There are about 12 VM gifs and a few more PC gifs than that, so I'll get started now and finish up later.
When I made the gifs for these two programs, obviously I muted the music, and then we had two programs in the lyrical-romantic vein, so it was hard to decide where to be mesmerized, until you looked at skating content. Among other things.
Notes: Tessa Virtue straightens her legs rather more than Gabrielle Papadakis, who never straightens hers ever, while possessing hips nearly tighter than Meryl Davis's. I don't think either Virtue and Moir's skating, nor their choreography in Seasons suffers much in comparison to Papadakis/Cizeron's performance, despite Seasons's deficiency of drooping-flower-in-the-meadow body language or dramatic head rolls. And despite Tessa's failure to use fluttery fabric on her skirt. And despite Tessa and Scott neglecting to acquire matching light tans. Tessa does her own, interdependent skating while in and out of connection with Scott, rather than relying upon him to steer and turn her around the ice, but OTOH there's a clearly insufficient number of fluttery pirouettes performed in place as Scott gesticulates emotively while gliding, and yes, possibly Virtue and Moir could have raised their arms and eyes to the arena ceiling more frequently.
Yet, while I could see these choreographic omissions being perceived as less romantic, I don't get why some think it lesser skating. Or even less "impactful" skating, the most important category, usurping all others.
I think the main reason some may have preferred Papadakis/Cizeron to Virtue/Moir is they think the music is prettier. The clothes are prettier, the hair is styled more romantically, and the emoting gives more feels.
But the skating - it's not better. Or even in the same universe. I think lifts were mentioned, so I can't wait to get to those.
Here are the gifs (there will be some commentary):
|Maybe Virtue and Moir's skating is too big?|
The enormous run of blade/ice coverage thwarts
|Though Papadakis Cizeron work to convey otherwise, a strong |
skating program is performed more with the blades than by
swinging the arms. Kudos for their arms remaining attached
to their shoulders after this performance; that took some doing.
|I'm not convinced all of ^ is what the figure skating|
glossary means by "knee action".
My gifing slowed down a bunch at this point,
because the whole program looks like this.^
I kept thinking I was stuck at the same place, and
had to double check.
|These guys could be the 2015 World Champions.|
To be continued, but until then, jumping ahead to this:
|This is glacial. So were Davis White often as not,|
but they were touted as fast. Churn those arms.
|I can't be the only one who gets seasick|
watching these two.
Of note is how each team manages contact and hold. Tessa manages her own balance, generates her own power, while in and out of contact with Scott. Gabrielle is hitched to her partner like a sidecar as he steers her, generates her momentum for her with pushing and pulling, and compensates for her lack of power and security.
There's juniorish performance/content apparent in this comparison, but it's backwards to the impression some observers have expressed. Looking at the two programs together, it's also difficult to see why anyone would believe Virtue Moir's program was "abstract" and Papadakis Cizeron compelling (I know those two labels aren't opposites). Even if one sets aside the obvious, which
is that to any reasonably skating-aware observer, skating skills at this level of superiority are inherently mesmerizing.
|Oh, come on.|
|Oh, come on.|
|So we're back to a whole bunch of crap that, miraculously,|
adds up to the opposite. It's a strategy that works.
|Aaand ... scene.|
I'm verklempt, but pretty sure for the wrong reasons.