I'm watching 'Criminal Intent' on Channel 10 because it's a special magic-themed episode.
It's the usual cheesy TV fiction version of magic (you know, magicians protecting their secrets, etc) but it did feature three distinct styles of magic, which was a nice change. The David Blaine/Criss Angel endurance stunt magician, the stage mentalist with his big screen camera on stage, and the old-school magician performing to a bored audience of six at a sideshow.
The storyline had a magician being murdered by a jealous rival, and a criminal profiler who just happened to know a whole lot about the art of magic solving the case.
(What a ridiculous plot! Can you imagine magicians being jealous of another magician? Impossible!)
What was interesting to me though, was the buried alive stunt featured in the show. It reminded me of the one I did back in 1988 - twenty years ago!
I was nailed into a wooden box live on the 'Today' show at 8am, and lowered into a grave dug in the lawns of the Caulfield Town Hall (which was the venue of our gala show). A huge earthmover then covered me with tons of earth and Paul Bowen monitored my progress on a heart monitor on the surface. (This was way before the invention of the web cam they used on Criminal Intent).
Seven hours later, on the TV show 'Live at Five' I was scheduled to emerge from the grave, but instead a plare went off on the roof of the Town Hall and I came abseiling down the wall.
What was supposed to be a magical surprise was a disappointing ending to an escape. Yes, people wondered how I got to the roof of the Town Hall from six feet under, but they simply assumed I was never in the grave in the first place and the whole stunt was dismissed as just a trick.
I learned a very important lesson that day. Never mix magic and escapes.