Tessa Virtue - a diamond in figure skating. In a very expensive cut.
She’s the strongest technically among all current females in ice dance. She has unique, stunning skating skills. This is a real gift from God. — Tatiana Tarasova
As Scott has said, he and Tessa were both incredibly lucky to, among other things, be compatibly talented, to have their talent grow at the same pace. Scott has a way of moving on his skates that makes skating seem as natural to him as breathing or walking. You don't see the technique. In the past, some observers in the skating world have admired this so much they almost implicitly dissed Tessa as his talent sidecar. Also implicit was the idea that she was conventional compared to Scott.
I can hardly think of a less conventional ice dance sensibility, or a less conventional, more brilliant talent, than Tessa Virtue, despite superb, textbook-and-beyond skating technique.
While the ISU (and the judges at the Canadian championships) disgraced the sport in their scoring of Carmen vis a vis Notre Damethis past season, I think Carmen at least made it impossible for anyone to pretend Tessa was second to Scott or second to anyone.
There's a lot of pride that Scott and Tessa bring to their performances. That's not an excuse for the ISU judging system to pretend they don't see that Scott and Tessa are a million miles beyond Davis White every time they take the ice, that they should, as some observers in the comments sections have said, be able to absorb more than one mistake before they lose to a relatively "clean" Davis and White. They are as beyond Davis White as Yuna Kim is beyond most of her contemporaries and as Patrick Chan is beyond most of his contemporaries.
I believe the ISU and everyone else, including the USFSA, depends upon the ignorance among the skating public and media to pull this off, and also relies upon the idea that the skater or skating team who most strenuously begs the audience for approval and admiration is probably the skater who's doing the better job.
As anyone who looks at stills from SOI - or really stills from anything Tessa Virtue does - her ability to manage her body in space, her balance, her lines, her control, her awareness - is second to none. But I'd also look at how that body awareness and control enables stunning blade work. And then look at how Meryl's lack of control, stability and awareness negatively impacts her blade work - or prevents real blade work from happening (Charlie is no better on his feet than she is, but this is just comparing the women). I've never seen a pair of ice dancers who work around both dancing and skating as strenuously as Davis White. The moments of skating and/or dance are short-lived intersticials between filler and bullshit.
What happened last season is criminal.
P.S. Scott is, needless to say, in love with Tessa, proud of her, and supportive of her. So for the past many years when he's called her the best figure skater in the world, described himself as needing to keep up with her, called her his most admired athlete, people might believe it's out of love. He says it because it's true. He knows skating better, IMO, than most skaters competing today. He, better than anyone, knows what she's doing out there, knows what's obvious about her talent and also is well aware of the aspects of her skating that are both absolutely breathtaking and sail straight over people's heads because she's not begging the crowd for approval the second she does it. They've both got too much pride for choreographic exclamation points and underscoring that have no purpose but to encourage both audience and judges to believe they've done something great.
P.S. - too apt, Derek Hough is on "Just Jared" saying that Davis White taught him a trick he might do with Kellie Pickler on DWTs. Of course. What Davis & White do seldom has anything to do with skating skills. This is why they score so highly in pcs. Pcs don't mean anything more than the judges playing the politics card.