NFL quarterback based on their looks
And NFL quarterback is likely to check many of the 'attractive' tick boxes - athletic, successful, etc. However, they are judged on their prowess in the game, not their looks (except for those who are fantasizing about them). Whereas cheerleaders are judged more or less entirely on their looks - despite the fact that they train pretty hard as well, and their physical abilities are just as incredible. Oh, and they make peanuts in regards to pay.
To explore that premise and determine our areas of agreement and disagreement is better done over a couple of drinks while sitting in some comfortable chairs.
Agreed. I'm partial to bourbon these days, so somewhere with a decent selection thereof is preferable.
Again, I would argue there is some selection bias in YouTube comments. Conclusions from interviews also would be unreliable because of a similar selection bias for the questions based on what the interviewer expects his or her audience would find appealing.
YouTube comments are like drunken comments - they don't change the nature of the person making them, there's just less of a filter.
Side note to support my claims - My wife stilt walks for events. She gets pretty much the same comments and questions every single time she does an event. Most times, the comments about looks come from men, and the comments about skill come from women. Both genders ask, "How's the weather up there?" though.
And you are probably right that interviewers are asking questions they think their audience will care about - but that doesn't change the fact that the audience (which will be the same people making YouTube comments) seem to care about what kind of underwear Scarlett Johansson wears under that leather outfit as Black Widow, as opposed to asking Chris Helmworth about his stunt work or workout routine.
The press surrounding The Avengers is actually a pretty good yardstick, really. ScarJo actually got pretty fed up with interviewers always asking her about clothes and make up and underwear while asking the men about acting and preparation and such that in some interviews Mark Rufalo would answer the questions posed to Scarlett and she would answer the questions posed to him - just so she could stop talking about the same appearance-centric subjects.
Not to mention red carpet events - women are asked about their dress, men are asked about their accomplishments.
We are undoubtedly, currently, a society that values women's looks and men's work.
The premise is plausible, but in no way inspires wonder. The idea of someone spending countless hours listening to the sound of a marker on paper to discern what is written seems a bit inane to me. In the context of a show like Penn and Teller's Fool Us (and in most magic or mentalism show), any performer provided explanation is presumed to be false. Her explanation puts me in a position where if it is true, it is a demonstration of a rather odd and particularly un-useful skill and if it is false, it is a mere trick.
I don't know. I think you may be approaching this without the correct theatrical context.
Being able to take one sense and interpret it into another sense is kind of cool. And, just plausible enough to be possible. Maybe it won't inspire wonder - but honestly, that isn't the goal of mentalists in many cases. We are entertainers, yes, but wonder is not the only emotion I seek to elicit. Sometimes I want to evoke outright awe of the degree to which I have honed a particular skill. Perhaps that's a kind of wonder, I don't know.
Also, side note - I could see this being the plot-turn-point of a criminal procedural like Psych, The Mentalist, Sherlock, etc. where the detective/hero finally cracks the case due to their finely tuned senses being able to take sound and turn it into an image.
Anyway - I question this specific line:
(and in most magic or mentalism show), any performer provided explanation is presumed to be false.
In a magic show, I agree with you 100%. In a mentalism show, though - I disagree.
When someone is performing proper mentalism it should be presented in such a way that is plausible. To that end - I am frequently (almost every show, really) asked about my 'powers' after a show. I never claim to be "real" (unless I'm presenting a genuine skill) - but people believe my premises. I consider this due to the plausibility of my scripts as well as the congruent nature of how I perform.
So while people going to a magic show will assume it's all tricks - people seeing real mentalist show will often believe what that person says they are doing. The problem here is the number of people who claim to be mentalists who are mental magicians.
but rather to express a bit of disbelief that P&T didn't guess it.
This is why I put "fooled" in quotes in my response.
After talking with Aiden Sinclair I've changed my perception of Fool Us. I'm not sure how many people actually fool them, and how many people they just want to give stage time or attention. I am absolutely sure that some of the people they have labelled as having fooled them did not fool them - well, did not fool Teller. I'm sure some of those people they just decided deserved time on stage.
So I'm not positive she 'fooled' them. Maybe they just decided she's good enough to deserve the attention. As I've said, I'm interested to see what she has to offer.