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Thread: Was Suzuki twice a victim of underscoring and pageantry in PCS?

  1. #91
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    I think Akiko should have won both events (despite her weaker SPs). I think she was marked accurately, but I think the two women who beat her were overmarked. Mao benefitted from marginal UR calls and +GOE on jumps she popped into doubles. Kaetlyn IMO was overmarked in PCS. The important thing is that Akiko doesn't put herself in trouble after the SP, because the skaters' marks are higher if they can be near the top going into the LP.

  2. #92
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    Compared to Asada at NHK, I don't see where Osmond was overscored at SC. Suzuki done it to herself with her short program. Osmond basically scored the same as Nebelhorn (which I thought was undermarked) and she was definitely undermarked in the short at SC to allow for Suzuki to score well. But that didn't happen. If Suzuki had a FS at SC similar to NHK she would have won. Her programs seemed slow at SC and, I think, not well executed. I actually lost interest watching.

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    Quote Originally Posted by os168 View Post
    What a nice and lovely thing to say. Unfortunately it is also far form reality.

    Should it matter in sport? No. Does it matter in figure skating, unfortunately it Yes.

    May be my view is different than yours because I went to an all girl school (yeah that should do it ), and i know beauty absolutely matters in everything regardless if you are in the company of women (and arguably in particularly in the company of women). This is a sport where aesthetics are appraised, that is why skaters wear nice make up, pay attention to their hair, costumes, themes, and most skater would prefer pretty music that are going to flatter their presentation. But should it matter to over ride everything else? Absolutely not. That is why TES is the most important credible part of the COP. Why do you think Miki was never as popular as Mao in Japan? She even had the quads earlier in her career which arguably was just as impressive.

    I am curious if we show the 2x2 performances from NHK to a bunch of 12 years olds IN Japan, and ask which skator should win, I bet 9/10 will pick Mao. It seems to me some ISU judges at NHK 2012 were't that much different from a bunch of 12 years olds by 0.05 at least.
    Beauty matters in everything we do, except it's hard to rank it. The argument here is that Suzuki doesn't do as well because she is not as pretty as Asada. I find that argument to be weak. In singles skating, I haven't found the "beauty" of the skaters to matter greatly, even less so in men. Was Ando pretty? Was Kim or Meissner considered beautiful? To be honest, they all more or less look the same to me. They are all fine, it's rare to find a female skater who really stands out physically. The only example I can recall in recent years is Kiira Korpi where I have even heard people commenting that she looks like an actress at the Olympics Games in Vancouver. Every other girl, Asada, Suzuki, Kostner, you name it, just nothing special. So I am having a hard time understanding why some people believe Asada won it on her "beauty". It's such a personal choice.

    Rather, I think some skaters can be more charming than others. Take example of Daisuke Takahashi. Undoubtedly, he is extremely popular with a lot of female fans. Then again, is it because he is considered beautiful for a man? I am not sure. I am confident many find him very attractive but not necessarily all physical. If I have to take a guess, from a pure physical standpoint, you either adore him or you don't because his style is very particular so it's either you get it or you don't. But the fact he displayed good sportsmanship, a great showman and down to earth - all make him very charming. With that said, I think Asada have qualities that Suzuki doesn't have off ice that makes her more marketable in eyes of certain stakeholders. But from a pure physical standpoint, I am not convinced she is that much different from Suzuki if you omit the fact she is much younger than Suzuki but that's about it.

  4. #94
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    I think the "beauty" that is rewarded in skating is often more related to carriage and body lines (most of which is related to skills that skaters can intentionally develop, but they can't do much about body proportions) and to the quality of movement ("soft knees", flowing edges, relaxed controlled use of the whole body). Facial structure is probably less important, although it can have a subconscious effect in skating as in all areas of life.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gkelly View Post
    I think the "beauty" that is rewarded in skating is often more related to carriage and body lines (most of which is related to skills that skaters can intentionally develop, but they can't do much about body proportions) and to the quality of movement ("soft knees", flowing edges, relaxed controlled use of the whole body). Facial structure is probably less important, although it can have a subconscious effect in skating as in all areas of life.
    I think your characterization is fairly accurate as far as singles skating is concerned. Given this thread is regarding : pageantry in PCS, I doubt the OP meant simply that Asada has better body lines or fluid movement.

    It's hard enough to deal with national bias and potential reputation influence on scoring, adding pageantry into the mix just seems to makes thing a lot more complicate. Who would want that?

  6. #96
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    I'm confused by what is meant by "pageantry" in this context.

    Definitions of the word: http://www.thefreedictionary.com/pageantry

    Do any of these apply? Or is the word being used to mean something like "judging a sports contest as if it were a beauty contest (beauty pageant) instead"?

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    Quote Originally Posted by os168 View Post
    What a nice and lovely thing to say. Unfortunately it is also far form reality.

    Should it matter in sport? No. Does it matter in figure skating, unfortunately it Yes.

    May be my view is different than yours because I went to an all girl school (yeah that should do it ), and i know beauty absolutely matters in everything regardless if you are in the company of women (and arguably in particularly in the company of women). This is a sport where aesthetics are appraised, that is why skaters wear nice make up, pay attention to their hair, costumes, themes, and most skater would prefer pretty music that are going to flatter their presentation. But should it matter to over ride everything else? Absolutely not. That is why TES is the most important credible part of the COP. Why do you think Miki was never as popular as Mao in Japan? She even had the quads earlier in her career which arguably was just as impressive.

    I am curious if we show the 2x2 performances from NHK to a bunch of 12 years olds IN Japan, and ask which skator should win, I bet 9/10 will pick Mao. It seems to me some ISU judges at NHK 2012 were't that much different from a bunch of 12 years olds by 0.05 at least.
    I also attended an all girls' high school; thankfully, my experience must have been different from yours. We were judged, both by peers and teachers, on our capabilities and accomplishments, not on our physical attributes.

    As far as the judges at NHK, you and I may not agree with the results, but that doesn't mean that the judges were swayed by Mao's "beauty". And as someone said, beauty is in the eyes of the beholder ~ I find both Mao and Akiko equally attractive.
    Last edited by chloepoco; 11-28-2012 at 02:16 PM.

  8. #98
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    Quote Originally Posted by gkelly View Post
    I think the "beauty" that is rewarded in skating is often more related to carriage and body lines (most of which is related to skills that skaters can intentionally develop, but they can't do much about body proportions) and to the quality of movement ("soft knees", flowing edges, relaxed controlled use of the whole body). Facial structure is probably less important, although it can have a subconscious effect in skating as in all areas of life.
    I agree. There have been some (facially) very attractive champions and some who have been average looking. Akiko's marks are fine she just needs to skate a better SP because she isn't going to get the benefit of the doubt when she makes mistakes. It isn't because she isn't pretty, but rather her skating skills frankly are not as good as Mao's. For her to be 2 points behind Mao in PCS for the LP puts her easily within reach of the title had she skated a good SP.

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    Quote Originally Posted by drivingmissdaisy View Post
    I agree. There have been some (facially) very attractive champions and some who have been average looking. Akiko's marks are fine she just needs to skate a better SP because she isn't going to get the benefit of the doubt when she makes mistakes. It isn't because she isn't pretty, but rather her skating skills frankly are not as good as Mao's. For her to be 2 points behind Mao in PCS for the LP puts her easily within reach of the title had she skated a good SP.
    ITA. Akiko has always been a weak SP skater who has had to come from behind in the FS. Does anyone remember when she was 20th at 2010 Worlds and had to skate in the first group but managed to finish 7th in the FS and got 11th overall? That's probably the worst example.

    At Japanese Nationals, 2009 4th (6;3) 2010 2nd (4;2) 2011 4th (7;4) 2012 2nd (3;1).
    Worlds: 2010 11th (20;7) 2012 3rd (5th;2nd)
    4CC: 2009 8th (9;8) 010 2nd (1;2) 2011 7th (6;7)
    GPF: 2009 3rd (5;3) 2010 4th (4;5 )2011 2nd (2;3)
    GP events:
    NHK: 2008 2nd (4;2) 2011 1st (1;2);2012 2nd (5;1)
    SC: 2009 5th (8;5) 2011 2nd (4;1) 2012 2nd (5;1)
    COC: 2009 1st (4;1); 2010 2nd (1;2)
    COR: 2010 2nd (2;2)

    Now with the exception of Worlds 2010, she doesn't bomb as badly like Ashley Wagner did and is usually within striking distance to easily get a medal and even win; but it would give her some buffer if she did not make mistakes in the SP.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wallylutz View Post
    Beauty matters in everything we do, except it's hard to rank it. The argument here is that Suzuki doesn't do as well because she is not as pretty as Asada. I find that argument to be weak. In singles skating, I haven't found the "beauty" of the skaters to matter greatly, even less so in men. Was Ando pretty? Was Kim or Meissner considered beautiful? To be honest, they all more or less look the same to me. They are all fine, it's rare to find a female skater who really stands out physically. The only example I can recall in recent years is Kiira Korpi where I have even heard people commenting that she looks like an actress at the Olympics Games in Vancouver. Every other girl, Asada, Suzuki, Kostner, you name it, just nothing special. So I am having a hard time understanding why some people believe Asada won it on her "beauty". It's such a personal choice.

    Rather, I think some skaters can be more charming than others. Take example of Daisuke Takahashi. Undoubtedly, he is extremely popular with a lot of female fans. Then again, is it because he is considered beautiful for a man? I am not sure. I am confident many find him very attractive but not necessarily all physical. If I have to take a guess, from a pure physical standpoint, you either adore him or you don't because his style is very particular so it's either you get it or you don't. But the fact he displayed good sportsmanship, a great showman and down to earth - all make him very charming. With that said, I think Asada have qualities that Suzuki doesn't have off ice that makes her more marketable in eyes of certain stakeholders. But from a pure physical standpoint, I am not convinced she is that much different from Suzuki if you omit the fact she is much younger than Suzuki but that's about it.
    What is aesthetic if it does not account for beauty?

    Bare in mind I am not talking about whether something you or I find beautiful, but about subjective within the context of NHK taking place in Japan how Mao, Miki and Suzuki are perceived by JSF as #1. #2, #3 etc where media/commercial pressure certainly have played a large part too (Sport popularity, ice shows, sponsorships and so forth).

    It is my feeling it is this perceived ranking spilt onto PCS scoring and made the difference in the ranking. If beauty doesn't matter, why isn't Akiko favoured like Hanyu (who's certainly beautifu/skated beautifully, at least to me) seems to have over taken Kozuka this year as Japan's #2? (or Why Kozuka seem to have lost his PCS he deserve) And similarly why is the media there always obsessed with Mao when it is Miki who won the WC, and Akiko was the one podiumed last year?

    If this NHK competition took place in another Grand Prix say TEB, can you honestly say the results would have been same? That is my whole argument. There's no doubt Mao is their perceived #1 favourite for the last quads and their big skater for Sochi as was the Vancouver, and while she is a great skater, Mao benefit a great deal from her beauty (yes including skating) that is practically a nice litte cottage industry in Japan that the sport benefit from. There's nothing wrong to acknowledge this because it happens to be true, it undoubtly benefited her through out her career.

    Quote Originally Posted by chloepoco View Post
    I also attended an all girls' high school; thankfully, my experience must have been different from yours. We were judged, both by peers and teachers, on our capabilities and accomplishments, not on our physical attributes.

    As far as the judges at NHK, you and I may not agree with the results, but that doesn't mean that the judges were swayed by Mao's "beauty". And as someone said, beauty is in the eyes of the beholder ~ I find both Mao and Akiko equally attractive.
    Sorry for being blunt, but if your school did not educate you ALSO on the importance of physical attribute then, then it seems it hasn't taught you a well rounded view of the real world as you should. Certainly things should be learnt not from text books or syllabus, but also from peers with common sense. If your head girl do not make an effort for nice presentation including physical appearance, sorry, I just don't buy it.

    Apart from that while I can understand why acknowledging of beauty / pageantry in this sport might annoy some people who prefer to see competition won entirely on the sporting merit of the performance and the skater, but to me it is one big fallacy when a key judging criteria of the sport includes aesthetics. Otherwise why people present themselves certain ways, and smile to the judges? It is no accident certain popular and well 'reputable' performers do look certain ways in anything having to do with performance art in which I consider figure skating is part of.
    Last edited by os168; 11-28-2012 at 03:36 PM.

  11. #101
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mrs. P View Post
    ITA. Akiko has always been a weak SP skater who has had to come from behind in the FS. Does anyone remember when she was 20th at 2010 Worlds and had to skate in the first group but managed to finish 7th in the FS and got 11th overall? That's probably the worst example.

    At Japanese Nationals, 2009 4th (6;3) 2010 2nd (4;2) 2011 4th (7;4) 2012 2nd (3;1).
    Worlds: 2010 11th (20;7) 2012 3rd (5th;2nd)
    4CC: 2009 8th (9;8) 010 2nd (1;2) 2011 7th (6;7)
    GPF: 2009 3rd (5;3) 2010 4th (4;5 )2011 2nd (2;3)
    GP events:
    NHK: 2008 2nd (4;2) 2011 1st (1;2);2012 2nd (5;1)
    SC: 2009 5th (8;5) 2011 2nd (4;1) 2012 2nd (5;1)
    COC: 2009 1st (4;1); 2010 2nd (1;2)
    COR: 2010 2nd (2;2)

    Now with the exception of Worlds 2010, she doesn't bomb as badly like Ashley Wagner did and is usually within striking distance to easily get a medal and even win; but it would give her some buffer if she did not make mistakes in the SP.
    If you look only at her past result, then it is almost the equivalent of looking at only her protocols without looking at her actual FS performances where she had probably the best skate of her life. While those result may look fine on paper, but many long observers of her include myself who watches the competition can see she was underscored in general in PCS, and in particularly in Japan, that is perhaps why this sensationalist thread title was made in the first place. I feel there's some truth in that, but some don't. To the rest of the world, she is world's no.2 (Her current ISU ranking). If Akiko skated for Russia, or Canada, or US, she certainly would have done better.

  12. #102
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    Quote Originally Posted by os168 View Post
    If you look only at her past result, then it is almost the equivalent of looking at only her protocols without looking at her actual FS performances where she had probably the best skate of her life. While those result may look fine on paper, but many long observers of her include myself who watches the competition can see she was underscored in general in PCS, and in particularly in Japan, that is perhaps why this sensationalist thread title was made in the first place.

    I feel there's some truth in that, but some don't. To the rest of the world, she is world's no.2 (Her current ISU ranking), to Japan, she is not good as Mao however well she does and however badly Mao does. If Akiko skated for Russia, or Canada, or US, she certainly would have done better.
    Well of course. I totally agree that she should have won at both competitions and that she has always been underscored, not relative to herself, but relative to other people, i.e. when she makes a mistake she gets a harsher break and when does well her competitors seem to get a bigger break. I.e. Even with her disaster SP at Skate America, Alena Leonova still got 27 PCS, beating Christina Gao, Mae Bernice Meite and others who had much better programs.

    That said, it's always good to not play the catch up game and leave it up to the judges in the FS. Don't give them a window to justify their decisions.

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    Quote Originally Posted by os168 View Post
    Sorry for being blunt, but if your school did not educate you ALSO on the importance of physical attribute then, then it seems it hasn't taught you a well rounded view of the real world as you should. Certainly things should be learnt not from text books or syllabus, but also from peers with common sense. If your head girl do not make an effort for nice presentation including physical appearance, sorry, I just don't buy it.

    Apart from that while I can understand why acknowledging of beauty / pageantry in this sport might annoy some people who prefer to see competition won entirely on the sporting merit of the performance and the skater, but to me it is one big fallacy when a key judging criteria of the sport includes aesthetics. Otherwise why people present themselves certain ways, and smile to the judges? It is no accident certain popular and well 'reputable' performers do look certain ways in anything having to do with performance art in which I consider figure skating is part of.
    I'm quite happy with the education I received, and consider myself well-rounded, thank you very much.

    While I do believe that Akiko deserved to win, obviously the judges felt differently. Again, I do not buy your theory that the judges were so taken in my Mao's beauty that they placed her above Akiko. So to answer the original posters question, I believe that Akiko was underscored, however, it had nothing to do with 'pageantry'.

  14. #104
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    Now wait a minute! Let's back up a couple of posts. Miki Ando is drop dead gorgeous.

    http://www.sportfems.com/wp-content/...iki-ando-3.jpg

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    Now wait a minute! Let's back up a couple of posts. Miki Ando is drop dead gorgeous.

    http://www.sportfems.com/wp-content/...iki-ando-3.jpg
    Absolutely!!

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