Thursday, November 6, 2014

Short takes

These gifs aren't apples to apples comparisons. They're just my takeaways, distilling my impressions of Skate Canada and Skate America 2014.

Moore Towers/Marinaro:


Chock and Bates:

Not so sure about the curve part or
the "lift" part.

I can't.
What I noticed with Chock Bates is that after the uber stand-still, draggy, dramatic opening, and some effortful stroking, the program turns glacial. That's a thing now in ice dance.Be slow. Truncated run of blade is preferred. How can you be crisp, clean, and tight with your music if you spend any time on an extended, deep edge. By the way, very.deliberate.sustained.gesturing is the new "crisp and clean."

The other thing in ice dance is the less skating you do, the higher you'll score.Ice dance. Once the skate-iest of all the figure skating disciplines. Then the North American Feds and ISU officials realized the public and media didn't know the difference, so why not turn it into a favor swapping pawn, and a pile of crap, while bragging it's now legit, in the best tradition of the most corrupt enterprises in civilized history.

I can't even touch the base value and levels bullshit.

The Shibs. I want to cry. The blade run and speed alone. How many points behind Chock & Bates? North American figure skating is a bunch of assholes:

Chock and Bates, of course, have one of the most
rudimentary, mediocre step sequences in contemporary
free dance history.
Hubbell Donohue (switched to their 2014 skate)

They need better speed, but how relevant is that in ice dance anymore? Chock & Bates are slow, and Hubbell Donohue have deeper, longer edges, better unison, softer knees, more program content, and skate their program.

Gilles Poirier:

I think there's some sleight of hand with them where she's on an extended edge supported in some type of connection/hold with Paul (and hey, I won't look a gift horse) but he's doing the actual skating, he's the one with power, and that's how they achieve speed/ice coverage when they DO achieve speed/ice coverage. It's a more palatable strategy then just in-your-face dragging and pulling, and that's the best I can say at the moment til I sit with their program a little longer.

Update to the paragraphs that follow - here is the attorney's original article:

An Idiot's Tale

Her name is Javairia "Jia" Junaid. I don't know if her linked-in profile is current.

My issue isn't with what she describes as her "bias" - a bias that assumed the appealing (to her) famous guy was being targeted by a vengeful ex. Plenty of people harbor attitudes and biases at variance with their education, job description and experience.

My issue is with her stupidity and her inability to process information. There were two components to the original story. One was The CBC's announcement that they were getting rid of Ghomeshi. The other was Ghomeshi's facebook post.

Any lawyer - any regular person with common sense - would know that a publicly funded corporation the size of The CBC, run by a bunch of well-paid, lawyered-up corporate dudes, is not going to get rid of one of its longstanding marquee talents because some ex-girlfriend with a chip on her shoulder made shit up. But attorney Jia Junaid had no problems reaching that conclusion. I wonder what she charges per hour - her clients must get tremendous value whatever her rate may be.

It's an especially comforting read when one absorbs that she's worked in advocacy sectors. NICE.

My original remarks:

I don't know what kind of idiot juice some media types are drinking in Canada, but one of the many naval-gazing Ghomeshi "think pieces" was from a media-type/lawyer (a woman) who confessed that when Ghomeshi's firing was first announced, and she read his facebook post, she believed him, and imagined that he was being victimized by a bitter ex girlfriend, probably a model/actress wannabe (I will hunt down the link to the article later).

Think of the brains it took to default to that assumption. This legal light immediately assumed that a corporation the size and power of The CBC would fire its famous signature face/name/brand because some anonymous, wannabe, resentful ex girlfriend decided to make trouble by making shit up. An actual lawyer figured that. A lawyer assumed The CBC just went - sure, probably true - he's gone! The subtext in this lawyer's assumptions was that it was probably a pretty girl, and therefore entitled and uppity, and you know, they get publicly funded major corporations to do their bidding all the time.

SO so incredibly stupid. And she had no problem publishing this.

I bet this woman/lawyer defaulted to that assumption without ever having once in her entire life witnessed/experienced an ex-girlfriend taking down some guy. She believes in myths more than she believes in real life. I would love to ask this lawyer exactly how often in her real life experience, and not her soap opera viewing, somebody's vindictive ex-girlfriend, all on her own, not only attempted some sort of combination smear campaign/stalking strategy against a guy, but against a much richer, more powerful, famous guy, and succeeded.

This woman is now regretting her default reaction because as it turns out, a couple of well-known women are accusing Ghomeshi, so now she knows it's not some phantom model who persuaded CBC to ditch the guy whose 20 foot poster was on the side of the building, but a few People Who Count.

I am dying to find out what firm pays this woman for her legal expertise, what her hourly rate may be, and what clients pay through the nose for her work. I hope it's not Siskinds.


Enjoyed this from MacLean's latest on Jian Ghomeshi:

Stories circulated at the CBC about his penchant for “rough sex” but they were mostly dismissed as gossip, says Paul Malcolm, a Q producer for four years. “I heard rumours of punching for as long as I was on the show, but I didn’t believe it.” “Jian was very private,” says one producer, who noted he seemed to have different tiers of girlfriends. There were high-profile women with whom he was aligned —Ani DiFranco, Sarah Polley, Lisa Ray, Tessa Virtue—as well as far younger women who would accompany him after show tapings in other cities.

Nice, right? Virtue and Moir are lucky Ryan Semple only appears to be a quasi-virtual-douchebag on twitter and instagram. But I bet anything they don't know much about him.

Virtue and Moir's social media alliances are paper thin, there's not even rudimentary due diligence, it's all cosmetic Stepford bullshit. Virtue and Moir have turned themselves into brittle, pageant-esque, image-burnishing paper dolls each an inch deep. It's so bizarre - years ago all they seemed to care about was skating, and Tessa was adament that neither she nor Scott had any interest in becoming celebrities. That attitude was either a complete lie at the time - wouldn't be surprised - or they've morphed into opposite sorts of people, and what are they getting out of it? They don't want to be adults? They want to stay in their version of high school their entire lives? There are twelve-year olds with more guts and character than either one of them.

At least with the Ghomeshi case causing people in media to come crawling out of the woodwork to confess how insular, dishonest, self-serving and inverted their "industry" and "community" actually is, we know the sorts of people with whom Scott and Tessa have affiliated themselves, and there's that saying that you know someone by the company they keep. Without even needing to, Scott and Tessa have adopted a community and are being reinforced by a community that is self-admittedly immature, self-promoting, self-obsessed, afraid, and insecure.

This post is brought to you by the windows behind Scott and Tessa:

There's been a lot of Funhouse Mirror-themed decor in the events they've attended this summer and fall.


  1. Last year's hd is better than this years gp, but this year's hd is even better than this year's gp. Your hd images are from their FD at sc last year, not this year.


    2. Thanks, will switch them out later.

      I'm still just so revolted by the elevation of Chock and Bates. They are ridiculous.

    3. I'm also revolted by the elevation of Chock and Bates. It should be between Shibs and HD for the US national title this season. Instead, CB are going to run away with it by at least 10 points, if not more. It's disgusting. Shibs and HD are better skaters and dancers than CB and both have two programs each that have more content and difficulty than CBs programs.

      North America has some of the finest ice dancers in the world, but they're ruining ice dance by promoting their very worst over their very best.

    4. It's their little internal political fiefdom, swapping out the prizes, with regard to the skating (as a one comments section participant noted not long ago). Without regard to the skating at all.

  2. Oh, posted this a few minutes ago below, but as this entry is much more relevant to the topic:

    Some SD comparisons....

    P/I vs G/P - Autumn Classic

    P/I vs P/C - Autumn Classic

    P/I vs C/B - Senior B

    More soon! Not ignoring SA and SC, and haven't forgotten about DF. And here's hoping sense prevails tonight at CoC, although at least none of the contenders are offensive.


    I agree 7:42, H/D have taken it up a notch even with her having to recover from hip surgery.

    1. Oh sorry, Die Flederamus. I've mentioned doing both a V/M 2012 and a Shibs waltz FD version.

    2. Ohh, I thought it might be something like that but then thought maybe there was a competition named DF that I had forgotten. :)

    3. Seeing PI next to cb and gp is like night and day. It's not night and day with pc, but they were gifted at ACI.

      Like PI, HD are also still a work in progress, but I am very impressed with the improvements they've made since last season especially with Madi recovering from hip surgery and their only being able to fully train for 6 weeks now. I can't wait to see how their programs grow this season.

    4. shibs blue danube is so much better than DF. they skate with the maturity and charm that dw lack. also the choreography is more dense IE they're actually dancing instead of just skipping around.

    5. (ps you should really do a comparison to DF and shib's BD )

  3. "Without even needing to, Scott and Tessa have adopted a community and are being reinforced by a community that is self-admittedly immature, self-promoting, self-obsessed, afraid, and insecure."

    It's become more than apparent how insulated and small the media community in Canada is. There was also this gem from the Canadian Public Relations Society:

    They say they're careful to stand only for what is honest, good, ethical.

    It looks like VM are closely associated with the media community that is more than eager and willing to lie their asses off on behalf of a charming and cute celebrity couple. But is VM's lack of good PR because they aren't associated with Canadian Public Relations? Or is that organization that says it deals only with the truth also turning a blind eye when it comes to Canada's (platonic) sweethearts?

    1. "References to terms such as "PR exercise" and "spin" have been used, reinforcing a long outdated stereotype."

      LOL. Come on.

    2. That stuff "Honest, good, ethical" is only words. It's been correctly pointed out that if some other media light were in Ghomeshi's position, he'd be leading the conversation about sexual assault even as his private life remained what it was, and even as everyone in the industry who heard his remarks knew the hypocrisy. I was reading that at one demonstration for abortion rights, GHOMESHI held the banner, which some observers found self-aggrandizing. He's used progressive issues and postured as a feminist as part of his image-burnishing, brand-positioning, and that's all it was.

      All those p.r. types who pose with Scott and Tessa and then do a sloppy photoshop job afterwards aren't thinking about the standards of ethics and honesty.

      These are not real principles any of these people/entitles live by.

      There's also economics. The people in p.r. who aid Scott and Tessa see it as a career boost. It goes straight on the CV.

      One article I read on the situation said that The CBC is fucked up economically, and that contributed to the problem. Many of those who worked with Ghomeshi weren't permanent employees, but the equivalent of temps with no job security who could be, not fired, but simply "not needed" at any time. These are not people who are going to confront their bosses with their concerns.

    3. Anyway, look at Scott and Tessa. They've rationalized their own hypocrisy to the point that Tessa believes she's being, no pun intended - VIRTUOUS when she lies to and manipulates the public. Look at the two of them, the purse-mouthed, shifty sanctimony when they promoted their reality show as honest, genuine and the actual truth to the NTH degree. What kind of damage does that leave behind? Down the line, why should the public ever believe anything they say? Down the line, why should the public believe what other celebrities say, knowing these two have done this for years with the active support of people in their sport and out, and people in media and out? It's not some crime or danger that is being covered up, but is that the only standard when one considers the ethics of aggressively marketing a hoax?

    4. Fascinating, that Canadian Public Relations Society statement. I'll be sure to keep note of their Board of Directors, Committees, task forces and others active in the society and any connection with/participation with Scott and Tessa's extremely aggressive manipulation of the public, that has only accelerated in the past year. I'm not reading that the Canadian Public Relations Society is saying that they refuse to spin and manipulate ONLY in the case of dangerous or criminal activity. They're saying they have top to bottom ethical standards and want to present the truth to the public. (The truth does not mean hang a person's private life up on a flagpole. It DOES mean don't proactively sell a laundry list of absolute lies to the public while insisting it's unvarnished reality and nothing but the truth, AND insisting that anybody who has told the truth or suspects it is misinformed or mistaken.)

      Scott and Tessa's idea of public relations is that it's lying. Tessa's idea of lawyering is also that it's lying. As long as your behavior is under one or the other umbrella, you're legit.

    5. Canadian media - a lot of media - functions more like a social community than a professional community, and people in media aren't interested in getting information to the public. It's all about branding themselves and celebrities are a huge "get" for anyone looking to brand themselves. Jian Ghomeshi was in the Jian Ghomeshi business. The CBC let him make Q near-synonymous with one person, Ghomeshi, and Ghomeshi controlled who a guest host got to interview, among other things. This was because the higher profile guests were a Ghomeshi trophy and not for the lower status guest hosts. That is ALL the higher profile guests mean to Ghomeshi, and neither he nor anyone else in media will ever do anything but encourage public figures that an interview with them is a terrific experience.

    6. Why should I believe what Sportbox says or does? Everywhere Scott and Tessa go, and with the assistance of Sportbox, plants on social media facilitate a hoax. It's as if a straight person were using p.r. exercises to position themselves as a luminary in the LGBT community. Scott and Tessa's entire brand is we are uniquely platonic. That's as p.r. exercise-y as you can get. They're Sportbox Personalities that Sportbox lists on all its envelope-opening events, they get paid, and then the social media plants come in to talk about how tiny and skinny Tessa is, who she's dating, who Scott is dating, how not pregnant she is and how not married they're not to each other, all illustrated by slapdash photoshop, not to be confused with the exquisite "artistic" photoshop by whoever does Tessa's personal instagram with the shrunken and de-volumed right side warping and liquifying and then painting over the traces, including the stomach. That's on her and whoever does those little artworks that she likes so much. The event photoshop is on the p.r. community and on Sportbox. What are they hiding about their golfers?

    7. Here's Kris Young, video coach for Canada's National/Olympic Women's Hockey Team, officially throwing his support to the sham:

      VM have all kinds of professionals promoting their sham. So much for any standards of honesty. Being associated with these celebrities, no matter how minor, is more important than one's own self-respect.

      The sycophants surrounding Tessa and Scott are good evidence how someone like Ghomeshi was able to get away with his actions for so long.

    8. These people aren't thinking about it at all. It's just the norm. That's why the Canadian Public Relations Society's statement about "spin" and "public relations exercise" being outmoded is such a joke. Nobody is working through ETHICS here. Lying about Scott and Tessa and aggressively foisting and marketing the lies onto the public is perceived no differently by any of these people than having a stylist come to the house and prep Tessa for an appearance.

      I also believe that in the avalanche of confessionals and think pieces from those in "media" since Ghomeshi, it's pretty evident that none of these people are rocket scientists, all of them are opportunistic and see the Ghomeshi situation as a way to get their personal story/name/experience out there - it's a chance to get into the spotlight themselves while hiding behind bogus self-reflection and sanctimony, and none of them have any larger perspective outside this story is in a way about ME. The CBC emiritus reporter who blasted Ghomeshi as a man who wanted to occupy the same "space" as the celebrities he covered is describing most people in media; it's not unique to Ghomeshi. A lot of the media, particularly the younger media, want celebrity, want to be branded, want to be in a position like Ghomeshi's, and worship the celebrities around them.

      I loved the one article where a woman scoffed at the idea that the Ghomeshi situation was any sort of watershed. We're always having watersheds. It's a chance for everybody in media to scramble for a position, to try and get themselves heard in their own articles about their own way of processing something, and then get links to that article retweeted and get quotes out there.

    9. Basically everybody in that industry expects someone else to do something about it, if anything ever needed to be done about it. That's the attitude. Oh, this is how everybody does it, so I did too. I don't have a brain, and I wanted people to like me. The best way to succeed in this business is to be a lemming.

      I don't think it's working for them (the members of the public relations and media class that enable Scott and Tessa and parrot all kinds of other bullshit about other stories) - I don't think this is the route to success or job security, but these people don't do the thinking thing too well.

  4. It's no secret in the world of alpine skiing and Canadian winter sports in general that Ryan Semple has a bad reputation with women. He's known to make unwelcome sexual advances and doesn't take rejection well. If this is who Tessa prefers to be associated with, she needs help. I've never met her or Scott but everyone says they're very nice people.

    1. 10:51. VM have shown themselves to be tone deaf in many areas. They feel they're so special the normal standards of ethical PR don't apply to them. In the same way, the normal considerations of being careful in choosing "companions" don't apply, or so they give the impression.

      What Tessa wanted was someone low enough to agree to sham with her, knowing she's married. Anyone checking out this guy saw immediately he's a pig when it comes to women. Tessa feels immune.

      Tone deaf.

    2. Their "unique" status is certainly one-size fits all. It covers every contingency. It's Virtue and Moir exceptionalism.

    3. I'm sure they've made certain that there's never been any sketchy behavior in Ryan Semple's private life, and the pristine Tessa Virtue marching down red carpets on his arm won't do any harm whatsoever, certainly won't, for example, make it difficult for any woman who has had a "bad date" with Ryan Semple. Would Tessa Virtue date a man who had a habit of being a bad date?

      OTOH, the way Tessa portrayed her relationship with Scott on the reality show does encourage people to believe she likes that sort of guy. Look at Scott's short fuse, barely contained impatience, and need to walk away from a situation that gets on his nerves lest he ... what? Furthermore, let's recall that when he'd have these tight-jawed mood displays, Tessa the Feminist would VO that she always thinks his moods are her fault.

    4. Basically they don't give a fuck how much damaging material they put out in the public sphere because it's all fake, see? Even though they insist the public believe that it's true, and these "truths" are probably not great things to market to the public either.

  5. Can someone explain why P/I, who had a brilliant performance, are in 5th, 4 freaking points back from 4th? Even the Eurosport commentators, who's commentary makes me want to puke, were confused:

    1. at this point i dont understand how they're below p/c but i guess p/c has more mileage in their programs...
      p/i should be a threat to w/p and above g/p skate canada is so fucked up

    2. The entire "sport" of figure skating is fucked up. Ice dance is just the best discipline where corruption can flourish, as there are no jumps and throws - you know, the stuff even the skating-ignorant can see.

    3. You wouldn't know CL were world champions by that performance. That compulsory sequence was particularly painful to watch.

    4. Even at their best C/L aren't world champion material, I still don't know how anyone can justify their win.

    5. It's embarrassing. I don't know why the judges want to promote them so badly considering that they aren't special in the way that some other teams are. Plus they're so much older than their competitors, which means that they really can't justify this any longer once the other young teams start to really gain traction.

    6. Gain traction how? There are other teams who are better skaters, I don't know what other kind of traction exists.

      There's no need to justify a result. We already know this.

    7. Well, P/I have been robbed so far at CoC. The program has room to grow, but it was a strong performance with a really great program. C/L were not good. I/Z have great skating skills, but were very messy.

      P/C are not a bad team and have made progress, but they're still rough and untidy, they do a lot of crossovers and little steps to keep speed and have some clunky, draggy sections. They seem to have a very significant political push happening for them though. They didn't receive the required deduction for him falling on his rear on the ending pose. And at ACI and now at CoC, P/C got a L4 in the Paso, and I'm looking at it and seeing what seems to be a different standard applied to the two teams. And they shouldn't be getting PCS higher than P/I, again for the second time this season. Their scores at French Masters were gigantic, they've really lucked out with P/B retiring. Still, the bigger problem is P/I being held down.

      On another P/I -related topic:
      Gilles/Poirier sure are popular with the Canadian commentators these days - here's an excellent record of it all, including Tracy Wilson's shining moments at SC

      Also, some interesting patterns at ACI, wouldn't you say?

    8. I should also add as far as the Canadian coverage goes, that while it sends a clear message about who the default silver medalist will be at Nats, it also was extremely disrespectful to W/P at SC. The entire thing was the Gilles & Poirier show, not about the world silver medallists winning their first Grand Prix at home. It was only an afterthought.

    9. Thanks 4:33 for providing an accurate assessment of PC's current ability. They are not bad and they have improved, but they are still flawed. The political push for them and the infatuation and fawning over them by online fans is puzzling to me for a team that still has a long way to go.

      The Canadian commentary is disgusting as GP finishing ahead of HD. It was also very disrespectful to WP.

    10. I will say this Guillaume is a beautiful dancer, the perfect male partner and that alone makes them shine a little bit brighter.

    11. Your standard for a perfect male ice dance partner is just that he's a good dancer? He's graceful when he's doing certain moves on his own, but I'm not seeing that translate much into especially strong partnering or presenting of her.

      And if it's about aesthetics, I find that him being a stronger dancer and skater than her results in the product looking somewhat awkward, for my tastes.

    12. That team gets on my nerves something fierce (P/C), mostly because they're such a hips up team. Oh they LOOK like a classic, non-ballroom ice dance team. Remember those days? They must be good! They're not without attributes but they're significantly less strong than teams they're sure to beat this season.

      I can't imagine this crap convincing people to show up for ice dance. It's completely obvious there's no connection between skating and scoring, the commentators make pretzels out of their explanation, and I don't believe fans really enjoy being given non-explanations for results that don't appear to be based on anything that happened on the ice.

    13. "That team gets on my nerves something fierce (P/C), mostly because they're such a hips up team. Oh they LOOK like a classic, non-ballroom ice dance team. Remember those days? They must be good! They're not without attributes but they're significantly less strong than teams they're sure to beat this season."


      This team is bothering me badly right now. They're not without positives and they are better than last year, but nothing in their programs or skating warrants the scores they are receiving or the infatuation seen with them by online fans.

      Your line about "they LOOK like a classic non-ballroom ice dance team" is spot on with the fan reactions. I've seen comments about it factor and star quality. The program gets called intricate and nuanced, but it's generic lyrical and is anyone paying attention with what's happening below the waist? If VM, Shibs, HD, or PI showed up with that exact program, they and the program would be called boring. But PC are from France and look like an old theatrical-based team and who cares about what their feet are doing because they have star quality and it factor.

      Most disheartening is that a number of VM fans have been sucked in.

      This season is looking like it's going to be another disaster. That's what happens when something turns into Lord of the Flies as ice dance has.

    14. "That team gets on my nerves something fierce (P/C), mostly because they're such a hips up team. "

      Did you actually watch their FD? A lot of people on FSU are giving stupid reasons for liking them, but I saw soft knees, variation of speed, very deep edges (I wish I knew how to make those feet only videos), and crisp elements. The lifts came out of nowhere, transitioned seamlessly on the music, and exited on beautiful running edges.

      If you guys are seriously going to go with they're theatrical and a "who cares about what their feet are doing" type of team, then, wow. Couldn't be more off the mark, in my opinion. Really shocked to see people at this blog talking like this, when this blog has been one of the few places that I thought got what good ice dancing was about.

    15. Anon 2:00 PM: watch their FD again, and if you can't be bothered, Sinska over at Goldenskate sums up what exactly is wrong with this result. P/C are not a bad team, certainly no worse than D/W, but the political push behind them is so ham-fisted, just like the push behind Chock/Bates, Gilles/Poirer, Coomes/Buckland. Jury's still out on which Russian team will get the support of their fed, but at least all the Russian teams actually skate properly.

      Step Sequence Level 2 and 3:
      …more questionable edges by Guillaume, also some light edges by Gabriella, bigger spacing between partners and no, no, no – get rid of that upper body bent forward done from time to time Gabriella!

      Many many two footed skating in Transitions. Gabriella doesn’t have proper work with free leg, doesn’t go into extension very often not only during steps, but also in Transitions, it gives the idea of not finished movements.

      As to presentation:

      I like choreography very much, the originality of some moments. It is not a difficult choreography (with stops, two footed skating), but every second is something happening, you don’t get bored. The music is very light and the couple creates very light mood also. Gabriella looks to be pretty tall girl, but she does toe steps and hoops very easily (which usually tall girls are not able to do – they look heavy in it – watch Stepanova or Sinitsina).

      P.S. French number 1 is doing its job. Even with such two great programs, the couple would never move up so high without Federation support. Personally I feel a little bit sorry for Natalie & Fabian who were also great and deserved high marks, but their journey to medals was much more difficult and their last year they were shot down at both Olympics and World Champs. Gabriella & Guillaume are not better technicians than Natalie & Fabien were and one year and they immediatelly jump into European Gold Medal Contenders. Natalie & Fabien must be sad that while other couple can be supported, they themselves were not in most needed time.

    16. I think people here are not so much saying they're not a good team, but that there are teams that are as good or better, and P/C are being outscored relative to them for obviously political reasons.

      I took 11:19 to mean not that they're nothing more than a theatrical team, but that it's an explanation of why so many fans, many V/M fans included, are suddenly gaga over a product that everyone hates if done well by a different team. It's a nice program skated well, but the declarations people are making, like that he's the best male ice dance currently competing, are OTT and is especially rich coming from people who have a habit of complaining about how boring other very worthy teams are. Suddenly ice dance is saved because P/C can win! No, it's still incredibly corrupt because they won.

      "they deploy Poirier's skating skills as an engine car pushing a stalled passenger car along the track."

      I'm not equating the two teams, P/C are far better, but there is definitely some of this going on in their FD as well. The judges are supposed to mark to the weaker partner. On the other hand, P/I's FD looks ike it's setup to showcase Alex's power, which still has a lot of room to grow but was showing in this outing.

    17. Never said that they had nothing to work on, but implying that they're above the waist, fake skaters relying on "the look" is totally off base, and comparing them to the teams you mentioned is really unfair, as they have worked on (and actually improved) their skating, and their win here wasn't pre-ordained (they were behind in the SD, and the two teams above them struggled technically - it's not the same thing as CB's win which was pretty much confirmed by Ice Network after champs comp).

      Reading through that, seems sisinska also thought IZ were undermarked on SS, footwork, and twizzles, but of course no one here is calling that out, because people don't like that they beat PI...

    18. "their win here wasn't pre-ordained'


      Thanks for sharing that, 3:41. P/C's edges are good, but not god's gift to skating. Can someone explain to me how Guillaume got key point 2 in the SD, and Mitch didn't? Camera angle is different, but even considering that, Mitch's looked like a clearer RBO. At ACI, both girls stepped on a LBO on step 28, and yet P/C got the key point.

      P/C beat P/I by a total of 20 points in this competition, and there is absolutely no justification for that. P/I need mileage for the FD , but it's obvious what they're going for now; I haven't parsed the levels enough, but it should have been close considering all the aspects of criteria, and at the very least I would place them ahead of P/C in the SD.

      P/C had 3 points higher GOE in the FD than the Shibs, again for no good reason except to put them in first. They didn't receive a deduction in the SD when they clearly should have. P/C's FD PB jumped 12 points in the course of 2 competitions.

      Apparently Tanith (and Kurt Browning, per below) was getting pious about how great P/C are for ice dance today, but was very critical of P/I's skating skills. I wonder if P/C have been chosen to act as some kind of foil for the bad teams, while continuing to keep the rest of the good teams down.

      "Reading through that, seems sisinska also thought IZ were undermarked on SS, footwork, and twizzles, but of course no one here is calling that out, because people don't like that they beat PI..."

      That makes no sense because the people you are referring to think P/I were underscored...

    19. This is like some kind of reverse DW "the skating justifies the protocol" argument. Their marks went up and they beat PI by a lot, so that proves their win was political. Ooook. Would love to see where you predicted PC winning the gold.

    20. "I think people here are not so much saying they're not a good team, but that there are teams that are as good or better, and P/C are being outscored relative to them for obviously political reasons."

      Thanks, 4:13, for explaining where we are coming from. They are not a dw, gp, or cb, but they are being overscored for political reasons. Even if they are not a dw, gp, or cb, it doesn't make it less wrong for them to get scores higher than what they deserve right now and scores higher than what better teams are getting right now.

      "I took 11:19 to mean not that they're nothing more than a theatrical team, but that it's an explanation of why so many fans, many V/M fans included, are suddenly gaga over a product that everyone hates if done well by a different team. It's a nice program skated well, but the declarations people are making, like that he's the best male ice dance currently competing, are OTT and is especially rich coming from people who have a habit of complaining about how boring other very worthy teams are. Suddenly ice dance is saved because P/C can win! No, it's still incredibly corrupt because they won."

      Bless you for this paragraph. Czieron being the best male dancer competing are OTT. He is good, better than his partner, but better than Poje, Donohue, Islam, and Shibutani? No. Papadakis is weaker and certainly is not as good as Madison H., Alex, or Maia. Kaitlin is not as good as the other three girls, but she's a stronger skater than Papadakis too.

      If PC's FD were skated exactly as-is by PI, HD, Shibs, or even VM, it would have been dismissed as boring and generic. All four of those teams have done lyrical and done it better, but it's this offering that has people beside themselves?

      The claims that ice dance is saved because pc can win have left me incredulous because it's still another team being overscored and given a victory they didn't have on the ice. It's still corruption.

    21. 4:52, the reason we know pc's scores and win are political come from comparing their skating to the CoP. It's the same way we know DW were overscored.

    22. No 4:52, it's a "what actually happened on the ice doesn't match the protocols and therefore things look weird" argument. It's not that they beat P/I and the Shibs by a certain number of points. It's that they beat by a certain number of points without the skating of all teams involved reflecting that. Not that their PB went up a certain number of points, but that it went up that many points out of proportion to their actual improvement.

      And unless everyone could see P/C's win coming, that means it couldn't have been the plan for them to win? And there were concerns posted before the FD - even before the SD - that they were getting tech points they didn't deserve.

    23. These are a breeze compared to my usual stuff, so I'm glad to do them if people want to see them.

      Feet only
      P/C SD
      P/I SD
      Shibs SD

    24. Thanks!

      PC can hit some deep edges, but there's something very heavy and draggy about their blade work. It's not light and smooth. The blades aren't moving effortlessly through the ice. I also didn't see soft knees. Heavy and dragging blades are inefficient blades. Inefficient blades come from flawed technique.

      There's also rocking, especially Guillaume in the lift.

    25. P/I and the Shibs have much cleaner blades.

      C/L SD
      I/Z SD

    26. "This is like some kind of reverse DW "the skating justifies the protocol" argument. Their marks went up and they beat PI by a lot, so that proves their win was political. Ooook. Would love to see where you predicted PC winning the gold. "

      Others have already point out that you haven't exactly made your point.
      With DW, it's the protocol justifies the skating. You just said the opposite.

      With PC, people are pointing out that the skating doesn't justify their win, that just like DW they were awarded key points where it appears the key points weren't done, and when you look at their actual skating the GOE makes no sense. People are questioning P/C's skating.

      I'm going to put up the feet only videos. I have a post ready with canadblue's other comparisons, and it's only waiting on gifs (which require watching the video through, clipping to the section I want to gif, and then making the gif, so it's a little more time consuming than embedding).

    27. I'm not surprised many VM fans like P/C. Many VM fans liked VM for aesthetic, not skating, reasons, among other non-skating reasons, and looked at their programs as vehicles for showing off not the skating, but attributes the fans especially enjoyed in them that were not skating.

    28. Thanks for the vids. IZ have outstanding blades. It's more evident from the feet only video.

    29. They skate far apart and she wide-steps like no tomorrow. WHY is that a thing now?

  6. It appears as if the ISU is "sending a message" to skaters who are working the actual system - CoP - with their skating, and not assiduously cultivating favors on the political side. Why should the ISU care how they skate? What's in it for particular officials, camps, etc.? Step up, Shibs and P/I. They need to get with the program. Get a clue already, skaters.

    I think it's getting visible to the lay person now, and figure skating stopped pretending awhile back that it gives a shit.

    1. My head is reeling from the CoC results. I'm not sure what teams like the Shibs, PI, and HD are going to do now. There is no room in ice dance for the teams that stick with the CoP.

      The last quad as DW were elevated over VM, ice dance was getting more and more drunk. Now, it's profusely puking all over itself.

    2. CoP is just a bunch of numbers. The primary complaint about CoP is its biggest asset. Even skating fans look at the protocols to justify the skating, instead of looking at the skating to justiry the protocols.

      I'm figuring out Gilles Poirier, and they're clever using hold. Instead of him dragging her at arms' length and yanking her past him to the other side, and other push/yank/lift/pull stuff, they deploy Poirier's skating skills as an engine car pushing a stalled passenger car along the track. He and Piper on in hold, she assumes an edge, Paul is doing the stroking around the turns and in transitions, but they're not arms' length and he's not pulling/yanking her. She's more like a sidecar. I don't know if that strategy is possible with Chock Bates because Bates just seems to be a perfectly awful ice dancer and a mediocre skater.

  7. Talking about the funhouse decor in many of VM's photos - take a look at this:

    Pretty sure Scott was photoshopped into both photos.

    1. Hah, the bottom right one for sure. Scott looks like a woman. Maybe they took something from the reality show. Look at the eyebrows.

      This is just trolling.

    2. He was definitely photoshopped into both photos. When I first saw the pictures, I was on my phone and it was too small to tell for sure. So while it seemed likely the bottom right one was, as OC says, I couldn't see the other one well enough. I figured if one was though, then they both were.
      Here is a good example showing how the top right one was as well.

      (another one, not as highlighted, now that you know where to look)

      I'm not exactly sure what they did. Maybe someone with more photoshop experience can explain which tools were used here.
      I don't know if the "box" was covering up the actual person/setting that was there next to KL before they added Scott in, or if the picture of Scott they used to import had something else in front of him that they had to block out... but either way, this photo is majorly messed with. The "box" is so sloppily done that it extends in to cover part of KL's head/face. LOL!
      But then, most of the Tessa pictures we're getting are sloppily done as well (the full-body one of her today case in point), so it's not like people are noticing, or care if they do notice.

      Something else I think is of note... I haven't been here in a few days, so I was catching up in the previous post... and there was a comments section (from Nov 4-5, specifically 8:54 on the 4th) talking about expecting to see sham pics pop up after the anon Tumblr report and discussion on how it wouldn't change anything, like the reports from Sochi that were soon forgotten... and lo and behold on Nov 6, looky what we got!
      It's almost like they were saying, "Oh, you want some sham pictures? Sure! Here you go."
      But it works. As soon as KL's new little collage went up (apparently she likes to make collages with him in it-is that supposed to up the cutesy factor?), this report was discredited. I don't know if it was true or not, although that person did seem a little miffed they were no longer being believed, but either way, it's definitely been labeled invalid.
      Since it's now clear they're going to continue this through the birth, I expect things to be picking up majorly in the next week.

    3. "Since it's now clear they're going to continue this through the birth, I expect things to be picking up majorly in the next week."

      I used to think they were just going to release a bunch of banked pictures around when she delivered, but especially as of late it appears they've become familiar or comfortable enough with photoshop to do that instead. They could also do a mix.

    4. 4:06
      Thank you for this. I thought things looked funny but I didn't know how to prove anything.

      What freaking, manipulative, malicious assholes. The shipper fans may be silly a lot of the time but they don't deserve this treatment. All the fans ever did was admire them and in return VM lie. VM are so nice that way.

    5. You can also see the outline around his arm and shoulder highlighted better in that first one.

    6. I really enjoy how the photoshop output at this point doesn't even pretend to be geared towards convincing anybody. Tessa seems pretty fixed on the output of whoever does her instagram - the right side is liquified/devolumized, the left is more monumental (just look at the hammer pants image), and then paint and clone is used to get rid of the pregnancy projection. Other than a couple of photos of her on the red carpet with Ryan Semple, nothing projects self-congratulation as much as particular images of Tessa with the right half of the instagram shrunk, the evidence of pregnancy erased, and the left side encouraging us to believe the scale/proportions are realistic, and please don't check to see if the left and right sides of her body match. There's this aspect of pride in it, don't know how to explain it. But sort of like - FINE, it's photoshop. But can you please appreciate how KICK ASS a solution to photoshopping out my pregnancy this is? Here's another three images!


    7. Back to KL's pictures. Doesn't Scott's hair look different lengths in each picture?

    8. @ 8:39, I agree. It could also just be styled differently, but those two don't look like they're from the same time, nor either from that specific event. It's like how the pictures of Tessa drastically change within each event she does. Her body looks one way, then it suddenly looks another way, and the next day is different again.....

    9. "What freaking, manipulative, malicious assholes. The shipper fans may be silly a lot of the time but they don't deserve this treatment. All the fans ever did was admire them and in return VM lie. VM are so nice that way."

      If the shipper fans ever piped down VM would do everything in their power to get them shipping again. At this point, and for some time, they're not reacting to anything out in the fandom; they're reacting purely to their previous choices and reinforcing previous choices. As you begin, so must you go on, we all know that.

      I do think the black dress (she's worn it a lot) full body shot of Tessa is funny with a much less photoshopped rear reflection in the mirror behind her. These things aren't accidental - as everyone can see, they're trolls.

      I do find it interesting that Feminist Tessa's manipulated ideal body image is Barbie.

    10. How unfortunate that Scott hadn't discovered photoshop and filters back when he was shamming with Jessica. He could have saved himself the trip to the Dominican, the tour round Santa Monica and Beverly Hills, and any number of photoshoots. Low detail and lots of color filter and there you go.

    11. "I do find it interesting that Feminist Tessa's manipulated ideal body image is Barbie."

      I don't expect anything else from somebody who spent 10 years in Canton.
      Ice dance basically promotes unhealthy body standards. Tessa had to listen to all these people within her industry that she's too heavy to be an ice dancer while Meryl Davis with her lollipop head and utter lack of muscles was hailed as the most athletic ice dancer of all times.
      That would mess with everybody.

    12. Oh please, who "within the industry" said she was too heavy to be an ice dancer? When that happened after 2010 it was in response to DW fans celebrating Meryl's contrived physique and they ran with it to support the narrative. It was Tessa who chose to go to the gym and add muscle to her back, arms and glutes, once CES was behind her and she could really train versus work on ice and then go to PT. That musculature is HER choice, and if the greatest female ice dancer ever who's ever existed is "too heavy to be an ice dancer" than how is she the greatest ice dancer who's ever existed?

      The physique Tessa creates in photo shop is down mostly to that when you warp an image, that's the physique. When you change aspect ratio, your head shrinks, your shoulders shrink, and your limbs tend to narrow and lengthen because everything is compressed from the sides, and yet the elements of the picture don't change, and they have to go somewhere, so they go up. Her boobs are courtesy of her pregnancy and her photoshoppers don't seem to have the sense to make them proportionate to the actual Tessa's body. When her personal instagrams delete volume from her right side, so her right side has different proportions than the left, becomes more fragile looking, and the scale of her body type changes. The result is Barbie. I don't know if she's proud of the body type but she's awfully proud of the effect of the photoshop.

    13. Not to mention this "heavy ice dancer" posed for widely praised photos for Sportsnet that were great looking. That's not someone who lacks body confidence in her real body. Her "summer weight gain" wasn't too in evidence there either.

  8. Not sure why u even follow VM
    its clear u despise them
    Why not move on


    No sound on this, but you were right, OC. A different program when skated with speed, and MAN did they have that this time.

    So hey, give them 5th and a silver for the Shibs, because sure. Isn't Didier the rumoured heir to Cinquanta?

    1. Here it is with sound, so you can hear Nicky Slater's lame commentary. His contribution is that Mitch should have worn a jacket. Idiot.

    2. But the commentators were great yesterday when they said PI were robbed.

    3. That was his knock on Scott last year for the sd. Apparently a jacket is worth a full point bump on pcs

    4. Shibs twizzles were gorgeous. My mind wandered during french team because it was lame

    5. Maia S had a little stumble here

    6. the best thing about the shibs twizzles is that one judge gave them +3 GOE while another gave them -1 GOE

      what the fuck COC

  10. "They need better speed, but how relevant is that in ice dance anymore? Chock & Bates are slow, and Hubbell Donohue have deeper, longer edges, better unison, softer knees, more program content, and skate their program."

    The speed will come for hd. It's one of the things that they're known for, but they'd only been training full time for 6 weeks at SC, coming back from Madi's surgery. With more training time, as the program gets into their bodies more, and they get their stamina back, the speed will pick up again. Of course, it doesn't make a damned difference because they're not a chosen team. No matter how much speed they gain, how much power they have, how much content they have in their program, how deep their edges are, how much skating and dancing they do, or how much the programs grow over the season, it's never going to reflect in their scores.

  11. Apparently Kurt Browning shaded DW today during CoC coverage. He said something like, "with Charlie and Meryl we learnt you can juggle with a girl but these two /danced/." He was talking about P/C. Of course this observation couldn't be made while VM were skating.


    Is the bending over supposed to be an attempt at hiding? Give the illusion that it's just the shirt hanging down, instead of the large bump that's clearly visible?