What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Discuss your favorite close-up tricks and methods.
Jeff Haas
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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Jeff Haas » October 21st, 2008, 3:18 pm

Jonathan - your suggestion sounds similar to a Dave Williamson routine.

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Jonathan Townsend » October 21st, 2008, 4:15 pm

I'm sure I'm not the first person to consider this obvious ploy for having torn card(s) and a reason to restore one. FYI my thinking is to setup a repeat where the performer absentmindly reassembles a hybrid card from mismatched peices. Again - thinking from the audience view rather than about methods and even looking at whether a mirror glass would be useful in this context.
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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby A1exM » October 21st, 2008, 9:37 pm

Finaly, someone mentions Dave's torn and restored transpo!
Not only is it restored, it is ironed out!
Plus of course the signed bit, now you're talking!

lepaul's is the best imp version, I patter, at the start, that I hate performing this trick, at the end I wait for the, 'well put it ALL back together' then i explain that's the reason I hate doing this trick! never worked it out.

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David Thomas
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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby David Thomas » October 21st, 2008, 11:41 pm

When you do a Torn and restored where there is one corner left at the end for proof, you shouldn't have it signed. Because signing is proof and them tearing off a corner is a note of proof as well, at the end there will be no questions asked if you didn't have them sign it. because, that torn corner loses its purpose if you have the card signed as well. Signing is to show them it was their card and it was their card you just restored. Them signing the card and then tearing off a corner of the card is asking for trouble. They think, "Hey I signed that card and it's back together! The signing is proof! But that torn corner...what is that for? Can you restore that too?" I guess it all depends on how you think of it. Signing + tearing could be thought of as just having more evidence of the restoration, but it's all a matter of your opinion and who the spectators are. Signing is good for full restoration in my opinion, but not for 3/4 restoration. Although you could just work it into your presentation so that you say not only is this restored card signed, but the corner YOU tore off fits perfectly in place! Am I making sense to anyone?
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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Jonathan Townsend » October 22nd, 2008, 9:38 am

Does all this go back to the parlor/stage version where you accidentally let a piece flutter to the ground before doing the restore and ... ??

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby mike cookman » December 9th, 2008, 10:43 am

David Williamsons torn and restored is fun and magical.

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Jonathan Townsend » December 9th, 2008, 10:50 am

mike cookman wrote:David Williamsons torn and restored is fun and magical.


Do you perform it regularly? If so what brought you choose this version for your repertoire?

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Pete McCabe » December 9th, 2008, 12:47 pm

One really good question is why are you tearing the card in the first place? Darwin Ortiz has a T&R card (whose name escapes me) in which the tearing and the restoration are both motivated. Worth studying for that point alone.

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby mrgoat » December 9th, 2008, 1:45 pm

Pete McCabe wrote:One really good question is why are you tearing the card in the first place? Darwin Ortiz has a T&R card (whose name escapes me) in which the tearing and the restoration are both motivated. Worth studying for that point alone.


Good point. Same as T&R newspaper. Penn and Teller solve that elegantly, but the same solution won't really work for cards :)

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Joe M. Turner » December 9th, 2008, 2:11 pm

I perform the Karrell Fox torn & restored card ("Karrell's Kaput Kard" from Showtime at the Tom-Foolery) at nearly every strolling event I'm booked at... totally practical, and -- in my view -- the fact that you end up with 3/4 restored is actually a surprise at the end rather than some kind of let-down. I justify the tearing as a reaction to getting the wrong card... a "mistake" which I immediately reveal as a joke by displaying the actual torn corner of the selection.

I don't have a problem with the incomplete restoration at all. It's a great moment when the incomplete restoration is revealed, and if they ask me to restore the last piece I have a few lines that I use to disengage that idea with good humor.

The Tom-Foolery book also describes Mullica's solution for a full restoration - impractical for strolling but perfect for the bar. The whole routine is also in Mullica's 1996 lecture notes, and it is also written up in the "From Kiddies to Korporate" lecture notes by Tom Jones and Rachel Wild.

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby erdnasephile » December 9th, 2008, 10:40 pm

Pete McCabe wrote:One really good question is why are you tearing the card in the first place? Darwin Ortiz has a T&R card (whose name escapes me) in which the tearing and the restoration are both motivated. Worth studying for that point alone.


I think the routine Mr. McCabe is referring to is "The Marker" in Cardshark. Mr. Ortiz' piece is an excellent example of motivated actions--everything in the trick is motivated, including the signature, tearing, restoring most of the card, and not restoring the last piece.

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby El Mystico » December 10th, 2008, 4:39 am

I suspect this may not be a terribly popular view, but - do you need to have a reason for tearing the card in the first place? Beyond the promise of an amazing bit of magic?
Most stage magicians don't justify cutting a woman in half. Singers don't justify singing "Killing Me Softly".
People remember Copperfield vanishing the Statue of Liberty, but how many would remember his reason for doing so?

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby mrgoat » December 10th, 2008, 6:28 am

Interesing El Mystico.

Could this be a stage Vs Close up thing? Thinking about it, stage acts rarely justify what they are doing. Close uppers always do.

Why?

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Jonathan Townsend » December 10th, 2008, 8:52 am

Actually - if someone were to present a sawing or similar mutilation effect realistically with anything even close to the screaming and bleeding that wouuld occur when a person is damaged...

On the other hand when someone in your face wants to fuss with their toys it takes quite a bit more to get you to care.

So which is more interesting - a bank night presentation or someone doing a musicbox impression? Okay maybe that's not quite fair - let's call it dance and leave the magical aspects as eye candy to enhance the dance routine and see where that gets us.
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Reason: sure - why not think of it as dance with special effects?

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby El Mystico » December 10th, 2008, 9:04 am

when I saw johnny Paul do his cards across, I thought it was best magic I had ever seen. But I don't recall him giving any reason for making cards pass from one paacket to another.
Now people say my cards across is the best magic they see me do...OK OK, so maybe the rest of my magic is lousy....

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Richard Kaufman
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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Richard Kaufman » December 10th, 2008, 11:10 am

You rip a card up so you can magically restore it.

You tear a newspaper up so you can magically restore it.

You saw a person in half, or cut them into pieces, so you can magically restore him or her.

Destruction is the motivation for restoration. You cause things to go astray so you can fix them. That's the job.
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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby erdnasephile » December 10th, 2008, 11:28 am

El Mystico wrote:I suspect this may not be a terribly popular view, but - do you need to have a reason for tearing the card in the first place?


I think the best answer may be: "it depends".

Others far more eloquent and knowledgable than I have tackled this issue in print but IMHO, I think either way can be compelling as long as the performer has something of value to say to the audience. Whether that message is communicated overtly or just implied in the presentation, the most interesting performers convey a point of view worth paying attention to.

That doesn't mean that coming up with a contrived, goofy presentation to "justify" things is the way to go. However, it does mean we probably should consider thinking about what experience we want to our audiences to have if we wish our magic to be more than just adequate. If that takes the form of Richard's "That's the job" premise, so be it--as long as we've thought it through.

Unfortunately, many of us sometimes stop at "becase it's cool" or (heaven forbid) "Wanna' see something weird" :grin: in our analysis of the reason to perform an trick (myself included).

While that strategy might work for some folks, I have learned to avoid performing such effects until I come up with a premise that means something to me.

Didn't mean to ramble--just my two cents...

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Jonathan Townsend » December 10th, 2008, 11:35 am

Richard Kaufman wrote:...Destruction is the motivation for restoration. You cause things to go astray so you can fix them. That's the job.


by fix do you mean restore to previous condition - none the wiser or better for the experience?

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Richard Kaufman » December 10th, 2008, 1:29 pm

Yes.
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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Pete McCabe » December 10th, 2008, 10:38 pm

From what I've seen, the success of an act is directly related to the amount of reason they give to everything they do. This is true in magic and every other form of entertainment with which I am familiar.

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Dustin Stinett » December 11th, 2008, 3:21 am

Pete McCabe wrote:From what I've seen, the success of an act is directly related to the amount of reason they give to everything they do. This is true in magic and every other form of entertainment with which I am familiar.


Hi Pete,

I dont doubt you; Im just having trouble wrapping my brain around this concept as an all encompassing rule.

For example, what is the reason Jeff Hobson gives for doing his wildly successful egg bag routine? (Unless its to get a good-looking volunteer up there with him so all his gay gags will work, which is a character driven thing. But is the audience aware of that reason?)

What reason does Mark Kalin give for putting a strange little man into a strange little box only to have him transform into Jinger; is that the reason an audience takes away?

What is the reason Teller plucks the petals off the rose via its shadow? (Other than the fact its a remarkable and beautiful illusion?)

I dont know if Im convinced that there has to be an overt reason (amount of reason they give) for good magic to work. Sometimes a guy plucks cards and doves out of thin air just because he can. Channing Pollack comes to mind: What reasons were given for the various parts of his act?

I believe that the success of an actany actis first determined by how much the audience likes the performer (regardless of what the entertainer does). How well they do whatever they do is a close second because often a performer must catch the attention of the audience with their wares before turning on the personality. But ultimately, they have to like the performer. I know when I think of the acts that I likemagic or otherwiseI like the individual(s) doing that act (even if I do not know them).

Dustin

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Tom Denton » December 11th, 2008, 8:51 am

Just to chip in with my few pennies worth, while I think that there should be reason and justification for everything in a performance, this doesn't need to be explicitly stated. I think a performer's character should provide said justification. For example, if a comedy magician establishes himself straight away as such, the justification for his effects is clear: to get a laugh and to entertain. If Derren Brown performed an egg bag routine, he would need much more explicitly stated justification as it doesn't match up with the persona he's cultivated.

In other words, I believe there has to be a narrative line of cause and effect running through a performance, otherwise it becomes a series of disconnected tricks which might as well be performed by anyone.

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Jonathan Townsend » December 11th, 2008, 9:01 am

Theater folks have a notion of "distance" - how far you want the audience to associate into the characters or action onstage which may serve us in this discussion.

If one wishes to construct an act or moment to be observed in the same way as one admires the elaborate actions of a musicbox or cuckoo clock - sure - no motivations or dramatic arcs required onstage. The film "Un Chien Andlelou" and the theater of the absurd may serve as reference or perhaps the works of Brecht/Weill.

On the other side of all this we have the "bank night" type drama where the audience is directly engaged in the action via the volunteer and their borrowed bill which is held hostage to a guessing game which goes wrong.
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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Jonathan Townsend » December 11th, 2008, 9:39 am

Since we don't know eachother well enough for me to offer you a card trick - perhaps just a part of a card trick? That is something with just part of a card. It could be any card...


Okay - anyone have suggestions for some tricks one might do with the quarters of a torn card?
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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Dustin Stinett » December 11th, 2008, 11:19 am

Tom D,

Im with you 100% on that. When I look at my favorite magicians, many are very character driven. But the reasons for what they do are subtle if not covert (Hobson's "character" wanting a glimpse of some cute guy's tuchas).

Pete: Are such subtle character driven motivations "reason" in your book? (I have not read it yet.)

Dustin

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby mike cookman » December 11th, 2008, 2:31 pm

Jonathan, I chose the Williamson torn and restored because I like how it presents a magician in trouble sort of scenario, and getting out of it would seem impossible, yet you do get out of it and there seems to be no explanation other than magic. Also, you tear up the card that was produced, the wrong one, and later it turns out to be the correct selection, then you restore it but it's still a little bent up, so you straghten it out. Three effects. It's fun.

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby raj k » December 11th, 2008, 4:53 pm

Jonathan Townsend wrote:Okay - anyone have suggestions for some tricks one might do with the quarters of a torn card?


Dingle's effect on a close up mat comes to mind....but....

I have a few ideas along this theme that provide a great start, but they don't involve playing cards. My problems usually stem from thinking too much like a magician, and if we try to extricate ourself from that role, tangible ideas procure which provide suitable starting points for a script.

One thought process technique I use that may be reciprocated by others involves considering synonyms for your starting point, in this case Torn and Restored Card.

Torn : Cut, slice, shred, mutilated, etc....

Card : Note, business card, identification card, photograph, social security card, phone number, currency, personal check, etc.

Take the theme, and apply it to something else. Infinite possibilities.

Lastly, I fully agree with Tom Dentons post above. Just because we can, doesnt mean we should. Just because a pro doesnt provide adequate justification, does not make it right. Most magic is two dimensionaltoo shallow. Why are we so opposed to texturing and layering our art? Damn straight its lots of work, but the results are worth it.

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby magicbar » December 15th, 2008, 12:49 pm

Karrell Fox's Signa-tear was one I used behind the bar. Simple, direct and slightly bold as most of his methods go. All that is needed is a paper clip and lighter aside from the cards. You don't go much beyond the guest's signature as a convincer that the restoration took place (it is a 3/4 restoration with guest holding the matching 1/4 w/partial sig) unlike the extent convincers are today (many I look at as overconvincing therefore raising suspicion). Overall, quick and easy and gets the job done. But still without a good storyline/reason it appears as a puzzle like the rest of them with the audience just guessing how'd he do it?

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Tony Rush » April 4th, 2009, 9:58 am

Where can I find the write-up for David Williamson's T&R card?

I saw a YouTube video the other day of a T&R card effect that's sold under the name "Holy Grail" by MagicGeek. Signed card, all pieces restored and the wrinkles "ironed" out. This sounds like the Williamson effect described above. Anyone familiar with it?

Thanks,
Tony

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Richard Kaufman » April 4th, 2009, 10:12 am

You can find it in my book, Williamson's Wonders! On sale right here. :)
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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Tony Rush » April 4th, 2009, 10:24 am

'nuff said! Thanks Richard,

Tony

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Roberto » April 4th, 2009, 2:24 pm

Joe,
I remember the T&R routine from the Mullica book you mentioned. It was the first T&R routine I ever learned. I used to have a nicely constructed bar in the apartment I lived in and I would always fry my guests with that routine, I loved it!

However, I wanted a better way of ditching the pieces, especially if I wanted to perform it outside of the bar. So I thought of a way to end clean by disposing of the torn pieces in a logical fashion. It involved the use of two paper clips. Haven't done the routine in years but now that I'm just getting back into magic, I'm going to try and piece it together again. Great thread guys!

Roberto

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Richard Kaufman
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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Richard Kaufman » April 4th, 2009, 2:38 pm

I've got a full Torn and Restored card, with the final quarter restoration, in my book CardMagic. It's based on the LePaul handling for most of the way, but then I restore the final quarter in completely new way. Look it up--its magical as hell.
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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Lou Serrano » April 4th, 2009, 5:10 pm

I've been performing Williamson's Torn & Restored Transpo for over 15 years. I've literally performed it tens of thousands of times. It's a three phase routine that is perfectly motivated throughout, and the effect on the audience is tremendous. The best part is that there are no angle problems like you will find in most of the one piece at a time routines.

If you don't have Williamson's Wonders, buy it immediately. Not only does it have this wonderful piece of magic, but it is filled with other topnotch, practical material that can be used in the real world. If you're a close-up magician, it should be in your library.

Lou

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Leonard Hevia » April 13th, 2009, 8:16 pm

I looked up that routine in CardMagic. A nice version of that effect, but the card can't be signed though.

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Richard Kaufman » April 13th, 2009, 9:09 pm

No, the card cannot be signed. It is not important that the card is signed except to magicians.
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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby skmayhew » April 13th, 2009, 9:30 pm

Lou Serrano wrote:I've been performing Williamson's Torn & Restored Transpo for over 15 years. I've literally performed it tens of thousands of times.


Dude!!! You are the Wilt Chamberlain of that trick!!

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Jonathan Townsend » April 13th, 2009, 9:47 pm

Anyone doing the trick with the flashpaper envelope from ECT?
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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby A1exM » April 14th, 2009, 10:18 am

Thanks for reminding me of that one Johnathan, it wouldn't be hard to have the reversed card slightly singed or burnt at the end, perhaps a corner could also 'accidently' fall from the torn pieces as you wrap them in the paper? Could also add a crossing the gaze switch whilst 'finding' the lighter? mmm

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Re: What is your favorite torn and restored card effect?

Postby Jonathan Townsend » April 14th, 2009, 10:51 am

:) That would be taking a more modern approach to the method while going back to the old stage version to add the convincer.

I like the image of a piece going fluttering to the table as the performer goes about making the magic, however that approach leaves one to need more setup and to carry two stranger cards for the complete restoration (intercessor?) back to the card from the borrowed deck or... not using a borrowed deck.

Any thoughts on setting up the burn as some sort of ashtray accident?
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