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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Magic names and the media » » Penn or Teller trashes magicians on "Bernie Mac." (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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mattneufeld
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According to a promo that aired on the radio for "The Bernie Mac Show" on Monday, Feb. 6, 2006, Mac's character is upset that his son is suddenly addicted to magic, and Penn, or Teller, appears in the promo ad and trashes magicians, telling the Mac character that most magicians are "nerdy" or "geeky," or something.

Yes, it's comedy, but there's a number of things wrong with this, mainly that it's just a thinly-disguised attack on magicians, and obviously the writers and Penn or Teller really thinks that magic and magicians are geeky. The whole thing is wildy critical and negative about magic and magicians. It's not that funny, really.

Well, someone should tell Penn, or Teller, or whoever it is that appears on the show, as well as Bernie Mac and everyone else associated with the show that it's a bit childish for any adult to label anyone "nerdy" or "geeky;" that magicians, of course, are not "nerdy" or "geeky;" and, uh, that Penn and Teller have made their vast fortune from.....magic. And Bernie Mac has made his fortune in the same field--show business--that employs literally thousands of magicians in the United States.

Grow up, people. Grow up.
Payne
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So we've been living under a rock the last two decades or so?
Trashing magicians and calling them nerdy or jerks is Penn and Tellers shtick. It's what they do. Perhaps it hits a little too close to home if you are offended by the comment.
Myself I am confident in myself my craft and my skills to not be offended by such rhetoric. In fact I can see the humour in it and always try to catch their show when I'm in Vegas.
"America's Foremost Satirical Magician" -- Jeff McBride.
Mercury52
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Heck, I'm a magician and I'll be the first to admit that magicians are often not on the cutting edge of what's fashionable. Does this make them nerdy or geeky? Maybe not, but it certainly doesn't help their image in the public eye.

Let's face it, public perception of magic is just now barely starting to be cooler with Blaine and Angel hitting the airwaves.

If you ask people to describe a magician, they'll give you the typical tux, top hat, rabbit, wand, etc. They don't need Penn and Teller and Bernie Mac to give them these impressions.

Many magicians are geeky. Many are not. Public perception is what it is, and it's not going to change on a widespread basis anytime soon. Not until we stop being so geeky! I'm sure I'm a bit geeky myself.

I don't think anybody is going to change their opinion of magic based on a promo for a TV sitcom. They'll either continue to like it or dislike it, find it geeky or cool, etc.

If we'd all learn to laugh at ourselves a bit more and not take ourselves so seriously, maybe there would be fewer hurt feelings in today's society. Maybe P&T aren't the only ones who need to grow up?

Kevin
Kevin Reylek
Bill Fienning
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I agree that many magicians are nerdy, some are much worse than others.

On the other hand, the super-nerd, Bill Gates, is also the richest man in the world. Maybe being a computer nerd is not so bad. (Said by a retired computer nerd.)
Bill Fienning

"It's More than Tricks"
paisa23
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It doesn't bother me either way. Its just a show . I don't consider my self nerdy or geeky, nor has anyone that I have performed for. Just My opinion.
mjeayres
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Isn't the joke supposed to be "ironic". i.e. Penn & Teller saying that magicians are nerds or geeky, therefore saying that they are nerds and geeks!?
Vandy Grift
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That is a repeat. I've seen the episode. It's no big deal people. Settle down for Gods sake. This episode is not going to make people think one way or the other. Quit wringing your hands, it's a television show.

What do you mean "Penn, or Teller, appears in the promo ad and trashes magicians, telling the Mac character that most magicians are "nerdy" or "geeky," or something."... Don't you know which one it is? Hint; only one of them speaks in public, so you have a 50/50 chance.

You said "Yes, it's comedy, but there's a number of things wrong with this, mainly that it's just a thinly-disguised attack on magicians, and obviously the writers and Penn or Teller really thinks that magic and magicians are geeky. The whole thing is wildy critical and negative about magic and magicians. It's not that funny, really."

But of course, you don't really know that, because you didn't watch the show. Watch the episode, then come back here and rant. I have a feeling you are a geek and a nerd because you are on here crying about something before you have even watched it.

Grow up, Grow up.

Vandy
"Get a life dude." -some guy in a magic forum
bitterman
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Embrace your inner nerd and get over it.
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mattneufeld
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Lawdy momma, such hostility!

There's no deeper psychology involved here: It's not about me. I was concerned, and interested in starting a positive, non-aggressive, mature discussion, because a television show, two popular magicians, a popular stand-up comedian and actor, and a network were poking fun at magicians and, even through comedy, irony, satire and humor, which I understand, supporting a misconception and a stereotype and a generalization that many magicians are geeky or nerdy. Whether it's through humor, sarcasm, irony or satire or not, it doesn't help promote a positive image.

But it does a disservice to the discussion to turn things around and blatantly attack me! Again, it's not about me. The idea is to generate a discussion about, again, a show, a comedian, some magicians and a network supporting stereotypes and generalizations. The idea is that it'd be better to show magicians in a positive light, and a supportive light. That's much more productive and positive--that's what I'm striving for. And everyone can agree with that!
Vandy Grift
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Matt,

Sorry my post came off so harshly. I wanted to edit out the comments about you being a geek etc. But it was too late. That was unnecessary. But I have seen the episode. It's not bad. Magic makes a few appearances on the Bernie Mac show because of the young boy charachter. They usually handle it pretty well.

It was either the episode you described or another one where "Jordan" gives up magic for good. Bernie Mac had been riding him about magic and how it wasn't cool or something. At the end of the episode Bernie feels bad for Jordan and says "I'm gonna miss that doggone magic." They don't really rip magicians on that show. Unlike Arrested Development, which I also think is very funny.

Vandy
"Get a life dude." -some guy in a magic forum
Reis O'Brien
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They're not lying... Magicians are geeks and nerds. Sorry to say it, but it's true. We're right up there with comic book collectors and Dungeons & Dragons fanatics. I mean, think about it... Have you ever heard of a "magic groupie"?
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BAH1313
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Who cares what others think? Be who you are and to hell the rest of the world.
People don't get noticed in this business because they dress and look like everybody else. They get noticed because of their eccentricities, their different way of doing things. isn't that what a nerd is?
Besides that, Penn and Teller have everyone on here talking about a RERUN, for chrissakes. Now, who are the nerds doin things different? Who's having TV specials? That goofy duo!!!
Let's face it. They didn't get where they are by doing things like everyone else. They have done some VERY eccentric thing and continue to do so.
I am truly blessed to have a job where people are laughing all the time and everyone believes in magic....Come to think of it, I'm blessed to even have a job.
Steven True
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Oh my!!Who really thinks we are geeky or nerdy? Ok a show of pocket protectors if you think we are nerds???
jcorb
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Here's mine!!!!
Steven True
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Well there you go now.

Steven
Rodney Palmer
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Well I an a magician and a very good one at that. If Penn and Teller want to call us geeks or nerds they may do so. All I know is that I do around 200 shows per year and I have one of the biggest clients in the United States that pays for my house, car, food, etc. I get paid to play and have fun. I guess I love being a nerd or a geek and getting paid very well.
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malini
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Ha ha.

You're really funny.
JHodgeCMI
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Quote:
On 2006-02-08 15:03, Reis O'Brien wrote:
They're not lying... Magicians are geeks and nerds. Sorry to say it, but it's true. We're right up there with comic book collectors and Dungeons & Dragons fanatics. I mean, think about it... Have you ever heard of a "magic groupie"?


Hurry up and roll your 12 sided die I'm trying to cast a spell here!
Joey Stalin
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You only use D12s? I use D20s and sometimes even a D100 Smile
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pepka
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I do card tricks. I play jazz trombone. I watch cartoons at age 31. I love computers. I'm a freaking nerd. I can't quote Monty Python the way most nerds do, but I'm a nerd nonetheless.

If Penn and Teller really disliked and disrespected magicians, I don't think they would have appeared at a benefit show in Vegas for a well known magician 2 weeks ago. Even though the magician in question is Christian, and they are card carrying athiests.

Penn and Teller are great entertainers and this is part of their schtick, has been for years. Get over it.
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