Grand-Prix Final 2016: review
I was so upset, that I couldn’t go to Marseille, that instead of sun, heat, French cheeses and wines I had just cheese, just wine and a rainy-snowy weather of our December. But maybe it was for the best. I’m afraid after some performances someone would have to carry my impressionable nature and unconscious body out of the arena. I doubt that fragile Japanese fans could do that.
Many skaters skated to a French music, alas, the audience didn’t appreciate it much. Unfortunately there were not much French people on the stands. But the Japanese fans as always were right there armed with Poohs.
But they had to keep their Poohs for a while because organizators decided to start with pairs.
Every year I promise myself to follow juniors more closely but every year I fail) However, every year it’s a surprise who got to the Finals
and who are all these people.
For some reason it’s always difficult for me to watch junior pairs. Especially when they fall, especially when they fall from lifts which is very scary( That’s why sorry but I don’t have much impressions from competition of junior pairs.
Alina Ustimkina looks great in her shorts for the short program.
Anna Duskova‘s tights and white heels of her boots made an indelible impression on my unbalanced psyche. The Czechs in general somehow looked weaker than I remembered them, had a lot of rush, mistakes on elements. Looking at them I couldn’t believe that they are world champions.
Mishina – Mirzoev – a lot of charm and positive emotions from their skating. Definitely they were my brightest impression from junior pairs. Great impression and the most optimistic expectations, but I’m afraid that girl has to be very careful with her diet, because she doesn’t look so small and tiny as pair girls usually do.
Alas, I can’t say that senior pairs were more interesting to watch. Without Savchenko / Massot, Sui / Han and Stolbova / Klimov it was hard to take this Final as the competition of six strongest pairs in the world.
Peng – Jin were obviously tired, it was their third competition in a row. Too many mistakes. Well, Yang Jin has to accept that his partner will struggle on jumps, especially in the free program. I agree with Tarasova, he behaved very worthy, as a real man and real partner. Perhaps, once timid Chen Peng will deal with this problem thanks to such a gentle attitude of her partner.
Julianne Seguin – Charlie Bilodeau returned to the old short program. I think it’s a wise decision because it’s much better. Unfortunately it didn’t help them much as Charlie treacherously fell from the jump. In both programs. But there is something touching in them and their skating, that makes me empathise and cheer for them.
Zabijako – Enbert also did a lot of mistakes. Well, such things happens. Still, like Peng – Jin, they don’t have much experience of competing together, especially at such level. Some things just come with time and the most important now is to stay healthy. Hopefully, with the experience caution will leave their skating and instead will come an amplitude and power.
What’s going on with Meagan and Eric? They still can’t deliver a clean skate( Second GP Final in a row their technical difficulty looses to cleanness and quality of execution. But I don’t think it will stop them. They just have no other choice. The trouble is their programs make impression only when they skate powerfully and cleanly. It did not happened this time( I also wish Meagan go back to her stylish haircut from previous seasons.
Ok, I really want to join the fanclub of Xiaoyu Yu. Oh, what a girl! Beauty and she really knows how to present herself on the ice. I demand a program where she’ll be portraying a queen! Big and scary Hao Zhang seems to be tamed) I have never seen him encouraging a girl who did mistakes in the program. Big China doesn’t stop to surprise me!)
Tarasova – Morozov had an amazing skate of the short program! It’s definately best program in their career. Well done, they coped with a quad twist and more or less coped with the rest of the free program. But I really want to meet the designer of their costumes. I want to check how fast he runs.
I was almost sure that ice dance will be the last competition at GP Final. But Frenchs decided otherwise.
I’ve heard a lot about Shpilevaya – Smirnov, I was almost promised that we have a new saviors of Russian ice dance. I don’t know what will they save and when, but not ice dance and not soon. The only performance in the short dance was his plunging neckline, everything else was slowly and not impressive. The free dance has gone under the motto “what else to do only for not to show some skating” So the rescue is delayed indefinitely.
At the starting move of their short dance Angelique and Louis tried to remove children from the screens…..and that’s all. There also was no fire in the gypsy free dance. And for some reason, they were constantly shaking their curls. Both. Of course, curls are very beautiful, but I want to see some dance in other parts of the body too.
Carreira – Ponomarenko‘s short dance was um…. the most adequate. Not a wow, but not “What it was?” like some their competitors have. Their free dance is beautiful, light, gentle. I like such dances for juniors. But I’d gladly burn Anthony’s purple plushy pants.
Actually, I’d gladly collect all the purple costumes from this GP Final anf burn them together – and let the purple flame blazes.
McNamara – Karpenter‘s short dance is a disaster) Especially I like how he’s skating with such facial expression “God, what am I doing here?” and “She is not with me”. I don’t really get their free dance, moreover I think they also don’t really understand what are they skating about. They have good speed, but they didn’t skate clean and had a lot of rushing.
She is wearing an apron over a bra, he gives her a spanking…. Can somebody please explain to me this genious choreographic idea? But the music without vocals really stands out. In the free dance Loboda – Drozd were probably inspired by Tessa and Scott’s Black Carmen. Black Malaguena in choreography is not too different from the standard red and black Malaguena, but Alla improved in speed and quality of her steps. Although, sometimes she’s still slower than her partner.
Parson‘s short dance is another disaster. Their costumes are a fashion disaster and music cut is also horrible. But Oh my God….I couldn’t take my eyes from their pattern! I re-watched it couple of times. Such an amazing skating skills, soft knees, great unison! Just wow! Free dance is very lovely and trendy. Rachel seems to have almost outgrown her brother, but I don’t see him having any problems in lifts. I’m really impressed.
I continue to believe that it was a bad idea to cancel compulsory dances for juniors. It affected badly on their basic skills.
Some predicted that at GPF Chock – Bates could regain the title of the first US pair. Well….now they need to think how to keep their second position in the national team. I don’t even know who else had so many fails in the first half of the season. Maybe it’s contagious. Well, then Ilyinykh – Zhiganshin’s offseason with Shpilband is justified. Destabilization of rivals is a great strategic success.
Whatever Hubbell – Donohue are doing with their sd it won’t become a less disaster. There’s only one right thing to do – throw it away and do a new one. Their free dance touches me to goosebumps. All three Lauzon’s pairs have free dances in the same style, but all skate absolutely differently. Apparently, even Lauzon’s style can’t extinguish Madison and Zach’s sensuality and sexuality.
Bobrova – Soloviev. Ok, first about what I liked) I liked the blues to Aguilera, it’s powerful and mature. I suddenly saw Dima in a different light. I also liked Katya’s mini-dresses, I hope she’ll never return to long skirts, because it’s a crime to hide such legs! Well, that’s all. Musical creativity of their coach is just killing all the trump cards and advantages of the pair. In the free dance I start giggling right from the starting move “And here everyone died” when Katya folded her arms and fell into a picturesque swoon aki Pannochka into a coffin.
Shibutani surely get the title “Steel nerves in ice dance”. After amazing performance of the Frenches, they came and did what they need to do. My great respect. I like their short dance, I like their free dance, but I want them to risk. Let it be on the verge of decency, let the people threat with public censure) I want them to surprise us. This is the only way they can win without mistakes of others.
Stumbling Guillaume killed all the magic. And for those who haven’t seen this magic before their short dance was a sad sight. Their free dance was fantastic. Their dance is stunning, giving a slight sense of shock. Canadians’ dance is completely different – it makes you feel, empathise. I don’t know how to compare so different programs, a lot depends on personal preference, which is closer to you – the flight of soul or earthly sensuality. Therefore, only each particular performance can show who was the best. For me, in Marseilles the French should have won the free dance, but still remain at the second place overall.
I sang all three songs of Prince (sorry neighbors through the wall for my decibels), I danced with them the entire steps sequence (sorry neighbors from the bottom for the swinging chandelier) and in ecstasy I wanted to throw myself on the ice in Marseille right through the laptop screen. Pure delight. I think emotionally their Japanese skate was stronger but it still touched me a lot. But I’m not sure that pink dress is exactly what this dance needs. You know, since return of Tessa and Scott I don’t worry for them. I just enjoy their skating. And let the judges hang the medals on whoever they want, it’s not so important any more.
Without Tsurskaya and Honda junior ladies’ final wasn’t very exciting for me. Japanese girls need to thinks of something that will make them more memorable. Sorry, but the only thing I remember is that one of them had a program to Gershvin and thankfully not in a blue dress.
Elizaveta Nugumanova is a lovely girl and not typical skater for Mishin. Both in terms of jumps and second mark. These are her biggest disadvantage and advantage.
Anastasiia Gubanova is a beautiful skater! Such a great lines and involvement into the program and music! I also like her programs, now is a perfect time to be a swan and Juliette, you’ll have time for everything else. Unfortunately, it seems to be hard to be her fan without solid amount of nervine.
Alina Zagitova – Eteri Tutberidze’s new universal soldier) What a character and what a jumping talent! Impresses, right? But it’s a highly supported by the judges torture to watch a program with all the jumps in the second half. Especially when a skater has no finished moves, no nice lines and the great music of Sen-Sanse and Minkus doesn’t really bother her.
I really missed Ashley in the ladies‘ final. I’d gladly replace Radionova with diva Wagner.
Elena has difficult times of struggling with her jumps. She had to fight for every landing, so it’s hard to talk about some impression from her programs. The main question is wether Elena is able to get in shape for the Russian Nationals?
For my taste for the set of indicators “program-choreography-costume” among the Russian girls Masha Sotskova looks the best. Someone has not a great program, someone has disaster instead of costume but Maria looks very tasteful. Keep it up. Very decent debut.
Kaetlyn Osmond was expectedly gorgeous in the short program, expectedly had mistakes in the free. Kaetlyn, don’t rub salt into the wound! Skate your La Boheme program clean! It’s one of my favorite music pieces! Yeah, Canadian Nationals will be interesting……Kaetlyn or Gabrielle?
Either it was nerves, or pain after stumbling at the start, but in the short program Anna Pogorilaya did not shine as she can. She was too concentrated, had some rushing, so there was no usual chic. I often criticize Anna for rushing and some lack of properly stretched legs, random arm moves, but for such performance of the free program I’m ready to forgive her everything! It was fabulous and it was very close to a real women’s figure skating.
Good girl Satoko didn’t rub salt into the wound and skated her La Boheme short program in a very beautiful way. Her pre and under rotations are a topic for another discussion but her programs are high level and haute couture, and she skated gorgeous.
I have only one advise for Evgenia Medvedeva. Save the money you got on grand-prix and use them next season for a world-class choreographer. Lori Nichol, Marina Zueva, David Wilson, Shae-Lynn Bourne, Jeff Buttle. Chose whoever you want but please no another theatrical program by Averbukh in Olympic season. Because about his FP I can say with phrases from Evgenia’s steps sequence “Oh my God” and “What the hell is going on”.
Probably, I’m going to say an insulting thing about junior men‘s final, so please forgive me. I don’t see any skater of this final being a medal contender in seniors……except Korean boy. It doesn’t mean that they won’t win anything in seniors, just they will unlikely cross the level of “solid average skater”. But Korean guy has a chance to become a top skater. I don’t know how to explain this…..just some sort of feeling.
Well, maybe also except Ilia Skirda, he’s just too young to make any forecasts.
Alexei Krasnozhon hasn’t learned yet neither American presentation nor American way of skating. His upper body is stiff. The only memorable things are 4lo and red scarf that lived his own life during Alexei’s free program.
Roman Sovosin is a good guy and he was trying his best but he lacks some gloss in programs and costumes. He also has weird take offs.
Alexander Samarin has a very catchy song in the short program. His jumps are beautiful, especially axel. But the same disadvantages: not good skating skills, stiff upper boby, programs, costumes.
Dmitri Aliev has better programs and better costumes. I’d even say much much better and almost great) But with him you never know is he going to win or fail everything.
You know I’m seriously thinking maybe I should end my review just right here…..and not a word about men’s final?
Because someone (in the sweater with my bloody tears on his shoulders) instead of
happy bright ending of the GPF left me heartbroken, so I didn’t want to write any review at all and watch/follow figure skating for a while.
Actually, there were other “heroes” who spoiled my mood that day! Yes, Adam, Javi and Yuzuru, I’m talking about you. Your performances in the free program really made me angry. It’s better use censorship and do not say what I wanted to do with you and previously mentioned someone. I’ll only say that it somehow involves the suspenders from Chan’s costume for the short program.
Oh, I wish they have finished GPF with ice dance(
Shoma, don’t scare me any more, neither in SP nor in FP. And let this women scream in your free program, let that door slams like in a horror movie, even a plushy pants……I’m ready to forgive you everything. Just always skate like this.
Em…. it’s still difficult for me to find words to describe my impressions of Nathan Chen‘s free program. I’m shocked. That moment you realize – a new era of men’s figure skating has come. Like it or not, but it has already come.
Okay, Yuzuru, perhaps, I’ll forgive you. The short was very good, you kept the first place and so sincerely supported your teammate, that my heart melted. And please don’t blame yourself for not setting new records. Not here, not now they’re needed.
The first half of the season is over. Figure skaters got their medals. But I’d gladly give medals to all the fans for surviving this marathon, for all the tears of sorrow and joy. We also deserved)
Related topics: Alla Loboda Pavel Drozd, Anna Pogorilaya, Cheng Peng Yang Jin, Christina Carreira Anthony Ponomarenko, Ekaterina Bobrova Dmitri Soloviev, Evgenia Medvedeva, Gabriella Papadakis Guillaume Cizeron, grand prix final, ice dance, Julianne Seguin Charlie Bilodeau, kaetlyn osmond, ladies, Lorraine McNamara Quinn Carpenter, Madison Chock Evan Bates, Maia Shibutani Alex Shibutani, Maria Sotskova, Meagan Duhamel Eric Radford, men, Natalia Zabijako Alexander Enbert, Nathan Chen, pairs, Rachel Parsons Michael Parsons, Satoko Miyahara, Shoma Uno, Tessa Virtue Scott Moir, Xiaoyu Yu Hao Zhang, Yuzuru Hanyu