Ok, so Phantom Regiment finally won one by themselves. As a purist and lover of Phantom's music for years... Congratulations! I am happy to see you all as champions. That being said I would like to congratulate DCI as a whole for going against the grain. Honestly, I never thought that DCI would let something like what happened to happen!
Let's look at the facts, Phantom Regiment was 2nd place entering finals. Fact #2, the second place finisher has not won in finals since 1983 when an up-and-comer, The Garfield Cadets, came from behind in Seminfinals to win on finals night. Fact #3, the shocker... DCI let it happen to The Blue Devils!!! Of all corps, the most honored corps, in DCI years, the defending champion Blue Devils!
Alright, now that that is over, let's get back to the nitty gritty. I, and I alone will hold this view... DCI gave Phantom this championship because they gave it to The Cavaliers in 2006. I have seen the scores, I have seen the shows, and my conclusion is that Phantom was actually the true winner in 2006. Why? Phantom was underscored in GE Music by at least 0.3 and The Cavaliers were overscored in Ensemble Visual by about at least 0.4. You add those up and you have a 0.5 swing (the 0.4 is cut in half because Both visual and Music totals are divided by 2) in Phantom's direction and that gives Phantom the championship by 0.15.
Does this mean that Phantom should not have won on Finals night?... NO! Honestly, I can't say, but the gap between Phantom and BD makes me wonder. On the other hand, I have not trusted DCI with their scoring as a whole for quite some time (2003) so for all I know, Phantom could have won by more, or should have won by more.
In terms of everyone else, I would like to begin by saying that Carolina Crown was fabulous. I saw the show about 3 weeks before Finals and loved it, and they clearly did very well in Finals. I mean, 96.8 is an excellent score, and it is now on my favorite shows list. Loved it, loved it, loved it!
I am a stated and unabashed Cadets fan! I love the Cadets and indisputably their biggest fan. Heck... my license plate honors them... but anywho... I enjoyed their show. It was solid, not spectacular, more of a 95.5 range, so yes I think the gap between The Cadets and Crown was too big.
Lastly, I will discuss the Bluecoats. When I heard what they were playing I was very excited! However, when I finally heard I was disappointed. Personally I don't think the music was arranged very well nor performed as well as it could have either, which is why it left me flat. But I must say... you can't go wrong with Rocky!