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  1. #1
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    About Johnny Weir's skating

    I realize that Johnny Weir has alienated a lot of people with his personality. He has repeatedly asserted his belief that politics deprived him of an Olympic medal. His spats with and negative comments about Evan Lysacek have also drawn the ire of many in the figure skating community.

    However, despite all those shortcomings, I still enjoy Johnny's skating. And that's what I would like to focus this discussion on while excluding all mention of Johnny's public persona. For those of you who like me take pleasure in Johnny's skating, what programs of his are your favorites? What do you think are the qualities that make Johnny's skating appealing? I ask this because while I find his skating sensuous and exquisite, I have trouble articulating what technical aspects make it so. And last but not least, what other male skaters have a style similar to Johnny's? This is the most urgent question for me personally because I have a feeling that there are so many male skaters out there with a mesmerizing, gorgeous, and breathtakingly beautiful style that I haven't yet discovered. The only other such skater that I know of is Stéphane Lambiel.

  2. #2

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    I loved Johnny's skating before he started having inconsistency problems and he got away from what was working for him. His basics - stroking, turns, etc. were beautiful to watch because of his lines, posture. His jump landings were light. The 3A was gorgeous. I used to like his lutz from a spiral entrance. he had a wonderful foot sequence in Otonal. He had some creative spins too, even at a young age. IMO he was more beautiful to watch than Lambiel, because he was more natural in his movements, and early in his career he was a consistent jumper too. Dick Button used to say- "he caresses the ice"- when he was stroking around the rink.

    My favorite Weir programs:

    The swan- 2006 Oly SP
    Dr. Zhivago LP (2004?)
    Otonal LP (2005?)

    I even liked his 2006 LP which used partly Irina's music. Not many people seemed to like it, and in the Olympics he used Otonal instead. IMO he should have stuck with what he had practised all season.

    He did skate well at a more recent worlds (2007?) and won the bronze. I thought he was going to make a comeback, but it did not happen. His career will be remembered as- what might have been.

    Some of his exhibitions were absolutely beautiful. I think 'Imagine' was among them, but I am forgetting most of them. More recently I liked his Lady Gaga number, even though the costume was awful.

    Johnny got away from what was working for him, lost his focus, and lost the opportunities to win some major competitions. He still remains one of my favorite skaters.

  3. #3
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    I love all his programs before Lady Gaga,I just HATEHATEHATE his Gaga programs,I love lady gaga's music,and Poker face and Bad Romance give Johnny most fame and money in his skating life,but I just HATEHATEHATE it forever!!!! it destroy his beautiful line,beautiful skating style,now he can just skate slowly and posing and doing tricks like Plushenko did in competitions,cheap,ugly and awful give the Johnny back!!!! go hell programs with gaga's song!!!

    other male skaters have a style similar to Johnny's:Yuzuru Hanyu from Japan.He will be next Johnny Weir,but with his jumps,he can get something that Johnny never could...hope so.

    lambiel is the opposite with Johnny,who can make people crazy with no sparkle,often Black custume even in some soft songs or classical music.they are totally different style.and I must say lambiel's technique is far from ignore,he has qoads entil now,fastest spins,high level footwork and excellent skating skills.and apparently he will remember as a two time worlds champion and olympic medalist and the best male spinner ever,not a uncrowned king.mention his name in this thread make me sad for Johnny...and Johnny?Lady gaga on Ice is a good thing? :blah I don't think so.
    Last edited by luCN; 09-20-2011 at 06:18 AM.

  4. #4
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    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=whV9x...eature=related

    This is my favorite Weir program...just sublime. I really wish he would have stuck with classical music instead of going the synthesized piano garbage route....

    ETA: And I'd like to give the finger to the judge who scored him 4.9/5.0...complete BS.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Triple Butz View Post
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=whV9x...eature=related

    This is my favorite Weir program...just sublime. I really wish he would have stuck with classical music instead of going the synthesized piano garbage route....

    ETA: And I'd like to give the finger to the judge who scored him 4.9/5.0...complete BS.
    Amen. He just Peaked artistically several years ago. He needs to learn that the music needs to stand alone, without the words. Most of his exhibitions have been performed to music playing in elevators all over the world. Bring back the Tarasova programs.

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    He used to have beautiful flow and extension, especially coming out of his jumpa, and aesthetically pleasing spin positions. Now his skating is very slow, which has killed his beautiful line and extension, and made triple jumps impossible.

    Even his "Bad Romance" routine looks sluggish, the last time I saw it he barely managed a double toe loop. He also did some hip hop number on Battle of the Blades that was painfully sluggish. Pop music needs to be high energy.

    I liked his Dr. Zhivago and Fallen Angels. I think he peaked when he was with Priscilla Hill. I don't know if it is age, money, or lack of motivation, but he doesn't seem to train as hard as other elite skaters, even pros, and it shows. I think his colorful personality is the only thing keeping him relevant as a skater.

  7. #7

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    I feel sad when I look at Johnny's career. He was so much better than Evan - technically, artistically, up to 2006 (although the Fallen Angel program - after 2006-was very good). Now see where Evan is, and where Johnny is.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vash01 View Post
    I feel sad when I look at Johnny's career. He was so much better than Evan - technically, artistically, up to 2006 (although the Fallen Angel program - after 2006-was very good). Now see where Evan is, and where Johnny is.
    I think that this thread sort of says it all. Almost 24 hours and only a handful of posts. Not much to say about Johnny's skating other than it used to be glorious and full of promise. He has moved on to other interests.

  9. #9
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    It happens to a lot of skaters. Some peak early, some peak late, some stay great for while, some go downhill pretty quickly . . . it's like any sport.

  10. #10

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    I loved almost all of Johnny's programs but my favorites were the Swan and Love is War. I also loved his debut senior nationals program and the enthusiasm he showed in the kiss and cry when he was younger.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Triple Butz View Post
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=whV9x...eature=related

    This is my favorite Weir program...just sublime. I really wish he would have stuck with classical music instead of going the synthesized piano garbage route....

    ETA: And I'd like to give the finger to the judge who scored him 4.9/5.0...complete BS.
    Absolutely gorgeous. It has everything- musicality, line, posture, technique, emotion.
    I never was a passionate Johnny fan, but I used to really like him. "Valse Triste", Zhivago", "Otonal", Swan Lake" - there was a distinct "signature" to those performances. I don't know what happened afterwards, but as many here say, his artistic development seemed to stop. Johnny started choosing mediocre music at best, and it seemed to me that his skating became about nothing. So-so music, expressed with a customary beautiful line, but not much else.
    Unlike luCN, I started appreciating Johnny again with his Exhibition numbers about the time he retired. I enjoy "Poker Face", because his personality- love it, hate it or everything in between- is just pouring out of that number, and that's what matters to me. Besides, it's quite original. I adore "Heartbroken". http://youtu.be/LpwmR3Ej-wE . Really love it, as much as Johnny's early programs; when I saw it live it brought tears to my eyes. Maybe not the most complex music, but, like in his early programs, choreography matched the music beautifully, and it projects sincerity and personality.
    improving my ballad- like lines

  12. #12
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    I'm not a huge fan of him, but I liked his 2010 SP to 'I Love You, I Hate You.' I can't think of that many male skaters who have a similar style to him, but one I noticed at the 2011 Worlds who had sort of a similar style was Kim Lucine from Monaco. Of course, he's not at Johnny's level in the least.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by dinakt View Post
    I adore "Heartbroken". http://youtu.be/LpwmR3Ej-wE . Really love it, as much as Johnny's early programs; when I saw it live it brought tears to my eyes.
    In fact, I love it just as much as you do. Watching it recently on YouTube is what inspired me to write this post. I watched it and was stunned because it reminded me of why I liked Johnny's skating in the first place.

  14. #14
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    Johnny's skating back in 2004 is what made me discover this forum. He had such a natural lightness and fluidity to his skating that I had not seen before. His flow and position on the jump landings, particularly the stretch of his free leg, were really something. Sometimes, Johnny's air position would be so tilted and I thought for sure that he would stumble or fall, but he somehow managed to still land it with terrific glide and posture.

    Basically, everything pre-2006 I loved to pieces and everything after that was below average for me. I'm not a fan of his recent exhibitions either. There is something in his movement that has changed. I would watch his "Unchained Melody" ex over any of his Gaga numbers or even "Heartbroken" any day.

  15. #15

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    This program was the first time I saw him, and although he was a nervous little skater with a mullet , this made me go WTF?!? Where did this come from?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fS9ul6w_Mq0

    He has beautiful lines and body position, he does difficult moves with wonderful flow and ease (like the little 3-turn variation around 0:20), he's fast, his edges are clean and effortless, his arm positions are gorgeous.....and even though this is early on in his international career, most of these qualities improved until about 2006-07 when he seemed to kind of lose focus.

    I would choose the Swan and Valse Triste as my favorites.
    You should never write words with numbers. Unless you're seven. Or your name is Prince. - "Weird Al" Yankovic, "Word Crimes"

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    Quote Originally Posted by Triple Butz View Post
    And I'd like to give the finger to the judge who scored him 4.9/5.0...complete BS.
    Judge's Marks for the SP

    That marks were harsh, but the ranking (3rd) wasn't really out of line, given that one other judge placed him third and three of the remaining seven judges ranked him second.

    OTOH, that judge's second mark for Weiss (5.7, as against 5.1 for Savoie, 5.0 for Weir and Jahnke, and 4.9 or lower for everyone else) is one of the most idiosyncratic uses of the 6.0 marking system I have ever seen.

    I have to say that I was exasperated watching that video. So much potential that was never properly fulfilled!
    Last edited by Vagabond; 09-21-2011 at 06:48 AM. Reason: To replace "seventh" with "second"

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vagabond View Post
    Judge's Marks for the SP

    That marks were harsh, but the ranking (3rd) wasn't really out of line, given that one other judge placed him third and three of the remaining seven judges ranked him seventh.

    OTOH, that judge's second mark for Weiss (5.7, as against 5.1 for Savoie, 5.0 for Weir and Jahnke, and 4.9 or lower for everyone else) is one of the most idiosyncratic uses of the 6.0 marking system I have ever seen.

    I have to say that I was exasperated watching that video. So much potential that was never properly fulfilled!
    haha, second you mean, right?

    You're right, that judge was just low-balling everybody...Still, I don't know how he/she thought they needed to leave room for 15+ skaters to surpass Johnny after that short program.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Triple Butz View Post
    haha, second you mean, right?
    Yes.

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