ETA - Thanks to the person who steered me to P/I's Canadians free on youtube. Here they both are - DW's and P/I's:
I was going to put DW first, then PI, but I think the difference is even more striking if you look at the "lesser" team first, and then DW. Immediately you notice DW are miles apart and are doing the most elementary in betweens, and most of their elements - not to mention the rest of it - in design and in execution - don't approach the level of difficulty of design in P/I's elements, let alone execution. Furthermore, Meryl and Charlie would come crashing to the ice if required to skate as closely together, with as much variation in direction and hold, and with as little preparation, as P/I are able to deliver so seamlessly in this performance. And please notice P/I's ice coverage. They're into the ice, they have big curves; they're covering that rink, they're not skating small.
I'm not pushing P/I here, because the same goes for VM. But it's instructive to look at a THIRD place Canadian team not anticipated to make the podium, who do every single thing better than DW.
Yet DW will win the gold, and VM will be silver, and P/I will make a "good showing." Unbelieveable. Unlike pairs, singles, etc., you still can't "move up" in dance even when you're superior. That's how it's been for decades, that's how the ISU had decided it should remain.
DW's skating is dumbed down but they've polished it, and they're rewarded for doing dumbed down stuff with polish. Lower ranked teams who combine admirable stuff with raw tend to expose themselves - lesser difficulty, or areas with good level of difficulty executed awkwardly.
In Paul Islam, we have a lower ranked team that didn't make Worlds last season, and finished third at Canadians this year. They're definitely not expected to podium in Sochi, and may possibly make top ten, but nobody anticipates top five. They are, however, complete. They have a high level of difficulty, and they're polished. They're a good point of comparison.
WHY are DW number 1? The skating at Canadians was so good, it begs the question of not just why DW are consistently beating VM, but why they're beating any number of teams.
At the moment, it's the lifts that are driving me crazy. I look at that fucking backpack, and that ridiculous fetal lift, and then look at the exquisite lifts the Canadians show in their programs, the control of their bodies in space as they execute, and the smooth run of their blades, and could just scream.
Skating fans are certainly powerless, that's for sure. More than any other sport.
I don't think skating fans (or any sports fans) should control outcomes. But a sport owes its public full explanations of results, explanations that refer to its own rule book and standards/critieria to shed light on scoring. Not abruptly claim the scoring is all about subjective arbitrary bullshit when it suits someone's agenda.
|Whatever "floating" effect it used to have|
has pretty much gone down the crapper.
|Not the greatest but skates into it, and kicks DW ass|
in independent control of body and limbs.
|Their problem is they lack the |
"wow" factor. Right, Evegny?
|What other sport can get away with |
actually gaslighting the public?
Also, ice dance is the only figure skating discipline with multiple instances of undefined criteria in the rulebook that the judges can use to elevate an inferior team. But WHY? The other three disciplines all have explicitly defined standards and criteria.
The one standard that is inarguable - superior stroking, blade run and ice coverage, is simply disregarded.
P.S. - something else re lifts: In the best lifts, when the women is changing position or entering a lift, her partner "assists". He provides leverage, a point of rotation, he might assist her momentum, but it's all "assisting" something she's already generated and set in motion. This is even true, this year, of Gilles Poirier, for God's sake.
Charlie White is not "assisting" Meryl Davies. What Meryl Davies does is contort herself into a position that enables Charlie White to sling her up, actually heave her up, or muscle her up. Naturally, this means they get the highest base value for their lifts and the highest possible GOE.