Poll: P & T's "Honor System"

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erdnasephile
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Poll: P & T's "Honor System"

Postby erdnasephile » August 13th, 2019, 11:07 am

Just saw P & T's "Honor System" on last week's Fool Us. I thought it was a intriguing presentation.

Question: Did any of you choose to close your eyes?

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Re: Poll: P & T's "Honor System"

Postby Jonathan Townsend » August 13th, 2019, 12:13 pm

I turned my head away from the TV screen, back to PC screen, so yes :)
Mundus vult decipi -per Caleb Carr's story Killing Time

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Christopher1979
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Re: Poll: P & T's "Honor System"

Postby Christopher1979 » August 13th, 2019, 3:06 pm

It was a very intriguing presentation. I must admit I was left feeling that there should of be a kicker of some sort. But, yes, very interesting.

Joe Lyons
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Re: Poll: P & T's "Honor System"

Postby Joe Lyons » August 13th, 2019, 5:06 pm

erdnasephile wrote:Question: Did any of you choose to close your eyes?


No.

I am closing them now at the thought of the resultant dialogue between Peter Ross and Brad Henderson. ;)

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Richard Kaufman
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Re: Poll: P & T's "Honor System"

Postby Richard Kaufman » August 13th, 2019, 5:17 pm

Snort.
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Re: Poll: P & T's "Honor System"

Postby Jack Shalom » August 13th, 2019, 5:44 pm

LOL.

I tried it both ways. Frankly, "the box was gimmicked" wasn't exactly a thunderous revelation.

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Re: Poll: P & T's "Honor System"

Postby JFox » August 14th, 2019, 7:43 pm

btw-- Very similar to the "Telescopic Box" in "Houdini's Escapes and Magic" - by Walter Gibson.

Joe Lyons
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Re: Poll: P & T's "Honor System"

Postby Joe Lyons » August 14th, 2019, 10:45 pm

JFox wrote:btw-- Very similar to the "Telescopic Box" in "Houdini's Escapes and Magic" - by Walter Gibson.


I agree. I had a major flashback to Houdini's Escapes when I saw this.

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Re: Poll: P & T's "Honor System"

Postby Ted M » August 15th, 2019, 12:07 am

Jack Shalom wrote:I tried it both ways. Frankly, "the box was gimmicked" wasn't exactly a thunderous revelation.

It was supposed to be underwhelming.

It's supposed to show the audience that magicians' secrets are often banal, that choosing not to know the workings can be more interesting and textured and enjoyable than knowing how the tricks work.

It's a show-don't-tell demonstration of Jim Steinmeyer's maxim that magicians guard an empty safe.

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Re: Poll: P & T's "Honor System"

Postby Jonathan Townsend » August 15th, 2019, 12:25 am

Finally watched the item open-eyed. What a sensible tribute to Houdini and one of his escapes. Wonderful :) Bravo!

*spoiler alert*
Got milk?
* end spoiler *
Mundus vult decipi -per Caleb Carr's story Killing Time

Jack Shalom
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Re: Poll: P & T's "Honor System"

Postby Jack Shalom » August 15th, 2019, 12:51 am

Ted M wrote:
Jack Shalom wrote:I tried it both ways. Frankly, "the box was gimmicked" wasn't exactly a thunderous revelation.

It was supposed to be underwhelming.

It's supposed to show the audience that magicians' secrets are often banal, that choosing not to know the workings can be more interesting and textured and enjoyable than knowing how the tricks work.

It's a show-don't-tell demonstration of Jim Steinmeyer's maxim that magicians guard an empty safe.


Fair enough. Then it certainly succeeded. :)

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Re: Poll: P & T's "Honor System"

Postby Pete McCabe » August 15th, 2019, 4:07 am

I saw it live and kept my eyes closed. I haven't watched the episode of FU, but I am looking forward to finally seeing it.

This piece came up when I interviewed Teller for Scripting Magic.


Pete
Let’s take “Honor System.” In 1975 you had the concept of the audience keeping their eyes closed. What did you find compelling in that idea, and how did you set about trying to translate that into Penn & Teller? Or more generally, where do you start turning an idea into a showpiece?

Teller
What did we find compelling? It seemed a good statement of something that’s not readily stated in any other form. That bit does so many things. It contrasts two ways of viewing the world, and argues that things that are hurtful in the world (keeping yourself in the dark) can be beautiful in a theater. It argues that taking home a riddle from a magic show is taking home something that will stick with you, like a melody. It shows you how simultaneously fascinating and disappointing secrets are. And it does it all in a light, funny way.

We don’t turn ideas into Penn & Teller. We are Penn & Teller. When we get ideas they’re suitable for us. There is no “turning into.”


Re: the method, Teller says they "adapted the 'lead-lined-box' from the Houdini notebooks.'"

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Re: Poll: P & T's "Honor System"

Postby Joe Lyons » August 17th, 2019, 9:45 am

Pete McCabe wrote:I saw it live and kept my eyes closed.


I’m curious Pete. Would you have closed them if you didn’t have an opportunity to watch again?

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Re: Poll: P & T's "Honor System"

Postby Pete McCabe » August 21st, 2019, 11:58 am

At the time—this was at least 15 years ago—I had no idea that I would ever have an opportunity to see it again. YouTube did not exist.

But I don't like to suggest that this was some great achievement. I know the secrets of lots of magic tricks. One more or less is just not that big a deal. The self-satisfaction I get from having kept them closed is much more valuable to me.

Joe Lyons
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Re: Poll: P & T's "Honor System"

Postby Joe Lyons » August 21st, 2019, 1:44 pm

Pete McCabe wrote: The self-satisfaction I get from having kept them closed is much more valuable to me.


Magicians enjoy the feeling of amazement more than laymen do.

That’s why we’re here.

From Jamy Ian Swiss’ Take Two blog:

“At the very first 31 Faces North conference in Toronto, a small, invitation-only event hosted by Allan Slaight and David Ben of Magicana, Tommy was the guest of honor. At his featured evening presentation, he performed for a time, and then stopped and said, “Well, I don’t know if this is supposed to be a show, or a lecture, or both … do you want me to explain some of this?” Without hesitation the elite group of magical artists and intellectuals responded virtually as one: No! Don’t explain anything! Just keep performing!

The magic was so beautiful, we didn’t need the secrets. We just wanted to continue the experience. And so Tommy shrugged and continued performing. It was a glorious, unforgettable night.”

The rest is here: https://www.magicana.com/news/blog/take ... mmy-wonder


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