"too perfect" theory

Discuss your favorite close-up tricks and methods.

Postby El Mystico » 10/19/12 02:29 PM

Reading through the Intercessor thread brought back memories of the old "too perfect" theory.
To me, the issue was never "too perfect" - it was always "too obvious".
Look at some of the great effects in magic - cards across ("somehow he got those cards across...but how could he?") cards up the sleeve ("somehow he got those cards to his shoulder...but how could he?") bullet to mouth ("somehow he got that bullet into his mouth - but how could he?").

Isn't the essence of greeat magic the combination of a great method, and a great presentation - one which anticipates the 'obvious' solution, and 'proves' it is not applicable?
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Postby Edward Pungot » 10/19/12 07:20 PM

I think it's appropriate to place this clip here for your consideration, as I think the Professor has addressed these issues in his construction of a classic effect. Many have said, Swiss and Giobbi among others, that his handling should have been re-titled, "The Symphony of the Cups & Balls." This clip by the way, was shown at the Vernon workshop Giobbi gave at the Genii Bash, and is wonderfully outlined and analyzed in the notes (which should be available at select magic shops and dealers).

http://www.magicbookshop.com/product_info.php?products_id=14316

[video:youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=De2tyFK8WA0[/video]
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Postby Edward Pungot » 10/20/12 10:33 AM

When something is done beautifully, elegantly, I think the aesthetic phenomena, regardless if the method is known to the audience, over-rides the too perfect theory.

When I see Bob Whites student Jared Kopf perform the egg bag, the linking rings, and the cups and balls; when I see Korean manipulator Lukas prestidigitize the billiard balls and the cards, I forget my theories and explanations and let the beauty take me in and experience magic as if for the first time. This is the power of the aesthetic phenomena, when even the most jaded magicians become teary-eyed.
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Postby mrgoat » 10/20/12 11:24 AM

Edward Pungot wrote:When something is done beautifully, elegantly, I think the aesthetic phenomena, regardless if the method is known to the audience, over-rides the too perfect theory.

When I see Bob Whites student Jared Kopf perform the egg bag, the linking rings, and the cups and balls; when I see Korean manipulator Lukas prestidigitize the billiard balls and the cards, I forget my theories and explanations and let the beauty take me in and experience magic as if for the first time. This is the power of the aesthetic phenomena, when even the most jaded magicians become teary-eyed.


Maybe there is another definition of the theory but this is what I know it to be:

Too-Perfect Theory is not an empirical theory, but a philosophical notion that a trick possibly can be "too" perfect and thus lead the audience directly to the method or too a wrong solution which gives the magician no credit. This notion was first published by Rick Johnsson in Hierophant in 1970, expanding on an idea attributed to Dai Vernon.

Rick Johnsson suggested that magicians should consciously construct their routines to lead the audience away from the actual method by allowing room for "red herrings." Also, since spectators will try to settle upon some solution (right or wrong), whenever possible, the magicians should lead them down a path where they receive the credit for the effect.

The "Too-Perfect Theory" article was republished in Genii 2001 August along with numerous articles debating the topic.

http://geniimagazine.com/magicpedia/Too-Perfect_Theory
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Postby Larry Horowitz » 10/20/12 12:44 PM

The wording should be: The Too Impossible Theory.

We see this with television magic.
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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 10/20/12 01:28 PM

IMHO "leading the audience to the trick's method" is the issue.

BTW, try: "oh, please hold it in your other hand" and watch what happens.
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Postby John Lovick » 10/20/12 02:05 PM

To me, the issue was never "too perfect" - it was always "too obvious".


I've always said the same thing. Rick Johnsson's original essay is a muddled contradictory bunch of ideas. In every one of his examples, the trick is never "too perfect" it is always not perfect enough.

The only real idea in the essay is that some tricks are not deceptive -- and there are things we can do to make them more deceptive. It has nothing to offer about WHY tricks aren't decpetive or HOW we can make them more deceptive. It gives examples, but those examples are all over the map, and of no use the next time you find yourself with a trick that doesn't fool anyone.

I refer to it as the "Too Obvious" Theory (using the term "theory" very loosely, as there are no remedial or diagnostic components to it).
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Postby sjrwheeler » 10/20/12 04:43 PM

Roberto Giobbi has a product called Ask Roberto Giobbi, its available on Lybrary.com

It has 52 questions and Roberto answers each with an essay. question 11 is on the too perfect theory, and along with his own response he included essays by several other people, in the words of the product description:

"Additionally to Roberto's thoughtful answer on the lp=97732 Too Perfect Theory] you are also getting Jon Racherbaumer's 60 page essay collection on this subject with contributions by Rick Johnsson, Tomas Blomberg, Magic Christian, Robert Neale, Bob Fitch, Jamy Ian Swiss, John Carney, Michael Close, Darwin Ortiz, Harry Lorayne, Martin Lewis, Patrick Watson and Simon Aronson."

definitely worth a look for anyone interested in the too perfect theory one way or another. (link below)

http://www.lybrary.com/ask-roberto-giobbi-p-11669.html

I've always been interested in the idea of intentionally leading the spectator to a false method with the intention of later proving the method to be false, at which point the spectators should be unable to back track.
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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 10/20/12 05:33 PM

sjrwheeler wrote:...
I've always been interested in the idea of intentionally leading the spectator to a false method with the intention of later proving the method to be false, at which point the spectators should be unable to back track.


IMHO the false premise is dangerous as the audience may be looking it later.

Claiming audience members are "unable to back track" is ... facetious, I hope.

The panting dog expects a treat and does not consider whether your thimbles are original, Berland or Ramsay.

If you'd like to build a theory - start with something that can be verified and design some experiments to attempt to falsify it. Find out what survives some testing so you can build on more solid ground.
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Postby Leonard Hevia » 10/20/12 07:12 PM

John Lovick wrote:
To me, the issue was never "too perfect" - it was always "too obvious".


I've always said the same thing. Rick Johnsson's original essay is a muddled contradictory bunch of ideas. In every one of his examples, the trick is never "too perfect" it is always not perfect enough.

The only real idea in the essay is that some tricks are not deceptive -- and there are things we can do to make them more deceptive. It has nothing to offer about WHY tricks aren't decpetive or HOW we can make them more deceptive. It gives examples, but those examples are all over the map, and of no use the next time you find yourself with a trick that doesn't fool anyone.

I refer to it as the "Too Obvious" Theory (using the term "theory" very loosely, as there are no remedial or diagnostic components to it).


With the exception of a few grammatical errors, I don't see "a muddled contradictory bunch of ideas" in Johnsson's essay. On the contrary, he expresses his thoughts very clearly by beginning with two premises:

1. Twentieth Century man no longer attributes the "magician" with supernatural powers.
2. To rational man, the unknown is unacceptable.

Johnson goes on to develop three hypotheses based on his second premise:

1. Man will find or invent an answer for what baffles him.
2. That answer does not need to be completely rational or consistent with available data.
3. Man is flexible in changing his answers in the light of more complete or acceptable data.

As Johnsson goes on to describe, combining the first premise with the first two hypotheses helps to explain why spectators can walk away from a magical performance with ridiculous explanations for the mysteries that were just witnessed. In some cases, the spectator is just guessing, but in others, it can lead them right to the method of the effect. The magician is now left with the dilemma of dealing with the latter situation. Instead of leaving this to chance, Johnsson suggests utilizing the third hypothesis to coaxe the spectators' solutions down the path of the magician's choosing and simultaneously stay within the parameters of:

1. Leading the spectators away from the correct solution.
2. Be acceptable to the spectators.
3. Would not detract from the tricks effect.
4. Would give the magician full credit for the magic.

This is what I learned by reading Johnsson's essay. There is nothing "muddling" nor "contradictory" about any of this. Johnsson's first example to illustrate his thoughts is a card effect. The magician hands the spectator a deck of cards, the spectator goes into the next room, selects a card, inserts the card back and pockets the deck. Upon returning to back to the other room, the magician divines the card. What could be a more perfect card effect than that (David Berglas nothwithstanding)? How is that card effect not perfect enough?
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Postby John Lovick » 10/20/12 08:29 PM

How is that card effect not perfect enough?


If you keep reading in the essay, you will see exactly why that card effect isn't perfect enough. Because of the structure it's obvious that all the cards are the same, and the spectator figured it out. THAT'S how it's not perfect enough. If you could prove that all the cards are different, then that would make it MORE perfect... and more deceptive.

Johnsson's essay is muddled and contradictory because he discusses four problematic tricks and suggests eight changes which he says will make the tricks less perfect (and therefore more perfect according to his theory). However, in reality, only two of the eight changes actually make the tricks less perfect; three make them more perfect and the other three merely alter the effect. All this completely contradicts the central premise of his essay.

There is no "theory" in operation here. I can't believe I actually agree with something Jonathan Townsend said, but he was on the money: "Start with something that can be verified and design some experiments to attempt to falsify it. Find out what survives some testing so you can build on more solid ground."

This is what I meant when I said in my earlier post that the "theory" has NO diagnostic or remedial elements. As acknowledged, some tricks are not deceptive. His "theory" offers NO insight into why the tricks aren't deceptive and what to do in order make them more deceptive.
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Postby John Lovick » 10/20/12 08:43 PM

This is what I learned by reading Johnsson's essay. There is nothing "muddling" nor "contradictory" about any of this.


All of what you quote is just the introduction. NONE of that are elements of his (contradictory) "theory".
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Postby Tom Stone » 10/21/12 12:24 AM

John Lovick wrote:As acknowledged, some tricks are not deceptive. His "theory" offers NO insight into why the tricks aren't deceptive and what to do in order make them more deceptive.

Well spoken!
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Postby Leonard Hevia » 10/21/12 01:46 AM

I'm not sure about that, John. My post covered the first three pages of Johnsson's text. That is far more than just the introduction. I believe Johnsson clearly explains in his first example why that mental card effect with those stringent conditions may not be deceptive with a method that utilizes a forcing deck. Johnsson then includes five strategies that are in keeping with his third hypothesis to make it more deceptive. He does mention that you could use the spectator's deck--a genuine deck--to perform this but that would make it tougher to pull off.

Johnsson's second example is Gene Finnell's "Spelling the Aces" and Finnell's Free Cut Principle. I don't have Finnell's book but understand it is a type of self-working card effect. Johnsson suggests handling the deck with a few false cuts and shuffles before the revelations to divert the spectators from correctly theorizing that some type of mathematical principle is involved as in the "21 Card Trick." According to Johnsson, it is better to let the spectators scratch their heads and wonder if those few cuts and shuffles set up the deck than think about some elegant mathematical principle that actually accomplishes the effect.

Johnsson's third example is a coin vanish at close range that relies on pantomime to succeed. Johnsson believes the pantomime method is not deceptive enough to convince the spectators that the coin is really in the hand before the vanish. Spectators would correctly deduce that the coin was never in the hand to begin with. He suggests changing the effect to that of a penetration through the hand so that the spectator will be fooled into believing the coin was there all along. The spectator is now left to somehow guess how the coin went through the magician's hand. It is a change from a vanish to a penetration, but Johnsson believes this does not detract from the power of the effect.

All three cited examples do not contradict the basic tenets of Johnsson's theory. Each example provides the spectator with a conceivably possible solution but no explanation that:

1. Leads the spectator away from the correct solution.
2. Is acceptable to the spectator.
3. Would not detract from the trick's effect.
4. Would give the magician full credit for his magic.

I also don't believe that Johnsson was concerned about meeting the parameters of an actual scientific theory when he labelled it the Too-Perfect Theory. When he published it in The Legendary Heirophant, he needed a title. That's all.
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Postby El Mystico » 10/21/12 04:51 AM

Leonard: You say each example provides the spectator with a conceivably possible solution which does not detract from the trick's effect.
Yet, for the example you give, Finnel's Spelling the Aces, Johnsson is suggesting it is better to leave the spectator thinking your cuts and shuffles set up the deck for the spelling.
To me, that solution detracts from the trick's effect. It is no longer about 'magic' ; it is about your skill at shuffling cards.
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Postby John Lovick » 10/21/12 05:01 AM

You covered the first three pages. While those pages might not technically be the introduction, his "theory" is NOT spelled out in those first three pages. It comes half a page later.

That theory -- which is the essence of the essay, and the things you wrote about are not; they are just the lead up --- being: Some tricks by virtue of their perfection are imperfect and if you make them less perfect, they become perfect.

And as I said earlier: He discusses four problematic tricks and suggests eight changes which he says will make the tricks less perfect (and therefore more perfect). However, only two of the eight changes actually make the tricks less perfect; three make them more perfect and the other three merely alter the effect. Therefore all of this completely contradicts the central premise of his essay.

None of the examples you write about address in any way how they relate to the "theory" and its central idea. It's just a random collection of random tricks that aren't deceptive and some random ideas about how to make them more deceptive.

Obviously he wasn't concerned about meeting the parameters of an actual scientific theory. But for the "theory" to be at all worthwhile, it needs to be diagnostic or remedial. And it is neither.
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Postby Jon Racherbaumer » 10/21/12 02:53 PM

"Theory" is a term that invites a range of definitions. I tend to side with one that considers "theory" a HYPOTHETICAL aspect of whatever subject is being examined and analyzed and discussed. The "truth or "truthiness" of it is yet to be decided or proven. As it stands, its an abstraction from which our practice should proceed, which would include (as Lovick points out) diagnostic and remedial solutions and approaches. I suggest reading my article that was published in Genii or as a monograph to see how many magicians have opined on this subject. One of the values of the theory is how much useful debate it inspires.
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Postby Leonard Hevia » 10/21/12 05:40 PM

El Mystico--to you it would seem that cutting and shuffling the deck a few times before the revelation in "Spelling the Aces" would diminish the impact of the effect, but to Johnsson and proponents of the Too Perfect Theory, it would be an effective way to help keep the audience from suspecting a mathematical solution. One or two fairly appearing cuts and shuffles would be enough to make sleight of hand conceivably possible, but still keep the effect unexplainable. That is all that Johnsson is trying to do--lead them away from guessing at the correct method.

John--you don't have to read the examples that Johnsson describes in his essay to clearly understand it. I'm not certain if you're critical of the way Johnsson articulates the theory through his examples, or if you simply don't comprehend how the theory can be applied to other effects. John Carney applies Johnsson's theory to the "Cigarette Through Quarter" in his introduction to Carneycopia:

Take, for instance, the popular Cigarette Through Quarter trick. The illusion of the quarter being penetrated is so perfect, the spectators have no other path to follow but the correct one, that the coin is ingeniously gimmicked and it was substituted for the borrowed quarter.

I understand that Tommy Wonder rejected Johnson's theory, but even he had to surrender to it for his "Card to Ringbox." He understood that if the spectator held on to the box until the moment of the revelation, there would be no other path for the spectator to follow but the correct one.

John Bannon mentioned in Dear Mr. Fantasy that a spectator correctly guessed the method after a performance of "Dr. Daley's Last Trick." She realized that Bannon could not have switched the two red aces for the black ones while the red aces were still in her hands: "So you must have done it before." Onward... (With apologies to Racherbaumer)
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Postby Bill Mullins » 10/21/12 05:57 PM

Jon Racherbaumer wrote: One of the values of the theory is how much useful debate it inspires.


But that's the question, isn't it -- is the debate it inspires useful?

That is, does consideration and application of the Too Perfect Theory make your magic better?
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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 10/21/12 06:10 PM

IMHO it matters less what they guess (or claim) and more what they believe to be a sufficient explanation for the trick.
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Postby Edward Pungot » 10/21/12 06:16 PM

Exhibit B : The Wakeling Sawing [ Performed by Kalin & Jinger ]

[video:youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4lcbk4VcUwQ[/video]
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Postby John Lovick » 10/21/12 06:27 PM

I'm not certain if you're critical of the way Johnsson articulates the theory through his examples, or if you simply don't comprehend how the theory can be applied to other effects.


Johnsson himself didn't comprehend how to apply the theory to other effects... because there is no theory.

The ONLY idea in his essay that you can take away is that some tricks are not deceptive... and there are things you can do to make them more deceptive. His "theory" (or his essay) offers NO insight into why or when tricks are not deceptive or how to go about making them more deceptive.

Look at his examples. What do the reasons the tricks are not deceptive have in common? Nothing at all. What do the solutions to making them more deceptive have in common? Nothing at all. In fact they are contradictory.

There is no theory. And no way to "apply it to other effects".

In every one of your posts (except arguably for your last one), you write about everything in the essay except the "theory" itself or its central idea -- which I quoted earlier.
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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 10/21/12 06:48 PM

Can we agree that some things that we don't demonstrate are things that a reasonable person might consider as method for our tricks?

For example: if you don't show that the pack of cards is made up of distinct cards before having a card selected - the audience might consider the possibility of the cards being identical after you have the selection replaced in the pack, put the pack in the box and claim to make the card vanish from the pack and appear in a volunteer's pocket.

:)
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Postby Jim Riser » 10/21/12 08:19 PM

Jon,
It is perfectly possible to do an ambitious card routine with a deck of identical cards. The cards would be handled in an ordinary manner. Shuffle them, have spectators cut the deck etc. Never show the faces. Have a card "any card" selected, shown, and buried in the deck. Do the usual card here card there stuff a few times. Place the deck in your coat pocket except for the selected card. Do a torn and restored card. Bring out the deck (a matching regular deck) from pocket and add restored card to top.

With proper audience control, no one will ask to see the deck. Implying normalacy in magic is more important than actual normalacy. Is that a word?

The trick could be too perfect but framed so as to cancel out any solutions.

Performing this way is the fun of magic. It is the thrill of cheating without actually hurting anyone. See how too perfect you can go by creative framing and situation control using very blatant methods. Even though this example is a card effect, it is really about "balls".
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Postby Tom Stone » 10/21/12 08:33 PM

I understand that Tommy Wonder rejected Johnson's theory, but even he had to surrender to it for his "Card to Ringbox." He understood that if the spectator held on to the box until the moment of the revelation, there would be no other path for the spectator to follow but the correct one.

...hanging on to this so-called "theory" to the price of losing plot, structure, flow etc.

Look at Tommy's performance. Imagine the box in the hands of a layperson... And is not that image enough to contradict your hypothesis?
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Postby Brad Henderson » 10/21/12 08:52 PM

Slightly off topic:

Does it matter if your goal is to present 'magic' and not "skill"? If they conclude "he must have slipped the card into the box without me seeing" then - as a feat of fast hands - it succeeds. But as magic?

It seems in Many of these examples you are are merely substituting one method for another - neither of which are 'magic'.
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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 10/22/12 07:55 AM

not "you" - "them" - what the audience suspects you "really did".
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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 10/22/12 12:31 PM

Jim Riser wrote:Jon,
It is perfectly possible to do an ambitious card routine with a deck of identical cards. ...
Jim


Agreed. I like that outline of an ambitious (with torn and restored finale makes it a supercard?) type routine where you finish with one card in hand, the pack in the case back in your pocket for the last item. That's sensible scripting and blocking in action. :)

Do you feel that routine would be effective if the payoff effect were the selected card claimed to have vanished from the pack (no display) and then discovered taped under someone's chair?
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Postby Jim Riser » 10/22/12 01:26 PM

Jon,
No, I feel that would not be an effective payoff (vanish and appear taped under a chair) nor do I like the setup involved. I would prefer to keep things on person and simple.

A better excuse for the card under chair would be that you made a prediction as to the card that would be selected. But this card/chair detracts from the sheer simplicity of the original routine. If the card flew to a location outside of the deck, where did the tape come from? I feel that there does need to be some semblance of logic when doing an effect. It is the structure of apparent logic which allows for the surprise and magic. No logic = no reason for surprise.

If a card could fly from the deck to a chair, would not a wallet be a better choice of location? Going over to a chair breaks up the spectators gathered around you and you lose your audience. Utilizing a wallet keeps everyone in position. It is all about handling and keeping your audience.

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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 10/22/12 02:13 PM

Jim,

Agreed about logistics in performance and focus (or containment for a table hopper)

What about in terms of effect vs "too perfect" plausibility? Would the suspicion that the card was always there or the pack not being innocent come to the fore?

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Postby billmccloskey » 10/22/12 03:03 PM

I think that most lay people, when presented with a magic trick, are less concerned with how they did it, and more concerned with when it's going to be over.
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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 10/22/12 03:11 PM

billmccloskey wrote:I think that most lay people, when presented with a magic trick, are less concerned with how they did it, and more concerned with when it's going to be over.


Stockholm Syndrome applied to elicit applause?

Does a standing ovation indicate an intention to flee before encores begin?
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Postby Jim Riser » 10/22/12 03:12 PM

Jon,
Let us return to my original post - before you muddied things with your flying card.

The restored card is returned to the deck (switched in ordinary deck). Hand the deck to a spectator asking him/her to remove the four aces. Then go in to a four ace effect. Doing what I have described will take care of any "solutions" folks might be thinking.

I mentioned all of this in response to your post stating "Can we agree that some things that we don't demonstrate are things that a reasonable person might consider as method for our tricks?"

It is perfectly possibly to do as I have described and so by doing disprove any theories as to how the magic was accomplished. It is all spectator control and acting as if all was as it seemed. Notice that at no time was it stated that the deck was ordinary or that the cards were different or that only one deck was in play. All of this is implied, the magic done, and the spectators get to freely handle the deck. Perfect magic with no solutions left as it is too late to verify any spectator theories.

Crowd control, understanding how to frame an effect, and presentation take care of too perfect and lingering spectator theories.
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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 10/22/12 03:34 PM

El Mystico wrote:...Isn't the essence of greeat magic the combination of a great method, and a great presentation - one which anticipates the 'obvious' solution, and 'proves' it is not applicable?


IMHO the first consideration is that the audience feel (believe?) that you did the magic or that something magical happened.
Backstage considerations including the performer's preparation, props, number of assistants etc. may also be founded in practical matters (as Jim Riser describes) yet are themselves outside the scope of what the audience experiences in performance. Effect is not method. The audience view is supposed to be different from the performer's view.
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Postby Jim Riser » 10/22/12 03:52 PM

billmccloskey wrote:I think that most lay people, when presented with a magic trick, are less concerned with how they did it, and more concerned with when it's going to be over.


+1
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Postby Brad Henderson » 10/22/12 06:31 PM

Jim Riser wrote:Jon,
It is perfectly possible to do an ambitious card routine with a deck of identical cards. The cards would be handled in an ordinary manner. Shuffle them, have spectators cut the deck etc. Never show the faces. Have a card "any card" selected, shown, and buried in the deck. Do the usual card here card there stuff a few times. Place the deck in your coat pocket except for the selected card. Do a torn and restored card. Bring out the deck (a matching regular deck) from pocket and add restored card to top.

With proper audience control, no one will ask to see the deck.
Jim


Have you tested this?

At a Bar mitzvah?
For drunks?
For drunks at a Bar mitzvah?

Pragmatic issues aside - it seems that a person who thinks they know the method ("he has more than one card") has no magical experiences until, possibly, the end. The entire performance their experience is non-magical.

By revealing their guess to be wrong AFTER the fact, do you think they will reply the trick in their mind and feel magic - or stick with their original guess?

Remember, 13 year old drunken men can be very obstinate.
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Postby Leonard Hevia » 10/22/12 08:17 PM

Tom Stone wrote:
I understand that Tommy Wonder rejected Johnson's theory, but even he had to surrender to it for his "Card to Ringbox." He understood that if the spectator held on to the box until the moment of the revelation, there would be no other path for the spectator to follow but the correct one.

...hanging on to this so-called "theory" to the price of losing plot, structure, flow etc.

Look at Tommy's performance. Imagine the box in the hands of a layperson... And is not that image enough to contradict your hypothesis?


Not in the slightest.

Tom--you must be referring to that "controlled" environment at Falanga's home in Lake Tahoe. In Falanga's home at Lake Tahoe--and indeed on television--any miracle can be made possible. At Lake Tahoe, Tommy Wonder could have performed the "Card to Ringbox" in the spectators hands until the last second, but he chose not to because he understood that was not the method he used out in the real world, and he had the integrity to avoid a false representation of this effect. Out in the real world, Wonder did not leave the Ringbox in the spectators' hands--and you know why Tom.
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Postby Brad Henderson » 10/22/12 08:39 PM

Yet many magicians have done ring/bill/whatever to impossible location that was in the hands of the audience member - to successful and deceptive effect.
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Postby Edward Pungot » 10/22/12 09:32 PM

billmccloskey wrote:I think that most lay people, when presented with a magic trick, are less concerned with how they did it, and more concerned with when it's going to be over.


Sadly, self-delusion is the greatest trick in many a magician's repertoire.
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Postby Tom Stone » 10/23/12 07:14 AM

Leonard Hevia wrote:Out in the real world, Wonder did not leave the Ringbox in the spectators' hands--and you know why Tom.

Yes, I know exactly why.
This is the guy who made a miniature double-facer for the "Magic Ranch"/"Card in the egg" to ensure that when the card falls out of the egg, it always land face up, so that nothing would mess up the timing in the end of the trick.

Leaving the box in the hands of a spectator would mean that the timing would never be the same. Imagine all the different ways a spectator could hold the box... hidden in a tight fist, in the lap, in the left hand, in the right hand... Countless ways the timing in the end could be messed up. That is why Tommy didn't leave the box in the hands of a spectator. "Too Perfect" had no bearing on it.
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