Strange Travellers by Paul Harris

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Postby Sublime Divine » Jul 7th, '07, 18:33



I did this trick along with a few others on my brother and his wife last night and this was the trick that got the best reaction (even better than Masudas WOW!) there were a few other people watching and i didn't want them all to be thinking of a different card so i got my brother to think of a card and then write it on a piece of paper and show it to everybody else so they all knew what he had picked, like i said it went down VERY well!

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Postby Rob » Jul 10th, '07, 09:19

Well, mine arrived with neck-snapping speed yesterday, and I can quite happily concur with the majority of postings here that this effect is indeed an unrecognised classic. I'd possibly go as far as to say it's the strongest 'packet trick' I've ever seen (I refer to it as a packet trick, as that's essentially how it's supplied; I'll be using this as the full-deck variant, though).

I know there have been the occasional mumblings about a certain gaffed card which is included in the set, and comments about it being particularly fake-looking.

Personally, I've already run through the effect several times with my wife, kids and the neighbours...and it's flown by all of them; sure, if you look at it for long enough, you'll be left with the feeling that it kinda' sticks out like a sore thumb - but this obviously isn't the case from a spec's point-of-view (which is the most important consideration). I suppose, if you were really uncomfortable with it, you could alter it, by adding a 'real one' (though it'd need to be split, to not give the card an even more unnatural look) - if you have the effect, you'll know what I'm waffling on about here :wink:

The book that accompanies ST is possibly the most comprehensive 'manual' I've ever seen with any effect (though I'd rather it didn't have that Blaine person on the cover...or the subtle adverts for his 'Split Spades' decks :roll: ) - it's MASSIVE!

Very well-written, the manual covers every angle and wrinkle, though - yes - because there are several handling variations, it does bounce backwards and forwards a little.

In terms of value-for-money, I'm pretty surprised that this was so cheap (I paid £13.00 from magicnevin.com), and I think the actual effect is almost certainly worth quite a bit more than that.

The reactions I've had from this so far have been worth their weight in gold (especially when I consider how cynical and jaded my wife and kids are, when it comes to my 'mad obsession' :twisted: ); the fact that the chosen card suddenly appears in the pack held by the spec is what really gives this it's impact.

I've not yet played around with having the spec pocket their cards, before the vanish, but I'm sure that'll add to it even more.

To sum-up: This beauty is a closer, and a mighty strong one at that - I've no reservations whatsoever about awarding this 10/10 :D

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Postby feifei » Jul 13th, '07, 06:01

I got this from Davenport in London. I say I am very impressed to how this is done. Though for some sharp eye audience they may be able to see it :P, so lighting condition may help. But, people have performed it thousands of time without problem anyway :P

Thumbs up :)

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Strange Travellers

Postby Al Doty » Aug 3rd, '07, 08:30

After reading all the posts I have come to the conclusion that this is just another version of the Princess Card trick. New presentation, a new handling and guess what? I'ts probably a great trick but Harris has done better. Sorry for the negative response.
Al

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Re: Strange Travellers

Postby seige » Aug 3rd, '07, 08:33

Al Doty wrote:After reading all the posts I have come to the conclusion that this is just another version of the Princess Card trick. New presentation, a new handling and guess what? I'ts probably a great trick but Harris has done better. Sorry for the negative response.
Al


That's the beauty of people jumping to conclusions. They are so often wrong.

The workings behind this are very nice, very clever, and you get everything supplied needed to create this little miracle.

I'd say, Al, that you stick with the Princess Card Trick, if that's you're opinion. I am surprised that someone of your self-reputed stature in the magic community would make such a comment.

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Strange Travellers

Postby Al Doty » Aug 4th, '07, 01:23

My apologies to all if I offended you. It was not my intention to step on anyones toes. In the late 1980s a version of this was done with 8 cards, spectator selects one mentally, cards are turned facedown and shuffled. One card was removed and placed in jacket pocket. Spectator is asked to name the selected card. Cards are spread to show it has vanished and the card is removed from the pocket to show it is the selected card.

Sorry that you feel I'm self reputed. I am a good guy if you get to know me.
Al

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Princess Card Trick

Postby Al Doty » Aug 5th, '07, 09:20

I know that you did not understand what I meant and you thought I was talking about the method when actually I was refering to premise. The premise of the P.C.T. is the spectator looks at a group of cards and mentally selects one, the card then vanishes from the packet. This the same premise for Strange Travellers. There is a transposition of the card either physical or magical and a revelation. The gaff cards used and I can think of at least three different types that can be used, all need to be turned in some fashion to accomplish the vanish. So the method is still basically the same. It really doesn't matter if you add to or take away from a trick, if you don't change the premise, then its still the same effect. Paul is a genius but he took an old effect and tried to pump it up and make it a real mystery and my disappointment showed in my comment. You might look at the Encyclopedia of Card Magic by Jean Hugard, page339 for a non gaff routine by Hardin. Also, if you can get your hands on the ANEWWORLD deck by Michael Weber and Dean Dill you will find some interesting gaff cards that can be used in this effect and else where. If you still feel the same way now and I haven't change how you feel then feel free to drop kick me into your Sin Bin. I'm 63 years old and hve been in magic for over 32 years and have seen alot of magic and made alot of friends over the years and many of them were well known and many were regular people like me. I am the lucky one for knowing them.



Al

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Postby bananafish » Aug 5th, '07, 10:10

Al, for the record I tend to agree with you that there is huge number of effects based on the PCT.

I personally used to perform one particular vartiation a lot until some bright spark decided it was a fun thing to be able to do on the web and may people copied suit. Unfortainately anyone that saw it could (and more often than not would) back track and work out what happened.

That was the day I put all my pct variations away in a drawer until the principle became less known again.

Then came along Strange Travellers. It ws obviious it was based on the PCT principle just reading the blurb so for a long time I didn't bother, but now I have (and for that CUPS has to be blamed) I have to say that I am once again performing a PCT principled trick.

What makes ST different from the rest - well everything really. IMO I feel the whole PCT principle is that much more disgiused and as most of the handling is in the hands of the spectator it just seems to be more innocent.

It is a powerful effect that I use. Is it the best PCT in the world? Well that can't be answered by any one person as it is so subjective but it is the only one I use at the moment.

Out of interest I also have the NewWorld deck from Dill/Webber and although that is an excellent item, I personally find the handling a little more cumbersome than ST. It is hourse for courses though.

Simon

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Postby seige » Aug 5th, '07, 10:24

bananafish wrote:Al, for the record I tend to agree with you that there is huge number of effects based on the PCT.


Based on, yes. Version of, no.

Al's comment was:

"This is another version of the PCT"... which it is not. If you examine the earliest version, by Hardin, then we see that yes perhaps the basic idea is the same, but not the principle.

I would actually state that it's OBVIOUS to any magician that Strange Travellers has a 'Princess Card Trick Theme".

However... what makes this stand head and shoulders above previous incarnations (Even Jenning's and Bean's miracle—Limited Edition—which has MUCH MORE in common with ST) is the fact that as Bananafish states, this is mainly happening in the spectators' own hands, with the cards being used being in play the whole time.

Now, that in itself totally disjoints this from a simple Princess Card Trick.

Sorry to have jumped on you Al, but I was quite shocked that a man of your calibre would have made such a comment... as there's a lot more credit due for this particular effect.

My apologies, sincerely.

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Postby Al Doty » Aug 5th, '07, 18:33

When I next go to the magic shop (this week) I'll see if they have ST and give it a close look. Paul is a brilliant thinker and my comment was not meant as an attack on him. Over the years he has created many great effects and this made me feel like it wasn't up to his best work. I appreciate your comments and am glad you didn't drop kick me in the Sin Bin and we still have the opportunity to be friends.
Al

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Postby Al Doty » Aug 10th, '07, 10:04

Seige
First let me say, that no apology needed on your part. I came off badly and deserved the jumping on.
Next, I visited the local magic shop and gave Strange Travelers a closer look. It was everything I thought it was except the gimmick. It was a nice surprise. I had the house magician perform it and spotted the gimmick straight away. Its a good idea but its too flat, so I made it so that it looked more real. I will perform it for the real critic, my wife and see how she likes it. I also have a deck that uses the same principle called Diminishing Returns but it is harder to make real looking. What matters here is that you like it and are having fun with it, I should not have been so over the top about it.
Best Regards
Al

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Postby Al Doty » Aug 14th, '07, 03:37

This will be my final comment on this effect. I have performed it and have polled some friends that do it and this is what I have found. It is a WOW when you get away with it and not so good when you get caught out. There are people who watch every move you make, want you count the cards one at a time into their hands and whill attempt to memorize every card. These people exist just to give you a hard time. And you can't rule out operator error because it can happen. Masklyne and Devants OUR MAGIC on the rules of magic, rule eight talks about an avoidable deffect cannot be justified. Unfortunately the part that fails is not the gimmick added to the effect. That part I like. Sometimes we just fall in love with an idea and there isn't any way to make it 100% foolproof. If it is the idea of in the hands magic that is appealing then try Jon Allens Double Back. It just like doing Daley Aces except the transference of the two cards happens openly in front of them, They believe they are holding two 9s and you show them the two Queens front and back. They are placed face to face and squared up and in a split second you spread them to show you now have the 9s and they are holding the queens. Thats is a WOW everytime. Thanks for putting up with feelings and opinions. This should not stop you from performing the effect for that is not my intention, but you may discover a way to make it 100%.
Sincere Regards
Al

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Postby Rob » Aug 14th, '07, 08:41

Al Doty wrote:This will be my final comment on this effect. I have performed it and have polled some friends that do it and this is what I have found. It is a WOW when you get away with it and not so good when you get caught out. There are people who watch every move you make, want you count the cards one at a time into their hands and whill attempt to memorize every card. These people exist just to give you a hard time. And you can't rule out operator error because it can happen.


Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this Al - you make some interesting points.

I have to say, though, that - out of at least 30 performances of this so far - I have yet to experience being 'caught out' (perhaps I'm just too perfect? :wink: ).

Sure, irrespective of whatever effect you're performing, you will always come across the odd spec who burns everything totally. In this case, as always, it's up to us to use the relevant audience management techniques to control how the spec perceives our miracles - it has nothing whatsoever to do with the effect being performed.

In terms of the possibility of operator error that you mention; again, this exists with every effect, no matter how basic the handling, and I fail to see that Strange Travellers is any more prone to mishandling than a thousand or so other effects!

In short, Al, I can't help but feel that you've jumped on this particular effect (for whatever reason) with the sole intent of 'tearing it down'.

Being someone who performs this quite regularly, on the other hand, I have nothing but praise for the effect (notwithstanding the few small negatives I mentioned previously); it's simple, easy for the audience to follow, and delivers a huge wallop of amazement, each and every time.

I stand by my previous comments - this is one of the very strongest effects that I own :D

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Postby Al Doty » Aug 14th, '07, 17:10

I wanted to be true to my word about being my final comment on this but I must just say this. Eugene Burger said that "He dos not pick the tricks, but lets the tricks pick him." I am the same way and this is not my kind of trick. I have apologised for being over top in my first post on this and I applaud all of you for your success and happiness with it. I have ridden motorcycles for almost 15 years and never had an accident. Two years ago a man made a illeagal left turn in front of me and I struck the front of his car at 40 miles an hour. The impact thru me about 35 feet over the hood of his car. I nearly died. As it is I have a metal plate in my pelvec bone and four plates in my right arm. I cannot turn my right hand palm up. So why am I telling you all this? Many of my peers thought I would not be able to do the things I did before and I push my self to do tricks that are difficult to prove them wrong. I cannot palm coins well but I can do the Ross Bertram steal and do a nice coins thru the table. I have worked hard at getting back to doing the Kelly bottom placement, side glide steal, side glide reversal, Zarrow, I do a good Elmsley even though I cannot fully turn my hand palm up. I might be limited to less magic than before but I want to keep the difficulty level high on what I can accomplish. It really is about me and there are things I like about ST. Its nothing personal about anyone elses choice of effects, its that I feel that I must keep doing the more difficult magic. Believe me, I have had other magicians ask me why am I trying to do difficult tricks when there are easier things to do and the reason has nothing to do with anyone elses choice. I'm driven to doing harder effects. I'm an old school magician and maybe thats not good but thats what I am. If you think I am just trying to tear down the trick, I am not. I am in awe of you guys for your passion, and ability. I am not where you are yet.
Sincere Regards
Al

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Postby I.D » Aug 15th, '07, 16:43

I have been thinking of getting this.

Is there a significant difference between this and Jay Sankey's Astral Projection?

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