Has anyone actually had this happen?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Antonio Diavolo, Apr 24, 2017.

  1. I hear this a lot when people list their favorite decks. Many say they always go back to Bicycles because they're common and people are less likely to think it's a trick deck. The thing is, I use various decks all the time (primarily bicycle) and the more skeptical people always think its a trick deck, seemingly regardless of how they look. This is my personal experience but has anyone ever had an audience member think the deck is rigged simply because the back design isn't Bicycle?
  2. I've had 'are those cards magnetic?' After doing a spring.
  3. What?!?!! How does that even work!?! Personally, though, never had that experience (probably because they're my classmates, but whatever).
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  4. I've never had anyone say it is trick deck, regardless of what cards I use. I did once have someone check to see if I was using a stripper deck and it was a deck of Bicycles. I've also had spectators shuffle One Way Decks and Svengali Decks and deal a Mirage Deck into two piles. They didn't think I was using a trick deck.

    I think the bigger issue is how people present their magic. If it is in a "fool us" mentality or if it is "say-do-see" patter (where they say what they are doing, do it and say see what happened), the audience is going to try to figure out the method. For them, simple explanations such as magnets, trick decks or just "sleight of hand" (one reason why you don't want to make your magic look flourishly) will make them feel better. If you provide a context through your presentation, they will just enjoy the magic without trying to figure it out.
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  5. I've had a few adults in their 50s ask if it was that special deck that used to be sold on TV I guess back in the day.
    Many people know about a Svengali deck. I use a Mirage deck in one of my Cowboy/Cowgirl shoot a card tricks.
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  6. In my experience, people don't jump to that. They're designer playing cards, just like people have designer shoes, clothes, etc, etc the list is never ending. I stick to bikes (actually Mandolins now) mainly because of the cost.

    I went to a party a few weeks back and showed up to them playing drinking games with a deck of NPH playing cards.
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  7. People always assume its a trick deck. I've even had people assume my bikes are fake. That's why letting them inspect it or at least see all the cards is important.
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  8. I've had a few 'older' people ask if I am using a tapered deck (That's a stripper deck to me and you)
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  9. I rarely am asked if it is a trick deck. The only time that this happens is when I do certain mathematical card tricks. I have had a few scenarios where I'll do something self working or hands off and they immediate feel the need to look through the deck. I don't think that the back design matters all that much.
  10. Almost every trick I do, especially one's that involve transformations, people think the deck is rigged in some way. Whether it's heat sensitive ink, or a deck that's entirely the 5 of hearts (or whatever card they happen to pick).
    Funny thing is, the only gaff deck I do use often is the Invisible Deck. Very rarely do people suspect a trick deck with this one. Most seem to think I do some sort of sleight to flip the card but I've had explanations ranging from subliminal suggestion to a mechanical deck that flips over the desired card based on a voice activated thing. I always love the ridiculous explanations.
  11. If they are speculating on method, it is because they think knowing the method is more interesting than seeing the magician perform it.

    Either this is because the performance is set up in such a way that they feel they are meant to try to figure out the method (ie: the performer has challenged them in some way to do so), or because the performance is boring and figuring out the method is a way to entertain themselves while the magician faffs about in front of them.

    In either case, the performer can stop it from happening by changing how they present the performance. Therein lies the difficulty for most magicians.
  12. The people who tend to question my tricks will usually do it regardless of how it's presented.
  13. @Antonio Diavolo, do you typically perform for the same group of people and it typically is the same individuals who question your tricks? I'm asking because the more you perform for the same people, especially people who know you well, the sort of "fool us" vs. "guess the method" contest can become common.

    What I find funny is that as magicians, we tend to do the exact same thing we don't like our spectators to do. We watch with a goal of figuring it out.

    There are two ways of doing this and they are best used together.

    The first way is the design of an effect. The effect needs to be designed to subtlely disprove all possible methods, including the method used. I say subtlely because if you obviously rule out a method (all the cards are different, this is a normal deck, etc.) that focuses the audience on the fact that there is a method -- making them wonder what the method is. In many ways, a magician's attempt to be "fair" (please, never ask a spectator "was that fair?" unless your next line is "of course it isn't, I'm a magician, I cheat"), can backfire because it makes spectators focus on what your are doing and think about how you could be being unfair.

    The second way is to present the effect in an entertaining way so that they willingly suspend disbelief -- that is, they don't care how you did it because it was so much fun to watch your performance. Structurally, I've always felt that you should have the audience expect the final reveal of an effect a moment before you get there, to WANT the magician to be able to meet their expectations and to be convinced that the magician cannot do what they want him or her to do. That's magic.
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  14. Our goal as magicians is to replicate reality as closely as possible & to always be directing the audience in every time they laugh, question, assume, look away, look closer, reacting, etc...
    Using an object that's not easily recognizable will always bring questions & will detract from your desired effect if you are not prepared for that. In today's time since most card games are played online, we're more than lucky if laypeople are familiar with traditional Bicycle playing cards.
    Which is why you will find spectators who assume you're using trick cards are the ones most unfamiliar with playing cards & it's our job to initiate them with the cards before we begin to perform by letting them shuffle & handle the cards & even talking about the values & suits.
    I have found when I perform for people who are familiar with poker, black jack, and familiar with handling cards in general are the last ones to suspect you're using gaffed cards if you designate the right approach.
    Antonio Diavolo likes this.
  15. It seems to be just people who are naturally skeptical of magic tricks. Regardless of how you distract them, they will be skeptical.

    The best part about that though is most of these people that I've encountered who act this way will be looking way too closely at the wrong place. They'll see, and call out, supposed sleight of hand moves where there are none. In all honesty, especially in high school, it could be an ego thing. Especially when they think very highly of their own intelligence. They just HAVE to know how it was done.
    RealityOne likes this.
  16. I've found the most common thing people suspect is a deck made entirely of one card. But usually this is dispelled when I let them handle the deck and see that they're all different. Either that or they'll make a way overly complicated explanation which in all honesty, if true, would be just as amazing as the trick. Like if the invisible deck used a miniature robotic arm to flip over the card named by the person, that would be awesome! I never present my tricks as a puzzle, or at least I try not to.
  17. Caleb Wiles has a great effect in his High Spots lecture notes called iDeck, which he presents as a computerized deck of cards.
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  18. I like using bicycle decks normally and gimmicked because I like to keep everything consistent. I don't like doing a trick with one deck and switch it out with another deck that is different overall because people may get skeptical. The only times I really change decks openly for another kind of cards is the cartoon deck or if i'm doing a trick with blank cards.
    Antonio Diavolo likes this.
  19. I have almost never had people think I was using a trick deck. Even when performing Chaos for a room full of magicians! I think it's all in the presentation really. You act like you're using a trick deck, they'll think you're using a trick deck.
  20. My experience has been that every once in a while someone mentions that I'm using a marked deck. I only use bicycle cards for shows.

    Around friends and family I use custom decks and have never had anyone be suspicious.
    Antonio Diavolo likes this.

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