What a week it’s been for the magic reviewers of the internet. There’s been drama, personal attacks, 51-minute-long magic rants, and heavy accusations. Let’s take a look at The Fall by Noel Qualter and the subsequent fallout amongst the magic reviewers.
This story is about much more than some meaningless magic review bickering. It’s a commentary on the state of magic, why reviews even exist in our industry, and why we all clamour to watch them (spoiler: it’s because we want to know how the tricks are done).
I should start by saying that Noel is a friend, though I maybe speak to him once a year.
Back when I was very young and trying to sell a radio play I’d written, I asked Noel to voice one of the characters. I think I’d met him twice at that point and I was pleasantly surprised when he agreed to help. He did later admit that he thought it was something he could just record on his phone at home and then felt it was too late to back out after I gave him the address of a studio several hours from his home.