After following U.S. Figure Skating champion Jeremy Abbott on twitter and reading articles about him prior to his Olympic debut tonight, I am convinced that he and American Idol champion Kris Allen were separated at birth. They are so similar in so many ways. Just to start, both guys have flown under the radar and been overlooked a lot during their reign as champions, letting their craft speak for itself. Jeremy's short program is to "A Day In The Life" by the Beatles (Kris is a huge Beatles fan), and he has Kris' "Live Like We're Dying" on his playlist. Jeremy and Kris also share a similar sense of humor and subtle quirkiness.
Also, check out their thoughts on twitter: For Kris, it's an avenue to say "stupid crap that goes on in my head". For Jeremy, it's "a way to be goofy and say what's on my mind without having much consequence for it." LOL. Seriously.
Jeremy and Kris aren't the only skaters and Idols with similarities. While watching the Olympic short program tonight, I thought it would be fun to pick an Idol pairing for some of these skaters. So here goes ...
Plushenko, the reigning Olympic champion, is in the lead after the short program. He's technically precise and relies on his arsenal of difficult skills such as his quadruple toe/triple toe combo, and he gives off a bit of an aloof, steely exterior. Dick Button called him "reserved and controlled" after his performane tonight. While Carrie's stage presence has improved drastically over the years, she wasn't known on Idol as the Farm-Bot for nothing!
Obvious comparison is obvious. Johnny is flamboyant and controversial, with a penchant for using costuming and dramatics to enhance his performance. His costume in the short program was black with pink accents, including pink corset lacing in the back, plus a pink tassel, a little bit of leather and some sheer. Adam has never shied away from controversy, dramatics or outrageous outfits. Both guys love Lady Gaga - Johnny does an exhibition skate to one of her songs, and Adam has recorded one of her songs.
Evan, the reigning World Champion, had a brilliant short program tonight, coming in second, just a few tenths behind Plushenko. Evan and Johnny have been rivals for years and do. not. get. along, a fact that the media loves to play up. While Johnny has been cast as the flamboyant one, Evan has been cast as the straight one (NBC played up his relationship with Tanith Belbin to death a few years ago. It was really gag-inducing), although he's pretty metro, like Seacrest (Check out the slicked-back hair and the perma-tan on both guys).
HE'S ONLY 19!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 'Nuff said. The Canadian favorite and reigning World silver medalist had the weight of his country on his shoulder, as Mary Carillo not-so-nicely reminded him when she said that no Canadian male skater had ever won gold. Patrick's skating is pretty exquisite - his footwork! - but he messed up a jump and finished after his music, earning a one-point penalty. He gets bonus points from me for having the best music of the night (Tango de los Exilados).
Like Taylor, Samuel is a showman who plays to the crowd. Last year, he was a definite crowd favorite at the World Championships with his hilarious cowboy free skate (if you don't want to watch the whole thing, skip ahead to 3:56. LOL), and this year's routine is to a song with harmonica (Taylor's staple) and banjos. His costume was a piece of work - overalls and a plaid shirt. Even Johnny Weir had something to say about that costume: "I thought it was very fashion forward and a very big risk, even riskier than man cleavage and a pink ruffle."