Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Lights, cameras, magic

Tonight's the night! NBC's new reality show, Phenomenon, premiers at 8 PM, and I'm counting down the hours. Magicians of all stripes will take their best shots to become the Pharaoh of Phenomena, Prince of Prestidigitation, Sultan of the Old Switcheroo ... man, I love magic.

Yes, I know it's all illusion. And no, I most emphatically do NOT want to know how it's done.

The hosts are Uri Geller and Criss Angel. Geller wouldn't have been my first choice; his big signature trick is ::yawn:: spoon bending. But I do have a story about him:

Back in the 70's, when he first hit the TV scene, Geller would ask the TV audience to gather up broken watches and bring them to the TV set. He would then make heavy-concentration faces and do some fist clenching, then take calls about all the watches that were miraculously repaired.

Silly as that sounds, I gotta tell ya that during one such episode he "fixed" an old pocketwatch of my great grandfather's that hadn't ticked a tock in decades. Probably a coincidence, though. Right?

*Update, 10:10 PM. The show was a major disappointment. The promos promised illusion and amazement, but all we got was cheap mentalist crap and a couple of amateur bar tricks. The only thing that disappeared was a half hour of my life. So watch this, NBC: Poof. I'm gone.

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