Who killed pro figure skating?

Who killed pro figure skating?

Post by ChocTa » Mon, 03 Dec 2001 11:07:43


Was it Philippe Candeloro?  Just kidding.  But is pro skating "dead" this
season? I miss Denise Biellmann.  And Robin Cousins.
ChocTaww
 
 
 

Who killed pro figure skating?

Post by Trudi Marrapo » Mon, 03 Dec 2001 14:04:40


Quote:

> Was it Philippe Candeloro?

No--it's not really dead yet--but he certainly has been stabbing it with a
big knife.

Quote:
> Just kidding.  But is pro skating "dead" this
> season? I miss Denise Biellmann.  And Robin Cousins.
> ChocTaww

Keep watching whatever special shows and exhibitions air featuring pro
skaters. They're out there, even if they're not doing as many competitions
anymore.
--
Trudi

"Cindy attacked life like O.J. Simpson going through an airport."
--an unfortunately dated simile from an old TV movie I just saw

 
 
 

Who killed pro figure skating?

Post by Julie Bixb » Tue, 04 Dec 2001 06:31:39

Straight answer: the greedy tv networks.

There ended up being *so* many pro events--opens, cheesefests,
specials--that it became overkill and the public tired of it.  Plus, the
top "name" skaters--Kristi, Scott, Tara, Okasana B., and others--just
didn't participate as much as they had in the past.

Thus, fewer pro events.

Quote:

> Was it Philippe Candeloro?  Just kidding.  But is pro skating "dead" this
> season? I miss Denise Biellmann.  And Robin Cousins.
> ChocTaww

--
Julie Bixby

Engage Romulan .sig cloaking device...

 
 
 

Who killed pro figure skating?

Post by Jim Reute » Tue, 04 Dec 2001 12:58:57

I think the general public gets tired of seeing the same skaters over and
over again.  The old cycle was about 4 years, as skaters appeared in
Nationals, made (or didn't) the Olympics, and moved on to professional
skating (or other) careers.  When it became profitable a few years ago to
remain "eligible" the normal movement ceased.  Michelle Kwan has been on the
"eligible" TV shows for 8 years now. With no new ***, the professional
shows were also showing the same skaters year in and year out.  Since
skaters have a limited repertoire of competitive programs, that meant the
same programs over and over and over ... Not a way to capture the
imagination of a largely non-skating TV audience (or maybe even a
sophisticated, knowledgeable skateophile audience).

I miss the pro shows, because I find Scott Williams more fun to watch than
Todd Eldredge, and Yuka Sato, Dorothy Hamill,  and Charlene Wong  more
interesting than the current crop of lutzless ladies.  Scott Hamilton seems
to be retiring, but Kurt Browning is, in spite of his injuries, the most
exciting thing to watch in Men's skating. I wish I could see Liz Punsalan
and Jerrod Swallow, and Renee Roca and Gorsha Sur,  and Herbie and Fred,
instead of the weekly ISU not so Grand Prix events.  Progress.  Bah, Humbug!


Quote:
> Was it Philippe Candeloro?  Just kidding.  But is pro skating "dead" this
> season? I miss Denise Biellmann.  And Robin Cousins.
> ChocTaww

 
 
 

Who killed pro figure skating?

Post by DreamWeaver80 » Tue, 04 Dec 2001 14:51:42

Well, and there were often big questions as to the validity of the judges
scores and alot of skepticism about the judging in general.
 
 
 

Who killed pro figure skating?

Post by Alhun » Tue, 04 Dec 2001 16:29:04

This is probably not a popular answer as to what has happened to pro skating,
but it is possibly a factor. I've heard many casual, but regular watchers of
figure skating on TV comment on how tired they are of the surfeit of eligible
skating this season which has been basically splatfests. Other than the top two
or three competitors, the rest are either uninteresting or unable to skate
clean or nearly clean programs, or both.

So perhaps what pro skating didn't do to itself, too much inferior eligible
skating helped along.

In my opinion, the general public still likes pro skating--even though serious
skating fans have pretty much turned against it (something that seems terribly
self-defeating in a way).

Amanda

 
 
 

Who killed pro figure skating?

Post by Locutus of Bo » Tue, 04 Dec 2001 17:03:47

Quote:
>Amanda
>In my opinion, the general public still likes pro skating--even though
>serious
>skating fans have pretty much turned against it (something that seems
>terribly
>self-defeating in a way).

Hm. I think skating fans who are critical of pro "competitions" are every bit a
part of the general public, too.

Personally, I think pro skating is a wonderful thing... but it's entertainment
and an art form, not a sport. I embrace it for what it is, but I take none of
its "competitions" seriously unless they have clearly defined rules that are
actually adhered to by the untrained-to-judge
"judges". For the record, I don't take ISU pro-ams seriously, either, because
they seem to emphasize different things at different events, nor do I take
seriously any event that includes gratitous candy sixes/tens.

I don't think the general public is stupid enough to think that skaters never
fall, so I'd think the only people turning them off from eligible splatfests
would be the commentators who claim robbery instead of taking the time to
educate the fans about what is really valuable in eligible skating. Of course,
those commentators would have to actually _know_ those things in order to
explain them, and I'm not at all convinced that many of them _do_ understand
what trained eligible judges reward.

All of the casual skating fans I know in real life love all forms of skating.
They don't care if it's pro or eligible; they just talk about how wonderful it
is to watch. Of course, they tape it while watching Monday night football, or
while watching the Cowboys or the Stars play their games... but at least they
tape it to watch later.

What killed pro skating, IMO, was a change in the economy, where corporations
are now more worried about their bottom lines and feel there are better places
to put their cash than in underwriting some bogus pro event for promoters who
don't care if they fill the house with a crowd because the event has already
been paid for by the corporate title sponsor. It's expensive to "buy" two hours
of network ad time, and they'd rather target their audiences with more
effective advertising than seeing their name a hundred times in the background
as a skater goes by it.

Peg
==
"I think there's the philosophy, If it ain't broke, don't fix it. But if it's
sort of molding, you don't want to stick it in the freezer. If nobody's eating
it, it's no good." - MKwan

 
 
 

Who killed pro figure skating?

Post by MJsk » Wed, 05 Dec 2001 08:36:32

Trudi wrote

Quote:
>Keep watching whatever special shows and exhibitions air featuring pro
>skaters. They're out there, even if they're not doing as many competitions
>anymore.

How about yesterday's "Gotta Dance". Wow I loved that special. I was not overly
fond of the direction the NBC specials were taking. Too many live vocalists
with the camera on the singers instead of the skaters.  Tara's "Hip Hop" on ice
was prpbably the first skating special I actually quit watching in the middle
of the broadcast and never even gave the tape a second look. But yesterday blew
me away.  Brian and Yuka skating to  Canon was pure joy!

MaryJo

 
 
 

Who killed pro figure skating?

Post by QuanYi » Wed, 05 Dec 2001 09:48:23

Quote:
> Brian and Yuka skating to  Canon was pure joy!

I wholeheartedly agree.  I am one of those nuts who thinks figures are
essential in training great skaters.  I had a friend call me after the show and
tell me she had never really understood what I was talking about (as I rave
frequently about the lack of figures in figure skating) until that show.  I
loved the whole thing.  What I didn't love was the camera work.  I particularly
hated the closeups. In the Roca and Sur piece, I wanted was to see the actual
line of the whole lift; what I saw instead was a close up of her face.  There
were a number of other camera frustrations, but that was my only complaint.
This is actually the first skating even of this year that I've transfered to
tape from my Tivo.  Interesting because I am not a pro skating fan.

Melinda

 
 
 

Who killed pro figure skating?

Post by WIsi » Fri, 07 Dec 2001 02:00:09

Quote:
>> Was it Philippe Candeloro?

>No--it's not really dead yet--but he certainly has been stabbing it with a
>big knife.

Funny you should say that. I think that Phillipe is a HUGE reason for the death
of pro figure skating. The fact that he showed up at World Pros last year,
stripped, hammed it up and won was absurd, IMO.  That was I think the final
nail in the coffin.  If anyone out there had doubts as to the validity of pro
skating, that pretty much sealed the deal.  That was an insult to skaters who
have trained their whole life, accomplished World and Olympic titles, etc.
What he did was go out there and make a mockery of the sport, its sacrifices,
its competitors, its soul.  I have to really respect skaters, like Sergei who
refused to become the ***of a joke on the ice. He would say why would I want
to go out and be a clown, etc and make a fool of myself, I worked hard all of
these years and accomplished so much, why would I throw it away to be laughed
at?  I think that pretty much sums it up.  Either you have respect for yourself
and your sport, or you don't.  Phillipe's program was an absolute shame.  The
fact that the judges rewarded him with first place is even more of a crock.
Yes, my friends, that was the death of pro skating, IMO.
 
 
 

Who killed pro figure skating?

Post by DG51 » Fri, 07 Dec 2001 04:53:25

writes:

Quote:
>>> Was it Philippe Candeloro?

>>No--it's not really dead yet--but he certainly has been stabbing it with a
>>big knife.

>I think that Phillipe is a HUGE reason for the death
>of pro figure skating. The fact that he showed up at World Pros last year,
>stripped, hammed it up and won was absurd, IMO.  That was I think the final
>nail in the coffin.  If anyone out there had doubts as to the validity of pro
>skating, that pretty much sealed the deal.

Absolutely.  Your average fs viewer does not distinguish between the legit pro
events and the cheese fests.  The King of Cheese doesn't skate as much as he
clowns, and while he has a constituency, it's not the same people who value
deep edges and intricate footwork.

  That was an insult to skaters who

Quote:
>have trained their whole life, accomplished World and Olympic titles, etc.
>What he did was go out there and make a mockery of the sport, its sacrifices,
>its competitors, its soul.

No kidding.  I doubt it was his intent to do something negative, but that's
what happened nonetheless.  I felt sorry for the skaters who put together
legitimate programs for that event.

Daria

 
 
 

Who killed pro figure skating?

Post by Locutus of Bo » Fri, 07 Dec 2001 05:02:35

Quote:
>(WIsil)
>Phillipe's program was an absolute shame.  The
>fact that the judges rewarded him with first place is even more of a crock.
>Yes, my friends, that was the death of pro skating, IMO.

So the short answer is... Philippe, in the rink, with a garment rack?

Peg
==
"I think there's the philosophy, If it ain't broke, don't fix it. But if it's
sort of molding, you don't want to stick it in the freezer. If nobody's eating
it, it's no good." - MKwan

 
 
 

Who killed pro figure skating?

Post by Trud » Sat, 08 Dec 2001 04:23:08

[snip]

Quote:
> What killed pro skating, IMO, was a change in the economy, where corporations
> are now more worried about their bottom lines and feel there are better places
> to put their cash than in underwriting some bogus pro event for promoters who
> don't care if they fill the house with a crowd because the event has already
> been paid for by the corporate title sponsor. It's expensive to "buy" two hours
> of network ad time, and they'd rather target their audiences with more
> effective advertising than seeing their name a hundred times in the background
> as a skater goes by it.

> Peg

I don't know. I think all these declarations of the death of pro skating
are a bit premature. It occurred to me the other day that we still see a
whole lot more pro skting--whether it's shows or pseudo-competitions--on
U.S. TV than we did prior to 1994.

No, we certainly don't see anymore the crazy proliferation of events
that we did in 1994 and for a few years after--that era when every
single weekend day seemed to bring yet another skating event, sometimes
counterprogrammed against another event on another network. That era
when a new competition was born every month, when guitars became prizes
in some competitions. But wasn't all that a bit of a fluke anyway? An
extreme? It was bound to end sometime. Like a constantly rising stock
market, it was destined to level out someday, not just keep going ever
higher and higher.

I do think the amount of pro skating on U.S. TV is still higher than it
has been for most of the TV era, even if the
cup-runneth-over-with-both-wheat-and-chaff boom period of the mid-'90s
is over. I think of it more as a "natural market correction" than as a
"bottoming out" or a "death of pro skating."

Trudi
currently mourning the death of my TV, 1987-2001. Funeral services will
be private.

 
 
 

Who killed pro figure skating?

Post by Alhun » Sat, 08 Dec 2001 09:19:23

Quote:
>While I disagree that "pro figure skating is dead," I do believe
>that performance stabbed it several times in the chest, and it very
>nearly died of trauma wounds.

Yes, and it got Rudy Galindo with a pretty good jab, too.

Amanda

 
 
 

Who killed pro figure skating?

Post by MJsk » Sat, 08 Dec 2001 14:23:05

Trudi wrote

Quote:
>LOL. While I disagree that "pro figure skating is dead," I do believe
>that performance stabbed it several times in the chest, and it very
>nearly died of trauma wounds

I hope that there will still be life for pro skating. I think that most of the
reasons given  for the decline of pro skating are valid, i.e, overkill, too
many cheezy comps, the ISU awarding prize money and allowing the eligibe
skaters to earn a living, etc. But I have to add that some of the decline has
to lie with the skaters. Pro skating tends to go on the cycle of the Olympics.
Skaters retire from eligible ranks and turn pro. The last batch of pro skaters
post Nagano really did not cut it. Perhaps they saw the popularity pro skating
was enjoying and coasted. Phillipe was kind of wild and fun during his heyday
but it did not transcend into quality professional skating. Surya was ***
and had a back flip, but that did  not provide too may fine moments. Tara was
too young and injury prone. It was the older professionals that were still left
holding the bag and their goals changed.
I wonder what type of opportunities the "new" batch of pro skaters will have.
Perhaps if the work is not as easily avaliable, the skaters that are truly
serious about building a career around pro skating will work harder to develop
into the type of pro skaters we were so lucky to have in the  late 80's early
90's.

MaryJo