I just got to see everyone on TV. Takahashi's long program was the one that moved me the most. (Act surprised.) This isn't to take away from anything Hanyu did; they showed his short and long programs, and obviously the guy's on his way to be a skating giant. But he still skates like a boy (not like a junior skater, I hasten to add, but like someone not yet matured into his power). Daisuke skates like a man, a mature artist and a commanding technician. I can't parse the skating skills and whatnot--that's not how I look at skating. But when I compare things like the footwork and spins of Daisuke to the other skaters in this competition, what I see is Dai's fluidity. His footwork and spins seem to unroll like ribbon, like dance, from somewhere inside the music. All the other skaters--Miner, Fernandez, even Hanyu to a degree--seem to be flinging themselves around in a dutiful sort of way. At times they're almost lumbering around, as if their feet have weights in them. After a few measures, I look away and continue with my task of organizing my sewing materials. (Exception: what an Ina Bauer Hanyu has!) With Daisuke, I'm riveted to the screen. There are a few movements in his spins that I can't even imagine how he made, because they seem to violate the laws of physics. How can he insert that little sideways kick without falling over? At those moments, I think that the force that keeps him upright is the music itself. This guy has something no one else has, and I'll watch him avidly no matter what ranking he attains with his performance. It's pure sorcery. Congratulations to all three medalists! But a special cheer for Daisuke.
This has to be the best post in this thread (for us Dai fans). Well said Olympia!