Carson introduces my "Tornado of Fire," which looks like the darkened set of Stargate. Carson tells the audience that this is not a trick or an illusion, while a dummy that could not be nearly as dashing or attractive as me stands in the center of a smoky cyclone that bursts into flames. The dummy, not as resilient at The David, catches fire and burns. I pretend it's Lance Burton.
Suddenly, I appear in front of the burning dummy wearing a smart olive jumpsuit that screams whatever word is the opposite of "drab." I bellow, "Hello! I'm David Copperfield! And I hope I do better than that guy!" I was talking about Carson Daly just then, not the incinerated dummy. Disarm the audience with wit at the start, I always say. God, I'm good. As the opening title card comes up I'm interviewed in split-screen, with two angles of PURE DAVID filling the screen. CBS focus groups suggested that seeing two David Copperfields on the screen at the same time from different angles was enough to induce multiple orgasms among 37-to-45-year-old females in Nebraska and Wyoming. Ladies of Nebraska and Wyoming: You're welcome. I say in this little montage that when I was six, my family and I escaped a fire at my uncle's, and fire became a lifelong fear for me. You'll notice that every special I do begins with me explaining how I plan to conquer a fear. Like when I conquered my fear of the Statue of Liberty, or when I conquered the fear of seeing an airplane off in the distance by making it disappear. My genius at television programming becomes evident in the next montage showing how I conquered my fears of drowning, heights, and now Mother Nature. (The cruelest bitch of all, my friends.) Some stock footage of tornadoes from the 1920s is shown to prove my point, which is this: Tornadoes are bad. And they have been bad for at least 80 years. I intend to kick their asses on national television. I then explain that the only way to survive a fire-carrying tornado is to stand in the center, not touching the 2,000-degree fire. Kind of like a Healthy Choice dinner that never thaws in the middle. Secret to my readers: My biggest fear now is actually being single.
Next up, my live show begins with the word "Imagine" projected on a white sheet. On every white sheet used in my shows, a groupie has been bedded by yours truly. That's the David Copperfield promise. This show was taped in Memphis, Tennessee, for obvious reasons. Okay, you got me. There are no obvious reasons. It was cheap to shoot there. So sue me. The titles on the sheet talk about imagining being in another place and traveling by just closing your eyes. Right now, I'm imagining sitting right next to you and whispering into your ear, "I'm David. And I want to put my illusion deep in you. Don't you want it?" You know you want to travel onto my lap. As moody music plays to the audience of Tennesseeans, many of them with teeth (oh, come on, I kid the Memphis folks. They're beautiful, lovely, inbred people), listens to me speak. In voice-over, I tell the audience that all my life I've wanted to be able to travel to another place, just to get through the day at home or at work. Except, where have I worked exactly? I mean, it's been a while since I had to do weekend shifts at Home Depot, if you know what I mean. I promise to the audience that tonight, I'm going to travel to the other side of the planet by just imagining. All I need is about $10 million in cash and equipment, paid for by the CBS network. And some teamsters.
The camera revolves around four men (Sal, Jerry, Anton, and Louie the Bitch, as we call him), who lift up a platform. A sheet (used with a groupie named "Geraldine," I believe) falls, then lifts, and there I am! David! Good God, I'm beautiful. The crowd applauds enthusiastically, and I respond with a rampaging erection. You at home can't see it, but let me assure you, the audience isn't applauding because of that simple magic trick. I step down, wearing a white T and unbuttoned blue shirt, doing the Casual Magic thing. I want to seem attainable to the common lady. Like a young James Brolin. "How y'all doing?" I yell, because that's how you gotta talk to these crackers. Oh, I'm sorry. Did I say "crackers"? I meant "tasty saltines of the South." I ask the audience to put their arms out, wrap their hands together, and then flip them up with baby-talk commands: "Go like thiiiiis. Now, go like thaaaaat." The screen for home viewers suddenly commands, "You at home…Do it now." My great God in Heaven, that is brilliant. How can I not achieve ratings gold? The camera cuts away and cuts back as I turn my contorted hands back to the "up" position, thus confounding my hillbilly audience. The cut-away rendered my illusion completely dumb to the home audience, but that's okay. The show gets better, I promise. I'm just trying to disarm the folks in the audience. And judging from the gun laws in Memphis, disarming the audience is probably a good idea.