Sunday, January 13, 2013

It was them

That's it. Them. There's nobody else.

These are the two people who begged us to associate Tessa with the character of Carmen. Scott even belittled those who were slow to get on board.

These are the two people who went to the media so journalists like Ryan Pyette would produce pieces titled Syrupy Sweet Image is Gone.*

Carmen was ready for its debut and Team Virtue Moir proactively instructed the media and the fans that Tessa embodied this character.

Of course they did. They couldn't just let her skate it and have everyone see that she embodied the character. And actually, everybody saw Tessa's performance was spectacular, but that wasn't enough. They needed to be informed that they had doubted Tessa, and then be corrected.

So now the season is many months old and Tessa Virtue hits the media to complain that people associate her with this character and it hurts.*

They just make shit up. They don't hesitate. If it's convenient to make it up, they do it and sell it.

So let's review: At season's start, they told us the ways we could associate Tessa with Carmen, because they were afraid we wouldn't. Or, more likely, it served their purposes to pretend we wouldn't.

And now they're coming around bitching that we associate Tessa with Carmen, which nobody does. We associate Tessa with powerful ice dancing as both performer and technician and we associate Tessa with delivering a spectacular Carmen on the ice.

That doesn't suit them. That's not the role they've assigned us, and it's all about that for them.

This was a set up, start to finish. It doesn't matter that the fans aren't doing and haven't done what Scott and Tessa claim. Fans don't have a voice. Scott and Tessa can run any kind of line in the media and it goes unchallenged.

It's ironic how often they accuse fans of not understanding the difference between performance and real life, isn't it, when Scott and Tessa themselves lack all respect for the difference between reality and deceit? And in fact, they are constantly looking for ways to get fans to believe that fans are mixed up about reality and fantasy, because that way fans are more likely to believe the falsehoods Scott and Tessa peddle every day. Their media strategy is appropriated from Gaslight.

It's one thing to lie about your own circumstances. It's another level of mendacity to lie to people about themselves.
*A real reporter would have asked Tessa exactly which of Carmen's attributes some people are confusing with Tessa's. Do they think Tessa works in a cigar factory and spends her smoke breaks rolling cigars on her bare thigh? Is Tessa offended that people might confuse her with a woman who is unapologetically honest, upfront, fearless and powerful?

Words from Denyce Graves, who's sung the role often: "I'm a great admirer of this woman," Graves says. "I have drawn a lot of strength from who she is. I wish I could be more like her. She doesn't care. She really lives honestly, and that's attractive, I think."

Well, apparently not to Tessa.

Don't worry Tessa, people would never accuse you of that.

P.S. Some of the fans online who have read this article are asking, in all sincerity, where it is that Tessa has been accused of being like Carmen. They believe Tessa. They don't think she'd say something like that if it wasn't true.

*I don't think it's escaped anyone that the title Syrupy Sweet Image is belittling. Are Tessa and Scott mocking the Mahler program, the UoC program, the other programs they've done? Are they saying it was just sugary glop, beneath their abilities as artists, but they were compelled to do those programs in order to pander to their simple-minded fans? What does Scott mean when he says it would be easy to just "look at each other and sigh"?

Is he trashing his former programs, claiming they were an act put on per fan demand?

Why is it so natural to them to be insulting?


  1. Besides this issue of Tessa saying her feelings are stung, I also take strong exception to two other things in this article.

    One, the reporter saying the gossip about their personal lives has been inflamed due to the sensuality of the Carmen FD. Other than a handful of fans who still like to speculate about VM's private lives on public forums (and it's a very very small handful) the fandom as a whole never brings this up except to reiterate Tessa and Scott's own story - that they're not a couple. If fans think otherwise, they're not talking about it on the most visited public skating-message boards. The fans have actually been very respectful about this subject and there is NOT an increase in gossip because of their FD. If anyone thinks the existence of this blog is to blame for "more gossip" because of a sexy FD they not only have not bothered reading the blog, they're making things up. Like you've said, that's the same argument they made when they brought up George Clooney, accusing the fans of not telling the difference between fantasy and reality. The reporter said this as if it's a given fact - I wonder, is this what VM themselves are saying or is it just a lazy reporter who doesn't bother looking at facts? Ether way, it's offensive that they decided the fans are not capable of appreciating this FD without bringing in their private lives. This year the fandom is so excited about this FD, and then VM have to dump this on them.

    Second, Scott saying the majority of fans only want to see the lovey-dovey programs, that against all the fans wishes, VM must be true artists and expand their horizons (or something like that). Such martyrs for their art! When in fact, for years the fans have been dying and pleading for them to expand their artistic interpretations. Anything VM do that shows diversity has been more than welcomed and acclaimed by their fans. Where do they get this stuff?

    From beginning to end, the script has been decided beforehand - in fact, I'd say since VM were juniors - and they stick to that no matter the facts. These guys have now been on the senior circuit about 7 years and they still stay in the same scripted little box. It's tiresome and insulting.

    1. It's safe to say the reporter is just repeating what Scott and Tessa said.

      This: "they've decided fans are not capable of appreciating this fd without bringing up their private lives."

      No, it’s BECAUSE it's not true that they're in the media working hard to sell that it is.

      The stuff Scott and Tessa say about fans is stuff they've made up to suit their purposes. They manipulate the fans directly, and then they lie about the fans to the media. There's nobody fact or logic testing this shit.

      The point is to get the media to repeat it, so it becomes a truism, because when it comes to figure skating, the media doesn't check anything.

      If Scott and Tessa are arguing that 1) people are confusing Tessa with Carmen 2) people want lovey dovey programs; 3) people are again focused on their private lives, then we can be sure none of it is happening and that's why Tessa and Scott have set out to argue the opposite in the media.

      Everything they say is manipulation. They have become as pathetic as Debbi Wilkes. They pretend - not believe - pretend - that reality is something they've made up. It serves their purposes to portray fans as a bunch of emotional idiots.

      Do any other skaters talk about themselves and their fans as Scott and Tessa do? Do any other skaters not just make shit up, but talk at ALL about the misconceptions fans have about themselves and their programs or their lives? Any figure skater anywhere? Who? Yuna Kim? Johnny Weir? Meryl and Charlie? Did Michelle Kwan go on and on about how fans only wanted her to be the innocent schoolgirl on ice then go on and on about how this program or that wasn't the Michelle fans expected and what a pain in the ass it was to fulfill herself as an artist when fans wanted to keep her in a little box?

      What figure skaters lived consistently up their own ass the way Scott and Tessa do? They LOVE talking about Scott and Tessa more than they talk about the damn skating. In this most recent article, it was such a relief to hear from Jennifer Swan, who apparently didn't get the memo. She talked about the choreographic process. I'm sure she'll be set straight next time.

      Meryl and Charlie uttered some cheesey and dumbass shit early in the season when they starting wanking on about chemistry and their fabulous skating skills. Thankfully, this tactic didn't seem a good fit and now they sound like themselves again.

      Unlike their training mates, they don't presume to tell fans what they think. They simply tell the media that they hope fans will enjoy their latest program. Their other training mates, the Shibs, do the same thing. "We hope they enjoy it." They only speak for themselves, not other people. They don't spend time telling the media how the public perceives them, what the public expects of them, and how they try to both live up to those expectations and challenge them.

      In the first place, that type of talk sounds ridiculously arrogant on a couple of levels - that fans are giving this that much thought, and that a couple of figure skaters are actually in a position to know what the public expects and wants.

      Scott and Tessa benefit from figure skating being such a marginal sport. It's not covered in any kind of depth and many of the "journalists" assigned to the sport don't know anythign about the sport. And a lot of figure skaters who do commentary perpetuate a lot of fallacies about figure skating, so even the quotes from the "pros" can be off-base. This creates a media environment where Scott and Tessa can claim reality is whatever they need it to be at any given moment and the person they're telling it too doesn't know if it's true or false.

      The way they present themselves in the media goes unchallenged. Nobody has the balls to call them on their shit. Every time they are in front of the media they present themselves as experts not only on themselves but about what other people think about them.

    2. "The way they present themselves in the media goes unchallenged. Nobody has the balls to call them on their shit."

      Thank you for having the balls to call them on it.

    3. "Second, Scott saying the majority of fans only want to see the lovey-dovey programs, that against all the fans wishes, VM must be true artists and expand their horizons (or something like that). Such martyrs for their art! When in fact, for years the fans have been dying and pleading for them to expand their artistic interpretations. Anything VM do that shows diversity has been more than welcomed and acclaimed by their fans. Where do they get this stuff? "

      I totally agree !

    4. They're not getting this stuff from fans. They need fans to play a particular role in order to justify the role THEY'RE playing for the media. It's propoganda and nothing more.

    5. 11:17

      How sad is that, that they so effortlessly say these things. I have to wonder if even Tessa and Scott know reality from the made-up roles they've assigned to fans. They've been spitting out this stuff for so long, do they think any of it is true? If so, it's pathetic.

      I guess it's still pathetic even if they know every second that they're lying about the fans' thoughts and desires.

      Sheesh. What arrogance.

    6. No, they don't think any of it is true. It's tactics. That's obvious if you look over their patterns. They constantly manipulate, gaslight and spin. It's a one way street because fans don't have a voice. What Scott and Tessa say about fans becomes the only version of fans the media talks about, even though it's completely fake. The media doesn't care. Obviously the skaters don't care. Fans are a necessary evil and anything goes.

      I think the idea that fans even have an off-grid outlet in the internets to express themselves directly to each other pisses these people off. They want control above all, even when the fans aren't bothering them.

      I've never seen a pair like this - so fucking addicted to DRAMA. I've mentioned Elena Bereshnaya before - I don't think this woman who had her freaking skull sliced open by her partner's skate blade made as huge a fucking deal about everything as do Tessa and Scott. Shen and Zhao trained in impoverished conditions initially, were for years unable to grow their skills to the level they yearned to achieve because of those conditions, and when opportunity presented itself they embraced it and became legends. Shen and Zhao delivered a performance for the ages in D.C. when they won Worlds and Shen was skating on a landing leg that was injured and numb. After that Zhao snapped his Achilles tendon prior to the 2006 Olympics that it's likely they otherwise would have won, and he skated and got bronze, and in the next cycle when he was closer to forty than to thirty, and when it could be excruciating to train the triple toes they needed in order to win in Vancouver, they did it and won.

      They've never made the fucking drama out of their experience that Scott and Tessa do. Scott and Tessa are histrionic little drama queens, both of them, and they insist on dragging the fans into it because the fans are their excuse. Right on schedule before every competition, here comes an avalanche of their shit.

      They just come across as small minded and small time. They can't get over themselves. They are more special than anyone who has ever figure skated ever, not just as figure skaters, but as PEOPLE.

      They can't stop obsessively micro-managing their "story" - a story that in the version they tell that has no basis in reality. I mentioned first world problems before - let's call it champagne problems. They obsess over stuff and are cowardly about things that other people - including some of their teammates - can't afford to get hung up on because other people have actual challenges to confront in addition to their skating career. Other athletes GET OVER the fact that they had a stressful physical condition four years ago. They GET OVER what they imagine strangers might think of them.

      Scott and Tessa make such a big fucking rotten game of everything you wonder how much time either one has ever spent in the real world, and by real world I don't mean Fowler-Kennedy. When you're an athlete, shit happens to your body. For Tessa, it was compartment syndrome. For Bereshnaya, it was getting her head sliced open and her speech center impacted. For Maxim Shabalin, it was skating the Olympic season as a one-legged man. In her professional career, for Katia Gordeeva it was watching her husband, the father of her child, her skating partner and the love of her life drop dead when she was 24.

      Scott and Tessa are more special and more put upon than all of these people. They have been through so much more.

      You seriously have to wonder what Marina Zoueva thinks sometimes when she watches their p.r. antics when you know what her previous Olympic gold medalists went through at a similar age and how THEY handled it.

  2. THANK YOU! More people need to read this and open their minds to other possibilities.

  3. "What does Scott mean when he says it would be easy to just "look at each other and sigh"?"

    It sounds to me like he is:
    - Scoffing the fans' love of their chemistry (which does *not* mean said fans are confusing the on-ice characters with their off-ice reality). And this in spite of having said in some other interviews that he considers their on-ice "connection" a strength. Now all of a sudden it's a burden.
    - Insulting the fans in suggesting they don't care about the skating, only about romantic sighs.
    - Declaring he's so popular he would still have fans even if he didn't skate and only looked at Tessa and sighed.

    Idiotic, much.

    1. Nailed it. Didn't miss a thing.

      Let's wait a bit for their whining to commence about how they were misunderstood.