The downturn in the economy and the popularity of Ellen DeGeneres and Rosie O’Donnell may lead to another golden age of variety television shows — which is good news for magicians and people who love magic.
The Hartford Courant reported that variety shows are making a comeback similar to their heyday in the ’70s. DeGeneres and O’Donnell have variety shows airing this week — DeGeneres’ “Ellen’s Even Bigger Really Big Show” features an appearance by Hans Klok. And FOX has a variety show in the works starring Ozzy Osbourne.
The timing is right for variety shows to return, O’Donnell said:
“Variety shows were a big hit in the ’70s when the economy was, you know, in the crapper and gasoline was scarce, and people’s belief in the political system was shaken. The economy has made it so that people are staying home more and, you know, sadly unable to go out. And to give people an hour to forget about their troubles, to have an hour of fun, laughter and singing and dancing, no politics, no arguing, no talking about controversial things. That to me I think is needed now.”
That is good news for magicians, mentalists and illusionists: The shows will give them the opportunity to snag more primetime. As we recall, that worked out for David Copperfield and Doug Henning. DeGeneres alone is quite the fan of magicians and magic.
In other magic-on-TV news, the 2008 World Magic Awards will air at 8 p.m. Eastern on MyNetwork. Neil Patrick Harris will host; performers include Klok, The Amazing Jonathan and Lance Burton.