Criss Angel is a riddle wrapped in a scoop-necked leather shirt (or maybe it’s a jacket) seated on a throne.
That’s how he greets his “think tank” in the premiere of “Criss Angel BeLIEve” (10 p.m. Tuesday, Spike), the behind-the-scenes look at how the Strip headliner creates new stunts and illusions. (For those of you keeping score at home, last week’s episode was only a sneak peek.)
Magic on TV has always made about as much sense as ventriloquism on the radio. There are just way too many opportunities to cheat. And even if everything’s above board, there’s always that lingering suspicion that you’re watching a special effect.
But at least Angel keeps things interesting.
As the few of you who saw “The Incredible Burt Wonderstone” will remember, nutso street magician Steve Gray (Jim Carrey) was very clearly based, at least in part, on Angel.
And the few of you who saw it also will remember that Gray made part of a playing card disappear, then carved it out of himself in front of a horrified Fremont Street audience.
Everything comes full circle Tuesday night when Angel performs a variation on that trick in front of a horrified Ludacris.
Coincidence? Did Angel even see “Wonderstone”? Or is he really just that self-aware?
There’s no telling, because a Spike publicist was unable to get him on the phone for an interview.
But if he really is that self-aware, what’s up with that throne?
Don’t go away mad: After 10 years and hundreds of questionable decisions, “What Not to Wear” (9 p.m. Friday, TLC) is leaving the air with a two-hour finale bash in Las Vegas. But, as the description on the channel’s website says, “It wouldn’t be ‘What Not to Wear’ without one last makeover in the city known for epic fashion disasters.” 1) That’s rude. 2) We assume they’re not talking about that leather shirt-y/jacket-y thing.
See this Evel: Since this column has somehow taken a weird turn involving leather costumes, it’s worth mentioning “Pure Evel: American Legend” (10 p.m. Monday, Discovery). The too-brief look at the controversial life of the star-spangled daredevil born Robert Craig Knievel discusses not only how he conned Jay Sarno into letting him jump the fountains at Caesars Palace but how he conned reporters into believing he was hovering near death in a local hospital after his terrible crash.
Song and dance: Now that the blind auditions are over, Las Vegan Barry Black is ready for the battle rounds on “The Voice” (8 p.m. Monday, KSNV-TV, Channel 3). The Samoan soul singer is a member of Adam Levine’s team. And Las Vegas native Tera Perez stars in “A Step Away” (10 p.m. Thursdays, NUVOtv), which follows Jennifer Lopez’s dancers on their world tour. Perez serves as the stand-in dance captain for The Artist Sometimes Known As J-Lo.
Fright night: During the final episodes of “Breaking Bad,” you may have noticed commercials for a little show called “The Walking Dead.” It returns at 9 p.m. Sunday on AMC. People may be talking about it Monday morning. Be advised.
One night only: The Royal Ballet presents its take on “Don Quixote,” filmed at London’s Royal Opera House. The special event, which includes interviews with the dancers, can be seen at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Colonnade, Santa Fe, South Point and Village Square theaters.
Out-of-context quote of the week: “Is there a way to get my eyes sewn shut?” — Criss Angel
Contact Christopher Lawrence at clawrence@ reviewjournal.com or 702-380-4567.