I also take issue with your misuse of the sarcasm smiley.
As for Hanyu's GOE, I think it's reasonable since when he is on, his jumps are truly spectacular and judges tend to be impressed by big jumps other than smoothy skills on ice. He does has a weak jump now and then, but overall his jumps quality are better than most skaters in the men field. When I say better, that means "in general", not in any particular jump. Pchan, even when he nails the axel, could not get high GEO as Hanyu's 3A. The only Asian men who has a better Axel than Hanyu is Han Yan, but he is off-on-off-on-off. Hanyu's biggest mental block at the moment is his 4S, but finally he landed it in Worlds so I guess next season he's gonna aim for consistency of this jump. He's gonna be shaper in his moves. Personally I think Hanyu's GOE is quite well-deserved.
About the PCS inflation. I also find it's stupid and confusing and incomprehensible too. At this rate, all the medal contenders (whom the judges have already decided even before the SP) will likely to get all 90s PCS for free skate now, the rest should just go home.
In 2012, only PChan was rewards 90s PCS for his spectacular skating skills which was quite well-deserved when he was on. But when he was off, I don't see it why they gave him such score. Don't get me wrong, I love PChan, but I have to admit PCS inflation all started from him. It's not his fault, it's the judges' fault for over-rewarding him with over-the-top PCS even when he fell.
And this was just the beginning of a bad trend. Look at what happened at Sochi, ladies events. They gave all the medal contenders relatively even mark in PCS so they could use TES and GOE as excuses.
Now worlds 2014, all the men with exceptional SP get 90s PCS. Machida jumped 10 points in PCS for his flappy bird program. Okay his SP was really good but I don't get his LP at all. Even when he was on, I would only give him 82-84 PCS at most for that performance. If they were more strict on him, 80 PCS is at most. Hanyu's PCS is 91 which is quite unreasonable for his Juliet-narcissist long program and I don't understand why/how, David Wilson and Brian Orser's reputation? His higest PCS score should just be 85-87. Anyways, kudo to him for finally delivered a clean long program for the second time in the season. I was so moved by his effort, he deserved the gold. Not that PCS score, though.
But anyways, PChan, Hanyu and Machida are not the ones who get unreasonable high PCS for lackluster long program. even Javi get 91 PCS, as high as Hanyu, what can I explain? I don't get it either. I love Javi out of these 3 most, but I admit he sometimes look labour on ice. His LP this season suits his personality and strength so well, but still not a masterpiece or a memorable program. I blame that on the choreographer. But overall his LP works. What a pity he mad mistakes, other wise he would have been the gold medalist because top 3 have relatively same PCS, so the one with higher TES would likely to be the winner.
Overall, I am okay with the placement, but their PCS should just be in mid 80s at most.
Hanyu was held up as Chan's rival. The ISU wanted to avoid a scandal like London worlds happening in Sochi. They needed a genuine rival who can unseat Chan when he makes more than one error. Since no one can expect the higher PCS than Chan, the "rival" must be someone who has decisive technical advantages (base values). Hanyu was the chosen one and now he is the favorite at every competition
Machida was held up only because it was in Japan. He would be behind Fernandez everywhere else. Since Hanyu was THE favorite, he received the major part of the home boost.
Fernandez is held up as the European favorite, same as Kostner of past eight years. But his position is not as secure as Kostner (who had the Speedy backing and weaker competitions in Europe).
Hanyu definitely deserves high marks for his lovely 3A, but not for every element he does and certainly not the PCS he gets. And with the PCS gap now being what it is, everyone else might as well pack it in.
If anything, Fernandez is held up because he's a good jumper and from Team Orser. There is no bonus for being Spanish or some kind of all-Euro PCS boost.
Yagudin, Lambiel and Chan are the Gold Standards to me. ( We discuss about Chan because he didn't win Olympic Gold, which he could win even with a mediocre skating, but he was not able to do so.., but still many unmachable quality included in his skating as a whole package like the other 2 I mentioned).
I don't agree with his PCS (and Machida and Javi's PCS as well) but personally I think Hanyu's GOE is quite reasonable, and the main reason is that judges tend to be impressed by big jumps. Technically if I were a judge and I have only 5-7 minutes to score each skater, I would tend to give higher mark for the one who execute most of the elements well, especially who has big and beautiful jumps.
It's not like the judges have hours and hours to review all the jumps and compare each one to another. Hanyu might not have the highest mark of GOE for each elements, but he often gets relatively high marks for all the elements. For example, he might score lower in SS and IN, but still remarkable high compare to most men, while the one who get the highest mark in SS get extremely lower marks in other elements. When the general quality of all elements are relatively high, it's understandable that Hanyu often ends up with high GOE. Ever from his debut at senior worlds, unless he was remarkably off like what happened in his SP at worlds 2013, judges often give him high execution mark, it's not a plot they use to pack him up against PChan because he was still just a newbie at that time. His TES in all of his three worlds are highest of all men.
It's a tendency for the judges to score him high GOE. And it's subjective since they have had an impression for a while that Hanyu has spectacular jumps (and it's true) and they love that, so high GOE is a bonus.
Anyways, at least Hanyu delivers most of his jumps well (not the 4S) and people can see that "oh, beautiful jump", unlike a certain olympic champion with unreliable jumps and not so beautiful executions. You know who.
The programs of 1948 are empty compared to today. Yet, would anyone dare argue that Patrick Chan and Yuzuru Hanyu are better than Dick Button? Frankly, as much as I think people were way too harsh on Patrick Chan and the other men, in general, regarding their skating in Sochi, I would never compare him favorably with Takahashi or Lambiel, let alone Yagudin, Browning Button, Curry, etc.
The gold standard is not about doing more than what your predecessors have done, in my opinion. All sports evolve, and figure skaters are now doing things that were not considered in years past. Does competing in this era automatically make Chan and and Hanyu the gold standard over others that have come before them? I would say no way, and I say that as much as I love Hanyu. He has a lot of developing to do to. As for Chan, there is something lacking there, in my opinion. I know he has legions of fans, but no matter his accomplishments, his skating has never won me over. He gets the points, that's for sure, but I would not go out of my way to see him perform.
That is a really good point, Panpie. You said it... all sports evolve, and figure skaters these days need to be technically superior than they were in the past... and superior in areas outside of the elements. You won't get a John Curry anymore because skating is different now. So why not just let John Curry be John Curry, and Chan/Hanyu be Chan/Hanyu?
A song sounds way better on vinyl than mp3, to a lot of people... a silent film is more enjoyable to some than a film wrought with special effects. But these are the times.
You want John Curry, go and watch John Curry. But don't expect skaters these days to have to live up to that when the sport of figure skating is becoming more technically demanding (as any sport that truly evolves inevitably ends up doing). If every skater is giving clean performances with 5 jumping passes and simple choreography and easy spins, you're sending the sport back 30 years, and then you REALLY won't get people watching it.
I don't want to watch a competition with 30 John Currys because that to me isn't a competition worthy of 2014. That's not to say I don't respect the past but people should move forward instead of having a retrospective way of thinking, "Welllll, back in the good ole days, we didn't have none of these transitions and spins nonsense! Watching Curry do a walley on my grainy VHS was better than any goshdarn quad."