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  1. #221
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    Quote Originally Posted by David21 View Post
    We were comparing Fumie to Sasha so I don't know what Kwan or Slutskaya have to do with that.

    As far as the actual skating was concerned (and that was what I was talking about above), Fumie had better speed and flow across the ice, deeper and smoother edges and softer knees while stroking. Those are things which have to do with talent in skating and not how high you can raise your leg in a spiral.
    Basics are probably the most important part of skating, but they are not the only part, and Fumie didn't have anything over Sasha other than basics. Jumps they were comparable I guess, but while Fumie had some sometimes better quality jumps, she attempted easier jump layouts and was even more inconsistent and prone to bad meltdowns than prime Sasha ever was, but had this weird knack for doing her only semi clean (since she never really skated clean, which even Sasha has done occasionaly) programs the same days Sasha did her worst. Sasha has way more than holding her leg up in a spiral over Fumie. She has far superior spins, far superior extension, position, control, and balance in her spirals (and in fact despite Fumie's basics her flow and run of edge in her weak spirals is quite weak and no better than Sasha's), by the mid 2000s her footwork was as good or better, her musical interpretation is far more diverse and better at her peak, and her elegance, command of the ice, positions, style, line, extension, and look on the ice are all far superior to Fumie. Other than basics and a bigger and better lutz and flip, Fumie doesn't really have anything over Sasha. No aspect of Fumie's skating is special, while many aspects of Sasha's are. As for Sasha's glaring weaknesses standing out more, I would argue Fumie's hideous leg lines, extensions, godawful posture and back, are all bigger weaknesses than Sasha's basics which in fact got quite good by 2004, or any aspects of Sasha's skating.

  2. #222
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    Fumie never posted a win over Kwan or Slutskaya in her whole career. That alone speaks to her level of "talent" at the very top level that is. To the best skaters of her era she wasnt even a small threat of any kind. Even Kwan at the 2005 worlds in her worst shape ever beat Fumie, like usual. Irina in even worse shape at the 2004 worlds still beat Fumie I believe (7th to 8th). Sasha had an amazing career, a better one than Fumie, and people still say she should have and could have done a lot more. You never say that about Fumie.

  3. #223
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    Quote Originally Posted by joubertelegant View Post
    Fumie never posted a win over Kwan or Slutskaya in her whole career. That alone speaks to her level of "talent" at the very top level that is. To the best skaters of her era she wasnt even a small threat of any kind. Even Kwan at the 2005 worlds in her worst shape ever beat Fumie, like usual. Irina in even worse shape at the 2004 worlds still beat Fumie I believe (7th to 8th). Sasha had an amazing career, a better one than Fumie, and people still say she should have and could have done a lot more. You never say that about Fumie.

    Irina did not beat Fumie at 2004 Worlds

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    I did find that an "on" Fumie had better musical commitment and depth than Sasha. I know people love Sasha's musicality, but I find it very lacking. Something missing behind the eyes and her upper-body was sort of stiff. Even her "fiery" interpretation seemed flat to me. However, I know I'm in the minority on that one.

    Also, in the 2004/2005 season, I thought Fumie had much more interesting programs. Basically I found an on Fumie's musical interpretation to be more on point than Sasha's. Compare their LP performances music wise in 2002 where their skill levels were on a more equal playing field. Fumie really utilized the music well whereas Sasha looked lost in Carmen and tried hard to get people into it (like clapping to her music in SLC to desperately inject some energy into it). However, when Sasha had a program she gelled with, it was outstanding like her Malaguena SP (mostly in her second season doing it), her Dark Eyes SP (again mostly in her second season performing it), and her Romeo and Juliet (after years of doing it as an exhibition and then having David Wilson retool it to give it more depth).

    Somebody mentioned Fumie having a weak run of edge on her spiral sequences. Is that true? Watch her "Paint it Black" SP (loved that program!) spiral sequence. She does the entire serpentine spiral sequence without any crossovers in-between her spirals. That's a true testament to the power of her blade and is something Sasha could never do. However, Fumie couldn't deliver spiral positions the way Sasha did. Regarding Fumie's spins, again, I found that version of COP to really play against Fumie's strengths. Had she been able to have the options that became available in the 2008-2010 and the 2011-2014 seasons, she wouldn't have made those sad attempts for some of those positions that seriously slowed down her spins.

    Anyway, Sasha has had the better career and more skating fans prefer her (even though I am still surprised that people on this forum think that people outside skating fandom would know who Sasha is). I think people compare the two because they bursted out on the international scene at the same time and traded results until Sasha flew past Fumie (though Fumie did get to beat Sasha at Sasha's last Worlds). They also illustrate two totally different styles and strengths in skating.
    Last edited by VIETgrlTerifa; 07-17-2014 at 05:53 AM.
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  5. #225
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    Fumie's programs=10 mg Ambien, no hangover! Catnap
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

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  6. #226

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    Good one! I have one...Sasha's musical depth is as shallow as her edges.

    Seriously though, Sasha's edges improved a lot and were pretty good in 2006. Just not Arakawa/Slutskaya/Kwan/Suguri/Kostner/Hughes good.
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  7. #227
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    Arakawa and Kostner cannot be touched in the edge department. I can sort of see the argument for Kwan whose edges were nice but Suguri and those two in the same sentence??

    I've seen them all up close and live excepting Kwan.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

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  8. #228
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    I just watched Fumie's SP at the 2003 GPF where I was present live. I wanted to make sure I wasn't missing something. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pFCxC2bBDik

    Looking for that elusive "musicality."

    She is skating to Fade To Black by the Stones who are the ultimate cool in rock'n'roll. The only thing that makes an attempt at said cool is the outfit but she should have lost the skirt. But OK. The sheer back only brings attention to her poor posture.

    Moving on to choreography: if you imagine her wearing a sunny yellow dress, she is easily giving you a picture of a happy, quite a bit gawky schoolgirl skipping along in the park on her way home. She is smiling, opening up her arms and hopping on her toepick as if gamboling on a summer meadow. Forget anything remotely black or cool there. There is zero and I mean absolute zero interpretation. Did you say stiff back? Because that back remained in the same hunched over position the whole entire time.

    Jumps--is that a slight leg wrap I am seeing? It's a mini Nakano and it's at the ankle and not the knee but it's a wrap nonetheless.

    Moving on, as painful as this violin music makes it--and it's painful as in tooth ache. (what did Frank Carroll call this kind of arrangement? He was right on, as usual).

    Same goofy smile during the footwork and what's that she's got going on with the arms? This is first rate windmilling right there. Gracie Gold would be proud. Back still hunched, toes unpointed. Where are the Rolling Stones in all of this? She could have been skating to Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. Nice scratch spin although not blurred to finish.

    What musicality were you referring to?
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

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  9. #229
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    I found Fumie's 2004 long program as quite musical and artistic, other than her usual stylistic flaws. I am not sure if I felt that way about anything else she did though. Her 2006 season short program too was great. Her 2001 and 2002 season long programs to Jupiter and Moonlight Sonata showed decent musicality, interpretation, and emotion, but nothing incredible.

  10. #230

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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    I just watched Fumie's SP at the 2003 GPF where I was present live. I wanted to make sure I wasn't missing something. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pFCxC2bBDik

    Looking for that elusive "musicality."

    She is skating to Fade To Black by the Stones who are the ultimate cool in rock'n'roll. The only thing that makes an attempt at said cool is the outfit but she should have lost the skirt. But OK. The sheer back only brings attention to her poor posture.

    Moving on to choreography: if you imagine her wearing a sunny yellow dress, she is easily giving you a picture of a happy, quite a bit gawky schoolgirl skipping along in the park on her way home. She is smiling, opening up her arms and hopping on her toepick as if gamboling on a summer meadow. Forget anything remotely black or cool there. There is zero and I mean absolute zero interpretation. Did you say stiff back? Because that back remained in the same hunched over position the whole entire time.

    Jumps--is that a slight leg wrap I am seeing? It's a mini Nakano and it's at the ankle and not the knee but it's a wrap nonetheless.

    Moving on, as painful as this violin music makes it--and it's painful as in tooth ache. (what did Frank Carroll call this kind of arrangement? He was right on, as usual).

    Same goofy smile during the footwork and what's that she's got going on with the arms? This is first rate windmilling right there. Gracie Gold would be proud. Back still hunched, toes unpointed. Where are the Rolling Stones in all of this? She could have been skating to Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. Nice scratch spin although not blurred to finish.

    What musicality were you referring to?
    Meh, we all see what we want to see. Lori choreographed this to a classical rendition version of the Rolling Stones' "Paint it Black" and they chose to take it in a different direction. You may not like it, but I think she succeeded in setting the mood they chose to set. I'm not saying Fumie is the most musical person but I found her performances more soulful than many others even with the bad posture. For me, I can't tell the difference between Sasha's Dark Eyes and Malaguena interpretations. IMO, Sasha is like a light switch. She's either trying to be feisty or she's looking love-lorn making O faces. No nuance. With your ballet background you probably see things in Sasha I simply don't see.

    One point, Fumie had to wear a skirt because the rules. The ISU forced women to have a skirt until the 2004-2005 season.

    Check out Fumie's Carmen:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TX21Vo5LTKE
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  11. #231
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    Quote Originally Posted by VIETgrlTerifa View Post
    Meh, we all see what we want to see. Lori choreographed this to a more muzak version of the Rolling Stones' "Paint it Black" and they chose to take it in a different direction. You may not like it, but I think she succeeded in setting the mood they chose to set.
    And what might that mood be and how does it correspond to the music? What nuance are you looking at here that makes it musical?

    Are you saying her posture was good and she represented the Rolling Stones hit well? Are you saying she didn't do the things I mentioned as such as windmilling, the ankle wrap and unpointed toes? I don't care who choreographed it--I see what Fumie performed.

    What are you seeing?
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    And what might that mood be and how does it correspond to the music? What nuance are you looking at here that makes it musical?
    My you're aggressive.

    To me, it's the way Fumie lit with the music at the beginning and the way the playfulness was carried through with a lack of pretension. The beginning was heavier which Fumie's expression matched, then when the music picked up so did her movement and her mood. Lori probably wanted to show a much more playful and free side of Fumie since before this program, she always chose more classical and serious pieces. This wasn't a literal interpretation to the lyrics of Paint it Black, but then this violin version wasn't the most literal playing of the piece either. This isn't the first time we've seen choreographers, performers, and even skaters reject literal interpretations and make up their own. It's not as if she was skating to an original recording of Tosca and smiling all the way through.

    Now before you pick apart my opinion and try to challenge me with some sort of "objective" analysis, just know that there is none here. It's all from my gut feeling.
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  13. #233
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    Oh you just like her skating and dislike Sasha's. Taste is always subjective. Intellectually, I appreciated MK's qualities on the ice but never really got invested in her skating. It's just when you call someone musical, I want to know what it is that you think makes her that. I don't see it at all, I see a poorly chosen and inappropriately interpreted piece of music. She should have worn pink and skated to Happy (if it were written at the time)--it would have worked much better. But to me wearing that edgy outfit, choosing an edgy piece of music and skating like a little girl frolicking in a park was incongruous.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

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    Maybe it was supposed to be irony illustrated. :p
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    Judging by talent, Suguri had the better career, simply for the over-achievement of being a 3 time world medallist and 3 times 4CCs Champion.

    Cohen obviously had the Olympic silver but was capable of so much more, again given her talent. She never won any big titles internationally, just GPs and 1 GPF - which Suguri also won.

    Out of the 5 Worlds that they went head to head on, Suguri beat Cohen 3-2, with 2003 being contestable due to competition structure. Out of the 2 Olympcis that they went head to head on, Cohen beat Suguri 2-0 but IMO it was extremely close both times and Suguri was a little unlucky both times.

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    Quote Originally Posted by VIETgrlTerifa View Post
    Maybe it was supposed to be irony illustrated. :p
    Whoa, that's a whole different layer of interpretation!
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marco View Post
    Judging by talent, Suguri had the better career, simply for the over-achievement of being a 3 time world medallist and 3 times 4CCs Champion.

    Cohen obviously had the Olympic silver but was capable of so much more, again given her talent. She never won any big titles internationally, just GPs and 1 GPF - which Suguri also won.

    Out of the 5 Worlds that they went head to head on, Suguri beat Cohen 3-2, with 2003 being contestable due to competition structure. Out of the 2 Olympcis that they went head to head on, Cohen beat Suguri 2-0 but IMO it was extremely close both times and Suguri was a little unlucky both times.
    Better career should not be dictated by who fell shorter of their potential. That is like saying "Fumie achieved less, and is a much poorer skater, but since the achievements gap is lesser than the ability and potential gap, Fumie's career was better." By that logic Flatt might have a better career than Yu Na Kim. She probably came the closer to fulfilling her own potential of the two.

    2006 Olympics was not close whatsoever between Cohen and Suguri btw. Nor IMO was it contestable, although I guess there are a few delusional folk who might try and say otherwise, but they are just that, delusional folk. Considering there are also a few people on this forum who argued Bobrova & Soloviev and/or Pechalat & Bourzat deserved to place above Davis & White in Sochi, it takes more than a small sum of people with no valid arguments having an opinion (in such cases deeply rooted in both bias and lack of knowledge) to merit a true worthy debate or questioning of a result to even a minor degree. I could see a case for Fumie deserving the bronze in Turin, a bad and incorrect one IMO, but still a possible one. The silver, not a chance.
    Last edited by judgejudy27; 07-18-2014 at 06:13 AM.

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    As for Sasha and her musicality, I thought her musicality actually sucked before going to Tarasova. Her Carmen in 2002 was the most unmusical and empty Carmen I ever saw, which is why IMO she would have been left out of the medals even had she gone clean; as opposed to some others who think she would have won gold over Hughes with Irina and Michelle's mistakes. It was telling how decisively she was scored behind Kwan and Slutskaya, especialy in presentation scores when all 3 fell and landed basically the same jumps; well Irina didnt fall but had as much worth of mistakes. There was obviously something beyond her lack of basics that had her presentation marks so low, even with all those beautiful positions, lines, her grace and ease of movement, and all that polish.

    However I think Tarasova created a new Sasha in musicality. She really gave a ton to her performances and the music in her 2003 programs. After she and Tarasova parted, I sort of see a decline by her in this again, but her 2006 Olympic season programs were very musical again, especialy her Romeo and Juliet. One of the few times I ever agreed with Sandra Bezic "others skate to Romeo and Juliet, Sasha is Juliet."

    I do think Fumie was fully invested and commited to her choreography, and was practically Kwan-like in that regard. However I am not sure if that ended up translating to great musicality, despite the intense effort. I agree with alot of IceAlisa's points on the matter.

  19. #239
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    Quote Originally Posted by VIETgrlTerifa View Post
    Good one! I have one...Sasha's musical depth is as shallow as her edges.

    Seriously though, Sasha's edges improved a lot and were pretty good in 2006. Just not Arakawa/Slutskaya/Kwan/Suguri/Kostner/Hughes good.
    Your last point is kind of one of the problems I see with Suguri's supposed big edge (only edge?) in this debate. I dont put Suguri in the same class in edge quality, speed, power, or basics as Arakawa, Kostner, or Kim. Maybe even not quite on par with Kwan or Slutskaya (both who I have a notch down already from the ones I mentioned). Maybe on par with a Hughes or Asada. She had excellent basics, but they werent remarkable either, even if some of her supporters in this thread like to potray her as the reicarnation of Yuka Sato with better jumps. That she had to back pump and hunch over during crossovers to help her speed is telling too. I hate to quote Sandra Bezic a second time, but again one of the rare times in her commentary career she said something that made sense, following Fumie's Turin Olympic skate "well it was a strong performance, but she lacks the elegance, power, and skating skills of Arakawa." This shows Sandra atleast doesnt view her as having close to the worlds highest level skating skills or basics by any means.

    Sasha improved to the point they were very good by the end of her career, and I dont think even much difference to Fumie. I know scores dont tell the whole story but it is worth noting Sasha had higher skating skills scores than Fumie in every program they skated vs each other that year. Sasha even for her excellent Olympic short program had lower skating skills than Shizuka and Irina too, and this despite having by quite a bit the highest overall PCS, so it is not like the judges refused to differentiate any either, but they still put Sasha over Fumie.

    So if basics is all Fumie really has to go up against Sasha's otherwise superior in many other ways (even if you dont view her musicality superior) skills and qualities then she really isnt in good shape in this discussion.

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    Good. Icealisa, Judgejudy27 agrees with you. All is right in the world.
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