When it comes to sports, the Olympics are like your granny. (Bare with me, I promise this will make sense.) Just think, when it comes to your grandma you pretend to be something you’re not, you act much more responsibly and demurely in order to trick them into thinking you’re a sophisticated, well-rounded individual.
You neglect to tell them the stories of your wild nights out, that one time you nearly ended up in a foreign country by mistake, or that occasion during freshers when you made a trip to the ER. This censored life then leads your grandma to think that you’re a star. In her mind, you’re a gold medal standard grandchild.
It’s a theme that transcends through to the Olympics, where the competitors want to do everything they can to impress the judges, but in a tasteful fashion. There can be nothing too provocative at the Olympics, or you’re guaranteed to see your score plummet. It’s Fifty Shades of Gold, not Fifty Shades of Grey!
So when Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir planned to perform a rather risque move during their Olympic program, they had to think long and hard about whether it was worth it.
They may be the most decorated Canadian ice dance team of all time and current world record holders, but that doesn’t mean that they can do as they please when it comes to the Winter Olympics – even if they have won two gold medals at the games in the past.
The pair, who first partnered up in 1997, were planning on carrying out a lift which required 28-year-old Virtue to straddle Moir’s shoulders during their Moulin Rouge-inspired performance. The provocative lift sees Moir’s head in Virtue’s crotch, which many believe is a little too hot for the games.
Watch it here and judge for yourself:
Talking to The Toronto Star, 30-year-old Moir explained the pair’s decision to remove that element from their routine: “What it came down to, actually, was that when we slowed it down and looked on the video, it wasn’t aesthetically that beautiful of a position, so we wanted to change it, make it a little bit better.”
The pair first performed the maneuver at the 2018 Canadian National Skating Championships in January. But despite their victory during the competition, the “suggestive” technique was all anyone spoke about afterward. In fact, the press in Canada were so alarmed by it that they were reluctant to share photographs of the lift.
“I think we liked that it made a statement, and it was different and that was great for the start of the season, but for the overall vision of the program, we hope that this new position fits a little better,” Virtue explained.
It would seem that this decision paid off, for the pair won gold in Pyeongchang. In fact, their performance was so perfect that Baz Luhrmann, the legendary director behind Moulin Rouge, tweeted his appreciation. “Congratulations to @ScottMoir & @tessavirtue for leading @TeamCanada to the gold with Moulin Rouge… you are Christian and Satine on ice! Looking forward to cheering you on in the individual competition,” he typed.
The provocative lift has once again led fans of the skaters to speculate that they’re a couple, for the chemistry in their performance is potent.
For now, the medal-winning duo insists that their relationship is “complicated” but not romantic. However, when you watch the full performance, you’ll find that hard to believe…
Watch their full performance from the Canadian Skating National Championships here:
Surprised the rink didn’t melt…