Unlike concerts, which always start a minimum of half an hour later than the show's start, the ice show starts punctually (probably because everything like the music and the voiceovers are prerecorded and set to a timer.)
Chevy, the major sponsor of the tour, kept blatantly pimping its products to the point of annoying.
The opening number is just the skaters coming out, spinning a cheap trick or two, and then skating back off the ice. It's a bit boring, but it's good if you don't know skaters by face. The costumes were atrocious, save for a few. Plushenko was wearing some terrible orange shirt that made him look like he had a little pot belly. He doesn't! His stomach, like the rest of him, is flawless! ^_^; (Yes, I am so in denial. Hush.) For some stinky reason, Fumie wasn't at the show. I wanted to cry – she's my favorite female skater after Kwan. She has such a delicate edge to her skating. Her facial expressions always make me think of the stereotypical geisha. Poo. Rudy, like last year, got the loudest cheers when he came out. He's our boi; San Jose adores him.
First skater out was Nicole Bobek. Technically she's nothing special; she's very sexy, however, and looks good on the ice. She skated to some horrid ABBA medley. Most of the music seems to be oldies; I guess it was the theme this year. A few skaters broke from it, though, so maybe it was all a big coincidence.
Punsalan and Swallow don't excite me much; but then they're ice dancers and I don't care much for that discipline. They skated to some song by Ray Charles that I didn't care for. *shrug* This program I liked, however. The costumes were cute as can be.
Some boring little girl skated to "Sugar Sugar" next, I think. She wasn't anybody important, so I spaced out.
ROO-DEE! ROO-DEE! WOO-HOOO! Rudy Galindo was next, skating to a Prince medley in gorgeous purple velvet. He wore a big purple cape and tossed it off into the crowd; there was a minor scuffle to catch it. As always, his program burst with energy; Rudy is probably the biggest crowd-pleaser on the tour. This being his hometown, everyone knew exactly who he was and cheered at everything he did. How could we not?
Some boring pairs skaters went next. Their program was the sort of thing one does in competition; I spaced out.
Dan Hollander was next. Last year, he was mildly funny. This year, he was tedious and tiresome. He's a novelty skater, much like Galindo, but he relies on the tricks more than the skating and it grows old. (Rather like he did.) He should've just crossdressed again...
Philippe Candeloro managed to refrain from stripping this year. Instead, he did some smarmy piece to "God Bless The USA" that is probably supposed to express his joy at being in this country instead of France. (Hey, I'd probably spin on the ice, too.) It was corny, but he pulled a neat trick near the end where he tugged the sleeve off his white dress shirt and out popped the American flag; he skated a few laps with his arm held straight in the air like a flagpole.
Break! Insert an intermission here.
The second act starts with Irina Grigorian doing her hula-hoop thing. *Yawn.* It's the same thing every year, with different music. But at least it's still entertaining, unlike the acrobats who came later on. They were dull, dull, dreadfully dull. They're just two men climbing on each other, except it's on the ice so it's somehow cool. Snerk. No.
Micheal Weiss skated. He has some signature X thing that he does, but otherwise he's a very dull skater who insists every year he'll revitalize his career – and never does. I think he's said he'd retire three or four times now. He's kinda cute, tho'. (It's a redeeming quality. Hush once more.) He breakdances on the ice.
Another pairs team. La la la la la...
Woo-hoo! Irina Slutskya skated a fairly interesting program. I like her. She has taste. Her costumes range from really interesting to truly terrible – she managed to hit somewhere in the middle this year as she skated to a cheerful Russian dance song.
Timothy Goebel and Sasha Cohen are two American skaters that I find forgettable, despite their individual talents. Goebel's jumps are flawless and Cohen looks like a little fairy when she's on the ice. But Goebel's sense of artistry and footwork is that of a doorknob; Cohen's inconsistancy causes her to fall at every major competition. sigh/ Goebel skated to Creed, and had a horribly tacky cross on the back of his vest. (With Arms Wide Open is truly a terrible song, by the way.) Cohen did beautifully; if only she could tap into her confidence in competition I would respect her.
Elvis Stojko, recently out of retirement, skated to "The Middle" by Jimmy Eat World. It isn't his best program, but considering his age (31 is considered ancient in the competitive skating world) he holds his own amongst the teens and twenty-somethings..
Plushenko, of course, was gorgeous. He wore an older costume, to my surprise, and skated to a far more serious piece of music than expected. ("For St. Petersburg 300" it is called; that is his hometown and it celebrated some sort of anniversary earlier this month/late May. He's very much a homeboy, so doubtlessly this is some sort of dedication to his city.) I thought his program would be his World's exhibition, since that's usually what the skaters use. But instead, I think he was skating to a long program from earlier in his career. He was technically so much better than a year ago; he landed most of his jumps clearly (he did a quad-triple-triple at some point, but I'm not sure which specific jumps they were) and his footwork was amazing! It could not have been put together by the choreographer he used for the Olympics, because the arm-flailing was gone, thank goodness. ^^; Anyway, do you know what I love about Plushenko? His ass. It is so nice and round. (I'm trying to get a good shot of it.) It just looks like it'd be heaps of fun to go and smack that butt. ^_^ Someday I will, you know. Plus, he's always wearing gloves. ^_^ Gloves are sexy, raaaaaar. Guys are all the better for them...unfortunately, off the ice Plushenko's style doesn't carry. He tends to favor the baggy clothes that, for some awful reason, guys choose to wear. Honestly! Everyone agrees girls look hottest in tight clothes; why don't guys realize it works both ways? Pfft.
(Quick random yaoi moment here.
Goebel: Evgeni, you're so hot.
Plushenko: You know it, babe.
Goebel: Want to go back to my place.
Plushenko: Yeah, all right then.
So technically this was at Worlds, not at Champions on Ice. So what? I found the picture and it made me laugh.)
Kwan. Four letters and you know exactly whom I am speaking about. Michelle Kwan is amazing, and even when she's skating to a blah song ("Fallin'" by Alicia Keys) her skill and grace shine through. She is the perfect choice for closing; she and Rudy were the only ones to get standing ovations.
The closing was gorgeous and the highlight of the evening. (Well, minus Plushy-sama.) It had a Latin theme, and the costuming was amazing, like Carnival. ^_^ (I've been trying to find photographs, but I can't find one anywhere.) Plushenko's closing outfit, as always, was atrocious. I don't understand why the designers always place him in orange; it really isn't his color. -_-; My poor baby, they torture your beauty so!
Shyeah. Plushenko's hot. Did I mention that already?