Gambler vs Magician

Discuss your favorite close-up tricks and methods.

Postby cataquet » 02/21/02 11:44 AM

I love Lorayne's Gambler vs Magicain, where the gambler produces four of a kind and then the magician produces four of a kind (from his pockets), and then reveals the four Aces. :eek:

Now I know someone out there is going to say that the handling really belongs to Xxxx and that Lorayne ripped it off. But does any one out there care to name their favorite Gambler vs Magician effect. Although the effects may differ slightly from the above, I'd be interested in reading about them.

The Lorayne handling is pretty old, and I wouldn't be surprised to find improved handlings elsewhere.

Bye for now

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Postby Pepka » 02/21/02 11:53 AM

Hey Harold,
On the videos, The Magic of Jeff McBride there is an excellent story to go with the trick. Silas and the Slickers is told completely in rhyme and fits beautifully with the story.

As far as who originated it I can't say except I really don't think it was Harry Lorayne. I've heard the effect credited to Dr. Daley, but I'm not sure.
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Postby Matt Sedlak » 02/21/02 12:52 PM

I believe the placing of the two cards into the pockets previous to the effect is the Dr. Daley contribution to the effect. As far as favorite Gambler Vs. Magician plots there are quite a few bu my favorite would have to be mine. At the conclusion, rather then the cards being in the pocket, the backs of the four kings have changed color within the deck.
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Postby Cugel » 02/21/02 01:59 PM

The best version of this trick (and, in fact, one of the STRONGEST sleight of hand tricks you can do for a lay audience) is Darwin Ortiz' "The Showdown" from the book Cardshark.

In Darwin's handling the four queens are signed by two spectators and they "see" three signed queens as they are cut to when, in fact, two have already been loaded into a wallet and keycase held by two spectators.

The handling is also (typically) streamlined to the nth degree - not a wasted movement.

BTW, since publishing the effect, Darwin has varied one of the pocket revelations so that he removes a queen from the closed card case. So the revelations are: three tabled queens are shown to match the four at the ened, the one queen from pocket, one from card case, one from wallet and one from key case.

I've read and seen a few good handlings of the effect and this one is without question the strongest if you want to destroy a lay audience.

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Postby Pete McCabe » 02/23/02 01:10 AM

I'm quite fond of the Marlo-Gardner poker deal, aka the Lorayne poker deal.

But I think, whatever you do, the most important suggestion I have is that you do not present this as a contest between "a magician" and "a gambler".

Instead, make it a showdown between Harry "Golden Fingers" McPeak and Harry Houdini, King of Cards. Or pick any famous gambler and magician. Or make up your own famous gambler and magician.

Just make them specific. And give the gambler a trademark gambling skill for which he was famous in the gambling underground. Give the magician a legendary secret magic method that he took to the grave.

A lot of magicians don't favor "story" presentations, and I often feel the reason is that a lot of story presentations don't really tell a story very well. The more specific you can make the characters, the more details you can add (without bogging down the story), the more captivated your audience will be.

If you do that you can use any good method, which the Marlo-Gardner certainly qualifies as.
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Postby cataquet » 02/23/02 03:38 AM

Peter, your comment on selling the effect is absolutely vital. The gambler v magician effect is otherwise quite a boring effect from an unattached viewer's perspective. The storyline creates a world in the audience's imagination, and creates the effect. The poker deal, on the other hand, tends to create its own interest.

In the context of the Marlo-Gardner deal, (which is a separate topic), I like David Regal's 10 second handling. The only handling change that I make is to reverse the royal flush. So when the spectator deals the hands, the flush shows face up. When the first card turns up, they pause the deal, and you tell them don't stop. They continue the deal and can't believe what's happening.

Also, try Chand Long's Shuffling lesson with five stacks instead of 4. In the dealer's hand, place the DeadMan's hand (Aces over eights) and in the spectator's hand, place a royal flush.

Bye for now

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Postby Paul Cummins » 02/23/02 10:09 AM

"On the videos, The Magic of Jeff McBride there is an excellent story to go with the trick. Silas and the Slickers is told completely in rhyme and fits beautifully with the story.

As far as who originated it..."

'Silas and the Slickers" may be found on page 74 of the 1974 Dover edition of Jean Hugard's More Card Manipulations (- this would be page 28 of the original More Card Manipulations Number 2). It is listed as a ballad by Elmer Applegit. And, while the method is also descriped after the ballad, Jeff modernized the effect with series of flourishes that serve to punctuate the prose. Jeff first did this routine for me in the seventies at a Tannen's Magic Camp session when we were counselors there.

From an historical standpoint, Hugard writes, in the above book, "It will be noted that the plot of the trick is the same as that in the trick Magician versus Gambler in my Annual for 1937. The presentation, however, makes the trick a new one and in the hands of a performer who can deliver the lines effectively a better feat is hard to imagine."

While on the topic of the Magician vs. Gambler, I highly recommend any of Jim Swain's published versions of his routine Poker Interchange. While not the exact, Magician vs. Gambler effect, they represent a wonderful approach to the genre.

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