Sunday, June 22, 2014

Magic and Alchemy

I just watched a season 2 episode of Wonder Woman featuring Ed Begley, Jr. aka Stan Sitwell from Arrested Development. It's amusing, for Ed plays Harold Farnum, an eager fanboy and magician who wants to help Diana Prince in her investigation. There's a huge conference of magicians taking place at the hotel where Diana is meeting an oil prince. Most of Harold's magic tricks don't work, and he gets captured by the villain to use as bait for a trap, but Harold at least successfully constructs a carbon-arc torch in the hopes of escaping his prison cell. (But Wonder Woman just yanks the door open with her super-strength.) "Diana's Disappearing Act" is full of stage magic and mimes and a sinister magic shop. The villain is Count Cagliostro, a descendent of an Italian family that Wonder Woman apparently battled in the 18th century. They've always been magicians and swindlers, and the current Count has a scheme to turn lead into gold.

Harold has a crush on Diana, and wants to be her expert consultant on magic. She tolerates him and even refers to him as a "boy" at one point, though he's clearly not that young. Maybe everybody seems like a child to her since she's over 2,000 years old. I liked seeing all the various tricks performed, and Harold says that magicians refer to their art as "conjuring" since "magic" can also mean witchcraft. My recording blacked out for a few minutes in some kind of glitch, so I'll try to see if I can get the episode on Netflix or iTunes.

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