- Format: Kindle Edition
- File Size: 4197 KB
- Print Length: 222 pages
- Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1520903162
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00J8VJ6S4
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Average Customer Review: 29 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #177,747 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Smoke & Mirrors and Steven Seagal: The Burning Pants of Popular Culture Kindle Edition
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I think it's best described by giving a quick summing up of each chapter.
The first chapter is about James Hydrick, a martial artist who could turn the pages of a book or move a pencil without touching it, using the power of his mind. Hydrick became a celebrity and had his own school before being exposed as a phony, the page turning and pencil moving were conjuring tricks performed by covertly blowing on things!
The next chapter is about urban legends. One such legend involve incidents where people would claim that Bill Murry came up to them, he would do something strange (e.g steal their french fries) then say "and no one will ever believe you" and leave. Irrespective of if these things did happen, people were making up very strange stories and entire sites have been devoted to the subject. Other urban legends covered are such things as Purple Aki ( rumored inspiration for Candyman) and Jimmy Savile rumors.
Chapter three is about professional wrestling. As I am sure you know professional wrestling is fake, and the wrestlers have to keep up their fake persona even outside the ring. A strange unreality of genuinely skilled and tough fighters hamming it up for the crowds. When challenged with claims that wrestling is fake, unpleasant results can happen. One reporter was slapped unconscious by a wrestler showing him how fake it was.
The forth chapter is about BBC mockumentary Ghostwatch, a one off show filmed like a live documentary set in a haunted house. The documentary terrified a lot of people who thought the ghostly goings on were real.
The next chapter is "The Mads Lies of Hulk hogan", Hulk has told some interesting tales in his time, such as Elvis coming to see him wrestle (Evils died in 1977, two years before Hulk's wrestling career started), he claims to have fought in the Pride fighting championship in the seventies (this is not possible as Pride was established in 1997) and many other questionable claims.
The sixth chapter is about Most Hunted, a very popular ghost hunting TV program. Despite the fact that one of the presenters was a psychic that could channel spirits and many ghostly goings on like strange noises they never actual found any ghosts. The TV program was eventually exposed as fake, the knocking and groaning noises were done by the presenters.
The final chapter is about unbelievable tales told by certain martial artists. Frank Dux, (alleged ninja that worked for the CIA) who inspired the movie Bloodsport is covered. Steven Seagal also claims to have worked for CIA and of course the alleged incident involving Gene LeBell choking out Steve (causing him to close control of his bowels ) is mentioned. The rise and fall of Count Dante, the master of Dim Mak (death touch) is covered. People claiming no touch knockouts is mentioned. Unfortunately, after critics tested these claims it was discovered that the no touch knockout masters can only get it to work on their own students, not anybody else! (youtube "Kiai Master vs MMA" for a good example)
Anybody interested in BS in the martial arts will love this book, as will anybody interested in BS in general.
In this new book he tackles a variety of subjects - the phenomenon of the TV psychic, the terrifyingly self-delusional world of professional wrestling, an urban legend about Bill Murray stealing a chip off someone in the Crouch End Wimpy, and more.
The one thing all of the subjects in the book have in common is the blurring of fact and fiction - which Millard does his best to get to the bottom of in his own unique, uncompromising - and hilarious - way.
Every single chapter has laugh-out-loud moments that you will find yourself sniggering about hours later, and I recommend the book in its entirety.
However, I have to make special mention of the chapter on Brian Pillman.
This is, quite simply, the best writing on professional wrestling that I've ever read. And believe me, I've spent/wasted most of the last 25 years reading about the subject.
In equal parts funny, moving, insightful, and filled with original content and research, this is a must-read for any fan of the pseudo-sport.
This book deserves to be enjoyed by a wider audience, so buy it now before a bloated Millard hooks up with Zoe Salmon and starts working on the new series of Dani's House.
The other chapters are similarly illuminating - of particular note is a look at famed BBC mockumentary Ghostwatch, an evisceration of noted fraud Derek Acorah, and an exploration of the repeated Bill Murray encounters.
The tome is shot through with personal anecdotes of childhood, which is clearly where Millard encountered the majority of the figures and events dealt with. This is reinforced by the conscious decision to sprinkle the pages with immature jokes about penii - meaning the book works on several levels, unless you're a massively thick stuntman who IMDB says hasn't worked for eight years, in which case books without pictures may not be for you.
I would buy this book immediately, and then buy another one for a friend. Also, if I were to lose my Kindle and also my password for my Amazon account, I would buy another copy without hesitation.
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