ETA: this is the most recent link to canadablue's video:
Canadablue's video comparison
Below is canadablue's comparison between Davis and White's lyrical-ish 2014 gala program to Rachmaninov and Virtue and Moir's exhibition version of Mahler, performed in 2010. The original canadablue video compares the DW Rachmaninov performance to three additional Virtue and Moir exhibitions, but the central points are on display in the video's initial look at Davis White in 2014 vis a vis Virtue and Moir in 2010. Those points are:
...to illustrate the difference in difficulty and quality, of both skating and dancing, and especially with regards to how the teams gain and maintain power. Skating to slow music does not necessitate skating slowly. A team's movements can be in time to the music while still allowing them to cross the ice with speed. (canadablue)
Davis and White's bastardized appropriation of what some argue is Virtue and Moir's style is annoying because it exemplifies the bastardization of the sport itself. Never mind the skating Virtue and Moir are executing - Davis White merely ape the style, imitate some performance aspects, and, when pasted atop mediocre skating presented with conscious pseudo-import, it's seen as the same thing. While no skater or skating team owns a particular genre, piece of music, or style, I believe in this instance that Davis White's gala exhibition is intended to run the table, mimicking Virtue and Moir, so as to assert that Virtue and Moir have nothing we don't. We're complete.
It's sad. This sport is spitting on itself by pretending this (Davis White) is as good as that (Virtue Moir). It's a further blurring of style and technique, refusing to acknowledge any distinction. Through Davis and White, ice dance encourages fans to see generic styling as indistinguishable from superior skating. Journalists of course follow along. Some even now assume there's actually an artistic mark**, and that the artistic mark comprises things like mood setting, impact, momentum, and other non-technical, non-executional, subjective intangibles.
I'm going to start with canadablue's Davis White vis a vis Virtue Moir Mahler exhibition clips, and later, make gifs.
What bothers me, really, is not Davis White seeming to put on their bastardized Virtue Moir; it's the on-purpose bullshit in their skating. It's how they gesture towards doing something, and, gesture made, drop it. That's enough for them to be declared better than teams that actually do it, and to defeat them.
That's them all over. They're pro forma ice dancers. They appear to initiate something to a phrase of the music, and, gesture made, I bet many people think they did something, such as achieved and sustained matching lines while gliding. Except they didn't. They "present" it as if something's happening, and it's not. That's pretty much all their choreography/skating is, while Virtue and Moir are actually doing it. The sport doesn't want us to appreciate the difference. Considering the enormous gulf between what Davis White do versus Virtue Moir, this is heartbreaking.
**There's no need for any journalist to fact check what they say about figure skating when writing about the actual skating, because there's no accountability in journalism either. Nobody expects somebody writing about figure skating to actually understand the rules or know what's being scored.