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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Penny for your thoughts » » Are we ignoring Derren now? (19 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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KarpeNoktem
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Yeah I hear you. That makes sense - I think the debunking spiritual thing made sense only in the vein of it being to stop "charlatans" from taking your money or stopping you from seeing a doctor by believing their "powers" could heal you. Then, it's fair game. Whereas, Derren was for "entertainment purposes only". It's why I have no problem with Uri Geller - because he was doing it to entertain. But those doing it to gain control/power/money for a false promise whilst using Mentalism or cold reading is understandably frowned upon. But true, these things have ripple effects to psychic entertainers too.
Rhewin
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On Jul 28, 2022, KarpeNoktem wrote:
Yeah I hear you. That makes sense - I think the debunking spiritual thing made sense only in the vein of it being to stop "charlatans" from taking your money or stopping you from seeing a doctor by believing their "powers" could heal you. Then, it's fair game. Whereas, Derren was for "entertainment purposes only". It's why I have no problem with Uri Geller - because he was doing it to entertain. But those doing it to gain control/power/money for a false promise whilst using Mentalism or cold reading is understandably frowned upon. But true, these things have ripple effects to psychic entertainers too.


Hasn't Geller been hired by oil companies to divine the location of oil deposits to the tune of millions? But, you are right. To the main public, he was entertaining even if promoting (what I assume to be) a false belief that he could bend metal.
KarpeNoktem
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On Jul 28, 2022, Rhewin wrote: Hasn't Geller been hired by oil companies to divine the location of oil deposits to the tune of millions? But, you are right. To the main public, he was entertaining even if promoting (what I assume to be) a false belief that he could bend metal.


I didn't realize he'd done that! Thanks for the info. Well, yes then I guess that reiterates the point I'm making - that Randi or Brown are perhaps right in debunking some of that stuff if they're falsely using it to detect oil and failing at it and getting millions for it. Unless Geller actually found a way of pulling it off. Then fair game!

I guess with Derren - he's not used his fame to become a psychologist or get hired as a therapist or a detective in any capacity as far as we know and openly mentions "magic".

It's a fine line - I do like the "psychic" persona done correctly but if it's too easily abused, and potentially more likely to be "exposed" in the YouTube expose-everything-era, then perhaps a psychological bent or something else is more likely to work with audiences. And skeptics alike.

What others ways could we present Mentalism in today's era? Thoughts welcome Smile
bobaji
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I think the problem with Derren, is not Derren, but all the clones.
Sooooo many mentalists in the uk adopted the Derren Brown personae. Including some fairly well known ones.
I think that's the problem. Derren is great as of course is Andy Nyman, who deserves, and gets, a lot of the credit for at least the earlier DB theatre and TV shows. Nyman though I think has a much more interesting performing character to DB, for my taste anyway. And there are a quite a lot fo different characters and persons that could be developed for presenting mentalism with a little thought and imagination.
Dewars Neat
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On Sep 5, 2022, bobaji wrote:
I think the problem with Derren, is not Derren, but all the clones.
Sooooo many mentalists in the uk adopted the Derren Brown personae. Including some fairly well known ones.
I think that's the problem. Derren is great as of course is Andy Nyman, who deserves, and gets, a lot of the credit for at least the earlier DB theatre and TV shows. Nyman though I think has a much more interesting performing character to DB, for my taste anyway. And there are a quite a lot fo different characters and persons that could be developed for presenting mentalism with a little thought and imagination.




I completely agree with this sentiment. 90% of all mentalists seem to be a derivative of Derren. I’d love to see more mentalists try to develop any kind of personality that isn’t just a cheap imitation of him. So much room for originality, but not much out there
bobaji
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Its interesting as well, that after all this time he is still the template. Weirdly when they made Sherlock, they sort of modelled Domininic Cumberbatchs version on Derren Brown. So the whole thing went full circle, and then those who want o perhaps adopt a Sherlock Holmes type personae, if they look to the Shelock show, end up copying Derren again.

I think there are a lot fo interesting characters than can be looked at and used as inspiration. Not least of all looking at your self to start with.

Anyway drifting off topic perhaps. Ma be theres a thread to be started about fictional characters of different types who might be good inspirations for developing a mentalists performing personae. ( If it doesn't already exist...)
bobaji
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Just to add one more thing as I think one of my previous posts sounded a bit more judgy than I intended. ( and who am I to judge anybody.)

There are a lot of really good and creative uk mentalists, I have had the great pleasure to know quite a few of them and to meet many of the others. I think Derrens influence has largely been positive, its also kind of inevitable that people will adopt his style. ( at least when starting out) and at a certain point for people that worked commercially it was almost the only option as he was so big in the uk that there was demand for that style.

Whilst a lot of people did adopt a kind of Derren personae, and that template as I said is quite strong. People who have stuck around have developed thier own styles and voices, so in some regards its not a bad thing to emulate your heroes.

Before Derren a lot of people especially in the us adopted the style of Kreskin or in the uk perhaps that of Berglas a little. Agin kind of inevitable really. Osterlind openly talks about how much Kreskin influenced him and how much he was inspired by him for example.
Jerry
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I liked the past Derren Brown when he was a mentalist.
Not the current - Instant hero, subliminal marketing, stealing art, you are in a video game shows. They may be entertaining to some, but not me.
saysold1
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Derren is the best in the world - and he is currently touring his new show throughout the UK at this time.

Artists create art and the best push the limits and are willing to experiment. The art they create might not always be the art that we want, but I appreciate that Derren is not static but growing.
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Chaz93
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I rather enjoyed Derren Browns early work, while he was performing mentalism and hypnosis. I've become less of a fan as the years go on as I'm not big on the recent specials. For me, personally, yes I am kind of ignoring him now as the direction he's been taking doesn't really entertain me. That said, should he perform a show in Texas I'd drive to the other side of the state to be in attendance.
Socrates
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In the early days Derren Brown was more of a magician and therefore he held a bigger appeal to those who frequent boards such as these. Nowadays he performs less in the way of a magician and has, at least for me, much more of interest to offer. David Blaine is the same - all the time he was performing pocket-tricks that others could copy he held more appeal, as soon as he began doing bigger stunts, he was not so easy to emulate.

As the years go by, I find their latter works hold much more substance, but am I ignoring them now?
Inlakesh
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Im not. He is very relevant. His body of work is unparalleled I reckon.
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His Broadway show “Secret” was one of the best entertainment experiences I ever had. I do not like the genre and am in general bored to tears by it. All I can judge him by is what I’ve seen and “Secret” was absolutely wonderful.
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<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
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