Incidentally, I read on the internet some time ago that Derren Brown consulted his friend Richard Wiseman before making the 'Séance' program.
Here is a Richard Wiseman video showing how easy it is too fool inexperienced
people in dark. However such simple tricks as employed here (e.g. slipping ropes under loose arm rests) are inadequate
to explain far more difficult conditions under which many mediums were tested , by experienced investigators, looking for fraudulent methods, who still reported some mediums as producing inexplicable phenomena under such conditions. YouTube - Richard Wiseman Seance Unconscious Fraud
What Derren Brown implies is 'unconscious fraud'...wasn't. He most probably tricked a young student into confused thinking for a brief moment that she perhaps threw a tambourine over a curtain.
'Unconscious fraud' was a claim that some mediums in a full trance state, a state reportedly with zero memory recall afterwards, were highly open to suggestion (similar to hypnosis) and if over keen to succeed in trials or be lead to cheat (as Derren Brown implies) would 'unconsciously' produce movements or take actions to achieve goal without memory recall of cheating.
Please note, if Derren Brown *could do* what he claimed '.. it is actually my suggestions that have encouraged them into involuntary behaviour .... '
...far from debunking this if anything would support what early researchers were claiming. In fact, 'Skeptics' would have to review many historical case of alleged mediumship fraud as potentially just 'unconscious fraud' , if Derren could do what he claims
What has occurred often in the history of séance mediumship is that a even single (or few) incidents of alleged fraud or 'unconscious fraud' have later been presented by skeptic organizations as solid evidence of 'conscious fraud' of the medium. However ....
In doing so, would they also dismiss all cases of 'Dissociative Identity Disorder' (or Multiple Personality Disorder) where the patients and doctors claim the person has no memory recall of what took place earlier as also solid evidence of 'conscious fraud'? Dissociative identity disorder - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Cases of deep trance fraudulent mediumship are perhaps not as simple as skeptical organisations like to imply.
In 1992 Richard Wiseman attempted to debunk the very controversial medium Eusapia Palladino 1908 trials by 3 experienced SPR investigators (2 of whom were experts in séance fraudulent methods) . Wiseman suggested an accomplice tampered with the hotel room locked door where there investigations took place (no evidence) and used a rod to fish and move objects (no evidence) and that the investigators somehow didn't notice any of this when much of the phenomena occurred in n good light, not pitch darkness.
Unlike Derren Brown 'séance', Palladino sat in front of the curtain (not behind it), the tamboruine was 3 feet away while she was tied to the chair by rope designed not to be easily undone. Can you untie someone using a rod through a door panel?
So ....whose opinion is more valid, Richard Wiseman's opinion & Derren Brown's (video) trick in pitch darkness OR Howard Thurston (almost as famous a magician as Harry Houdini in his day) who directly tested Eusapia Palladino in good light and concluded '...the phenomena were not due to fraud and were not performed by the aid of her feet, knees or hands ....'
I have nothing against debunking properly .... but frankly the quality of debunking by some famous skeptics over the years has been deeply flawed and just as extraordinarily implausible as a extraordinary paranormal claim!
One must conclude if such Victorian mediums were all cunning frauds (long before the days of video editing tricks) their methods of deception often seem far beyond what Richard Wiseman or Derren Brown achieved in their 'séances'