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The Carbonaro Effect

The Carbonaro Effect

Photo Credit:  truTV
  • Premiered: 
    May 15, 2014
    (Click date to see TV listings for that day)

  • Network: truTV
  • Category: Series
  • Genre: Reality
  • Type: Live Action
  • Concept: 
  • Subject Matter:
  • Tags: magic, hidden camera prank

Buy This Show on DVD or Watch Online

No DVDs Available
(That We Know Of)
Legal Full Episodes
Not Available Online
(That We Know Of)

Plot Synopsis

THE CARBONARO EFFECT is a half-hour hidden camera prank series that follows actor, magician, comedian and improv artist Michael Carbonaro, as he uses his skills to trick, amaze and amuse the unsuspecting public. In each 30-minute episode, Michael performs baffling tricks on people in everyday situations -- all caught on hidden camera -- leaving them stunned and delighted, even though they have no idea what just hit them. In this series, Michael poses as an ordinary bartender or a seemingly unremarkable salesman, astonishing his marks by turning a tuft of hair into a puppy or pouring 12 pints of beer from an ordinary bottle. After airing a sneak-peek episode of THE CARBONARO EFFECT at 10:30pm ET/PT on April Fool's Day 2014 (Tuesday, April 1, 2014), truTV broadcast the series premiere of this series on Thursday, May 15, 2014 at 10pm ET/PT, showing back-to-back new episodes. On Thursday, October 30, 2014 at 10pm ET/PT on truTV, THE CARBONARO EFFECT returned with its Season 1 Fall premiere. In this new episode, "Out of Control," Michael stuns customers in a holistic store by treating them to kale cannolis that are too good to be true. Later, while working in a toy store, Michael shocks his coworker by bringing a large teddy bear to life.

On Wednesday, July 29, 2015 at 10pm ET/PT, truTV premiered the second season of THE CARBONARO EFFECT, immediately following a three-hour marathon (7-10pm) of encore episodes. In the season opener, "Just Made History," Michael poses as a hipster at a farmers market and makes an endless supply of juice. Then things become blurry at the eye doctor, and later, shape shifting aliens send Michael's co-worker into a frenzy. THE CARBONARO EFFECT returned with new episodes on Wednesday, March 23, 2016 at 10pm ET/PT on truTV, immediately following a five-hour marathon (5-10pm) of encore episodes. In the spring premiere, "EggShaq," Michael unveils the ancient mystery behind bowling balls, and later does the world's longest spit-take! Plus, LITERALLY THE BIGGEST special guest in the show's history, a.k.a. Shaquille O'Neal, helps with a plan to blow one superfan's mind!

Season 3 of THE CARBONARO EFFECT premiered on Wednesday, February 1, 2017 at 10pm ET/PT on truTV, immediately followed by a half-hour special. In the season opener (10pm), "Incredibly Unsettling," Michael breezes into the Windy City to shock and amaze the Chicago locals. In a health store, he sells a supplement that proves you are what you drink, and at a Metro station, he utterly derails a commuter's sense of reality. Then, the special (10:30pm), "Trick Plays," celebrates Michael's all-time greatest sports moments! Things get heated in the bowling alley; golf course hazards come out of nowhere; and during a workout, Michael shows that transformations can happen in an instant. After a seven-month break, THE CARBONARO EFFECT returned with new episodes on Thursday, November 9, 2017 at 10pm ET/PT on truTV. In this new episode, "A Similar Rock Energy," Michael is back in Chicago to hash out new ideas in a hemp store, but it's not until he inspects a spooky church that people start getting stoned -- literally. Plus, Michael teams up with special guest star Jack Black.

On Thursday, May 17, 2018 at 10pm ET/PT, truTV premiered the fourth season of THE CARBONARO EFFECT. In each new episode, Michael Carbonaro performs ingenious tricks on unsuspecting members of the public, all caught on hidden camera. Watch jaws drop when he causes a man to time travel into the past, or turns a tuft of hair into a puppy. Whether posing as a librarian, museum curator or seemingly unremarkable store clerk, Michael Carbonaro's effect on people will leave you laughing out loud with his bewildering and thrilling illusions. In the season opener, "Total Face Rejuvenation," Michael shocks a receptionist with a medical procedure that leaves both their jaws on the floor, and then at a party store, Michael reveals a regenerating piece of gum. Plus, an electrifying trick rewrites history. THE CARBONARO EFFECT returned with new episodes on Thursday, December 13, 2018 at 10pm ET/PT on truTV. In this new episode, "There's Life in Here," Michael gives a confused woman the license to speed a the DMV, unclogs a "crumby" toaster at a return counter, and blows the kind of a beach attendant with a scaly encounter from under the sea.
Season 5 of THE CARBONARO EFFECT premiered on Thursday, November 7, 2019 at 10pm ET/PT on truTV. In the season opener, "Cat Lady," Michael wows directors at auditions with costume changes, but cracks when he sings. Plus, things get sticky when he demos flying Post-Its. Then, Michael's co-worker's jaw drops when a shape-shifting tenant returns while they clean house.

Other Titles

  • Previously known as: Undercover Magic

Production & Distribution

  • Produced by Fields Entertainment
  • Produced by 11 Television