Sunday, January 1, 2012

Houdini gets Decoded, January 4

UPDATE: CLICK HERE to read my own reaction/review of this episode. Warning: it's not pretty.

Was Houdini Murdered? That's the topic of Brad Meltzer's Decoded set to air on January 4, 2012 on The History Channel. The show will feature interviews with Lance Burton and Dorothy Dietrich among others.

The Houdini murder theory is not new. New York tabloids fanned the flames of a conspiracy within days of Houdini's death in 1926. Norman Bigelow revived the idea with his self-published book, Death Blow, in 1983. Recently the theory reached new heights with the publication of The Secret Life of Houdini and a push to exhume Houdini's body to test for poisoning.

For the record, I think the murder theory is ridiculous and all these "investigations" pure sensationalism. While Houdini certainly had his enemies among spiritualists (and I do believe Whitehead might have had an agenda to rough Houdini up), you just can't murder someone via appendicitis.

But I guess the murder theory is now a part of Houdini lore, and it does make for good TV. And there's always the possibility that Brad Meltzer might actually debunk the idea once and for all, although I'm not encouraged by the episode description. Guess we'll find out together on January 4.

You can pre-order the DVD of this episode for $24.95 from The History Channel shop (release date February 15).


  1. Virulent abdominal infection not enough for some people? =)

  2. I watched the "2012" episode just to get a sense of what this show was like. It is TRASH, even by trash TV standards. All fear mongering and hysteria. Their conclusion, yes, the world will end in 2012. Fact. Don't expect much from the Houdini ep.

  3. This is kind of the problem with this sort of TV. People who don't know much about the subject will see it and think there's truth to it because of the way in which the topic is presented. There's a lot of that about, unfortunately.

  4. Especially as this is on the "History Channel." But we'll see.

  5. Awesome, can't wait to see this!

  6. Nope. Still don't miss my tv. LOL! :)

  7. Just watched it, and I want to throw up.

  8. I'm glad they cleared-up that Houdini died when he was 53. All the other sources before this should correct their errors.



Receive updates via email