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The Grail - Mike Rose

PostPosted: Oct 18th, '05, 16:08
by katrielalex

They Say
A single red-backed prediction card is placed face-down in full view of the audience. The spectator names any number between 1 and 52 (e.g.17). The performer hands him a blue backed deck and asks him to have a look through it to confirm that it is simply a regular deck of cards - the spectator confirms that it is. He is then instructed to deal down to the seventeenth card and place it next to the prediction. Without any moves or switches, the performer turns over both the selection and the prediction - they match!

No sleight-of-hand? No equivoque? No switches? No extra props? No problem!

Mike Rose's brilliant approach to the 'card at any number' plot satisfies the need for a worker's solution to this commercial effect. This is so clean and direct that it will go straight into your act!

About £20, I bought it here (thanks ;)) for £7 which was definitely a bargain.

(1 = an aardvark could do it, 2 = a smart aardvark could do it, 3 = only the best aardvarks could do it, 4 = no aardvarks could ever do it, 5 = not even the God of the aardvarks could do it)

1.5, and that's pushing it. There's a little (very little) memory work, which is intuitive. The one "move" is so easy an aardvark could do it ;). In fact, I don't think you could call it a move. I'm sure y'all have all done it just by accident many times.

This is great. Really, great! The effect is just as it is described. It really is a free choice, any number between 1 and 52 can be named. The prediction is not switched, the same card is used. There is only one little problem - it does use a gaff. If you have a switching device, the problem is solved, but without that the effect is not examinable at the end.

Now that that criticism is gotten over, are there any other problems? Nope. Not one thing that I can complain about. This effect is just so clean and direct, I something :). No, really, if you don't buy this you're an aardvark and you don't know what you're missing.

The perfect testimonial to the brilliance of THE GRAIL is that it fooled my brother completely, and that's hard to do seeing as he has become so learned in the magical ways (erm...) that I barely show him anything - it's not worth it.

10 out of 10 - easy!

PostPosted: Oct 18th, '05, 18:12
by ace of kev
Thanks for that review, but is it always the same card, or can you do it again to a different person while the other person is still there?

The Grail

PostPosted: Oct 18th, '05, 20:57
by roman59
Glad you like The Grail!

Mike Rose is a very good friend of mine & he will be at The Ipswich Magical Convention this sunday.

If you are going tell hime that you like his baby I am sure he will appreciate it.


PostPosted: Oct 18th, '05, 21:12
by Scudge
cheers for that

PostPosted: Oct 18th, '05, 21:14
by katrielalex
ace of kev wrote:Thanks fot that review, but is it always the same card, or can you do it again to a different person while the other person is still there?

Ah..forgot to mention.

It is not repeatable (well, you could repeat it, I guess, but there's a big risk).


PostPosted: Oct 18th, '05, 22:53
by ace of kev
Ok, thanks for that. I was just curious, it hasn't put me off the trick or anything


PostPosted: Jan 11th, '06, 14:46
by The Last Deck on the Left
I've had this a while now, and thought I'd revisit the review, in case anything else has been added. I performed this lots when it was new, but have only just ‘found’ it again this Christmas at the back of my magic drawer (all the CUPS Clutter had been obscuring it!). Anyway, with reference to an earlier message, this is repeatable – not to exactly the same audience, but you don't need to worry about having people present from your first performance if you got hold of the extra gimmicks. Those who have this will know what I mean.

Anyway, I just really wanted to flag this effect up again. It really does play extremely cleanly and I’ll never forget the look on my brother’s face this Christmas when the two cards matched (this just happened to be a lucky ‘perfect no-move’ situation - he did all the handling and counting of the deck that he chose, and still the cards matched EXACTLY! – so I got an even bigger puzzled / astonished reaction with no room for solutions such as me handling the deck in a ‘funny way’!).

PostPosted: Jan 11th, '06, 16:27
by katrielalex
Actually, just to put a damper on things, I thought I'd just say that I haven't used this nearly as much as I thought I would when I first got it. The problem is, if I can say this, that although the setup is quite simple, it also has to be very exact or the trick will fail spectatularly - there's no room for error. That means that once it's set up it's very hard to use the deck for any other effects, as if you do there is a big risk of messing it up. I had a deck lying around for a couple of weeks all ready to go, but I only did it once or twice.

However, that isn't to say that the effect or method isn't good - they are. It's just that I found that it was too much trouble always to have a deck set up and ready for it.

So this isn't perfect for walking around or table hopping (not that I have any experience, naturally :)) - it might be better to carry it around in a separate deck and have it as a 'just in case' thing.


PostPosted: Jan 11th, '06, 17:59
by The Last Deck on the Left

You are totally right - and that is why it got pushed to the back of my drawer. I have a Red and Blue deck bounded by an elastic band - which are my Grail Decks - ready to go at a moments notice. However.... that moment never really arrives, as it is always in my drawer!

Saying that - the reaction I got at Christmas was SO good, I must try and start using it more!


PostPosted: Jan 11th, '06, 18:22
by katrielalex
I actually think that it would be possible to do an effect that was not quite as clean but almost as good, with no gimmicks.

e.g. bottom deal, side steal...


PostPosted: Jan 23rd, '06, 23:25
by Nikodemus
I'm not sure if the review does justice to this trick.
The effect as described could be reproduced with a S***gali deck, since the 'prediction' is in essence a force [This is not any card at any number].
The crucial point is how thoroughly the spectator is allowed to examine the deck to see that all the cards are different. (EG. With the S***gali deck they could only riffle them.)
From your happy reviews I am pretty sure this must be more examinable than a S***gali approach - I only used that as an example.

Could someone who owns this please provide a bit more info on just how 'regular' the deck is (or at least how regular the spec sees it as)?


PostPosted: Jan 24th, '06, 09:35
by katrielalex
The deck is 99.999% examinable. I'd be perfectly happy for spectators to check it out, count the cards, etc - the only time you have to be careful is if they want to undergo a full external inqui- I mean, a more thorough check. In other words, there's one little thing about it that's not quite normal but it's very hard to spot unless you're really looking for it.

The deck can be happily ribbon spread face up and so on, you could even spread it face up to count (;)). Once you've done that, you're clean with the counting.

This is hard!


the Grail and spectators explanations

PostPosted: Jan 24th, '06, 09:55
by The Last Deck on the Left
When I count down to the spectators card I always place them face up on the table. That way the spectators can see that every card is different. And I count very slowly and deliberately to make sure they know I am not performing any ‘funny moves’. I place their selection to one side and carry on counting for a short while and say "look if you'd have said number 'spec's number (x) +1' then your card would have been the ..., if you'd have said 'x+2' then it would have been the ... , x+3 the ... and so on. I then often spread out all of the cards that have been discarded and dealt face up onto the table, saying "look, if you'd have given me any of these positions you'd have ended up with a completely different random card.”

Also, depending on the spectator and my judgement of their ability to count - I often get them to do the counting of the cards - I just make sure I watch them like a hawk. That way they KNOW you didn't perform a sudden bottom deal or something fishy.
(Sometimes this effect works so well that you don’t even need to touch the second deck of cards – after you have made your selection from your deck, they call out a number, and then you can let them pick up their deck, open it, and deal off cards, face up, to their chosen position – and it WORKS!)

Actually, writing “that way they KNOW you didn't perform a sudden bottom deal or something fishy” gives me a whole idea for a new thread - possibly already done – but discussing lay-peoples ideas of what card magicians are up to. For example I've had things quoted to me like "I guess if you had short sleeves on, you wouldn't have been able to do that, right?" and "I bet you know how to deal off the bottom". One spectator thought that the only possible explanation for one effect was the use of a clever carbon-copy item, that copied his signature and stamped it onto another duplicate card! :D Have you noticed how spec's explanations are often FAR more complicated than the real working!

Maybe I’ll start a new post sometime… :D

Re: the Grail and spectators explanations

PostPosted: Jan 24th, '06, 11:08
by katrielalex
The Last Deck on the Left wrote:One spectator thought that the only possible explanation for one effect was the use of a clever carbon-copy item, that copied his signature and stamped it onto another duplicate card!

I really wish I had one of them!


PostPosted: Jan 24th, '06, 12:36
by Nikodemus
After my last post, I had a look around on some other forums & got answers to some of those questions. [I've also (i think) worked out the basic idea of the method & it sounds good.]
So correct me if I am wrong, but it sounds like...
1. Each of the cards in the deck is a totally normal ungaffed card (no R&S, L&S, funny printing etc).
2. There is a subtle setup of the deck - but something the spectator is highly unlikely to spot. Especially if you reveal your prediction after they countdown to their card - so that they don't know in advance what they might be looking for.
3. There is another gaff which is very subtle too. (like B'wave & Twisted Sisters).
The setup & the gaff could both be dispensed with if one were to go with 4 multiple outs for the prediction!!! This would make the trick 100% examinable.
Last-Deck-On-Left, I am really surprised you don't let the spec always count the cards - that is one of the strongest points of the presentation.

Ok, so now I have 2 more questions:
A. How simple or complicated is the maths you need to do? Do you do it mentally or would it help to have a crib sheet?
B. How easy/hard is the 'move' that is needed? Do the instructions go into a lot of detail on this point?