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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Dvd, Video tape, Audio tape & Compact discs. » » Worst Effects on True Astonishments set? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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smith83
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Big Tiny comes to mind
PatrickGregoire
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Have you used it?
Mind Melter
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I happen to really like big tiny Smile it's simple, yet powerful.
synth_infusion
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Hey Whokebe, what don't you like about Big Tiny if you don't mind me asking?
Tom G
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Is there a purpose to this thread?
synth_infusion
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Quote:
On 2009-02-24 19:34, Tom G wrote:
Is there a purpose to this thread?

Hmm I was also thinking the same. :/
bugjack
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I was waiting for this thread...

I actually think it's okay... The "best effects" thread had a lot of variety so I'm sure this will too. And what will be interesting is to see how many of some people's best effects are other people's worst. For example, I like "Big Tiny." It would be one of my best.
Review King
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Quote:
On 2009-02-24 19:34, Tom G wrote:
Is there a purpose to this thread?


No. It was started to cause a stir.
"Of all words of tongue and pen,
the saddest are, "It might have been"

..........John Greenleaf Whittier
kissdadookie
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Only mediocre one that I felt was on the set was the Muscle Bend. Excellent method for physically bending coins but the routine was pretty ho-hum. Of course, this is coming from a person who's been performing the coin bend as a PK/mentalism type of presentation.
Magicsquared
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I think you'll be hard pressed to find any "worst item" that isn't in somebody else's top 5.
PatrickGregoire
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I thought that the Muscle Bend was hilarious, which is a good thing. The premise is just so funny.
Mercury52
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I think value can come from a thread like this, as long as people give reasons for what they don't like. Just like giving reasons for why we like something, it's important to give reasons as to why we don't like something. Just naming an effect flat-out with no other context isn't too helpful.

But, perhaps someone will post about why they feel an effect is weak, and get some good feedback from other members, and gain some new perspective on the effect, or find a way that it can work for them.

For me, as I continue to explore TA, there are some effects that I know I'll do often, others that I'll only do occasionally, and others still that I'll probably never do, or only do once. But I don't think there's really a "worst" trick on the set. It's all personal preference.

Case in point, some of the heated debate about Backlash 2. I've not performed it yet, so I'm still waiting to form an opinion. Some people obviously are performing it with great success, others seem to have major beef with it. When I saw it on the DVD, it wasn't one that I was itching to try right away.

First impressions can be deceiving. Granted, we all usually know what fits our style and what makes a fooler. But on more than one ocassion I've felt that an effect was "just ok" or "not that great" only to be proven very wrong when showing it to laypeople.

My philosophy on the material in TA (and pretty much any material really) is "Don't knock it til you've tried it." I think many of us might be surprised when we finally do try some of our least favorite effects from the set. It's easy to get caught up in the great ones and the ones we love, but I don't think we should neglect the ones that don't impress us off the bat, because they might turn out to be hidden gems.

Kevin
Kevin Reylek
Engali
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Kevin,

I agree wholeheartedly--to an extent. It's pretty much common sense that you should perform material that speaks to YOU as a magician, right? Ortiz says this in Stong Magic. Sankey says it in Beyond Secrets. The simple fact of the matter is that if Magician A loves effect X and Magician B dislikes it, assuming equal skill, Magician A will get a much better reaction. Basically, you're better able to convey the sense of wonder you have about the effect in your verbal/non-verbal communication. Your conviction in the expository pahses and your general energy will be higher/more invested in the performance.

The whole point, the value that can come from a thread like this, is that people can choose what doesn't work *for them* and explain way. I think there's immense value in that. Some might say, "Hey, give this a try even though it doesn't speak to you or is contradictory to your design/aesthetic senses." And you might perform it and you might get a realtively better reaction than you expected. But again, why run against the wind when you can choose material that REALLY fits you? It's a useful exercise to do once in a while and can open your eyes a bit, but at the end of the day I think everyone is best served by doing the material that just clicks for them. To come full circle with what I said above, just because you get a better reaction from an effect than you expected doesn't mean you will/should perform it again necessarily. After all, someone who actually loves that particular effect will do it better than you. This isn't to say that it's about who performs what best, but about choosing what material you *personally* perform best instead of trying/performing effects just to see if they work.

EDIT:

BTW, to make this clear, I am NOT saying that simply stating "X effect sucks" is worthwhile at all. I think that's just disrespectful. I DO think that constructive criticism is valuable and lacking, ironically, in the review forums.
edh
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You might also learn a subltety within an effect that you did not care for and apply it towards some other effect that you do like.
Magic is a vanishing art.
organicmagician
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Lubor's lens comes to mind. People loved that - I thought it looked like something you'd get from Tenyo (very prop-like, etc). Also, reactions were so-so.

I also didn't really care for muscle bend or backlash.
acchessor
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Lubor's Lens is on my top five - it's received great reactions, and I enjoy how it's not structured as a magic trick.

I suppose that even if we were to come to a concensus on a "worst" effect, that it would still be better than 90% of the substandard material out there.
animation
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I think you have to consider many things when performing an effect. I don't think you need to perform every effect out there to see if it is good or not. And just because another magician says the effect is good doesn't mean you should then go out and start performing it. The most important thing is, do you actually like the effect or the basic premise, and does it compliment the image you want to potray as a magician/mentalist. If you like the basic premise but think the method is bad, then I think you should road test the effect to see if the method is transparent. For example, Dunn's deal maybe a great effect for someone else, but it doesn't fit my style so why should I bother road testing it just because X says he gets terrific reactions.
Dunn's deal because I don't want to present magic that way
Engali
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Quote:
On 2009-02-25 18:10, acchessor wrote:
Lubor's Lens is on my top five - it's received great reactions, and I enjoy how it's not structured as a magic trick.

I suppose that even if we were to come to a concensus on a "worst" effect, that it would still be better than 90% of the substandard material out there.


I don't think it's about "coming to a consensus" so much as seeing why people subjectively don't like certain effects and then finding out why, for them, it doesn't fit their performing style. And it has nothing to do with whether or not the material is better than 90% of the stuff out there, it's about comparing the effects of TA against themselves.

As someone who hasn't bought TA looking for more objective reviews of this product, which are lacking, I'm interested in a wide array of opinions so I can "set the range" of my expectations. Honestly, hype only hurts my perception of a product because it creates high expectations. Not every effect in this product is going to be a gem simply because of the fact not every effect is going to fit every performer's style/set-up requirements. Personally, I don't like carrying gimmicks around unless it's really, really worth it. All I'm getting out of the current rave reviews are vague references to it being the best thing ever....doesn't give me a realistic view of the product and sets me up for disappointment. At this point, if I didn't take most reviews with a grain of salt, I'd expect every effect to be "worth the price of the dvd" and that's simply not going to be true.
Mercury52
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Bugjack, I think we're pretty much on the same page. Absolutely people will, and should, perform what they're drawn to.

I'd just hate to see this thread turn into a list of effects without any description of why people don't like something.

I think watching magic DVDs is like watching movie previews, and doing a performance is like seeing the full movie. Typically, we know what genre we like, and can get a good impression from a preview as to whether we'll like a movie or not. But once in a while, something that didn't strike us in the preview can really get us upon watching the movie, and vice-versa.

To extend the metaphor, that doesn't mean that we should all start watching Westerns all the time if we really like romantic comedies. I'm just saying that the occasional western might take us by surprise, so we shouldn't necessarily dismiss them right away.

I know there are plenty of things that I won't perform often, but I do want to try them at least once, just to see how things go. But like you said, I'm already having great fun and great responses from the effects I was initially drawn to, so I certainly won't be beating myself into trying to create new favorites.

So far I think this thread is really interesting, because both Big Tiny and Lubor's Lens have been mentioned, but those are 2 of my favorites from the set.

Kevin
Kevin Reylek
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Cripes... this thread started off with thinking the Big Tiny was one of the worst effects? Its one of the most powerful... ever since I learned it... I decided to use up my box of used card decks (I got a lot) and started doing it daily for people I wanted to impress... this KILLS.... it really gets that cool astonishment momemnt - they looked floored with reveal one and then the four sets... the WTF... and then you get to give them the deck to keep (cuz why the heck are you going to keep it)...

My premise is a mystical / pseudoscience / science concept... I'm not going to give aaway my entire plot the basis is that of creation via mystical thoughts versus science and DNA.... and that there is overlap... the deck becomes the symbol of a "creator" with its full DNA sequence.... the top card is shown with dots and dashses to represent DNA coding etc... we disintegrate the code and send it into chaos / evolution / whatever... and what appears random occurrances from the environment maybe seen as resulting in the creation of little versions of the original source.... was it natural selection? Was it divine design? Four beings created in the image of the Source.... let the specs ponder and boggle their noggins.

Humble opinion - the only way to think about "worst" effects on these DVDs is more a relative ranking scale i.e. is the effect 9.5/10 - 10/10.... with 9.5/10 being the "worst"

:)

You name any effect on that Disc and I'll tell you it can be a miracle mindblaster.
"They are lean and athirst!!!!"
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