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evanthx
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Quote:
Last I checked there were four seperate threads on TMC about Copperfield being robbed at gunpoint.

And not only are some bashing, a few are even outright suggesting that Copperfield set it all up as a publicity stunt.


I think there is a HUGE difference between the Blaine stuff and this Copperfield stuff. And I went back and rearead the Copperfield threads and frankly I do not read into it nearly as much as you did...so I have to respectfully disagree. Smile I just don't see the attitudes being similar.

To make an aside on the jealousy thing...
I have seen the "you are just jealous" of Blaine a lot. I think it's an attempt to justify the attitudes with a "if you dislike Blaine it is because you have a serious personality flaw" attack. In other words, the best defense is a good offense. I just don't think it makes much sense.

I think Blaine has a very polarizing effect. If you like him, great. But I have to admit I don't understand the need to create forums to defend him from the folks who think he's a total jerk. If you want me to not think he's a jerk, then let me hear some stories of him being a nice guy to counteract all the stories I've heard of how rude and offensive he is.

So seriously ... tell me some GOOD stories about David Blaine. Was he nice to you? Did he do something good for anyone else? Let's hear it.

Posted: Apr 28, 2006 12:07pm
Art - Your post is a good example of what I mean by the best defense being a good offense.
Art-Fantasy
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I know and I approve it as one of the best methods there is. By the way, Dean is Defending Blaine too. It's all good.
tommy k
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I don't think it is important to say you like or dislike something in the "pop" culture, the public will tell you. David Blaine has become a popular household name. He succeeded in the "pop" culture. THEY like him.

I will use an illustration from the music world. There are incredibly talented guitar players that are technically proficient (similar to our knuckle-busting heros in magic) that you may never hear of. Yet,players like B.B.King and Eric Clapton have won our hearts. Why? The are less technical than other players and certainly not as good looking or young. The answer is simple, they have found their niche. They know how to communicate with the public and their audience reward them for their efforts.

Do I like or dislike David Blaine? Who cares?! The public has spoken and that is good enough for me.
Jonathan Townsend
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It got you talking about the guy, and his special is next monday.
Keep talking
Keep watching
Tell your friends to watch.

Be good consumers

Keep up the good work
...to all the coins I've dropped here
giochi
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Jonathan, are you going to watch?
Art-Fantasy
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I"m gonna watch for sure. But, wait...I'm in australia.
Ireland
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Mr. Blaine and Mr. Angel are entertainers and I certainly receive periodic positive comments from people at shows I do asking if I can do this or that as they saw one of them do on TV. So they certainly know how to present their stunts to the media and public..... speaking of the media and public.....I'm reminded of the old Roman axiom about giving bread and circuses to the urban mob so they won't revolt. In any event, their catatonic persona and their projection of 'look at what I can do' (but really ....'don't look at me while we reshoot a scene') styles, don't appeal to me. My reaction to their stunts is indifference......I prefer the Shopping Channel.
Alewishus
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Quote:
On 2006-04-27 15:27, pkg wrote:
I'll quote Mr. Chris Rock : "everybody's fallin for this magician david blaine.. are we so desperate that we fall 4 a trickless magician!? cut a lady in half, pull a rabbit out of a hat, do something. what's his last trick? I'm in a box and I ain't gonna eat, that ain't no trick, that's called living in the projects.."

And standing in a block of ice, that's what the Inuit used to do.
People bash Blaine because his "ideas" are kinda stupid.
Standing on a pole for a couple of days, then undoing your catheter and jumping into a pile of cardboard boxes. Maybe it's performance art, but most people think that performance art sucks too.
Sure people watch, like they watch Nascar, and monster truck rallies, and hotdog eating contests, and Survivor.
Maybe it's just Blaines way of letting the rest of us blow off steam by bashing his incredibly nonsensical stunts.
The Shopping Channel you say?


A.
Sack subs, ok Ross?
We miss you asper.
Simon Lovell
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David is a good friend of mine and I've never found him to be rude or unpleasant. I've always found him to be a most charming fellow to be around. I'm also a fan of his style ... like it or not, it certainly grabs attention and those all important audience figures.

Hey, and if everybody likes you isn't that kinda bland? ... a bit like pasta without sauce? ... anybody can eat it but it just doesn't have much of a taste. Add a decent sauce and some will love it, others may not but at least the flavor gets an opinion!

In other words, it's not important that everybody likes you, just that enough do! David certainly has enough fans to be extremely successful and I applaud him for it!

Just my ten cents worth,

Simon
chris mcbrien
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Blaine's magic is in his artistic expression. It's a testament to what's inspired him. Watch or don't watch. I think it's great that he's successful in promoting his art form, and I wish him all the best.
Chris
FredNarlo
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I, personally have no problem with David Blaine (or I call him David Plain). I am sure he is a nice guy and he is definetly promoting the art, espeially in the eyes of magic dealers.

But this is the problem I run into. Now, I admit, this may be alittle of my "ego" (as I am sure some will call it) comeing in to play but after I do a few effects for some people many ask "So, who do you look up to? David Blaine?" Maybe not that exact question, but basically the same thing. I am quick to elt them know that although David is "good" in the sense he can fool others, he is never a headliner at magicians conventions or in some "legends" catagory. I explain he does a lot of things one can buy at a magic shop and I usually say "If you have about $250 and about 3 days worth of practice, you too can do many of the effects he did on the street, just like he did." They always ask about the levitation, biting quarter, etc. I don't put him down, but let them know, he is just a guy like anyone else, buying for the most part TRICKS that ANYONE can buy at their local magic shop and he aspired to make it big and he did.

I also let them know that when it comes to the "real work" he is in the dark!! (Now that ought to ruffle some feathers on this board, although it is true!) Sleight of hand is a foreign to Plaine as cold soup is to hot beer. They just don't go together!

Overall, I like the guy, just not his style of "magical powers" he lets on.
Douglas.M
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Publicity, even negative gossipy bashing is still publicity.

As long as people are "talking" about David Blaine (good or bad), it's good for keeping him in the public eye; which is what celebrity is all about (the Buzz).

What would be really bad for David Blaine is if nobody cared one way or the other. "Controversy" has a big effect on the amount of buzz one receives.

Or, as Lucy from Peanuts said "I don't care what people say about me as long as I'm popular".

Blaine bashing and Blaine supporting both keep David Blaine afloat in the sea of competing media attention-grabbers.

Douglas M.
Simon Lovell
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Fred,

No ruffled feathers here but I don't understand why you would say that. It is far better to promote magic and the magicians at the top than it is to give negative thoughts about them. After all, if the guys at the top are just hacks what does that make the guys in the middle or, indeed, at the bottom of the tree? David is a good friend and I can assure you that he is pretty ***ed good at sleight-of-hand with a caring and knowledge of magic that you'd be surprised by. If people ask me about him I just reply that he is a very unique and wonderful performer. I don't do his stuff but let me show you what I do instead!

It's not the props it is the performer. By your argument anybody with around $8 to spend (a deck of cards, a Sharpie pen and a cocktail napkin) could do my Strange and Unusual Hobbies show! (Love to see them try that!) It's not how much you invest in props that matters, it's how much you invest in performance! For $250 bucks you may be able to do some of the effects but you won't be able to do them like he did. It's not the performance it's the performer!

Oh, the reason he doesn't headline magic conventions is very simple. He's far too busy working on projects that make him real money!

Just my ten cents worth as usual,

Simon
evanthx
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I have a very hard time saying anything good about Blaine either, but ... I try to not talk down anything magic-related to the public. So I usually just say something non-committal and then talk about some other magicians that I _DO_ like that they might have heard of, such as David Copperfield or Criss Angel. That way I get into territory where I can say good things about someone and I never talk anyone else down. (I'll say what I think in a relatively private forum, but I try not to do that in public.)

So I'd suggest that, myself. It works, and I never have to say anything negative.

As for performance ... while what you say is true, Simon, I have to say I think David's performance style is abysmal. Having the contacts and connections to get on TV does not make one a entertaining performer. I just always figured he was the first one to get on TV with a close-up act in a well-publicised show - and that counted for a lot more than the monotone presentation.
Simon Lovell
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Having worked a lot in television myself I can assure you that it takes a lot to get them to first listen to you and even more effort to get anything on the air. In the UK I did a special called Beat the Cheat. It was highly rated but took over three years from conception to air time. TV is a tough business! The fact that David has had a number of specials (with numbers high enough to get the all important advetisers) shows that, despite what magicians (a tiny percentage of the viewing populace) think, he must be doing something right! Remember he didn't start off with those contacts, he had to earn them through lots of hard work. By the way please don't say it was because he was friends with a "famous actor" ... that would not have got him the continued success he has justly earned by being what the television guys want!

Bear in mind that he doesn't aim his shows at magicians but at the VH1 demographic of watchers which is a huge market for advertisers.

You don't have to like him or his style of course but his success does give him the right to respect. The oft repeated argument that any good magi could do his stuff is easily answered by simply saying, "then why aren't they?" David has managed to gain a big fan base, lots of exposure and interest. Obviously a lot of people do like him and his style and, by the way, I'm one of those people!

All the best,

Simon
FredNarlo
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Thanks for your response Simon.

You said: "It's not the performance it's the performer!" This I agree with, but I am sure you have noticed that Blaine as a performer is very plain. (No pun intended, but it goes well) I don't know how else to explain it, but he...like when he used the Raven (prop bought at your local magic shop) and made that quarter disappear from that boys hand, Blaine just sat there like he was a statue. When he bit the folder quarter (another prop one can buy at local magic shop) he just stood there. If you call this "presentation" then so be it, but it isn't, no matter if you are friends with him or not.

Simon, I don't dislike the guy at all! I mean, heck, he is on TV and rich and I am not - so more power to him! Keep up the good work David! But, I don't let people think he is some sort of magic-god or looked up to if he isn't. I do not go out of my way to point this out, but if it comes up I do not hesitate to mention it. That way if they go to their local magic shop and buy a folding quarter or a "how to levitiate" DVD they don't feel as if I was pumping them full of crap.


You said: "Oh, the reason he doesn't headline magic conventions is very simple. He's far too busy working on projects that make him real money!"

Simon, seriously...do you REALLY honestly think he would be booked at a convention for anything? - let alone a headliner? Would he do a lecture on how to bite quarters? Maybe live in a ice block? Some tips on the Raven? Hw about his tips on the Self-Tying-Shoeloaces? NO, I know...how to do TV show editing for an upcoming special! Do you seriously think he would get booked? What in the world would he do besides run to the dealers room and buy a bunch of stuff and just perform it just as the instructions say?

He would make a good magic dealer that's for sure, he could demo stuff all day long -but not headline magic conventions Simon, really. (He may be good at sleight of hand as you say, but I have yet to see it. When will he be going to FFFF?)

Simon...I think you, me and David should have lunch!
Simon Lovell
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The real point here is not whether he could be booked at a convention but why would he want to? He doesn't aim his magic at magicians but at the much larger populace. He has been and continues to be enormously successful doing so.

As for buying his props from the local magic stores where do you buy yours? Would you like it if another magician said to your audiences, "Do you know you can get that deck in the store?" or, "Man you can see how that is done in a book?" I hope you get my point!

He certainly doesn't claim to be a magic god (in fact he is a very humble and respectful person in real life) ... he doesn't really even claim to be a magician, just a guy who has some magic within the greater portion of the show. He's just a guy doing the stuff as he wants to and I admire him for that.

Just because he is quiet (as he is normally) and not leaping around in glitter jackets yelling, "Whoop!" or whatever doesn't mean that his style is not a presentation. Personally I find it refreshing that he just lets the "magical" effect he is doing breathe. His fan base certainly look up to him and will watch his shows while not watching other magicians. Cris Angel (another pal) falls into the same category of making "magical" effects popular with a demographic that, as a general rule of thumb, think that magic is boring. I applaud them both for opening these audiences eyes!

As for could he be booked at a convention (once more) I suspect that, if he did agree to do one, you'd find a lot of people going to that one.

I still see no reason to knock him whether he is a friend or not!

All the best,

Simon
airship
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I'm not a big fan of Blaine, simply because I don't like his style. That doesn't mean he isn't bringing in a huge new audience for magic, because obviously he is. Hey, different strokes for different folks.

In fact, I recently caught two of his specials on TLC and tried to watch them objectively, and I've got to say, he's good. He's very good. And a large demographic seems to think so, too. Will I watch him again? Maybe, maybe not. Like I say, I'm not a big fan of his style. But you've got to hand it to the guy - he's a good magician and came up with a style of his own.
'The central secret of conjuring is a manipulation of interest.' - Henry Hay
haywire
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David Blaine re-energised the publics interest in magic at a stagnant time.

His stunts have been attended by thousands of people. He has captured the imagination of the general public and had thousands of people talking about
these things, on radio, television, and of course the internet.

You may dislike his style, but he is worthy of every magician's respect for his
dedication to our artform. I say "go david go!" with everything I see him doing.

I think the words of the late great Blackstone Sr. are most appropriate for this argument :

"Applaud the success of your peers in magic, even those who one might consider your competition, That is the mark of not just a great magician, but a great man.
The world is a big place, and there is room for many magicians to prosper. Treat
your fellow performers with the same respect you might expect, and they will respond in kind."


- Harry Blackstone Sr.


I have always followed this advice, and I hope I always will...

Steven
Jonathan Townsend
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Quote:
On 2006-06-08 11:11, haywire wrote:... Treat
your fellow performers with the same respect you might expect, and they will respond in kind."


Good idea there.
...to all the coins I've dropped here
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