David Blaine’s latest trick: Making mountains out of molehills

15:01 08 October 2012

David Blaine

David Blaine


Remember the bloke in the box? He’s back, and apparently people still care...

Remember when David Blaine was exciting? Remember when he did all that remarkable street magic which left those taking part and viewers alike with their jaws bouncing like a rubber ball on the floor below?

Well, you’ll need to cling on to that because the American magician has, since first emerging in the early 1990s, managed to create headlines for his latest trick – making mountains out of molehills.

He has taken the remarkably dull and lifeless and somehow managed to convince thousands – if not millions – that what he is doing is clever, a feat of endurance, and, gulp, jolly brave.

Remember that time he went in a box for 44 days next to the Thames? Rather than all stand in awe, the British public visited him to hurl their kebabs at him on a Friday night and then, far more creatively, started using his box as a target at which to launch golf balls from nearby Tower Bridge.

In short, he sat in a box for over a month and then came down again. We all clapped.

As if that level of excitement wasn’t enough, he then returned to the US to stand in a sphere of water for a few days while air and food was sent in via pipes. They all clapped when he emerged.

And then there was the event where he was to be suspended upside down for, gulp, 60 hours, without a safety harness. He finished cue, one assumes, more clapping.

Can the world be any further stimulated?

Well, this month he stood on a platform for 72-hours while wearing a special suit while one million volts of electricity pulsed through him. Or at least around him.

Scientists pointed out the suit he was wearing made it perfectly safe and that the main issue was simply staying awake.

Which tends to be the recurring theme. Because David Blaine has devised a string of events where simply staying awake is considered a remarkable feat. What’s more, he does it in the middle of the most populated cities and millions file past him to watch.

Look! A man stands on a platform and doesn’t do anything! Roll up, roll up!

We’ll be giving out Academy Awards to those bloody living statues next, if we’re not careful.

Even I took a detour into work once to go and see Blaine in his box by the Thames (he was waking up, I waved, he waved back – it was about as exciting as the stunt).

The fact that no-one seems to have really noticed Blaine is doing this electricity stunt is a step in the right direction. The fact even fewer care, even better.

David Blaine is, without doubt, a clever man. One who knows the power of publicity and the ease of which to manipulate the media by doing what all magicians do best – and hype up the danger potential.

Just that, for once, it would be fun to see Blaine do something properly exciting – something which doesn’t consist of doing nothing for hours on end.

Perhaps something like, oh, I don’t know, some street magic?


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