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LC1

Magic Shows On Tv

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I always liked a bit of Paul Daniels as a kid, but the close up card tricks rather than the big stage illusions which I always 'knew' were achieved with trap doors, mirrors and false bottoms etc. But then you grow out of being impressed by such things...

But now I see that there is a new younger breed of street magician who have their own TV shows, and quite frankly, whilst they impress me, they also do my flippin head in trying to work out how they do these illusions without any tricksy stage props...

The two in particular are Dynamo and, more recently, Troy (series currently on C4).

Some illusions you can kind of imagine how they might work, but the majority leave me scratching my head. For example:

Seeing two girls in the gym, locker keys with their towels on floor, he warns them about security issue of leaving key in the open, asks for her trainer from one foot, picks up her key and slams it into the shoe, where it ends up locked inside the transparent air bubble in the heel (Troy).

Variations on this theme - wedding ring onto stem of a wine glass at a party, two flip-flops (thong style) from a guy's feet locked together in front of his eyes, and a man's mobile phone into a glass bottle and then gets his mate to phone it (all Dynamo). In every case they are genuinely amazed and slightly disturbed by these tricks, and he just walks away leaving them calling after him to ask him how to get them out again!

Now, to my mind, these tricks are only possible (barring new laws of physics) if the drinking glass/bottle/flip flops etc are all stage props, but even then I don't understand how it works, and he clearly takes these items from the people. And/or the people are all actors. But if so, then I haven't seen better acting anywhere, and they should all be rich Hollywood A-listers.

Both Troy and Dynamo have also done tricks with people's credit cards - Dynamo takes his own card out of his wallet and then wipes his finger across the face of it and suddenly it's got this other guy's name on it. then he asks him to think of his pin number and he guesses it correctly, leaving the guy speechless.

Troy poses as a shop assistant at his old place of work, guy comes to buy something, he cuts up his card in front of him saying it is stolen, then puts it back together. Then says that his account has been cleared, wipes his hand over it and the card goes completely transparent, but it still has the guy's name and details on it.

In a phone shop, asks a guy for his driving license, giving some schtick about identity theft, then proceeds to turn some little business card things on the table into exact copies of his photo ID by tapping them against the original until there are 5 of them laying face up on the table, then turn them back again with a quick wave of his hand.

Dynamo on a rooftop bar with loads of party goers in LA, gets them to form a small semi-circle facing away from him. He has a compressed air horn in his hand, says he'll sound it three times and then they should turn around to face him. He's quite short, but you can see him there behind them as he sounds it once, twice.... but then the third horn sound is very distant, and when they turn around he isn't there. The camera pans and there he is on another rooftop several hundred yards away, waving at them.

Dynamo on the beach, again in LA, gets a tanned woman to remove her watch, she and everyone else think it'll be a watch-related trick, but instead he puts his hand over her bare wrist and then pushes it up her arm, moving her distinct watchstrap tan line in the process.

Utterly ludicrous.

There are plenty more that I could mention, but you get the point.

If anyone can put my mind at rest that these are all easily explained, then please do go ahead! :D

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Utterly ludicrous.

There are plenty more that I could mention, but you get the point.

If anyone can put my mind at rest that these are all easily explained, then please do go ahead! :D

LIZARDS!

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LIZARDS!

Haha, don't you mean REPTILIANS!?

It hasn't entirely escaped me that they could well be the vanguard of a new evolutionary step for mankind... but then shouldn't they be putting their incredible powers to a slightly more productive use?!

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Consensus seems to be that majority of people they perform to are stooges (which I find hard to believe), and that when they aren't, there are always plants who are helping him out in some way...

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After watching the one where he supposedly goes through a plate glass window. (he sidestepped and a guy with a huge overcoat hid his move sideways and out a door to then reappear the other side of the glass). I believe most people are plants and/or in with the trick. Some being filmed looking aghast & amazed at something else.

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Consensus seems to be that majority of people they perform to are stooges (which I find hard to believe), and that when they aren't, there are always plants who are helping him out in some way...

Do you think they broadcast every attempt at a particular trick they try?

Or just the ones that work out?

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A moderately entertaining cold reading scene...

Not a particularly good film but I generally enjoy watching Woody Harrelson at work

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Consensus seems to be that majority of people they perform to are stooges (which I find hard to believe), and that when they aren't, there are always plants who are helping him out in some way...

US comic Joe Rogan did a show investigating psychic claims a few months ago. He did a spot with mentalist Banacek (not George Peppard, the other one). I don't think Rogan or his sidekick were coming at it as stooges. Banacek explains a little, in very general terms, in the last 2-3 minutes of this clip...

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US comic Joe Rogan did a show investigating psychic claims a few months ago. He did a spot with mentalist Banacek (not George Peppard, the other one). I don't think Rogan or his sidekick were coming at it as stooges. Banacek explains a little, in very general terms, in the last 2-3 minutes of this clip...

Doesn't explain much in all honesty.

Although most of the stuff is easily explained as he said in the clip by basic magic, it's dressed up as some sort of mental trick but it's just old fashion "slight of hand".

For example the first one where he gets them to pick the first word from a page in a book. Nobody gets to inspect the book, basically it's split in to two sections, half the pages have one set of text, the other has another, basically only two choices of first words (could be a number of ways this is done, anybody familiar with a Svengali deck will know a couple of methods). He has forced them to pick a word he already knows, forcing is a basic method in magic, people think they are freely choosing something when it's known all along. He then goes on trying to find out the word, but he already knows it, it's actually a little more impressive than just saying the word as the asking questions pushes people away from thinking they haven't had free choice.

That's not to say it's not impressive, but it's just old tricks wrapped up in new packages.

Can't stand the new breed either, it's not going to be all stooges, but it's a mix of camera tricks, slight of hand and traditional magic methods. It's been taken out on the street because it means they can do multiple takes, if it gets ******ed up then you move on, if it works but doesn't get the reaction you move on. They can do 4 or 5 tricks with a person, as long as one works then they have something to show, they can just dismiss the others. Paul Daniels can't ****** up 4 or 5, especially with an audience of hundreds but when it's joe blogs in the street you can get away with it by trying something hard and if it messes up you just pull out a bog standard easy trick and leave them semi impressed and reputation intact.

One other thing to remember is you can't just turn up and film stuff, you need prep, lighting etc so that gives ample opportunity to set things up, work out what props you need and so on.

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Doesn't explain much in all honesty.

I agree. I mentioned it because it was relatively recent, the mentalist is (imho) quite accomplished, multiple takes weren't involved and he does give a clue as to some of principles involved. If you've looked into the subject for anywhere between five minutes and a lifetime he's not giving anything away.

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these guys are just demonstrating the truth of the aphorism: "if you saw it on TV, then you didn't see it".

the trick is that they control everything and everybody in the illusion.

they aren't just wandering into random situations and performing magic, as presented.

it's rather a combination of meticulous pre-planning, shills, camera tricks and re-takes.

the dupes are those watching the show.

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...whilst they impress me, they also do my flippin head in trying to work out how they do these illusions without any tricksy stage props...

...two in particular are Dynamo and, more recently, Troy (series currently on C4)...

There are plenty more that I could mention, but you get the point.

Aye mate, I get your point.

Magic Shows...? You like them.

Not a lot, but you like them...

XYY

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Do you think they broadcast every attempt at a particular trick they try?

Or just the ones that work out?

Its pretty much what cold readers do to make themselves look awsome - just edit out the wrong guesses. Actually sometimes they dont even do that

"I'm feeling a male energy?... no a female energy.... and she was young..no old for that kind of thing... and when she passed...when she passes... there were pills... I see pills... there is medication.... her name began with an a... a ..C?... how about a P?.... an M maybe... oh! your grandad was Mark?....etc etc ad nauseum"

Its good for a giggle but when they're defrauding bereaved and vulnerable people its really quite sordid.

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"I'm feeling a male energy?... no a female energy.... and she was young..no old for that kind of thing... and when she passed...when she passes... there were pills... I see pills... there is medication.... her name began with an a... a ..C?... how about a P?.... an M maybe... oh! your grandad was Mark?...

GEEZ HOW DID YOU DO IT?!?!?!?! :o

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Aye mate, I get your point.

Magic Shows...? You like them.

Not a lot, but you like them...

XYY

That's more or less the nub of it, yes :D

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Do you think they broadcast every attempt at a particular trick they try?

Or just the ones that work out?

No, I get that completely. TV is all illusion at the end of the day. But I didn't imagine that there would be quite as much blatant fakery and duplicity at work in order to achieve these illusions. That sounds odd, since all illusions are fakery at some level, but it seems like a proper cheat to employ stooges to pretend that something amazing just happened, or using plants to help switch out genuine objects for trick ones etc. Either be a straight down the line close-up sleight of hand illusionist or GTFO in my opinion, none of this in-camera or editing suite manipulation, or multiple stooges to try to make an almost entirely contrived scenario look genuine.

I do think these guys are genuinely talented, but realising how much staging goes into these tricks instantly devalues them to my mind. But then they're not supposed to be analysed, they're simply supposed to be light entertainment for the masses, so perhaps I've just (re)discovered the brilliance of someone like Paul Daniels who, as someone has already mentioned, could work in front of live audiences in one take and with very little margin for error.

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Its pretty much what cold readers do to make themselves look awsome - just edit out the wrong guesses. Actually sometimes they dont even do that

"I'm feeling a male energy?... no a female energy.... and she was young..no old for that kind of thing... and when she passed...when she passes... there were pills... I see pills... there is medication.... her name began with an a... a ..C?... how about a P?.... an M maybe... oh! your grandad was Mark?....etc etc ad nauseum"

Its good for a giggle but when they're defrauding bereaved and vulnerable people its really quite sordid.

As parodied by Peter Kay, when he used to be funny...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BWmdEqwgit4

XYY

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