Trilogy Extreme by Alakazam Magic is one of my favorite gaffed deck tricks. The original Trilogy was created by Brian Caswell and there have been a few versions over the years. I originally used the Trilogy Bikes version (Alakazam 2008) until someone behind the counter at Tannen’s told me how to do the “Extreme” version many years ago and I bought something to help me make that happen. I ditched the clunkier “Bikes” version for the now released “Extreme” version and it really slays your spectator’s. This was a magician fooler when it first came out, until the concept and method spread like wild fire among the magic community.
Basically, with Trilogy Extreme, you show the spectator a single deck of cards that remains in view the entire time (part of the upgrade to make this trick “Extreme”). You fan through the cards to show a randomly shuffled deck and then flip it over to show the back of each card have different numbers on them between 1 and 52. You ask two spectators to think (and not announce) of any number between 1 and 52. So that they do not pick the same card, one silently picks an odd number and the other an even number. Then, a third spectator or one of the original two is told to think of any card. The performer writes down the name of two cards and one number (each on a different business card to hand out) and indicates that the thought of numbers and card will reveal that they match the opposite sides of the written down cards. First, the person holding the business card on which the performer wrote “King of Hearts” reveals their number and writes it down on the same business card. Say it is 14. Then the person holding the card on which the performer wrote “6 of Spades” for the first time reveals their number and writes it on the business card under the 6 of Spades, say it is 45. Finally, the spectator holding the card that has 37 written on it by the perform reveals that they were thinking of the 8 of Diamonds and writes it in the same card.
King of Hearts (performer writes) 14 (spectator writes)
6 of Spades (performer writes) 45 (spectator writes)
37 (performer writes) 8 of Diamonds (spectator writes)
The card with the 14 written on the back is removed as is the one with the 45 written on the back. The spectator sees the performer fan for and search for the cards and confirms that the numbers on the backs are all different. Then the performer flips the deck over and searches for the 8 of Diamonds as she again sees all the cards have different faces. Then, when the cards are flipped over, they match the numbers and cards written on the business cards. So, if that is not clear, the card with the 14 on the back actually matches the prediction and is the King of Hearts. The card with the 45 on the back matches the prediction and is actually the 6 of Spades. And, the 8 of Diamonds is flipped over and it actually has the 37 written on the back. It is impossible to back track and it is mind blowing on the scale of a nuclear explosion.
Trilogy Extreme comes with a 45 minute DVD and a gimmicked red backed Phoenix deck of cards. The teaching and demonstration consists of Nardi and David Loosley sitting on a couch. It contains no live or studio versions of the tricks, but instead has Nardi talking the viewer through the trick. That is a shame and it should have included at least on live or studio performance with real spectators. The DVD seems a bit rushed with several routines that are run through quickly, including a version with envelopes and a chair test version. Nardi clearly explains how to do the one-time set up which takes about 15-20 minutes. Because you will be writing on the back of each card with permanent ink, you need to be careful and make certain you know what to do or you ruin the trick and make performance impossible.
The trick is very easy to perform and takes very little to no practice. With the caveat that one spectator picks on odd card and one picks on even card, one spectator has a total free choice of any card in the deck to choose from and the other seemingly does as well, with one exception. Because of the nature of the gimmicked cards, it is recommended that only the performer handles them. There are no angles to worry about and this can be performed surrounded. The reset is instant, but you cannot repeat the trick to the same audience. As referenced above, this trick has a great way to hand out your business card and because of the nature of the effect, there is a chance that many of the spectators will keep the card as a souvenir and talk about you.
You are urged to register your purchase of Trilogy Extreme on the Alakazam Website for additional handlings. As of the writing of this review, there were a three additional videos. The first was a 14 minute instructional lecture by Nardi in which he explains a coin prediction routine of which bits of a live performance is shown in the promotional video, but interestingly, the live performance is not available on the Alakazam website (or the DVD). This video also explains the one potential sticky situation that could happen when performing Trilogy (a 1 in 26 chance). Nardi gives a satisfactory out if this situation happens. This explanation should have been on the DVD that comes with the product. There is also a 5 minute video of a performance with Nardi doing a performance of the “Extreme Photo Reveal” version to Loosley. Extreme Photo Reveal is great and direct and can be done to one spectator (or three), which helps make the trick move quicker. It uses a reveal with a picture that you text to your spectator’s phone and it is a knock-out punch. There is a third 6 minutes video with Nardi further discussing the Extreme Photo Reveal with a great way to market yourself to spectators that are amazed at your wizardry.
The ad copy states “This has got to be one of the finest card and number routines ever created.” I personally agree. I have no other comments about the ad copy or the promotional video other than it is weird that the promo video shows a coin prediction routine and it is not on the DVD. I also think the coin prediction routine is a bit confusing the way it is edited and in any event would stick with the original version of Trilogy Extreme.
This trick is worth every penny!
Available at your favorite Murphy’s Magic dealer
Product info for Trilogy Extreme (Gimmick and DVD) - DVD
Author: Caswell, Brian & Alakazam UK Publisher: Alakazam UK Average Rating: (1) Retail Price: $40.00 Buy Now
This has got to be one of the finest card and number routines ever created. When Trilogy was released it blew the minds of everyone that witnessed it and because of its success many similar effects hit the market BUT these were just pretenders to the Trilogy throne!
With the way playing card technology has changed the classic effect has been moved to the limit.
Trilogy Extreme has all the impact of the ground-breaking original version BUT now the deck is in play and on the table from the start. This is not Trilogy streamline this is Trilogy proper.
Trilogy is in the act of so many working professionals from stage to close-up, and from mentalists to magicians. Trilogy Extreme will now become the staple in card and number effects.
You name a random card, spectator one names a number. You name a second random card and a second spectator names a different number. Finally, YOU name a number and spectator three names ANY CARD he likes. Get this, you ALWAYS choose first! Bet you can see where this is going and are already thinking how the...!
OK - here goes: You open the card case and remove the deck. You freely show that all 52 cards have different numbers on them. You remove the card spectator number 3 named and place it face up on their hand. You now turn the deck over and remove the cards bearing the numbers spectators one and two named. When you flip over the first two you have an exact match card/numbers! The third card is still face up, remember spectator three had a free choice of ANY card. It couldn't possibly be, could it? The spectator turns it over - it's the exact number you named!!! All three spectators are left holding the exact card/number match that they picked!
How clean is TRILOGY? Well, there are NO sleights or cosy handling of any kind. There are NO forces, NO one-ahead and NO sticky cards.
Comes complete with the high quality Trilogy Extreme deck and instructional DVD and access to additional bonus effects including Peter Nardi's new 3 coin routine!