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The Bound Deck DVD and Gimmick (Blue) Review

Official Review

October 1st, 2015 7:17am
Reviewed by Stuart Philip
The Bound Deck is Juan Luis Rubiales’ adaptation of a Juan Tamariz trick. The performer shows two spectators (and no less than two are needed to perform this trick) a deck of cards with 12 small holes running across the upper edge of the card, just above where the King’s crown is printed. He hands out half the deck to one spectator and the other half to the other. Each spectator is then handed a small spiral and they spin them into their own pile of cards as if it is a spiral notebook. When that is done, the performer asks one of the spectators to say “stop” as the performer runs through the spiral and one spectator thereby picks a card. The deck is closed again and tabled, a necessary element to perform this trick. Each spectator then flips the cards over one at a time through the spiral to see that none of them match with their mates, except the chosen card. Then, a magical gesture, and the cards are flipped again, one at a time from each pile and all the cards that previously did not match with their mate have apparently found their mates.

With this trick you get a deck of Bicycle cards that are punched with the row of holes, two spirals and a DVD. The holes are precision punched and the spirals slide easily onto the cards. The DVD leaves much to be desired and that will be discussed below.

Now for the good: the moment of magic is stunning and baffling to lay people. If you want a routine that takes a few minutes, but can keep the audience’s attentino, this has some real potential. In fact, the promotional video is the studio performance of the trick, demonstrated by Rubiales, which is over 8 minutes long. Reactions yielded comments like “amazing”, “how did you do that” and “I just don’t get it!”

Now, the not so good. First off, the trick is demonstrated and taught by Rubiales in English. His English is not that great. You do understand what he is saying and he is a likeable character, but I think that his presentation and patter were slightly compromised due to the fact that English is not his first language. You can get a sense of his fluency in the promotional video, but where the language barrier really becomes an issue is in the explanatory track. I found the explanation to be difficult to understand, disjointed and not well organized. I had to watch the explanation more than once and was able to better understand how to do the trick by watching the studio performance after knowing the method. Additionally, the instruction suggests that you do something that I think gives the spectators two distinct chances to see something that they should not see. An alternative to that suggested handling is also suggested, which I think eliminates risk of something being seen that is a bit off. The camera angles on the explanation track are not great and the explanation does not give you the required set-up in the event that the cards fall and get out of ready order. You can figure it out yourself, but it can be a bit tedious. Also in the beginning of the trick there is the need for audience management so that each spectator does not look at the other’s deck, which may reveal something the performer would not want to be seen. This is not addressed in the DVD.

Prior to the cards being bound by the spirals, they cannot be shuffled by the spectators. The trick cannot be repeated without raising some major questions with the spectators.

The ad copy is a bit misleading in a way that many tricks are commonly marketed. It states what the spectator perceives and not what is in fact reality only known to the performer. It does not qualify the description. For example, the ad copy states “Now for a miracle finale. Because now when the cards are leafed through, every single pair matches.” when it should state that “apparently” every single pair matches. The spectator will believe that do be the case, but the claim is just not accurate. Also, I am a bit tired of the oft repeated and inapplicable marketing claim “So clever you will baffle yourself!” which made its way into this trick’s advertising claims. If the DVD presentation was better and the ad-copy was more accurate, this trick would have scored higher.

Overall, this is a very strong and impressive trick with a twist that makes this a bit different from your other great card tricks.

Available at your favorite Murphy’s Magic dealer

Product info for The Bound Deck DVD and Gimmick (Blue)

Author: Rubiales, Juan Luis
Publisher: Essential Magic Collection
Average Rating:  (1)
Retail Price: $45.00
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Manufacturer's Description:


An incredible coincidence effect performed under impossible conditions. You divide a deck in two and bind each portion so that it becomes a book of cards. The spectator chooses a card from one book. Dealing through the books simultaneously the chosen card falls at the exact same position as its mate. No other cards match. Now for a miracle finale. Because now when the cards are leafed through, every single pair matches. This despite the fact that the cards are still bound together. So clever you will baffle yourself!

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