MINDFREAK SEASON 2!

Discuss the latest news and rumors in the magic world.

Postby Richard Kaufman » 05/31/06 08:40 PM

Just saw the first two episodes of Mindfreak season 2 on A&E--east coast time.

I saw some excellent magic.

What did all of you think?
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Postby Steve Bryant » 05/31/06 08:48 PM

Outstanding. Although I think floating a cat is pretty funny.

But cool magic all in all, excitingly presented.
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Postby Rick Ruhl » 05/31/06 08:50 PM

Liked your cameos. Good press for Genii!!

The Blackstone/Hull floating light bulb was great!

The Dekolta Chair at the pool was really outstanding.

When he was doing the building float, I saw a bird heading toward him and thought (thank god this isn't live).

Yeah, he can float a cat, but let's see him float a ferret!
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Postby Steve Bryant » 06/01/06 04:58 AM

The great news is that my lay friends are starting to notice who Criss is. This just in from a girl in California:

Well, I will have nightmares for sure tonight. One of my friends called me to watch Ghost Hunters who were at the hotel in Colorado where they filmed The Shining. So I watched that and got creeped out and am now watching that freaky Criss Angel. I would love to throw him in the shower and wash that skanky hair of his. What happened to that chick in the lounge chair???? He is pretty amazing but looks creeeeeeeeeeeepy!

Some of us would love to have that hair!
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Postby Guest » 06/01/06 04:58 AM

I liked the idea of giving the camera to a spectator, even if they didn't "cut" to that particular camera, if gives a great impression to the audience that this was shot by...a spectator. I am very camera conscious, and went half-way through the levitation between two buildings, before I went "hey wait they aren't even using that camera"... But I also thought the levitation looked stiff.I guess if we could really fly it would be more like the way Davy flys.That is all I saw, more later.
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Postby Steve Bryant » 06/01/06 05:01 AM

P.S. Jeff McBride was great. It was neat that Criss showcased him like that.
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Postby Guest » 06/01/06 05:23 AM

I loved it. The levitation from one building to the other was beautiful. The bit where Jeff performed in the desert for Criss's "family" was really cool. Did you see at the end, he put one of the masks on the little kid? Very nice touch. My favorite bit had to be the De Kolta by the pool. Richard's appeared a few times now, is he a regular guest? And since he's featuring other perfomers, what are the odds you'll do something Richard?
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Postby Rick Ruhl » 06/01/06 06:33 AM

Originally posted by Steve Bryant:
This just in from a girl in California:

out and am now watching that freaky Criss Angel. I would love to throw him in the shower and wash that skanky hair of his.!

Some of us would love to have that hair!
Steve, my wife Sydney says the same thing. She has this mad desire when she sees him to wash and blow dry his hair.

Some girls like his body, some women just want to wash his hair. LOL
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 06/01/06 07:40 AM

Criss will be featuring a number of other magicians this season--from what I've heard they'll all be in the desert.

My only shots are as a talking head. :)
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Postby Guest » 06/01/06 11:47 AM

The First episode "Float" was pretty good...looks like less "Stooges and stunts" and more magic!

GOod Job!
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Postby Guest » 06/01/06 01:50 PM

It was definately nice to see Jeff McBride on the show. I hope to see more guest performers.
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Postby Leonard Hevia » 06/01/06 03:20 PM

I thought Angel did a nice job overall. When he climbed out of the manhole cover and proceeded to roll it up like a movie poster, I went "Huh?!"

It was nice of him to bring McBride in as part of the show. He sat down as an audience member to enjoy Jeff's act. Way cool man... :)
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Postby Guest » 06/01/06 04:51 PM

Sorry I missed it. Anybody know of a possible re-broadcast of last night's show ? Thanks
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 06/01/06 04:58 PM

Check www.aetv.com for scheduling.
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Postby Guest » 06/02/06 09:41 AM

Very cool. Thanks.
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Postby Guest » 06/03/06 04:50 PM

Originally posted by Rick Ruhl:
Liked your cameos. Good press for Genii!!

The Blackstone/Hull floating light bulb was great!

The Dekolta Chair at the pool was really outstanding.

When he was doing the building float, I saw a bird heading toward him and thought (thank god this isn't live).
I agree about the floating light bulb. The idea of doing such things in very bright light is intriguing, though it favors TV more.

The Dekolta chair was really nice as well. I was worried about the bird (or any other things two stories above the ground) interfering, but like you said, it wasn't live.

All-in-all, good show. And it was nice to see Jeff McBride perform on tv again. Very nice touch.
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Postby Guest » 06/03/06 06:58 PM

Cris has certainly endeared himself to the fraternity by showing props to icons of the profession like Johnny Thompson and Jeff McBride but the thing that has impressed me most was the levitation of the little girl with her family around her.

I havent heard any comment about the subtext of this illusion but I have to say that Ive never seen a levitation that was both visual and subtle and with such emotional impact.

For those who havent seen the show Cris is asked to do something for a family while hes planning the final levitation. He has the two youngest kids step back and witness what happens as the parents and two oldest kids are asked to close their eyes. He touches each in turn on the head and then levitates one of the older kids about a foot off the ground.

Then he asks them to open their eyes and tell what they experienced. The parents and older kids all say someone touched me on the head. Then he says Ask them what happened and leaves it to the two youngest kids to explain what happened to their older siblings and parents.

Think about that for a moment... How many times when you were a kid did you try and tell an older sibling or parent something and they simply wouldnt listen?

Now imagine the sister who was levitated and didnt know it SEEING it on TV months later.

I dont know who came up with the idea (I have a guess) but it is one hell of a trick.
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Postby Guest » 06/03/06 08:32 PM

good to read that the new season has started

I would add, check your local cable listings for repeats -- just now I saw that there were five episodes on this afternoon, four from last season plus "Building Float" -- the A&E site only mentions the Wed and Thurs broadcasts
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Postby Guest » 06/03/06 09:22 PM

Originally posted by Bill Duncan:
Cris has certainly endeared himself to the fraternity by showing props to icons of the profession like Johnny Thompson and Jeff McBride but the thing that has impressed me most was the levitation of the little girl with her family around her.
I wholeheartedly agree to both points. Allowing other people to be talking heads, as well as giving a bit of history behind the illusion he is going to do, is a very nice and classy touch.
As for the levitation of the girl, it was also well done and I bet those kids were high on emotion for weeks. Again, classy.
No one mentioned this, but another nice thing was the girl who gave Angel that quilt in the first episode, only to have the same quilt make a short appearance in the second episode. Yet another life long Angel fan on cloud nine!

Overall, I think this season has started out very well indeed.

Gord
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Postby Guest » 06/03/06 11:45 PM

You know, my girl friend hates criss angel. she just doesnt like the magic, she doesnt like his character/persona. hopefully she is in the minority.

for me, im not a huge fan of the magic, but a huge fan of what he is doing to magic as a whole.

if the nation appreciates magic more because of his show, than i have to really appreciate what he is doing.

im up for anything that puts the art of magic in high esteem.
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Postby Guest » 06/04/06 05:58 AM

Originally posted by rage1:
You know, my girl friend hates criss angel. she just doesnt like the magic, she doesnt like his character/persona. hopefully she is in the minority.
Not sure she's in the minority rage1. I watched one of the specials with a group of ten friends (male & female) and unfortunately the response was overwhelmingly negative. Its interesting that the negative comments (poser, rock star wannabe, over actor, drama king, and pretentious) were directed at him and not the magic he performed. Maybe to some, his persona overshadows his magic. As a control, I asked a few folks at work what they thought and for those whove seen him, the response was generally the same. Too bad.

PS The response from the Keith Barry show was significantly positive.
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Postby Pete Biro » 06/04/06 10:30 AM

Anyone know the ratings?
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 06/04/06 11:47 AM

About 2 million viewers, significantly higher than last year.
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Postby Guest » 06/05/06 03:22 PM

Wait... let me make sure I understand this, as I didn't see the show.
You're saying that the girl who was levitated did not percieve that she was lifted off the ground? You're saying that she was not hip to the method, i.e. not a stooge?
I find that a little hard to believe.
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Postby Guest » 06/05/06 06:26 PM

Travis,
I don't know anything about the method. She appeared to "cling" to the palm if his hand, which was on the top of her head.

For all I know the father was a robot with a crane mechanism in his leg and the girl was a balloon filled with helium. :)

I'm talking about the effect on the audience. I don't give a damn about the method. People at home could relate to the kids and what they were experiancing on the show and that's all that matters to me.

I suspect it's quite possible to levitate someone whose eyes are closed without them knowing anything happened. The touching on the head would have the same distractive effect used by Pickpockets...
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Postby Rick Ruhl » 06/05/06 06:55 PM

Copperfield did the same type of levi on his 4th special with the blond magic kid.

See the pics at

http://www.tonyko.com/_TheIllusions/ill ... ?special=4
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Postby Guest » 06/05/06 08:48 PM

Point taken, Bill, and I agree it's an interesting spin.

However, I don't agree that a person could be levitated (by way of a mechanical magic effect) without their knowing they were off the ground, unless they were sitting or laying on something; that is to say, their weight would have to be supported from underneath.
Otherwise, a little thing called gravity would be a dead giveaway as they felt the weight of their body being attracted to the earth.
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Postby Guest » 06/05/06 10:25 PM

Copperfield also did it again, just four years later on his "Great Wall" show.

http://www.tonyko.com/_TheIllusions/ill ... ?special=8

I agree that their weight had to be supported from underneath, and of course they'd have to know about it. What are the chances of finding two kids, exactly the same size, sitting exactly the same way? Unless they were prepped for it. It looks like Criss did exactly the same thing, only with her standing instead of cross-legged.
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Postby Steve Bryant » 06/06/06 05:06 AM

Zounds! Hard to believe the Great Wall show was 20 years ago.

I loved Criss's presentation on this levitation. It's an extension of the Karrell Fox (I think) Cigarette thru Quarter in which the spec holds the quarter on top of a Coke bottle, closes her eyes, and the magi pushes the cig through while the others watch. Later, they tell her how he got the cig into the bottle. "Yeah, right," she thinks.
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Postby Guest » 06/06/06 06:11 AM

Cool idea!
I've never heard about that. I like.
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Postby Guest » 06/07/06 10:52 AM

Just catching up on a couple of the new shows (gotta love TIVO). While watching the show last night where Criss walks down the side of the Aladdin Hotel, my wife said, with much conviction in her voice, "He's got to be suspended...........there is absolutley no other way"!!! This brings up the old debate of the "too perfect theory". I'm not sure how it was done but, again, many spectators may think that, hey, there is no other way so, although I can't see the suspension, it MUST be there. What do you think?
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Postby Pete Biro » 06/07/06 11:47 AM

Having been out of touch, when does the next show air?
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Postby Jim Maloney_dup1 » 06/07/06 12:02 PM

Originally posted by Pete Biro:
Having been out of touch, when does the next show air?
Two new eps tonight:

At 10:00, "In Two", which deals with Criss's take on the sawing illusion.

At 10:30, "Walk on Water", which deals with...walking on water.

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Postby Richard Kaufman » 06/07/06 12:11 PM

From what I've heard about "In Two," I think you're going to want to watch it.
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Postby Guest » 06/07/06 01:12 PM

Originally posted by Richard Kaufman:
From what I've heard about "In Two," I think you're going to want to watch it.
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Postby Guest » 06/07/06 04:39 PM

What ???

Nobody wants to comment on the side bldg walk and the "too perfect theory".

Boy, I guess I know how to kill a thread.
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 06/07/06 06:01 PM

I'll bite: what is it about creeping down the side of the building, or walking down the side of the building, that's "too perfect" or more perfect than most other levitations?
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Postby Guest » 06/07/06 07:24 PM

Originally posted by Bobby Plaut:
... unfortunately the response was overwhelmingly negative... (poser, rock star wannabe, over actor, drama king, and pretentious) ...
Is it fair to say that Angel has a somewhat polarizing persona? Hes certainly not as mainstream as Henning, Copperfield, Blaine, etc., and thus maybe his chances of a broad appeal are hindered? Thats not necessarily a bad thing IMHO, and maybe Criss doesnt care because hes succeeding with his target demographic market A&E probably wouldnt do a second season if the show was a flop.

Perhaps Criss is being absolutely true to his real self, but in this age of superhype and carefully manufactured TV personalities, I wonder if thats why some people have the poser and drama king reaction they just dont believe this is really Criss. Ive not yet seen any second season episodes, but I gather there is more magic this season (thank goodness if thats the case). With apologies to the bizarre magick aficionados among us, Ive never really cared for that brand of magic, with its Satanistic and ominous atmosphere (not for religious reasons; I just dont find it entertaining). Technically, Criss may not be a bizarre practitioner, but to my eyes and ears his show has dark overtones, like the come into my mindfreak intros and the quick scene cuts of frightening and strange people grouped in the middle of the desert (e.g., midgets, Johnny Thompson without makeup, etc.). I realize thats all part of the packaging, but its a turn-off and does indeed seem over-dramatized. Then again, I am many years beyond Criss core audience! :(

Clay

P.S. So they gave a spectator a hand-held camera for filming one of Criss illusions, eh? I think a brilliant GFer suggested that in one of the prior Angel threads, but (if memory is correct) it got politely pooh-poohed by one of Criss producers/advisors. Sounds like Criss people finally saw the light! :D
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Postby Guest » 06/07/06 07:55 PM

Originally posted by Richard Kaufman:
I'll bite: what is it about creeping down the side of the building, or walking down the side of the building, that's "too perfect" or more perfect than most other levitations?
More "proving" for other levitations perhaps? Copperfield's glass box and spinning hoops come to mind.

Not sure what Criss does as a "convincer" for his "walking up a wall thing". Does the camera get close enough to Criss (full body shots) that the lack of a visible rig is enough of a convincer?
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Postby Guest » 06/07/06 10:48 PM

Originally posted by Chris Aguilar:
Originally posted by Richard Kaufman:
[b] I'll bite: what is it about creeping down the side of the building, or walking down the side of the building, that's "too perfect" or more perfect than most other levitations?
More "proving" for other levitations perhaps? Copperfield's glass box and spinning hoops come to mind.

Not sure what Criss does as a "convincer" for his "walking up a wall thing". Does the camera get close enough to Criss (full body shots) that the lack of a visible rig is enough of a convincer? [/b]
No, the camera never gets very close to Criss, which to me was very suspicious, and confirmed a couple of my ideas. It was still a great effect, and if it looked that good in person, I'm impressed that he could pull it off. I don't know if it was "too perfect" as any audience member could probably say "he used some strong thread!" or "he used magnets!" or whatever, so there are alternate, false, but plausible methods. The distance helped a lot, though it did look great from that distance!

From what I've seen of "In Two" as presented on his special a few years ago, it was a nice effect loosely based on DC's (forget who created it right now) "Death Saw" but upside down. Nice idea, and there's really no reason why it couldn't be done in that manner, though I like DC's version - it just looks cleaner and, well, thinner.
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