Sunday, November 9, 2008

Of Tangos and Spartaci: Cup of China Recap

“Spartaci” is plural for Spartacus, just in case you were wondering.

OK, not really. I just thought it sounded better than Spartacuses.

Why would I find a need to pluralize the name of Khachaturian’s ballet anyway? Read on, as the GP observations keep on coming…

+ Stats-wise, my predictions held even with Skate Canada as I scored 5 for 12 again: good guesses for Ladies’ gold and silver, Mens’ silver, Pairs’ gold, and Dance bronze. Sarah Meier had anything but a clean skate either night, so Laura Lepisto took bronze instead. And Jeremy Abbott took full advantage of the quad-turned-double toe loop and other errors served up by Tomas Verner, which resulted in trading places on the podium from what I’d predicted. As for the rest… just picture more flip-flopping. That just about sums it up.

+ First we had dueling, back-to-back Giselles at Skate America for the ladies free skate. This time we had dueling, back-to-back Tango Medleys in the mens free skate for Artem Borodulin and Tomas Verner. My vote easily went to Verner; I cannot wait to see that one with all the content at 100%. But was anyone else taken back at how deflated his program was for a good 10 to 15 seconds after he took his one tumble? He appeared stunned, as if he’d fallen out of a wonderful dream and was trying to figure out how to jump back in.

+ As for the non-medalists, my favorite among the men had to be Kristoffer Berntsson’s robotic visit through 1985. I have to admit, Axel F and Take On Me remixes are things I could generally do without. But if he can manage some better jumps later in the season, this could be the coolest flashback since Stephanie Rosenthal’s Rockit program at 2006 U.S. Nationals.

+ My non-medalist pick for the women was easily Ashley Wagner (who finished 4th). The word I wrote down was FIERCE… so much speed! So much power! And did you hear the applause that thundered down midway through the routine? She seems to be thriving just fine under Priscilla Hill’s tutelage.

+ However, I have to admit that I’m not a fan of either Spartacus costume…that goes for Wagner’s AND Oksana Domnina’s (who used Spartacus for her free dance with Maxim Shabalin). I’m not sure when it was that Romanesque themes started taking on a tribal flair, but it would appear that both ladies had caught a little jungle fever. Note to both of them: the season is young. Take advantage.

+ Speaking of costume overhauls: what did everyone think of the new look for Belgosto’s OD? I liked it, but as the OD itself goes, I’m afraid I still like others better. And it occurred to me that the last time these two did a major costume change mid-season was the That’s Entertainment! free dance of 2006-7. Which ultimately led to scrapping that program altogether. Could there be an all-new OD by the GP Final?

On that quasi-cliffhanger, I’ll leave you with Clips of the Day from both
this Spartacus (the Dombalin FD), with hopes that I can find THAT Spartacus (the Wagner FS) on You Tube by my next posting. By the way, if you scratched your head at the way these clips are directed, you’re not alone. I’ve got a bone to pick with the TV producers at Cup of China, and I’ll get to that tomorrow.


tiamatsrevenge said...

Kelli -

I saw that you were looking for video of Ashley's FS from CoC ... and I just found it ... I thought I'd pass it along to you ...

The British commentators both sound like Davy Jones of "The Monkees" ... And they LOVED Ash's performance ...

Kelli Lawrence said...

Thank you so much!

You're right about the commentators... too funny... I'm a Monkees junkie and got my kids to become fans too.