Skate-Leading☆Stars – Episode 11

We are at the peak of the Grand Prix competition and everyone is bringing their A game. I mean, just how many teams will score their absolute best in this competition? If I’m honest, it’s making the ending feel pretty predictable, and I’m not too happy about that. But I don’t want to get ahead of myself until the final team gets their chance to skate. I hope that the final episode is going to be stunning and whoever takes the win deserves the victory.

I’m pretty bummed about Himekawa and his team I was really rooting for them as the underdogs. But their performance and music choice? Fantastic. It was a lot of fun, I honestly got some chills watching that performance, so at the very least, they win in entertainment for me. I think I’m just really drawn to their team because it has allowed us to see some growth for Himekawa. With this team, he’s really pushing himself to accomplish his best rather than carrying the whole team. And honestly! Even if he is carrying his team, I appreciate that there aren’t hard feelings about it. If anything, they’re encouraging him to go all out and seeing something like that is honestly refreshing. Perhaps Shinozaki and Maeshima can get in a fight next week and both of their teams become disqualified. Then Himikawa can take the victory 🙂

St. Clavis gave a pretty stellar performance this week but we have seen most of their free skate performance before. So, there wasn’t anything too surprising especially since Shinozaki isn’t very expressive. Don’t get me wrong, it was clean and a solid performance. I mean, he’s throwing a sword around so how could that not be cool? By all accounts, they are the favored to win and it’s going to take a miracle if Iondai is going to take the victory from out from under them. And personally, I think that would be a cheap win at this point. If Iondai is going to take the victory, they better be skating on their hands and doing backflips. Like the biggest difference between the two teams is that they both have skill and technique, but St. Clavis’ skill is on a whole other level so that they can perform incredibly difficult moves that other teams can only dream of doing. But Shinozaki in particular loses out of the expressiveness of the performance. And that’s where Maeshima comes in and proposes a threat. Iondai, is pretty strong in their skating, but they are much more rigid in their fundamentals. They make sure that what they can do is good. But with Sasugai encouraging Maeshima to be expressive and skate as he wants to, that ups the entertainment factor and overall flow of the performance. There’s feeling behind their movements. Essentially, their emotions are on their sleeves and they can make a connection to the audience.

Now, of course both of those things are important for the sport. You have to compete at a high level and you need to make it enjoyable to watch. I really am anticipating the win for Iondai, but I think a pretty neat curve ball would be for them to fall short of victory. But in their defeat, I think it would be good for Shinozaki to acknowledge Maeshima’s ability to captivate the audience and have an entertaining program. It’s not a victory for the history books, but it is a victory to Maeshima. Though, I do think Sasugai deserves a victory as well. So, perhaps total victory for Iondai might be the way to go.

Either way, it looks like we’re wrapping things up next week. I hope that we’re able to see Iondai’s stunning performance as the Grand Prix closes out. But most importantly, I hope they all just get to have some fun.


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