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Thread: Question about Japan and their skaters

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  1. #1
    The Comeback Kid Minze2001's Avatar
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    Question about Japan and their skaters

    I know skating is very important in Japan. And they love their skaters. My question is, having so many elite skaters why did the Japanese decide that Mao Asada was their sweethheart over skaters like Miki and Akiko. I am a huge Mao fan, but the Japanese media give her too much preference. I was watching a program after Nationals and they spend half of the time talking about Mao.


    If I was Miki or Akiko I will feel bad

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    Custom Title FSGMT's Avatar
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    Maybe because she is a two-time world champion and Olympic silver medalist? But I agree that Miki or Akiko should receive more attention, they are woderful skaters, too: especially Miki: in those early years when Mao was landing 3-3-3 and 3A like nothing, Miki was landing QUADS and her results have been a lot better for a lot of time, Mao clearly surpassed her just in the two pre-Olympic seasons, but, yes, in Japan they give too much importance to Mao when, frankly talking, a lot of skaters are (or have been) almost at her level...

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    Quote Originally Posted by FSGMT View Post
    Maybe because she is a two-time world champion and Olympic silver medalist?
    Mao became the national favorite by the victory at 2005 GPF in Tokyo and her position has never changed since then. Of course, "triple axel is the very important factor. Many ordinary people turned their eyes to figure skating the first time since 1992. If Mao's "biggest weapon" was a 3F-3T (like Kim), it wouldn't be the case. Ando's "quad salchow" and 3Lz-3Lo are more impressive.

  4. #4
    More or less: more is more sequinsgalore's Avatar
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    My own educated guess:

    - She was the young ingenue who had landed triple axels since age 12
    - Has landed triple flip-triple loops (the Japanese like the big combos)
    - Dominated the junior ranks
    - Flexibility in spins and spirals
    - Floating skating skills
    - Elegant performer w/ (usually) nice choreography
    - Titles (she trumps both Ando and Suzuki)

    Ando was also a young ingenue who landed quad salchows in her youth, but her spins weren't great and her performance skills lacking.

    Suzuki was a late bloomer, and I guess the media is always looking for the "next" thing. Her spins aren't great either, and she hasn't landed the big combos that awe.

    Mao Asada's qualities are what the majority usually look for in a ladies skater: feminity, flexibility and grace. Ando and Suzuki don't have these (as much), but you could say they make up for it in other areas.

    Asada just has that IT-quality... it's hard to put your finger on it.
    Last edited by dorispulaski; 01-05-2013 at 01:57 PM. Reason: no signature files allowed

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    The Comeback Kid Minze2001's Avatar
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    I agree with in everything you said. I am a big Mao fan and she does have the it factor. And she deserves to be Japan's sweetheart. But the special I was watching after Janpan's nationals was so telling, they spent most of the time interwing and talking to Mao and they only spent 5 minutes on the silver and bronze medalists. Before Nationals they kept playing videos about her triple axel practice.


    My question is was the Japanese media so crazy over their other champions?

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    Custom Title mary01's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Minze2001 View Post
    I agree with in everything you said. I am a big Mao fan and she does have the it factor. And she deserves to be Japan's sweetheart. But the special I was watching after Janpan's nationals was so telling, they spent most of the time interwing and talking to Mao and they only spent 5 minutes on the silver and bronze medalists. Before Nationals they kept playing videos about her triple axel practice.


    My question is was the Japanese media so crazy over their other champions?
    People in japan just seem to have much higher expectations of Mao, which is quite understandable when one looks and compares her record with the each others. I mean all of Miki's and Akiko's titles put together wouldn't even measure up with Mao's accomplishments!

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    Custom Title FSGMT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mary01 View Post
    People in japan just seem to have much higher expectations of Mao, which is quite understandable when one looks and compares her record with the each others. I mean all of Miki's and Akiko's titles put together wouldn't even measure up with Mao's accomplishments!
    Yes, Mao is the most important female skater in Japan at the moment, but Miki has won two world titles, one world bronze medal, plus one 4CC gold and one bronze, a silver at the GPF and five GP competitions; Mao has won two world titles, the OSM, two silver medals at worlds, two GPF, two 4CC gold and two 4CC silver, plus one 4CC bronze and eight GP competitions: yes, Mao has had better results (and I'm a big fan of her, too!), but not THAT better, if we watch at the real difference between her and Miki in the importance they have in Japan..

  8. #8
    Custom Title hurrah's Avatar
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    The Japanese public loves Mao because of her perceived personality. She's quietly mentally tough. And not at all spiteful or hateful. Always trying her best. Persevering. Does all the things that make her a champion with a smile and without causing a furor.

    Miki has been known to show her emotional instability on twitter, for example, and so she appears to be more of a drama queen type to Mao.
    Akiko is a sweet girl but she has not had the success that Mao has had.

    But it's the rare and uncommon combination of unassuming stoicism and sunny sweetness that Mao projects that makes her a star.

    Also, I think Mao has so many outstanding qualities besides her jumps that make her a special skater. Her presence on the ice is breathe-taking. I find myself watching Mao's performances again and again (and Daisuke's as well) but not the other skaters.

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    Custom Title mary01's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FSGMT View Post
    Yes, Mao is the most important female skater in Japan at the moment, but Miki has won two world titles, one world bronze medal, plus one 4CC gold and one bronze, a silver at the GPF and five GP competitions; Mao has won two world titles, the OSM, two silver medals at worlds, two GPF, two 4CC gold and two 4CC silver, plus one 4CC bronze and eight GP competitions: yes, Mao has had better results (and I'm a big fan of her, too!), but not THAT better, if we watch at the real difference between her and Miki in the importance they have in Japan..
    Please take a better look at the records when you compare! the ONLY thing in common they have is that both Mao and Miki have two World titles!

    before the 2010-2011 season Miki only had one Major title and that was the World title in 2007 which she barely won over Mao.

  10. #10
    On the Ice
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    Quote Originally Posted by FSGMT View Post
    Yes, Mao is the most important female skater in Japan at the moment, but Miki has won two world titles, one world bronze medal, plus one 4CC gold and one bronze, a silver at the GPF and five GP competitions; Mao has won two world titles, the OSM, two silver medals at worlds, two GPF, two 4CC gold and two 4CC silver, plus one 4CC bronze and eight GP competitions: yes, Mao has had better results (and I'm a big fan of her, too!), but not THAT better, if we watch at the real difference between her and Miki in the importance they have in Japan..
    Three GPF. 2005, 2008, 2012.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by FSGMT View Post
    Yes, Mao is the most important female skater in Japan at the moment, but Miki has won two world titles, one world bronze medal, plus one 4CC gold and one bronze, a silver at the GPF and five GP competitions; Mao has won two world titles, the OSM, two silver medals at worlds, two GPF, two 4CC gold and two 4CC silver, plus one 4CC bronze and eight GP competitions: yes, Mao has had better results (and I'm a big fan of her, too!), but not THAT better, if we watch at the real difference between her and Miki in the importance they have in Japan..
    I "compiled" a little picture of some results, just for reference, of Mao Asada and Miki Ando:

    http://img132.imageshack.us/img132/8...adaandando.png
    Last edited by aftertherain; 01-05-2013 at 07:36 PM.

  12. #12
    Thank God for Stephane Lambiel and Matt Savoie! shine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sequinsgalore View Post
    My own educated guess:

    - She was the young ingenue who had landed triple axels since age 12
    - Has landed triple flip-triple loops (the Japanese like the big combos)
    - Dominated the junior ranks
    - Flexibility in spins and spirals
    - Floating skating skills
    - Elegant performer w/ (usually) nice choreography
    - Titles (she trumps both Ando and Suzuki)

    Ando was also a young ingenue who landed quad salchows in her youth, but her spins weren't great and her performance skills lacking.

    Suzuki was a late bloomer, and I guess the media is always looking for the "next" thing. Her spins aren't great either, and she hasn't landed the big combos that awe.

    Mao Asada's qualities are what the majority usually look for in a ladies skater: feminity, flexibility and grace. Ando and Suzuki don't have these (as much), but you could say they make up for it in other areas.

    Asada just has that IT-quality... it's hard to put your finger on it.
    I do agree that think she fits the pretty princess stereotype that the majority of skating audience looks for and also her perceived child-like innocence. And I can see how that would make her very marketable in Japan, a country that just seems to love the image of a young sweet girl.
    But I really don't see how she has more IT quality than Suzuki... Her programs are way too generic, so is her expression.
    Last edited by shine; 01-05-2013 at 07:51 PM.

  13. #13
    Custom Title cinnamon's Avatar
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    In one word, Mao has everything that Japanese people like.
    Btw I found this video for this thread. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0QnTRVRZGAM
    It's 2003 Japanese nationals. Suguri skated to Swan Lake to win, 2nd place was Onda, 3rd Shizuka, 4th Yukina, 5th Miki, 6th Yukari, 7th Mao, 8th Mai, 9th Akiko.
    At 11:46 young Mao and Kanako were watching, then at 11:59 Miki was watching the podium.

  14. #14
    The Comeback Kid Minze2001's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cinnamon View Post
    In one word, Mao has everything that Japanese people like.
    Btw I found this video for this thread. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0QnTRVRZGAM
    It's 2003 Japanese nationals. Suguri skated to Swan Lake to win, 2nd place was Onda, 3rd Shizuka, 4th Yukina, 5th Miki, 6th Yukari, 7th Mao, 8th Mai, 9th Akiko.
    At 11:46 young Mao and Kanako were watching, then at 11:59 Miki was watching the podium.
    Ahhhhhhhhhhhh. that video is so cute mao is looking at the podium like one day I will be there

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    Quote Originally Posted by cinnamon View Post
    In one word, Mao has everything that Japanese people like.
    Btw I found this video for this thread. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0QnTRVRZGAM
    ITA. Which word is the one word though?

    Thanks for the video, cuteness overload!

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