(Close Window)
Topic: My tweaking of B'wave By Phil Goldstein
Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (Feb 23, 2014 10:07PM)
I haven't always gotten the reactions I wanted with this so I played around and came up with this handling that makes the reveal much more magical- in my opinion. I love this little packet trick.

When I begin the effect I ask the spectator to help me with an experiment in imagination, pretty much like the original. But I say to imagine I have the 4 queens while doing an Elmsley count followed by a Jordan count.

I tell them to think of, or choose either the black or red queens and adjust the patter accordingly. I think you can figure this part out.

Really drive home the fact that this has been, and is, all a free choice of theirs and then allow them to choose which one we keep.

Have them imagine to turn it over in the packet.

For the reveal it really blows them away to spread the top and bottom card and then do the 2nd and 3rd while saying that a card has indeed now turned over. They just saw all the cards twice and this wasn't the case.

And the back of this one is now red. I like to casually handle this with my thumb strategically placed and use it to gesture to the other cards.

Then the blanks- the cards that we got rid of- just adds icing to the cake.

You can optionally finish it by saying that this was just all an experiment with their imagination and do another Elmsley showing all blue backs again. You could then do one last Jordan or just move 1 card to the bottom and you're reset.

It may not seem like much, but the reactions I got with this at a gig and at home with my daughter who has already seen me do B'wave (she's 26) were awesome.

"That's amazing," and "Incredible," were what I heard at the gig. The counts seem to add a lot to the effect.
Message: Posted by: mlippo (Feb 24, 2014 10:18AM)
Sorry, but I do not agree with you. B'Wave is not magic nor sleight of hand that makes a card turn over in your hands. The point is that you ALREADY KNEW which queen would me chosen and therefore you had already taken it from a different coloured pack AND turned it over in your packet.

Besides going back to show the cards all the same colour again makes things even worse..

I'm eager to see what others think of this.

Message: Posted by: magicfish (Feb 24, 2014 12:15PM)
This has been done by many others before you.
Message: Posted by: videoman (Feb 24, 2014 01:27PM)
You should try out Duplicity by John Bannon. It has completely replaced B'wave and Twisted Sisters for me.
Spec gets to pick (free choice) one packet of cards to hold and then spreads them themselves, so it happens literally in their hands.
Everything is totally clean at the end, and very little E is needed and the handling and sleights are about the same.
Super clean routine.
I could never go back to the gaffed cards.
Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (Feb 24, 2014 01:44PM)
I figured it was done by others before me. I also figured some would disagree with me.

I shared it anyway thinking someone might benefit.

It gets good reactions.

Have a great day! :)
Message: Posted by: magicfish (Feb 24, 2014 07:35PM)
No problem, Theodore, thanks for sharing.
Message: Posted by: fonda57 (Feb 25, 2014 04:50PM)
Good that you are creative, but I wouldn't tweak B'Wave myself. It's beautiful just the way it is, there's no sleight of hand, and you essentially get three effects out of it. Doing Elmsley and Jordan counts before and after suggests you are "doing something." the way I see it.

But since you are getting good reactions, what the hell?
Message: Posted by: Rocky (Feb 26, 2014 07:01PM)
I like that the idea works for the people who matter...the audience. Sometimes magicians think more about how an effect should be performed rather than actually performing it.
Message: Posted by: fonda57 (Feb 26, 2014 11:30PM)
My thoughts were along the lines of, since it is technically easy to perform, it is easier to involve/engage the audience.

In my view, continually counting the cards face down can draw suspicion since only the backs are shown, and you are expecting them to just take for granted that they are queens simply because you said so. Seems like over proving something that does not need to be proven. Counting them after the effect to show they are all blue and face down again strongly hints that you are "doing something." I think it's dangerous to just expect an audience not to think.

Still, since it works for him, that's great. But I wouldnt do it that way.
Message: Posted by: Mb217 (Mar 30, 2014 11:31AM)
I think the audience is always what's most important, and a good laymen audience is always better than an audience of magicians. :D Thank God that's the way it most often is. :)

I have done B'wave for many years. It's a great effect. I have complicated it and kept it simple, and find that when it's simply put is about the best, for the reasons that fonda gives here above, that it makes it easier to stay engaged with the specs. I think that's what is is so very nice about the trick…It allows you to keep the specs in focus all the way through.

I like to see creativity, it shows thinking… But oftentimes once you've thought your away around a thing, you sometimes come back to about where you started with it to see that it was about perfect to begin with. :D B'wave is one of those sorts of effects to me. In fact, most times you will hear good voices tell you to not use the EC to show 4 face down cards. A card turning over from a face down set is sorta magical, more so than what B'wave is more so intended as, which is a mind-reading effect, IMHO. It can be important in these relative genres not to mix the two for fear of losing the potency of one. The whole effect plays of some clever mind-reading/imagination stuff, and it happens as per the specs. To me, the Queen turning over is more a magical sorta thing, and I think mostly gets lost in the overall effect of you telling them what you simply thought they would do as to all the hand-holding as you walk them through the effect. But, I guess it can be done that way if you like, and I sorta remember in the old instructions long ago that Phil Goldstein (aka Max Maven) might've mentioned showing the 4 cards face down (via EC) first(?).

Also, I think if this is playing well for Theo, then by all means, proceed. :) I suspect there will be more learning on all this and the effect will continue to take more stealthy turns before you finally make camp with it. :)

For me, I've carried it for years and do it now & again when I have that much time to do such an engaging trick with cards. :) The fun & beauty is in the path you lead the specs unwittingly down toward a resolve they think they had something to do with. It really is an amazing trick, that I have seen presented in several ways. Either which way, it always heavily involves the specs. The better versions have been those that don't give in to much "card magic" manipulation of the cards. As to fine relatives like "Twisted Sister" and "Duplicity" (Both fabulous takes on the basic B'wave premise by the venerable, John Bannon), I've also done them and found them to be nicely kicked-up-a-notch extended versions but I still prefer the overall simplicity of B'wave. I'm just sayin', and to each his own. :)

Like fonda says, it's an easy trick to do, one where you work much more on yourself to present it well than on any such moves to make it happen or seem more believable. Less is truly more in this classic effect. :)

Good string and talk here. :)
Message: Posted by: TheRaven (Mar 30, 2014 05:53PM)
What is amazing about b'wave is that the spectators feel that three different magical effects have occurred in succession when there is really only one.
Message: Posted by: dduane (Mar 30, 2014 07:00PM)
I agree with the comments above on keeping the original version - keeping it simple. However, I also believe that Theodore's version does work better for him. I know that when I put my own ideas into an effect, that I have more enthusiasm and present it better. That in itself will get me better reactions. It's sometimes more of a challenge to keep the effect as it was created and intended (which often is the best way to do it) while presenting it as if it was your original idea -- to help make it more magical.

Just my thoughts...
Message: Posted by: TheRaven (Mar 30, 2014 07:28PM)
On Feb 24, 2014, mlippo wrote:
... The point is that you ALREADY KNEW which queen would me chosen and therefore you had already taken it from a different coloured pack AND turned it over in your packet.

I don't necessarily agree with this. I think the mystery of the card turning over can be explained different ways. I use a patter involving the power of imagination which is demonstrated 3 ways...
1. The thought of card turns over
2. The spectator focused so hard on the color of the card that the back changed to red too.
3. The spectator imagined the other cards fading away (this I introduce as a term in the equivique) so effectively that the faces became blank.
Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (Mar 30, 2014 09:14PM)
Raven- That's the angle I used. I would emphasize they are using their imagination the whole time. And look- their imagination became reality. Eyes widen- looks of astonishment. No one ever suspects I influenced their selection. It really took the trick, for me and the people I've shown it to anyway, from a really good one to jaw-dropping amazement.

dduane- I like what you have to say here. I believe you're correct. The reason it works so well for me is because I've made it mine. I tried to work it as it was written, but when I thought of doing it this way it just felt right, fit my personality, whatever. I admit it wouldn't be for everybody, but it has really produced great reactions from the people I've shared it with.

Mb- You may be right. I may go back to the original. :) !

I just thought the angle of "knowing what one they would choose" for me, weakens the effect because they can suspect influence. Almost in the way I feel showing that, "I have two extra foreign coins," during C/S/B weakens the effect. When I would get to that part of C/S/B I could see the look in their eyes that said the magic had been weakened. I know you are setting them up for the ending, but then they just wonder how many coins DO you have in your pockets? That's why I also played around and came up with my own twists that never hint at extra coins and I still end clean.

But- great conversation! I love the Café so much for this reason. And I may be completely wrong and go back to doing the originals later, but I really appreciate all the wisdom the real working pros have to share around here. I'm working hard toward becoming a working pro; it really is my dream to be a magician and do something I love for a living. Thanks for listening to my semi-pro ideas with polite acceptance.
Message: Posted by: Vlad_77 (Mar 31, 2014 05:52AM)
I too am enjoying the conversation Theodore! As for me, I have always played Twisted Sisters as more of an experiment than a magic effect. In fact, I don't perform the EC at the beginning. To me at least there is motivation for it IF the effect is presented as a "let's try something weird" approach. Borrowing a bit from J.K. Hartman's work in Trickery Treats on an unrelated effect, I've developed a presentation that has never failed me and has never caused the punters to grab the cards.

I firmly believe that neither Max Maven's B'Wave nor John Bannon's Twisted Sisters need any "moves" whatsoever but I hasten to add that I am not at all implying that my thinking on this is the correct way, only that it is the correct for me. :)

Fun thread and it's great to see Marion posting in here! I remember when this coin wizard - and folks he IS a veritable wizard with the coin of the realm - started dabbling with card magic. I was so humbled that he asked my opinion on his early forays into the 'boards. I am a veritable hack and this "smoove" artist asked me! Anyhow, Marion's understanding of card magic is really a breath of fresh air in that since his specialty has been coins, he brings a unique perspective to card work that some of us who are steeped in cards may have not thought about.

Message: Posted by: JeffreyMichael1127 (Apr 10, 2014 04:46PM)
I do the Elmsley Count by explaining that there are 4 queens. I just come right out and have them name a queen out loud. I would say 90% of the time, people name the queen of hearts. The other 10% of the time they name the diamond. This takes care of that magician's force that I never really liked. It also makes for such a stronger impact when they could name any queen. If they do name the spade or club (rarely, but ok) then I name the other black card...then I name the two read and go into the remove 2 queens bit. But try it......just ask someone to name a queen....90% of the time it is the heart.
Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (Apr 10, 2014 05:55PM)
Message: Posted by: Leo H (Apr 13, 2014 12:13PM)
[quote]On Apr 10, 2014, JeffreyMichael1127 wrote:
I do the Elmsley Count by explaining that there are 4 queens. I just come right out and have them name a queen out loud. I would say 90% of the time, people name the queen of hearts. The other 10% of the time they name the diamond. This takes care of that magician's force that I never really liked. It also makes for such a stronger impact when they could name any queen. If they do name the spade or club (rarely, but ok) then I name the other black card...then I name the two read and go into the remove 2 queens bit. But try it......just ask someone to name a queen....90% of the time it is the heart. [/quote]

A great post Jeffrey. This is something I also notice, that the Queen of Hearts is usually named first. You can bypass the whole equivoque by trying this first.
Message: Posted by: GlenD (Apr 17, 2014 11:26AM)
If doing it as a "magic trick", perhaps with a bit of mentalism included then the way you are going through it sounds pretty cool. I have been doing B'Wave for a number of years and early on had it pointed out to me about the benefits and intentions of keeping it purely as a mentalism effect. And try to resist showing the backs and elmsey counting etc...My presentation has been one which closely resembles the one Dave Devlin showed me many years ago. I also have the jumbo B'Wave and enjoy doing it from stage or in parlor settings.
I love the reactions I get, most of the time BTW!

Message: Posted by: tstrong2 (Apr 21, 2014 04:03PM)
Ultimately, you have to judge for yourself whether it works better one way or the other with your audiences. You have to develop your own style and patter that is personalized for you. If it gives you confidence, flows freely and smoothly, and gets you the reactions that you want; isn't that what you are really after anyway? Every audience is going to be a little different. And magicians are going to be the worst critics. Simplicity often works best, but for obvious reasons, magicians tend to over-complicate it. In the end, the true measure of a magician is the number of people that they actually entertain. Not the number of people that they imagine entertaining. Do your own R&D in the field, in front of an audience, and find what works best for you.
Message: Posted by: Rolyan (May 27, 2014 07:55AM)
You've taken an effect that didn't work for you and developed into one that does. Well done, I've done the same many times. You've slightly changed the original intent and presentation but so what. Study the masters, know your history, understand the theory, but then make it work for you.

I personally wouldn't do the count at the end, due to routining. It's a bit like spreading a deck face down to show a cad reversed, then immediately spreading to show it's not reversed. It tips the method, it says 'look, I can make that happen just by doing this'.

There are some really good comments on here but I've not read any opinion that would persuade me to leave the jaw dropping effect behind and go back to the good effect. I hope your dream comes true for you.
Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (May 27, 2014 12:37PM)
I agree with you on the final count Rolyan. After giving it some thought, it isn't necessary.
Message: Posted by: Andy Moss (Jun 1, 2014 08:08AM)
All that matters -when all is said and done- is the impact of an effect on the audience.The performer is primarily an entertainer.This depends on many things including the performer's personality, style of presentation and upon his skill base. There should be no sacred cows in magic. I rarely perform an effect exactly as it comes to me. Yet I always reflect upon the possible reasons for the given methodology.I always respect the fact that much thinking has presumably gone into it and that the alternatives have likely already been considered and weighed up.We all stand on the shoulders of those who have gone before us. Yet as humans who love to perform we should not leave ourselves out of the equation completely.
Message: Posted by: inigmntoya (Jun 7, 2014 10:28PM)
My 2 cents if they're even worth that much...

If you want a pure mentalism/prediction effect, stick with B'wave as written. If you want a B'wave feel with LOTS of magical changes that ends CLEAN, check out B'rainiac by John Bannon and Liam Monitor.
Message: Posted by: Wabojeg (Jul 21, 2014 05:43PM)
If I may piggy back on this topic I have a question about B'wave that I wanted to see what others thought. It may have been covered somewhere else so feel free to direct me there. I've been experimenting with using three aces instead of the blank cards. I think, in my opinion, that since spectators probably have never seen blank cards before, that the appearance of them lets the spectator know that magicians DO use specially printed cards. I don't really want my spectators thinking that, do I? I would much rather they think that all of my cards are normal, including of course the red queen they are seeing. Am I over thinking this?

Message: Posted by: BeThePlunk (Jul 21, 2014 07:22PM)
I like B-wave. It's clean and easy and plays well.

I think that a face-down E count is a nice addition and can help to establish legitimacy. I think a second count is suspect and overkill. That leaves the queen on the bottom rather than neatly tucked in the middle, but I don't see a big problem there.

Wabojeg, the aces idea could be a nice addition; however, I think a sharp spec will notice that one ace has been shown twice.
Message: Posted by: Wabojeg (Jul 22, 2014 12:28PM)
[quote]On Jul 21, 2014, BeThePlunk wrote:

Wabojeg, the aces idea could be a nice addition; however, I think a sharp spec will notice that one ace has been shown twice. [/quote]

Hi BeThePlunk, thanks for your input, though I think I might have confused you. I was talking about no false counts or displays like this thread started with, but performing it the way that B'wave is traditionally done; however, use aces (or some other non-queen cards) instead of the blank cards.

Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (Jul 29, 2014 11:43AM)
So I just did this a couple of times the other night. Just did an Elmsley at the beginning and asked them to name any queen like JeffreyMichael1127 suggested. They both named the heart. Did the 3 phase reveal and no counts at the end.

Reactions were great. "Amazing!" "That's scary!" etc... I did this for my son and his fiancé and my son complimented me later on the trick with the queens that showed off my excellent sleight of hand. lol! I'll gladly take an undeserved compliment.

Works for me this way. I like it and it gets great reactions.
Message: Posted by: lcwright1964 (Oct 10, 2014 12:44PM)
I like the variation and will try both. I also like the simplicity of of Elmsley then Jordan combo. I always feel conspicuous putting the last card of an Elmsley on the bottom to facilitate a repeat Elmsley. Elmsley then Jordan (and repeat till the cows come home if one wants) is elegant.
Message: Posted by: vincentmusician (Dec 5, 2020 05:00PM)
I read and understand all the opinions of how Magicians present B'Wave. However, my favourite is the Burger presentation.
Due to the fact that in this one, you are discussing imagination and how good the spectators is. When the card is "Chosen"
you are proving that they have already predicted which card is already turned over. So there is no need for false counts and tricky moves.
You are not showing that they magically turned a card over. So for me, I just stick to the original handling.
What ever works for you. I have also found that over time, things can change. What ever Gets You Through The Night.