Like everything else, magic has its highs and lows.
Today, magic is probably in an upswing; at least one (and, possibly, two) generations have been raised on a diet of television, computers, CDs, etc. and a live performance -- especially of a theatrical nature like magic -- is a rare and cherished occurence to many people.
In the 1920s, magic was also in an upswing.
Then it became too expensive to stage full evening shows with huge casts. And it began to fade.
The night-club circuit, in the late 1930s, the 1940s, and the early 1950s was another period of upswing for magic, and it revived for a time.
Then TV cut into its popularity.
And then TV, with its variety shows, did a turn-around and provided another boost for magic.
Later still, TV dropped variety shows and, with them, went magic.
Then came Doug Henning.
And the cycle continues.
In the 1960s, the late Charlie Miller took apparent delight in condemning anything he didn't like, in his Genii writings, by saying "magic takes another leap into oblivion."
Well, most of the critics have gone and magic soldiers on.
As it always will.
With its ups and downs; its highs and lows.