Ice Dance - Yes, they're great, but White/Davis just rub me the wrong way. I thought maybe it was just my Belbin/Agosto love and how the press/judges kept pitting those two teams against each other, but nah, they bore me. I can see how how good they are, but they just don't move me. On the other hand, oh my goodness!, the seniors debut of the Shibutani brother/sister team (Maia and Alex) were AMAZING! I just adored them. So light and fresh with wonderful, wonderful skill. Only 16 and 19, they didn't come across as anything other than pure style and sophistication on the ice. So glad to see them take the silver. They look like they have a great future ahead of them. Whee!
No one really else grabbed my attention.
Ladies (covering only the ones I saw the short and long for) - MIRAI! Love her so much. Her short was as delightful as ever, and as Sandra Bezic said, it was magical. Loved seeing her go into the long in first place, just wish she could keep the lead. She just makes me smile when she skates. Sigh, even if this wasn't my favorite long program of hers, she was still leagues better than Flatt. Ugh, ugh, ugh!
Alyssa Czisny did wonderful, she's not a favorite, but it was lovely seeing her do so well after her ups and downs. Alas, she does bore me a bit, not much charisma, but she has such grace and artistry and when her technique is on, she really hits the marks. The thing with her is that, with her backstory, you're really just rooting for her to do well. If Mirai couldn't win, then at least Alyssa won over Flatt. SO YAY FOR HER!!!
I love Mirai Nagasu, but I really do go back and forth between her and Ashley Wagner as my favorite. Ashley is so beautifully graceful and lyrical. Her arms and hands are comparable to Oksana Baiul, in my opinion -- the only one I've seen and that's really high praise coming from me. Once again, though, she had a weak short program and a much stronger long program. She actually placed much higher after the short than last year (where she went from 12th to 4th). This year, she place seventh, but alas, her long was not nearly as strong as her long programs usually are, so any shot at the podium pretty much rested on most of the top six finishers screwing up. Ah well. I still think she's a beautiful skater; I just wish she could get over her short program shutdown, she could be amazing.
Agnes Zawadzki, making her seniors debut, is very good. I thought she played up a bit of a slutty (is that the word I'm looking for?) vibe in her short program, but she's clearly, clearly got the goods. I really liked the demeanor and choreography in the long much better. I think that if they had gone for saucy/sassy in the short, I would have liked it much more. But the long really allowed me to concentrate on her skill (even with the mistakes, doubling jumps, falling on jumps, poor dear) without my disappointment in the choreography and tone. She's definitely promising, if not as graceful as I prefer. But I suppose I have Ashley and Mirai for that, and she still has lovely form and musicality, along with the technical skill.
I liked Christina Gao's short, and her long was just lovely. Gorgeous jumps, wonderful use of her longer limbs due to the growth spurt. She doesn't reach out and grab me, but she's quite, quite good. Still, I do like her, I mean, I gasped for her when she fell. Give her a bit more time to get used to her new body though, and I could see her being unstoppable.
Rachel Flatt is, admittedly, more graceful than I've seen her before. Of course, before this round I thought of her as Frankenstein's Bride on Ice, so that's not really saying much. She still lumbers, but she's a bit better, less lumbering, but still ... this girl is a National Champion? Sigh. I mean, you have Mirai, Ashley, Alyssa, Agnes, Christina with varying degrees of such grace and musical artistry and then Flatt? She sticks out like a sore thumb. Technical consistency, my ass. It so bugs me that this girl is a figure skating champion. Ugh. Really, shouldn't grace and artistry have any place in determining the winner? With Flatt on top, it sure doesn't look like it. Double ugh.
Tomorrow, the mens with JEREMY ABBOTT! and JOHNNY WEIR!! Yay!