There are many TV shows covering stage magic and magic tricks – but at the same time, not all of these shows are great.
Want to know why there are so many bad jokes about stage magic? It’s probably because there’s also a lot of bad stage magic. I’ve seen many shows that were but a fizzle on the radar as far as impressiveness and ability goes, but I’ve also had the benefit of living in a time of stage magic greats.
If you’re looking for some shows about magic tricks and stage magic that are worth your time, here are a few excellent suggestions.
#1: Dynamo: Magician Impossible (2011 to 2014)
I’d say Dynamo is one of the most charismatic, dynamic and vibrant magicians we’re lucky to have today – and his tricks have always brought people closer to the art of stage magic with a mystical, grand take that hasn’t been seen since Copperfield made increasingly larger things vanish in front of our eyes.
A personal favorite is what I call the vaporizing Dynamo: simply, he disappears from his clothing while it drops to the floor. (And a second? His levitation stunt performed in Rio.)
It’s magic performed the way it’s meant to be done: properly!
#2: Mind Control with Derren Brown (2000)
Mind Control was British-born mentalist and magician Derren Brown’s first TV special. It was enough to cement him in the minds of many as someone to keep an eye on – and from there, he’s followed it up by exploring different topics relating to magic, mentalism and performance in some of the creepiest ways possible.
How far can mentalism be pushed? Derren Brown loves finding out, occasionally to the complete horror of the public.
Hypnosis and heists, fake miracle healing, staged zombie apocalypse events… All in the name of stage magic and pushing the limits.
Worth watching for any enthusiast or fan. (To make it even better, he has a cameo in BBC’s Sherlock Holmes.)
#3: Death by Magic (2018)
Death by Magic is a more recent show featuring British magic professional Drummond Money-Coutts as he explores the magic tricks that killed famous magicians – and then tries to replicate the same tricks on camera, minus the event that killed the previous ones who tried.
It’s the typical show that requires a disclaimer of not trying this at home. For once, I’d believe it.
Love weird, morbid magic?
Well, you’ll probably love this.
#4: Magic for Humans (2018)
If you’re looking for something more family-friendly, I’d recommend Netflix’s Magic for Humans, presented by Justin Willman. It’s good magic, without the darker, mystical aspect that some of the other shows I’ve mentioned here contains.
Watch for the segment, “Magic for Susans” where he features a person named Susan in a magic trick for every episode.
Sure, it’s corny, but it’s worth a laugh. (And he tracks down Susan Sarandon, one of the most famous Susans of all time.)
#5: Penn & Teller: Fool Us (2011)
Penn & Teller are one of the most incredible duos in stage magic and performance. Flashy, yet impressive; subtle, yet explosive – revealing, yet still secretive, and that’s really hard to do in the world of modern magic combined with the internet.
Fool Us is just that: Participants show up and try to trick Penn & Teller.
Can magicians fleece an expert?
Well, let’s see – over several seasons.
It’s great viewing!