Monday, January 30, 2012

The Grail - Gold Edition

Follow this carefully: you lay out a prediction card, then you get the spectator to name a number, then you hand THEM the deck and have them count down to that exact number and pull out THAT card. The two are the same. It's one of the Any Card At Any Number type effects with a slight variation, and it's amazing to see.

There are no difficult sleights with this effect (just one possible move you might have to do, and it looks natural). You will have to work out a little simple math very quickly, but it is really easy. The rest falls on presentation. There are a few variations provided here that give you different ways to present this effect (using different cards!) so you can repeat this effect at a later time and have a different outcome. Even creating your own predicted cards (in case you want a particular one chosen for some reason) is easy.

This one has it all and is one of those easy-to-do miracles that will blow their minds. As an added bonus, it's absolutely possible to use the deck for other effects after you do this trick, though you will need to open with Grail as it's not a closer unless you do a deck switch.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Search and Destroy

I'm what you might call a lazy magician in that I love effects that give you big results without spending hours of my life practicing some incredibly hard card control move that might or might not work in the real world under pressure. When I saw the video for "Search and Destroy" I immediately loved the audience participation factor and the way this appeared a "perfect length" card trick. In other words, when someone comes up and says "Show me a trick", you need something that will engage them, be impromptu, allow you to concentrate on presentation more than knuckle-busting, and not go on so long as to bore the spectator. This effect fits the bill perfectly.

In essence, you will have to learn one card control move--and most magicians already have at least one they always fall back on. Just in case you don't, however, Aaron teaches you one that gets the job done. From that point onward, it's all pretty much showmanship as the rest of the magic happens in the spectator's hands. Is it easy to figure out? Well, I wouldn't repeat this one too often because it's sort of a logical effect that can be figured out after a few viewings. That has to be the shortcoming of any "no heavy sleights" card effect (it's not self-working, so I won't call it that). Still, it's perfect for the right situation and crowd.

The only other thing to remember is that you'll need to be a showman to make this fun. You don't have to be as outgoing as Aaron is on the video (he's almost annoying at one point), but you'll need to play up the crowd to make this effect appear bigger than what it is. I highly recommend this one to anyone looking to add some easy sparkle to their act.