Copyright 20189 by Jeff Quinn, Omaha Magician, Nebraska Magician, Iowa Magician, Midwest Magician.  No items on this page may be reproduced without expressed permission from Jeff Quinn.

Family Show Vs. Kid's Show

February 2, 2014

Not only am I a magician; I'm also a dad.  I have endured Barney on Ice.  I have paid $50 per ticket to take my daughter to see Veggie Tales.  I have seen EVERY animated movie made between 2001 and 2013.  And most of that entertainment was not entertaining to me.  But I smiled and went anyway because it was entertaining for my daughter.

 

And I learned some things.  Some very valuable things.  

 

I learned that I never wanted to do a show that alienated the adults in my audience.  That's why you'll find me doing humor and throwing in referenced directed at the parents.  I want the grown-ups to find the magic as amazing as their kids do and I want them to also leave the show being just as entertained as their children are.  I respect the parents who spend quality time with their kids by bringing them to my Summer Reading Program magic show and I don't want them to feel like it was just another kid-based event that they had to endure.

 

I also learned that innuendo is a no-no.  I recall sitting with my daughter in a movie theater when she was about 8 or 9, watching a cartoon and a character made an adult innuendo.  To be honest, it made me feel kind of creepy.  I wonder what I would have said if my daughter had asked me what it meant?  I would have probably made up something, but it would have been a very awkward situation.  

 

Finally, I remember seeing a trend of bodily function jokes in children's movies.  This may have appealed to 9 year old boys, but as a parent, I found it crude and tasteless.  I believe in setting an example for children.  I'll never resort to toilet humor to get a cheap laugh.  I'm better than that and the children deserve better than that.  Unfortunately, not all entertainers think so.  Several years ago my jaw dropped in horror as I watched a magician make a joke about how he thought his 5 year old assistant had soiled himself.  Imagine how the child must have felt.  Imagine how the parents felt.  I couldn't believe it.

 

Maybe my taste in humor comes from my upbringing.  I remember that my father and I would watch Laurel & Hardy, Abbott & Costello and W.C. Fields.  Even today I would prefer to watch Carol Burnett over Honey Boo Boo or Gilligan's Island over Jackass.  

 

Trends in humor may change, but I believe that there will always be an audience for classic, clean, non-offensive humor.  And that's exactly what I plan on continuing to do.

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