Death By Magic recreates fatal stunts

Courtesy of Netflix
Drummond Money-Coutts defies death and astounds audiences in Death by Magic.

Neil Runge | Staff Writer

01/17/19

Watch as a man takes possibly life-ending stunts to a whole new level. Netflix’s new show Death by Magic is astounding and absolutely mind-boggling. It blends the genres of documentary and reality TV in a magical way.

Hosted by Drummond Money-Coutts, or DMC, is a professional magician who goes on a journey to learn about then test the limits of his illusionist skills in his new show.

Each episode starts in a new city, where DMC talks about a magician who died as a result of their own trick. DMC goes through the magician’s deadly trick and does man on the street-style presentations of smaller, safer types of tricks that all build up to the finale at each installment.

From being nearly hit by a train in Cape Town, South Africa at the start of the show to tackling a spin on the Niagara Falls barrel stunt in Los Angeles, every stunt DMC pulls is an amped-up interpretation of a famous fatal stunt. DMC takes an already deadly event and somehow raises the danger and increases the risks.

Even the little tricks DMC pulls before the big finale are mind-blowing. What he does seems to defy all logic. The genuine reactions from the people he interacts with are entertaining and relatable.

The audience reactions aren’t the only things that build up Money-Coutts’ authenticity in the series. After being buried alive or nearly drowning in water, DMC doesn’t come out unscathed. He doesn’t come out spotless or without a scratch — he gets drenched in water, cuts his hand, and, in the case of being buried alive, he came out covered in dirt.

DMC coming out harmed or at least dirty seems to erase any doubts that his stunts are faked. He doesn’t hop up at the end of a performance with a huge flourish. Almost every time, he collapses in exhaustion before the people who just saw him complete a death defying trick.

Death by Magic still holds the dramatic flair of every magician’s act. Alongside the flair, though, is a genuine show of tricks and stunts that leaves everyone watching stunned and questioning how someone could ever accomplish what DMC has.

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