Jay Sankey on Fancy Decks

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Mat La Vore, Dec 8, 2007.


Do you agree with Sankey?

  1. YES

    64 vote(s)
  2. NO

    22 vote(s)
  1. i think i just crapped myself

    that really was an awesome post steve
  2. Kindly stop it with the metaphors. It's not nearly as clever as you think.

    If that's your opinion, then custom decks are simply not for you. That's all.
    I'm willing to bet that they weren't, and that part of the reason you're saying this is because your only experience with custom decks has been negative.
    You very clearly stated that most of the times you performed with custom decks, the spectators were suspicious and that just about everyone is suspicious about decks they've never seen before. I may have stated it wrong, but I was trying to say that with proper presentation, that simply isn't the case
    The 10 seconds (literally, that's all it takes) is worth it to perform with a deck that I really like and handles well and that can open up a whole slew of presentational options and performance themes.
  3. #23 Mat La Vore, Dec 8, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 8, 2007
    I agree that the magician's demeanor plays a part but I think you're being pretty narrowminded in thinking that the magician's demeanor is the sole reason for suspicion and that spectators do not have thoughts of their own outside of what those the magician projects to them through his performance. Magicians cannot control spectators' minds. Those that think they can are only fooling themselves, not their spectators. And just because someone doesn't call you on something does not mean they are not thinking it. Notice Sankey said he noticed the waitress in question seemed more suspicious of the magic rather than amazed. He noticed this. Sometimes someone doesn't have to tell you something, you just have to know how to read between the lines.
  4. honestly, i like to perform magic with custom decks, i use them once in a while. MAY be ONCE a month. When i do use them, it is worth every second. Because as a magician i am showing my spectators elegance of playing card. At the end, i am the magician. not a regular poker/card player.
  5. Exactly. And normal bikes are like more than half the price of any fancy deck so why not stock up on em? They feel great, and handle exceptionally, so why do we even need these cool decks of cards for magic. But however, I do agree that for Flourishing and XCM, it's different, because they want the show and it adds to their flashy-ness. Not good for magic.
  6. If anyone questions me about my deck I say this. "Yes it is a trick deck, so just not be that amazed if something amazing happens."
  7. i partially agree with sankey, it's harder to pass off weird decks as legit, but nowhere close to impossible.

    I buy those decks for me anyways. they're just fun to have/use.
  8. To make it short and sweat- it's both, and mostly the deck.

    The deck is the main problem for the exact reason that Steve mentioned in his earlier post.

    The performance is the problem if you stare at the back of the deck for hours only to reveal the name of the top card...there are many performance flaws that exist, that being one of them.

    However, in my opinion, a deck should not attract attention. Having 2-3 performance mistakes throughout your act will not make people want to examine it. However with a deck that has an abnormal back, UPON BRINGING THE DECK OUT there is an IMMEDIATE suspicion of trickery. Which. Is. Not. Good.

    Just my 2 cents,
  9. apperently it is since you still wont answer
  10. No, no it's really not.

    I use both. Are you happy now?
  11. oh bull you do
  12. I really honestly believe that if you take out a deck of blue bikes, and a deck of guardians, ghosts etc, since they are my tools, I should be able to present the same effect the EXACT same way, and have it believed the way I intend it to. It has to work both ways. If I do a triumph routine, I should be able to script it for any deck, and not have to alter the script for either deck.

    Of course if the patter I have revolves around death and the effect specifically calls for a certain color of deck (which I don't have a single effect that REALLY 100% calls for any particular custom) then I would use one, and likely not be called on it.

    I would be willing to bet that if I did the same routine 10 times with a regular deck,then with a custom, the spec would suspect twice as often with the custom as the regular.

    In short, I could make the customs seem legit, but I should HAVE to MAKE my cards seem legit. It defeats the purpose of doing something extraordinary with something ordinary
  13. Never had this issue. You foreigners are uptight. I'm glad people don't give me the nth degree when I perform, it'd just detract from the enjoyment.. I'm happy to just entertain, custom deck, or regular.
  14. Only reason i have ever handed out a custom deck was not for examination but for the interest of art design..
    I disagree with Sankey..
  15. My thoughts on this: I use black cards for all my routines BECAUSE half the time I get questioned or called out on them. Why? Simple, because during the routine or if I mess up a trick, I can pull out my trusty normal blue backed invisible deck, and NOBODY asks about them... ever... so far...
  16. you are with some friends at a party or whatever gathering.

    you say want to see a magic/card trick?

    a. you bring up your custom deck
    b. you bring up your regular bicycle deck

    what is the probability of someone calling you out on gimmicked cards in alternative a?
    what is the probability of someone calling you out on gimmicked cards in alternative b?

    i dont know the answer. but dont you question things you havent seen before? will you take the magicians word for it? magicians uses gimmicks you know.

    think about it. the person says want to see MAGIC or CARD TRICK and then brings up a pack of cards you have never seen before?

    custom decks will make people think twice more often than regular bikes even if its a percentage of 0.1 vs 0.2

    i think its kinda hilarious how some of you defend your beliefs with your life(religion anyone?). no reason to start a flame war over a deck of cards.

    i like guardians and i will prob order some from time to time. but i think ill stick to regular bikes for the most part because they are cheaper.
  17. I once remember Danny Garcia say something along these lines- "The ghost deck looks amazing but I'll never use it."

    Anyways, I'm patiently waiting for any artist's opinion on this.

  18. Bugger me...this thread is going off in a totally different direction to the other one isn't it Mat?

    I really haven't got the time to re-write my post from E so that it's different on here cos' 1) I'm far too busy and 2) I'm a lazy bugger. So I'll just copy and paste it below. However, in response to you point about 'noticing' that I don't have time to post on both forums...

    Whilst my post below (and on E) did not approach this point in any way, I did completely understand it. Just sometimes my mind it goes a'wanderin' big fella...I'm sure you know that by now. And much as I agree with you and Steve on certain things (the state of the world today, pumpkin faced yokels, gaffer-tape and a baseball bat is not the correct way to keep a girlfriend), i simply don't believe that the "Everyone recognises ordinary bikes and therefore they think that any other form of deck is suspicious' is a valid argument in its entirety.

    Is mine?

    Certainly not...but I'm gonna' re-post it anyways....

    Original Post:

    I received Sankey's newsletter the other day and this caught my interest too.

    I've read countless threads and differing opinions over the years on this topic and can see the worth in the arguments both for and against to a certain extent.

    In my limited experience, what deck of cards is used makes no difference. I've never been hassled by pulling a deck of Tigers on someone. To be fair though, I'm speaking of very, very limited experience so I wouldn't like to put it forward as a justification by any means.

    That said however, a friend of mine does tricks with an old pack of Marlboro Playing Cards. Horrendous things they are, I mean really, really nasty looking and so old it's a wonder that the cardboard still holds up to being handled. And he's never been called on them before. What does that say for odd looking decks?

    Nothing really. It's been said many times that Bikes are the most recognised and well known brand, and whilst this may indeed be the case, that doesn't necessarily follow that everyone knows what a Bike looks like...

    Well, obviously only stupid people would not know what a bike looks like; two wheels, saddle, handlebars etc...the things are everywhere...but Bicycle Playing Cards? Not where I'm from. In all the places I've ever shopped that sell playing cards, there has never been one brand that stands out in the way that, say, Stephen Kings name stands out on the 'K' shelf in a book store. What is more often the case is that there are boxes and boxes of all kinds of wondrous and mostly horrendous designs of playing cards; some with flowers on, cartoons, pictures of movie stars, adult ones with stars over inappropriate areas of the cover models. It should be remembered that WE think about things like cards and what they look like and how they handle etc, because we are into magic and all its dark and sinister little dirty secrets.

    But your average Joe Shmo? Doubtful in my opinion. To your average guy or gal in the street (or possibly in a house, shed, barn, some sort of weird contraption involving tubes, rubber and a gas powered generator...these people, turn up everywhere I tell ya') cards are cards. They're things you play card games with. They mean nothing. In fact, before I happened upon E, I'd never even heard of Bicycle Playing Cards, let alone knew what the most recognised colour or back design was.

    I accepted that Bikes were the standard deck of cards for magicians because E's site told me they were, and I had no reason to doubt them. Subsequently this 'fact' was backed up by many different posts and posters on many different sites, however the whole subject has remained one of fascination for me to this day...and this thread in fact, as I wonder if everyone thinks this is fact for the same reason?

    For instance: surely if you lived in Las Vegas, the most recognisable type of playing card to you would be Casino type cards?

    Maybe I'm wrong, I often am. Why, only the other day i was wrong about something and let me tell you...aha....whew...I had a jolly good laugh after I was wrong and chuckled as the wrong was quite, quite wrong and I really have no idea how it came to be that i was so wrong when usually I'm not so wrong, well, not as wrong as that time i can tell you...ahaha...ohhh...I'm laughing now just thinking back on it...ahhhh....well, anyway....

    So maybe I am and maybe I'm not and maybe there really is some sort of justification to dress dogs and cats in hats and coats and take them out in public...but I would hazard a guess that the thing that messes with a specs head when you perform a card trick is not the deck of cards but the magic performed with them. I would imagine that someone is as likely to grab the deck of blue or red-backed Bikes from your hand after your Erdnase and holler "FAKE, CON...INSTIGATOR OF DEVILMENT & MISCHIEVOUS TRICKERY!" , as they are a Tiger or Guardian deck because the thing they're going to think is 'not right' about the deck is that what you just did with it is obviously impossible therefore there must be something up with the deck, more-so than the colour of the cards or their design.

    Obviously that's one possible scenario...I'm not saying that people think that after every trick ever performed otherwise the world would be a screwed up place, but you get where I'm coming from?

    Jay, love you as much as I do...I'm gonna have to say, No, I don't agree with you.

    Rightso, I'm off to Tipp-Ex all of my Tigers as now I'm paranoid someone's gonna' think there's something up with them.

  19. Here is my 2 cents:

    Costom decks are not as much for magic as they are for flourishing. I believe custom decks were invented to "look cool". I mean, you can use them for magic, but you better get used to giving the "Oh no you can buy these on special sites online they're completely ordinary" speech, which is all well and good, if you don't mind getting good at it really fast. I have plenty of custom decks, mostly cause I like flourishing when I'm at home or when I'm with my friend who flourishes. I do use them for performing magic, but not if I don't have to.
    I guess the main thing is, magic was meant to take something ordinary, and make it do something extraordinary. You usually don't do that to people that don't find them thing you're doing magic with, uncommon, or even rare. I guess that's why you introduce the deck itself to them first though. "Here check out these cards! They look cooler but are completely natural in every other way. Except the stocks... And the finish..." =P
  20. its not about recognizing bikes in particular or any brand for that matter.

    i live in Norway where they dont sell bicycle and i have never thought about the brand on the cards. but since i was little the type of cards that i usually played card games with was usually red or blue backed with the art being white just as on bicycle.

    different art like disney themed and whatnot ive seen too sure, but its recognizable things. disney themed cards cant possibly be trick cards right?

    blue or red backed cards are easily recognizable by everyone.

    bring up a pack of guardians. black back design?!?!? not disney themed or black or blue. WHAT IS GOING ON?!?!??

    anyway pulling out a pack and get accused straight away for trick cards vs doing a trick and get accused for using trick cards are 2 different things. 2 different reasons for you being accused.

    but i really doubt people will call you out on gimmicked cards just because of card design but i do think the probability is higher.

    most people know card tricks can be done without gimmicked cards anyways and will just stand in awe of your skills in card tricks.

    my brother came visiting me while i was screwing around with the guardian deck. he knew i had ordered something online. i told him i had ordered a deck of cards for card tricks. showed him the deck and talked a little, while i was talking i set up the deck for drunken shuffle and showed him the trick. he was like WTF??? didnt even question the cards.

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