Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Just super, super bad

 Charlie's "meh" paso doble. Poor bugger (not really, but you know).



This post was going to have title like "Live by the scores, die by the scores", or "How does it feel, Charlie White?" by way of sticking it to Charlie White for going through a little bit of a Virtue Moir experience on DWTs. Not only is he getting screwed in the scoring despite blatantly outdancing the leader, who isn't dancing at all, not only are his scores suppressed in favor of somebody the judges shower with tens no matter how awful she is, but that somebody is his own ice dance partner. It's like, look upon my works, ye mighty, and despair! And look what you hath wrought, Charlie White!

Except I doubt it goes that deep.

But then I saw Meryl's "salsa," where she "danced" with an entire troupe, a dance which consisted of stomping around the floor on bent knees, being flipped and held up like a marionette by Maks while groping for her footing (watch, she gropes for her footing), and where the "troupe" was configured at the top of the dance to hide Meryl's ass. You'll see that part. It was terrible. When someone is that terrible, that's the headline.



To spare myself gifing every single second, because it's so bad every second should get its own gif, and I'd be here all night, I saved it in slow mo, so Meryl's fabulous form, rhythm, control of her body in space and sense of balance can get the showcase it deserves. Yes, rhythm in slow mo. When someone with rhythm is in slow mo, the tempo has changed, but you can still see the rhythm.

Or not.

video

And now I'm off to gif my favorite parts, as soon as we get this out of the way:




And this:


Be back soon.


Someone on one of the discussion sites called Meryl's dancing "masterful." It's another triumph of narrative over eyesight (something Virtue and Moir themselves exploit off the ice, which I'm going to post about later).

Walk walk walk walk push and walk walk walk.

More tomorrow.




She's a born dancer.


The challenging skipping part of salsa.

40 comments:

  1. Where is the rhythm? The Latin hips and torso? They call *this* salsa? Just NO.

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  2. Every dance she does has some type of strobe lighting to go with the all purpose dance kick

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    1. It's all compensation and camouflage. The strobe creates the "hip action" and the rhythm. I haven't watched DWTS in a few seasons, so this looks absurdly in your face to me. But I read in the comments section that this is now the trend; take a shitty dancer, toss tens at them, continue to the finals. The show used to storyboard differently, and mix it up more.

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    2. On another note....man is she ugly
      Just like that blue avatar character.

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    3. That is relevant HOW, 10:26? She's on a dancing show, not a beauty contest. And besides, plenty of V/M fans do not think she is ugly.

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    4. Not relevant
      just stating a fact - and it how is it relevant that "plenty of v/m fans do not think she is ugly "

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  3. Holy hell - WTF was that?!! If that travesty isn't proof postive the producers are fixing this, then I don't know what is....

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    1. Yup I think any dance coach is thinking wth as well...no wonder Meryl was never injured...there is zero risk to her movement...then you add the drama that two other female contestants are injured/sick - Danica and Amy - and you start wondering...I swear this weeks dance with Meryl looks like a throwback to the first MTV videos circa 1980s and not in a good way...

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    2. That's actually a good point about zero risk to her movement. In last week's rehearsal package, we heard Maks seeming to bitch about her being so "fucking timid." Meryl's movement always IS fucking timid. She doesn't engage her core. Sombody else is pinning her joints in place and holding her up. She's moving from the knees out and often from the elbows out. She's incredibly self-protective. And I remain incredibly curious as to what accounts for it, as the glimpses we had in the rehearsal packages seemed to suggest she can't, literally, rather than doesn't. Charlie, OTOH, can, and all this time he's been matched up to her. Now he's learning new things and doing it, and getting slapped down.

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    3. Has Meryl legitimately earned anything on her own merits, ever? It's not bad enough she has an OGM that she sooooo does not deserve, not to mention all the medals she has. This is a BS made-for-TV contest and it STILL has to be rigged for her.

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    4. I'd say she's a classic case of being born on third base and thinking she hit a home run, but that construct sort of implies that the person "has" something that takes them three quarters of the way around from the very beginning. That's not the case with Meryl. With her, she's carried around the bases and across home plate without either hitting the ball or running, and is congratulated for a grand slam.

      I don't believe ABC had any idea she was bad. That's why they gave her real criticism the first two weeks. After that I suspect two things occurred - the fan vote came in, and it became obvious that what we'd already seen was the limit to what she could do. If I'm correct, then they needed to overscore her to keep her in, because the fan vote wouldn't keep her in if her scores dropped to match her performances. It became clear that they couldn't score her according to what she was actually doing. She wasn't doing it and never would do it. She's incapable of a growth arc. What she did in the first two episodes is the limit of her range of movement. All Maks and Val have done is repackage the same moves to different music and then the show overproduces. If they'd scored her to her level of performance, she'd be where Candace Burrell is (and Cadace is better), and possibly out on her keister by this time already. I think that's un-p.c. to have one partner out that much sooner, before another, and there's also the Disson/ABC alliance someone in the comments section discussion has noted.

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  4. This is priceless: https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=Qoo5ZVmU5oI#t=47

    It's a video of Sarah Feng and Anthony Ponomarenko (son of Klimova and Ponomarenko) doing their _intermediate_ level FD at Junior Nationals in 2012. Check out the twizzles at about 48 seconds in.

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    1. BWAH! And they covered a lot more ice, too.

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  5. Those Meryl's "kick-kick-kick", "walk-walk-walk", "turn-turn-turn" seem those all-purpuse twizzles and those shitty non-skating things they did in their ice-dance coreography, such as hops, arm movements, lunges, not sustained edges and so on.

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    1. Don't forget skipping. Apparently there's just a ton of skipping in salsa.

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  6. This is exactly like when he was with Mel B. I never thought she was great. All she did was fierce!walk across the floor and do leg extensions... which obviously were better than Meryl's because she could hold up her own leg, not kick and drop. She did it with more attitude, attack, and command than Meryl, but the routines were the same basically.

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    1. Mel B. is sacred in the annals of Maks fandom. But I agree with you. This is what makes Maks such a convenient partner for somebody with Meryl's limitations. People look and blame him, but I've got news for them. Val put together better choreography but Meryl was executing the exact same stuff the exact same way, and only the exact same stuff the same way.

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  7. VM are still doing the curve lift from Seasons. Isn't that kind of dangerous if Tessa is pregnant ? Could the pressure on her stomach hurt the baby ?

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    1. Really, I think everybody is better off if they stop back seat driving. If people are worried, read more about pregnancy - there's some great links in the comments section to the post below this. That should put people's minds at rest. Otherwise, and as idiotic as Scott and Tessa can be, they are not idiots about their own bodies. They don't need fans second guessing them about pregnancy health.

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    2. What effing pregnancy????? This is just nutso. Get yer head checked!

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  8. This article somewhat dares to question the marks in Sochi, but not too much:

    "Whether there was a deal or whether it was collective mindset or general stupidity, "some of the marking at Sochi — especially the incomprehensible ice dance component scores — was a major setback for an already-struggling sport."

    http://m.thespec.com/sports-story/4496958-in-stars-on-ice-virtue-and-moir-unveil-first-program-they-choreographed-themselves/

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    1. I disagree with the implication that it was only the components, or especially the components. For anyone who knows the rules, a +3 GOE for most DW elements is just as inconceivable as a 10 in PCS. This has the effect of making DW sound like a technically competent, but component-lacking team, when in fact they are completely incompetent technically by a huge margin.

      Also when they say incomprehensible, I'm not quite sure if they mean it was incomprehensible that the judges gave DW such high scores, or that ice dance in general and the CoP are incomprehensible, which would be fodder to DW fans, I think - it's all a matter of opinion and all that since DW are getting it done technically.

      Still, it's a start, and I don't want to dog on it entirely. I like the fact that they don't dismiss the L'Equipe deal, but also point out that even if that wasn't the cause of the marks in Sochi, that it could be part of a larger problem. That's where I fall... whether the specific story in L'Equipe was correct or not, it really doesn't matter, because we didn't need a story to tell us the judging was corrupt... the proof is what we saw on the ice and in the scoresheets. I'm inclined to believe there was something to the story, but it wasn't the full story and the deal was clearly not limited only to the Olympics. The push for DW has gone back 5-6 years and I'm inclined to believe the Russians started getting into the action in 2010 to assure DS a place on the podium and got real serious about it in 2012 when it looked possible that there would be no Russians on the podium in 2014. So in that sense, I do agree the Russians and Americans have been working together.

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    2. Do we know whatever happened to the L'Equipe journalist who wrote the original article? If there was indeed collusion, that's a scandal in itself, but the bigger scandal is the systematic over-marking of DW the last two quads. The L'Equipe article was either a missed opportunity to shed light on the marking, or a precursor of a bigger bombshell to come. Sadly, I don't think the bombshell (ie, blowing the lid on D/W's overmarking relative to their crap skating) is forthcoming anytime soon.

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    3. It was my understanding that although she had covered skating for years, this was going to be her last season to do so because she was so disgusted by the politics.

      I think there was a deal, but I think it was a deal made long ago. What's suspicious to me is the timing of when someone went to the press with it. By the time the the deal was reported, the groundwork had been laid so people dismissed it. Even with the deal, I suspect it was just one part of the system-wide, from-the-top-down corruption that was necessary to make this happen.

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    4. I would love for her to get Natalie Pechalat unplugged...P/B were also screwed several times over this past quad, thanks to D/W's overmarking.

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    5. While Milton's article is a start, what would also be a start is if he became informed FOR HIMSELF about the sport. Then he could look at DW's performance and report from his own knowledge what was crooked about the scoring. The way he writes back, he reports based on what he imperfectly understands from the skaters, or other sources. At one point he realized Virtue and Moir's step sequence was miles better but didn't grasp that not only was it more difficult, it was also executed miles ahead of DW and yet was scored as inferior. And now he seems to grasp that there's something called "component" scores, but doesn't have the full picture, because after twenty years of this he hasn't, you know, checked out the sport as a sport for himself.

      oc

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    6. It's interesting that PB "unplugged" themselves to complain about IK, but never could say anything negative about DW. There are some pretty clear hints. At 2013 4CC, Nathalie raved about VM's soft skating and said they were her favorite in the competition. At 2013 TEB in the press conference, PB said that many couples recycle lifts, but the audience was lucky at that competition to have 3 couples who do new things (VM, PB, and IK). I'm certain they don't care for DW (I mean, they have eyes), but they don't speak out even though they've spoken out about other things. It really does feel like a big conspiracy sometimes.

      Maybe in a couple of years, when DW are out of the picture, more people will speak up.

      This is what PB said about IK:
      http://www.lequipe.fr/Patinage-artistique/Actualites/-rien-a-se-reprocher/442424
      F.B. : On n’avait pas vraiment de gros espoirs quand on a vu le tirage au sort des juges. On savait exactement que ça allait être difficile. Après, passer de 103 points à 110 points en une semaine, c’est phénoménal. Félicitations aux Russes, je suis impressionné. Une telle progression sur un même programme...

      Why can't someone ever say something like that about DW's skyrocketing scores?

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    7. they arent exactly complaining about I/K's scores there. F.B. is saying : "we did not really have big hopes when we saw the drawing of the judges. we knew exactly it was going to be difficult. after, passing 103 points to 110 points in a week, its phenomenal. congratulaltions to the russians, i am impressed. such a progression on the same programme."

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    8. Because when it's the ISU behind it, it's terrifying. If an entire country/Federation is afraid of crossing the ISU (South Korea), how must a single team or skater or coach feel? Most of these people hope to continue in the sport even after they're done skating. What ex-skater/coach will attract any business from up and coming skaters if it's believed they're on the bad side of the ISU?

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    9. Fabian wants to coach and will be starting out with Igor in Novi. PB couldn't speak out anymore than anyone else can or could.

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    10. 6:58, this is 2:48... I was reading a heavy amount of sarcasm into PB saying how "amazing" it was that the Russians progressed by 7 points with the same program.

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  9. One of my favorite things about this is that she has to prep herself with a small backwards motion to gain momentum for her leg kick.

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    1. Yep. The entire thing kills me. And I remain fixated on "What the hell accounts for Meryl?" She's not like any other skater, good or terrible. She has a specific set of limitations, around which the programs she and Charlie skate have been formatted for years. WHY? At a certain point, resistance and stagnation creates more fatigue than growth. Yet it appears clear that Meryl cannot grow. It's one thing to have a ceiling on your skating talent, and then to realize that if you fake it in a particular way, you can win anyhow, with the cooperation of the ISU. It's another to be on a reality dance show, with your partner moving quite slowly/deliberately, and still not be able to straighten your own leg, nor arrest your own (slow) momentum after a rotation. Something's up, and has always been up. There's a core to this mystery, and it goes back awhile.

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  10. DW shippers are throwing a hissy fit on tumblr because Charlie commented with an " I love her " under one if Adam Rippon's instagram pictures of himself and Tanith. Apparently it's rude and inappropriate to profess your love for your long-term girlfriend and makes it look like their relationship is fake

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    1. Listen, not long ago I took a tumblr tour, and it was an eye-opener. Charlie is in love with Meryl. For whatever reason, he can't deal. There was even one icky fanfiction that had Charlie/Meryl innocently (but not) cuddling in bed as ten year olds. You know, they didn't know what sex was, but all the other senses were attracted.

      Basically, it seems modeled on the contortions VM fans threw themselves into when they tried to buy VM's story that they were platonic, and, at the same time, account for the fact that Scott was all over Tessa and vice versa, all the time, and clearly when it's not choreography.

      There is nothing about DW that somebody who believes they are platonic needs to rationalize or account for. But I never knew that the (IMO, limited) DW shippers were so OCD and intense about it. Scott Moir never said a word publicly about either Jessica or Cassandra (clearly, to him, the reality show was on par with facebook, because he doesn't and never has acknowledged Cassandra in the interviews he and Tessa continue to give pretending fans are obsessed with their personal life and too consumed with fantasy to acknowledge the platonic reality).

      Let Charlie say a word about Tanith, and clearly Tanith has a gun to his head, and is forcing him.

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  11. Anon at 6:58 pm - I have a different take on those quotes from PB - and I am a native french speaker - my interpretation is that when PB saw who was on the judging panel - they knew that the odds were not in their favour and with regards to IK - I think they were being sarcastic because in a space of a week the same FD skated the same way a week apart scored seven points higher...if you have seen Fabien in press conferences - he generally is very straightforward and speaks his mind..I mean at the press conference after Worlds 2012 in Nice - when asked about the Yankee Polka being the SD for the upcoming season - Meryl indicated that she was excited about it...Fabien basically indicated that he was less than enthused about the Yankee Polka...Fabian is far from being as politically correct as Igor Shpilband...the guy is definitely more a free spirit...and Nathalie isn't exactly a doormat either...

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    1. oh ok french isnt my first language so i might've missed that. although i find it weird how F.B. expressed his sentiments on not being keen on the YP like scott but didnt get punished for it... (before his injury)

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  12. wow meryl looks sf smug here http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-faLnoK7-ACo/U2GVC-OlqgI/AAAAAAAAHIg/ljxzvs20Cp8/s1600/smile.jpg all those (un)deserved wins must be getting to her head.

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  13. I really hope they take this horrible, irrelevant, disgusting blog full of internet trolls without a life off the internet. Do you people even have a heart? You're all disgusting and are the reason why I (and MANY more) absolutely hate V/M and their bitter fans as well.

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    1. 8:31, if you hate VM and their fans so much, why are you reading this blog?

      The fact that this blog has been up for 3+ years now and has not been taken down should be one clue for you. There is no ground to take it down because the whole premise of this blog, that VM are married and the parents of young child, is true.

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