10-09-2011, 10:10 AM
Well, I'm a detractor and I think I'm seen more mature and interesting programs from teams in the JGP. Zzzz. They are pretty one note as far as range goes at this point. Can't pull of anything else.
Tessa and Scott are such great skaters, but I much prefer their SD. Maybe it's because I'm really not a fan of the swingy, upbeat kind of stuff, but I just didn't find it all that memorable. It seemed like they stopped and danced in place a lot. Maybe it will grow on me.
BTW, anyone who says Tessa is fat needs their eyes checked.
10-09-2011, 10:27 AM
Wicked Yankee Girl
Chock Bates FD
I don't like the music-it seems too one mood to me--but they have some nice moves, and a lot of promise. It's going to be a dog fight for the bronze at US Nationals.
I detest the song S'Wonderful. It sounds like one of those songs where someone has deliberately mispronounced a word because they can't think of a good rhyme (say, "Skip to the Bip")-worse, Astaire & Heptburn don't mumble it so it doesn't bother me-they draw it out and emphasize it. IMO, this FD would be better if they used an instrumental version of S'Wonderful.
I particularly like the final lift, and Tessa's arm and hand in the first part of the pair spin.
I predict they will make a lot of changes before we see this again, particularly because they missed a level or two here and there. The callers were very strict at Finlandia; a good thing--better now than later.
Shibs-I love them to death, but you can't deny that 40's swing is what they did last year. OTOH, they do it very, very well.
10-09-2011, 10:50 AM
I did not like the Shibutani's free dance at all! And I thought her dress was very ugly. That fast paced music does not fit their style. I can only think of a few people who can skate to a piece of music like that, someone like Nicole Bobek or someone with a lot of natural charisma. I can see the Shibutani's skating to something like what Czisny used last year for her free skate. That would be so wonderful for them. I like this team but do not like what was given to them this year. I would ditch this current program fast. They will be passed by other teams from what I have seen so far.
I thought V/M had a pretty good free dance. For the most part I like it. I think though that D/W these days are capable of a more difficult program technically than V/M. I noticed in a few of the lifts seemed like Scott wanted to put her down as quick as possible.
10-09-2011, 10:57 AM
Shibs are "One note"? Over the past 5 seasons they have skated programs to French jazz piano, Japanese taiko drums, romantic italian music from Cinema Paradiso, a Tango, broadway Carousel, and Nat King Cole. And all this time they have been so poorly received and unsuccessful. One note. Right.
Last year the Shibs skated a Fox Trot and Quick Step. This year the program is Swing and Tap to Big Band.
Ask a dancer, and they will say these styles may be related by time period, but the each of dance type is different.
10-09-2011, 11:49 AM
They couldn't pull of the tango and they couldn't pull off the Latin. They have a style, and they do it well, but it's boring. They've yet to show that they can do something else. JMO.
Last edited by oleada; 10-09-2011 at 11:58 AM.
10-09-2011, 12:15 PM
Well, they can do classical very, very well. I much preferred their FD overall to that of V&M, but the Shibs don't yet have the command, presence and power of V&M, but they have a very smooth and audience-pleasing style. Their program was more cohesive than V&M and their twizzles were better. The Shibs have the quietest blades in skating. V&M are excellent skaters with great presence and presentation skills, so will always get great scores, but this FD is no masterpiece - more like "That's Entertainment" redux. Chock & Bates FD again only emphasizes their height/legline mismatch.
Originally Posted by oleada
10-09-2011, 12:16 PM
I thought all 3 of the ice dance medalists did a good job in different ways but it's still really early in the season.
1. V/M: Really polished and tight technically already. No one skates like they do- so close together, so in tune with each other that it almost borders on bland because it's so perfect. I think it's a fun number for them with different types of moods in the musical theme but I wish that they had picked something a little more out of the box but this type of number really does suit them. And they will do well this season- and depending on what D/W's program looks like probably regain their World title again.
2. Shibs: I love them- they have such clean lines, positions and steps. While I like the swing music, it's in the same ballpark as last year's program. I know the difference between last year's more ballroom style and this year's swing and tap program but it's still American themed popular music. Though since they're both so young and have so many years ahead of them I don't think it will hurt them too much to have slightly derivative programs this early in their careers. Though unless they luck into other team missteps as they did last year I don't see them repeating as World medalists again this year. Having said that, this FD is a lot of fun and given some time I think they'll really make it "swing" . But it's almost like there were so many transitions and it was so difficult that they couldn't quite stay on top of the music yet. I'm sure with practice they'll get there.
3. C/B: I was pleasantly surprised by this program and team. I think they look like a good fit already and this program really suits them. Casual, a little moody and romantic- a really nice program with a lot of shading and nuance. Now, they just need to get the mileage together as a team and really solidify their technique together. There were some understandably sloppy bits here and there. I think what's interesting about the new judging system in ice dance and the loss of the compulsory dances is enabling new teams to come together and be competitive much more quickly than they ever would have in the past.
Overall, a good look at the new dances- I like them. One note, I was watching footage of the press conference after the FD on youtube and their answers were all pretty much the same programmed bits of we're happy with our skate, we're focused on ourselves, we can't wait for the rest of the season type polite-bot comments. All the skaters seemed so programmed that they almost couldn't seem to break out of it when one reporter asked them a very innocent but interesting question about how and who makes decisions on their costuming. Tessa seemed completely guarded and kept repeating that it was early in the season and that they only focused on themselves which had nothing to do with what the reporter was asking. Alex was the only one who eased things up by joking that they picked Scott and Tessa's costumes. I would have loved to hear about the design and meaning of Maia's FD dress because it's got that interesting line/ sash in the front of it.
10-09-2011, 12:25 PM
I've watched the videos and the only Canton team I liked is V/M. Their SD is good, even though I prefer last year FD version of this program. And I liked their FD, I think it suits them, and I like Tessa and Scott now much more than before, probably because they don't have to prove anything anymore and can try any style they want, not only young sweet lovers thing.
As for the Shibutanis... Boring. They are great technicians, but no interpretation here at all. Somehow they skated their latin SD just like they skated waltz last season. I mean, turn off the music and no one would guess it was the latin dance. And the music actually didn't help them at all. As for FD, it's just all the same. Oh, I'm sure every move of this dance will look excellent and polished at the end of the season, but I would like to see something more than "we are so young and sweet" from them.
Chock and Bates... I think they are just not the right partners for each other. Evan looked so much better with Emily, and Madison should have picked Kieffer Hubbell, they could've been gorgeous together, but oh well... I liked Hubbell/Donohue much more and hope they will get 3rd spot for Worlds this season
Last edited by Lucky Star; 10-09-2011 at 12:30 PM.
10-09-2011, 12:49 PM
Lucky Star, as usual, I agree with pretty much everything you said.
10-09-2011, 01:09 PM
Sigh. Completely agree.
Originally Posted by Lucky Star
10-09-2011, 02:58 PM
The ttack of the smile monsters wil continue unabated this season! Pick another facial expression Shibutani's! It's so creepy. It's so plastered on you think the inside of their mouths are wired?
10-09-2011, 03:47 PM
So skating to Swing and cheerful, feel good Big Band music, you should look like you are bored, unhappy or in pain or agony? Nonsense.
Originally Posted by gmyers
10-09-2011, 04:35 PM
re: the Shibs
I first saw the Shibs at World Juniors 2009. It was clear that they, with "Cinema Paradisio" were something special. I was a little disappointed at their setback during the final junior season, but starting at NHK last year, I was really very impressed. They have such light and joy when they dance. But by worlds, I was a little non-plussed. I do think they deserved the bronze even if they were a tad overscored, but I totally saw myself getting bored with the box they were in. The announcement of the music did nothing to ease my concerns. Part of me really rues that they won bronze because that, beyond anything, triggered comments like gmyers' above
But here's the thing: I didn't love that dance. It was good, it was light, it was enjoyable, it was effervescent. It was like really good cotton candy. I don't think it's fair to dismiss the program because it's lighter, but after a certain point, you want a little more substance. I wanna see greater depth of feeling, more subtlety, more in general. The worst is that I suspect that I could replace the music with their music from last season, and it would have the exact same effect.
KKonas said it was more cohesive than V/M's dance and while that might be true, that's like arguing The Hungry Hungry Caterpiller is more cohesive than Slaughterhouse-Five - technically true, but the range of feeling portrayed and evoked by V/M is far worthier than what the Shibs do here, imo. Everything from the lightly-noirish tint to that jazz section, to the depth of feeling in "S'Wonderful" (sorry doris, love love love that part), to the oldfashioned charm.... everything was spot on. Watching the Finnish feed (starts at 16:45 for those curious) and you get a masterclass of interpreting music. Can't wait for this to improve like I think it can.
10-09-2011, 04:54 PM
Thanks for your thoughts IP. I appreciate you explaining what you didn't like it it beyond the one-liners some folks are giving here.
Originally Posted by ImaginaryPogue
I think that since they won bronze at Worlds last year, there is now a target on their back. Which is expected since no one expected them to rise to the occasion so quickly. it also didn't help that V/M did a somewhat similar program for their FD this year. Yeah, of course, next to those two, the Shibs will seem like cotton candy. But is it realistic to expect a second-year senior team to have the same depth and substance as a team that's been in the senior ranks twice as long?
There's a refinement about them I've always appreciated. They show that same refinement when they did Cinema Paradiso in 2009 and they showed it when they did Smile/Let's Face the Music and Dance last year and they show it now. There's a crispness to each move, even here when it still has early-season roughness. That is something that is not to be underestimated. When you have refined taste, there's nothing in the way to prevent you from exploring other things. I.e. since they are using these programs to develop their technical proficiency, when they do move on to different type of programs, they will be able to transition better because they will not have anything (i.e. technical issues) to get in the way. Let's take I/K, the Russians. Don Quioxte. Great program. I/K doing it with their twizzle problems? Not so great.
That's why I don't see the doom and gloom some others see here.
ETA: Also let's point out the obvious. They scored a 92.63 at this competition with several Level 2 elements. That means this program can only get better. Also I feel that the Shibs got docked for their relative lack of substance- their PCS is 7 points lower than V/M. 7's and 8's-- there is room for improvement.
Last edited by Mrs. P; 10-09-2011 at 05:01 PM.
10-09-2011, 05:08 PM
Their facial expressions in this seasons dances are exactly the same as last seasons. How about a smile section and maybe a dramatic section? Just some range. Can their be some range? It's like from the start of their SD to the end of their FD their faces are injected with Botox so they can't move away from smilng. They will have all level 4's and will win all their GPS and medal probably at the GPF and worlds (again). So because they have all level 4 capability do some different style program. How about building to a smile?
Originally Posted by KKonas