Here are some updates to a couple favorite effects from earlier this year.
ISOLT is a handling for the Invisible Deck that is less about the effect of the ID, and more about using it as evidence for a lost period of time while your spectator is, apparently, "hypnotized."
That original post has three versions of the effect. This is a variation of Version Two: In the Shadow of Young Girls in Flower.
Here's how it works. You need an Invisible Deck. You're talking with your friend about one of the weirdest methods you've ever heard for a magic trick. "The interesting thing is there really is no method. It's based on these tests they were doing at Stanford University."
You then show them the video at this link (which is also embedded below).
The video shows a woman undergoing a hypnotic induction. You don't need to watch the whole thing straight through. You can jump ahead, but just make sure the spectator understands what's going on.
Watch the beginning of the video, up until the woman starts the mental journey down the staircase.
Jump forward to about 1:30. The experimenter is telling her a card to think of. A card she should name if ever asked for a "random" card. You say, "See, look what he's doing here. He's telling her what card to name in the future."
The experimenter tells her she will forget these instructions on a conscious level. Then he "wakes" her, asks her to name a "random" card and shows her that card has been reversed in the deck before they started. You narrate along with what's happening so it's clear to your spectator.
"So he's just told her what card to name, but she doesn't remember any of this. So this is the first time she's hearing about a card as far as she knows. Now she's seeing this as some kind of card trick, but really she's just naming the card he told her to name."
"It's one of the strangest methods I've ever heard of. It doesn't use sleight-of-hand or psychology to predict what she'll name. You just tell them what to say and then make them forget you told them. Voila! Can I try it with you? Not with the four of hearts, but some other card."
Once they agree, have them lower their hand and close their eyes, like in the video.
"In a moment I'm going to relax you more completely."
[Pause 5 seconds.]
"You are fully awake. Open your eyes."
I find it helps to place your hand on their shoulder or something to make it clear it's "over" because, from their perspective (i.e., reality) you haven't started yet.
"Do you remember?" you ask with a smile. "No? Okay, okay. Let's try it out. Go ahead. Name a random playing card."
They won't believe you at first, of course. They'll think you're just fucking around. It's when you show them the card they freely named is the one that is reversed in the deck that they really begin to question what the hell really happened.
Bookmark the video URL on your phone and you have a really strange 8 minute experience for someone whenever you have your invisible deck.
In, A Big Concept and a Little Idea, the "Little Idea" was a universal meta-presentation for Tenyo tricks. This idea has developed a bit of a following and I hear from a lot of people who have been using it or something similar. I understand why it's (relatively) popular. It leverages the "weakness" of the toy-ish-ness of Tenyo effects into a strength, but it does so in a much more interesting way then just saying it was the first trick you ever got, or something like that. (I find people want to be fooled by the first magic trick you got as much as they want to be stumped by the first math problem you ever attempted. Which is to say, not at all.)
Working through the trick with the spectator, and being fooled with the spectator is a particularly enjoyable magical experience for everyone involved, I've found.
In this file you will find a pdf to print off instruction cards for the trick Crystal Cleaver. Print them on the Avery business card sheets, front and back. These sheets are made so you can pop the cards out when you're done printing. It's fun. Pop pop pop.
Some things to remember:
1. This is supposed to be your first time seeing this stuff, so act like it. Don't be too familiar with it.
2. The instructions are intentionally not overly-clear. Look to your spectator to help you figure things out. "Crystal box?" you say. "I guess they mean this one, right? That would make this one the 'mystery box.' I guess."
3. If you want to use the spectator's ring, just don't include the other ring in with your package. The imperfect English of the instructions allow for the idea that you're supposed to use either a borrowed ring or the ring that's included with the effect.
4. If you really want to play up the weird backstory, when you're done with trick say, "We have to go take this and throw it off a bridge or I won't get next year's package."