Eric Leclerc had me totally befuddled. He performed two magic tricks less than two feet away from where I was sitting, and I still have no clue how he pulled them off. (You can check out the video below.) I was still talking about his performance days after he’d done them, and you’ll feel that way after tuning into YTV’s new hidden camera show.
Debuting Monday on the network, Tricked stars Leclerc—a two-time Canadian Magic Championship winner—as he messes with the minds of everyday Canadians going about their business in and around Vancouver. Monday’s bow tracks the energetic Leclerc while he approaches folks in Granville Public Market. There, he pulls off several food-related head-scratchers, correctly producing favourite snacks, fruits and a wedding ring from the most unlikely of places and using a cell phone to make juice. I don’t want to give away the tricks themselves, but Leclerc’s targets were as amazed and confused as I was. How does he pull off intricate magic that involves, well, possibly reading one’s mind?
“We spent five months in Vancouver filming, and performed 300 tricks,” Leclerc says during a press day in Toronto. “It was the first time in my career where I was doing magic that I wasn’t choosing to be put out there.” Adapted from a series in the UK, Force Four Entertainment auditioned hundreds of magicians before picking the Ottawa-based Leclerc. He and a team of magicians came up with all-original tricks, created and worked with him to perfect them before unleashing the brain-twisters on the public in 20 episodes. Having your angles covered is an important feature of magic, and Leclerc reveals well-placed production assistants and TV camera coordination blocked off key sight lines to keep the magic intact.
And yet, with all of that said, I still don’t know how Leclerc pulled off the trick he performed with a woman’s wedding ring at the end of Episode 1.
“When you experience magic in front of you, you know it’s not a trick,” Leclerc says. “Her reaction was real and that’s what this show is all about. It’s about their reaction when they trust a total stranger who says, ‘Lend me your wedding ring and let’s try something cool.'”
Tricked airs Monday to Thursday at 7:30 p.m. ET/PT on YTV.
Images courtesy of Corus.