs as well.

    Personally, I think the UK takes the cake for mindless vague celebrities who are famous for doing or having nothing. The only reason that they don't do "UCAP"s is because they don't give a rats [color=red]*[/color][color=red]*[/color][color=red]*[/color][color=red]*[/color] for skating, don't have any good skaters, and rarely if ever show it on TV. I also have a hard time believing that years ago, the UK box wasn't over run with T&D "UCAP"s. Heck, I can't believe how many TV specials they have about TV!

    France takes second place.

    Personally, "UCAP"s are my secret shame. They are so bad and useless and cheesy, I just love them! What would we do without the latest "She lost a pen, a foot and then her birth mother, just months after being reunited. Now she skates for gold, just weeks after giving her kidney to her dying brother, despite his having embezelled all of her money." ?

    Although I too will hurl if I have to see one more MK on the beach type UCAP, but then again I watch way too much skating to be considered healthy. I'm sure that the normal people who only watch skating once in a while appreciate the low down or recap on the big names just as I did when I first got hooked on the sport.

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