There's a sucker born every minute, and Nicholas J. Johnson can attest to that first-hand. As a magician (and comedian) himself, he's spent years observing shysters and illusionists at work, and has made it a personal mission to expose the sort of fraud that really hurts people. He calls himself 'the honest conman'.
But deception isn't always sinister. In this podcast, he explores the craft of the con in all its many and varied forms, picking the brains of special guests who are skilled in the sneaky arts. Their disciplines are wide-ranging - from straight-up magic to carnival games, ventriloquism to cryptic crosswords - and each conversation opens a window onto a small, secretive world. Johnson's enthusiasm is catching, and his competence obvious; he's a scam all-rounder, and an excellent escort behind the curtain. Reliably interesting, mostly weekly.
Gateway episodes: 17 The Cottingley Fairies with Sarah Baggs (2 Nov 2015) / 12 The Magic Castle with Rob Zabrecky (28 Sep 2015) / 24 Houdini and the Medium with John Cox (21 Dec 2015) / 02 Every Child Wins A Prize with Glenn Hester (20 Jul 2015)