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Thread: Suguri vs. Onda vs. Arakawa

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  1. #1
    RCM8410
    Guest

    Suguri vs. Onda vs. Arakawa


    As the title says, how do these top Japanese ladies match up? Specifically, what do you think their strengths and weaknesses are?

    Briefly, in my view:

    Suguri ~ more artistic and expressive, programs are better choreographed, jumps haven't been as consistent as they were in the past

    Onda ~ power-jumping all the way, great height on jumps, but artistry and posture still needs more work and refinement

    Arakawa ~ light, ethereal quality about her skating (esp. her jumps, like what Susie Wynne talked about at NHK), but can be a bit inconsistent

  2. #2
    AY2006
    Guest

    Re: Suguri vs. Onda vs. Arakawa


    I don't find anything "light and ethereal" about Shizuka's skating. She is about the same level with Fumie in that aspect, and both are far behind Yuka or Michelle.

    I will add some...

    Suguri - best spins and best speed among the three.

    Arakawa - lack of expression. (Isn't she called "iron mask" by some Japanese fans?)

    Onda - protected by Machiko Yamada's influence and her close ties with Noriko Shirota. (j/k)

  3. #3
    sk8guy2k2
    Guest

    Re: Suguri vs. Onda vs. Arakawa


    IMO, Suguri is the best out of the three. She has good presentation skills, spins, speed and has good jumping technique. Unfortunately, her jumps are inconsistent this season. Arakawa has a smooth quality about her skating, but sometimes mistakes appear out of nowhere. Onda is mainly held up by her jumping.


  4. #4
    rgirl181
    Guest

    Re: Suguri vs. Onda vs. Arakawa


    Arakawa is one of my favorite skaters of all the eligibles. I feel she underwent some kind of transformation between last season and this one where a lot of things came together. I agree that her one bugaboo is consistency, that and her spiral sequences tend to be rushed. But her stroking and ice coverage are gorgeous and powerful, with great soft knees and ankles. And her arms and upper body have flow to match her edges. Plus I love her energy. There is something lighthearted about her personality that I find very engaging.

    Onda is my second choice among these three Japanese ladies. Of course she has to work on her presentation, but I don't find it anywhere near as "awful" as some have described it. I just think YO is from the "power and speed" school of presentation, eg, Midori Ito, Tonya Harding, Irina Slutskaya, rather than the "balletic" one. She needs to improve her transitions and keep her arms up, but she has a spunky pixie quality to her skating that I love. I just hope they don't try to turn this "high flyer" into a "dying swan" in a misguided effort to make her "artistic." It would be like trying to turn an Elvis Presley into a Placido Domingo.

    Fumie: As I've said before, great gams! I love a lot of the individual elements of her skating and I love her personality, but the whole thing just doesn't come together for me. A lot of it is the problem with the posture and use of her upper body and arms. The round shoulders and stiffness take away from the expression and the total body line. Also, she has <strong>got</strong> to straighten her knee and turn out her free leg on her spirals. For someone at her level not to be doing this is just...bad! (Yes, Sarah's bent knee drives me crazy too, but at least hers is turned out )

    But like the US ladies, it's so great to have such depth! A lot there to love and be excited about, and the junior ladies are absolute gangbusters!
    Rgirl

  5. #5
    RealtorGal
    Guest

    Re: Suguri vs. Onda vs. Arakawa


    <span style="color:maroon;font-family:comic sans ms;font-size:small;">I have yet to be moved one iota by Onda. Can you see yourself sitting in front of the TV moved to tears by her performance? Ever? I am, however, impressed with the explosive power of her jumps.</span>

    <span style="color:navy;font-family:comic sans ms;font-size:small;">I liked Fumie's skating last year, just lovely. This year, she is off the mark.</span> :(

    <span style="color:teal;font-family:comic sans ms;font-size:small;">I am very impressed with Arakawa of late. As I mentioned on another thread, she is the skater Mr. RealtorGal is raving about these days. She's just a notch behind Sasha in his eyes.</span> :D

  6. #6
    Lcp88
    Guest

    Re: Suguri vs. Onda vs. Arakawa


    I've always enjoyed Fumie and think she is almost certinly a future World Champion, but I think Onda has the tech. edge over her. I think Arakawa has great jumps and er, "Good" artistry (bjork is not the best person to imitate:D ), so overall, I like Fumie, with Arakawa a close second.
    Laura

  7. #7
    GBMalwayz
    Guest

    Re: Suguri vs. Onda vs. Arakawa


    I am really impressed with Arakawa, and feel if she trained here in America, she would be able to let her real *star* shine.

    With all the Japanese skaters, I see a lot of technical prowess, but the culture doesn't really let them "emote" the way US/Canadian/Russian women do. That shyness or reserve holds them back when interpreting music. I am in no way putting down another culture. I would love to be able to travel in Japan, China, or live in another culture, as I have in the past, but that's impossible.

    Everyone fell in love with Kristi and Michelle in part, I think, because of the same humility they were taught and displayed through all the gold medals, and their work ethic is clearly very strong. As asian Americans, though, they grew up in this culture and that has affected their ability to be more free in their skating.

    Perhaps someone Japanese or Japanese American could explain much better than I what is different in Japan for women and women/skaters. I have only the merest idea.

    I love Fumie's personality, and that colors my view of her skating in a positive way. The deficits/faults rgirl already mentioned bother me, too. I think her stiffness comes across in her Swan peice earlier this season. She doesn't have the freedom in her skating to interpret that music. I can't help but think of the young Oksana, and all the ballerinas I have seen, and Fumie, though a peach, just doesn't have that musicality and depth in her yet. But Best legs in skating?<img src=http://www.ezboard.com/intl/aenglish/images/emoticons/ohwell.gif ALT=":\">

    Can't agree with that. I think we need a poll or thread as there will be more than five nominees.

    Yoshie, I just hated last year. This year I find her spark and sincere effort to develop some presentation skills more endearing. I was always impressed with Midori's big jumps, and huge smile, and this young lady has some of that spunk. I did love Fumie's skate to Ave Maria, I forgot to mention.

    Everyone seems to hate Shizuka's techno swan number with feathery costume, but for some reason I like it together and she can pull it off pretty well. I think it would look best on Nicole Bobek and would love to see her interpret the music, but I think Shizuka has so much going for her. These three ladies may not equal Yuka Sato, but give them time.

    Yoshie may surprise us, and I think she is very aggressive, a real player, and also hungry to prove herself. Podium Turino seems her clear goal.



  8. #8
    MaryMotorMouth
    Guest

    Re: Suguri vs. Onda vs. Arakawa


    RGirl wrote:

    "Arakawa is one of my favorite skaters of all the eligibles. I feel she underwent some kind of transformation between last season and this one where a lot of things came together. I agree that her one bugaboo is consistency, that and her spiral sequences tend to be rushed. But her stroking and ice coverage are gorgeous and powerful, with great soft knees and ankles. And her arms and upper body have flow to match her edges. Plus I love her energy. There is something lighthearted about her personality that I find very engaging."

    RGirl- I couldn't agree more. This girl has me transfixed. Something about her just makes me unable to take my eyes off her when she skates. Sure, there is room for improvement in her skating, but she is "fresh" to me. Maybe it's because I'm a little over the proclamations that skater X is the World Champion for the next 15 years and OG Medalist for the next 3 games.

    Maybe that's what makes me like Arakawa. Her skills seem very subtle to me, much less " Ta Da" like. I think that's what mesmerizes me.

    I love the white costume and her program, too.

    Fumie doesn't move me yet, I find she tends to be overpowered by her music. And Yoshie, well, I've never been a fan of skaters whose strenth is in the jumps. I like more balance. Hopefully Yoshie will get there and I can become a convert.


  9. #9
    rgirl181
    Guest

    Re: Suguri vs. Onda vs. Arakawa


    MMM,
    Re Arakawa: High five!:D
    Rgirl

  10. #10
    jharland
    Guest

    Re: Suguri vs. Onda vs. Arakawa


    I think Onda looks to boyish.

  11. #11
    Princess Leppard 625
    Guest

    Re: Suguri vs. Onda vs. Arakawa


    <span style="color:fuchsia;font-family:comic sans ms;font-size:small;">As some of you know, I am not a huge fan of ladies skating. But when I saw Shizuka's Swan Lake, I thought that was fabulous. Love the costume, love the music, and I think she is a fantastic skater. I hope she does well at Worlds. (and a high five to rgirl and MMM and GBM for liking the costume, too. )

    I saw Fumie and Yoshie skate at NC, and I thought they were both great, in different ways. Fumie is very elegant, and Yoshie has great power. They are both very nice and polite.

    I agree with whoever said not to turn Yoshie into a "dying swan." No, no one will ever be moved to tears by her performance, she's more of a skater who will make you smile. I hope her coaches let her go with that.

    cheers,

    Laura </span>

  12. #12
    RealtorGal
    Guest

    Re: Suguri vs. Onda vs. Arakawa


    <span style="color:blue;font-family:comic sans ms;font-size:x-small;">Expression and Japanese skaters... Funny that topic should be mentioned. I have had quite a few Japanese voice students over the years and they were ALL very difficult in that respect. One exercise I did with students would be to call out different emotions as they were singing and I expected them to reflect this in the music, their faces and bodies. With the Japanese students, I could call out HAPPY, SAD, EXCITED, OVERJOYED, DEPRESSED--WHATEVER, and it all looked exactly the same.

    In no way is this meant to be a criticism of a culture--heaven forbid I should ever be accused of that. My brother has lived in Japan for many years and we discussed this fact at length several times as part of my effort to help these students develop the emotional side of their music, and he told me he was not surprised at all by what I encountered repeatedly and that this was a cultural issue.</span>

  13. #13
    AY2006
    Guest

    Re: Suguri vs. Onda vs. Arakawa


    Some Japanese fans seem to think Fumie's face has too much expression. Her "poetic" comments on skating are also frowned on by many people there. (Just an impression I got from reading BBS.)

    On the other hand, even Japanese fans seem to think Suzie lacks expression. (Thus her "iron mask" moniker. She is also called "Noh mask" which is probably a more common expression. I think only detractors use those monikers.)

    BTW, if anyone thinks Fumie and Yoshie are "polite" they probably haven't heard of their war of words. (Yoshie only jumped up and down after Fumie's marks went up at NHK, although I don't think ABC showed this.) Yoshie's bravado has been a popular topic lately as well as Fumie's "self-absorption." It seems that same-country rivalry tends to be nastier (Yagudin/Plushenko, Michelle/Tara, Sarah/Sasha, Suguri/Onda, etc. In some of those cases, it's fans rather than skaters who are nasty to one anohter.) Michelle and Irina can remain good friends probably because they represent different countries...

  14. #14
    GBMalwayz
    Guest

    The Japanese ladies


    That's very interesting Rgal, regarding the voice students. It would be really great to hear you sing to us someday.

    And here I thought the three were getting along so well. Hmmm, just a puff peice I guess.

  15. #15
    Princess Leppard 625
    Guest

    Re: The Japanese ladies


    <span style="color:fuchsia;font-family:georgia;font-size:small;">Just out of curiosity, did when Yoshie jumped up and down after Fumie's marks, was that because Yoshie had just won? Or had she not skated yet? I can't remember the skating order. (I'm assuming this was NHK?)

    They were both very polite at NC. I never saw them together, though, so I don't know how they interact with each other.

    Laura </span>

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