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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Magic names and the media » » Derren Brown Channel 4, 22:10 2night (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Karswell
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On 2004-04-27 12:04, Niko wrote:
No, on Derren's show, when he puts the king of diamonds down in front of the dekc, you see the king of hearts behind it but it has a sword down by its side liek the black kings do.
anyoen know why?
-Niko


Probably the design of the aforementioned deck. The MP deck has its own designs, the burnt/smoked KD will be from a standard bike. References above to PureEffect/Devils Picturebook.

The chessmasters presumably discount the mirrorchess as DB is playing to his prediction, which proves mostly correct.
If its mirrorchess, how could he fix it so he has the correct number of pieces to be left? Or so they are lead to believe.

Nick.
MagicSquare
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Nick,

[
The chessmasters presumably discount the mirrorchess as DB is playing to his prediction, which proves mostly correct.
]

That's an interesting point --- but, unless there is some *major* distortion of chronology going on in the editing, the players don't even know about the existence of the prediction until all of the games have been played to completion.

If so, they would still have every reason to suspect use of the mirror-chess method during the games --- which brings us back to the central anomaly of how/why they appear not to know about this.


This is surreal --- I'm now confused, not by how Derren performed a complex trick, but by how he managed to get away with such a simple one. That's mentalism for you!
Karswell
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As already a few here have known about this, I would imagine its *extremely* unlikely a room full of grandmasters and ranked chess experts wouldnt know.

They may well have suspected this during the performance, but gave their statements of how baffled and impressed they were after the prediction would have discounted it. Until then a few words to suspend judgement for now could be said to encourage them. All speculation but the effect on the footage alone is, of course, the only important thing.

Nick.
Mark Roberts
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Quote:
On 2004-04-28 14:42, MagicSquare wrote:
Nick,

[
The chessmasters presumably discount the mirrorchess as DB is playing to his prediction, which proves mostly correct.
]

That's an interesting point --- but, unless there is some *major* distortion of chronology going on in the editing, the players don't even know about the existence of the prediction until all of the games have been played to completion.

If so, they would still have every reason to suspect use of the mirror-chess method during the games --- which brings us back to the central anomaly of how/why they appear not to know about this.


This is surreal --- I'm now confused, not by how Derren performed a complex trick, but by how he managed to get away with such a simple one. That's mentalism for you!



Ok, come on, guys!

Do we really need to know HOW Derren is performing his routines?

We need to learn from his success and use his performances to improve upon our own, I agree Smile

But do we need to know the mechanics of his routines?

Answer me this question please. If you knew how it worked ( the prediction, I mean)...who would actually go out and perform the Chess Effect?

Not me, that's for sure!

Let's concentrate on developing our own routines and use Derren's experience ( and others like him) to enhance our performance skills.
nimrod
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Mark,

but this is half of what being a mentalist/magician is all about. it has nothing to do with whether you are going to perform this effect or not, the secret just drives you crazy. you MUST know.
Mark Roberts
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On 2004-04-28 20:31, nimrod wrote:
Mark,

but this is half of what being a mentalist/magician is all about. it has nothing to do with whether you are going to perform this effect or not, the secret just drives you crazy. you MUST know.


I understand what you are saying here, Nimrod. But don't you think it's a bit of wasted energy.

Yes, I'm guilty of wanting to know some of his secrets myself. However, if I were to know how he did a particular routine ( which I do some of the time), I wouldn't go out and perform it unless I'd changed the presentation angle.

Watching Derren (and others like him) allows me to learn the real craft of presentation. I recently saw Derren live and learned so much from his performance. Yes, I learned a lot of tricks, too. But compare that to what I learned about his stagecraft and it would melt into the shadows.

I'm also not convinced that we should be discussing in depth mechanics on the open part of the forum. That's what the Inner Thoughts is for.

Sorry, just my twopence worth Smile
David Numen
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>Mark,

>but this is half of what being a mentalist/magician >is all about. it has nothing to do with whether you >are going to perform this effect or not, the secret >just drives you crazy. you MUST know


And that kind of thinking is one reason why exposure shows - either mentalist or magician geared - hurt so many people. To be successful, either as a magician or a mentalist, the secret is the least part of what you do. Otherwise, you are just a hobbyist. Nothing wrong with being just a hobbyist, I practically am that myself as I am a psychic reader by profession (anyone got a problem with that PM me, don't spoil this thread) and rarely perform (although that may change), but too many hobbyists think all you do is print some business cards with "magician" on and you're all set to go.

Yes, it's lovely to be fooled and even lovelier to work out how you were fooled but loveliest of all is to be inspired by a good performance and create your own presentation. That presentation may or may not use the same methodology you've uncovered but that largely depends on the presentation (which should be considered more important than the method) and that's why so many people (REAL people) think magic sucks. Because more often than not it's some patronising smart alec showing off how clever he is rather than someone being entertaining.

Regards,

David.
Karswell
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Its easy to stray into the methods and I couldn’t say I’m not interested or don’t think its of use, but I take your caution/reminder.

Its not so much the in depth mechanics of the effect were discussing, no-one is mentioning here a method of the prediction for example, but …I can’t help but be interested in how he puts his effects together on a wider, macro scale. And that is of use.

Nick.
Mark Roberts
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Quote:
On 2004-04-29 05:52, Nick Ridge wrote:

Its not so much the in depth mechanics of the effect were discussing, no-one is mentioning here a method of the prediction for example, but …I can’t help but be interested in how he puts his effects together on a wider, macro scale. And that is of use.

Nick.



Now, here we can agree Nick Smile

Watching how someone develops his persona, performance style, delivery style and routine construction is of far much more benefit.

For anyone who hasn't got them, I can highly recommend Pure Effect and Absolute Magic which will improve your performance style no-end.

Although these two books are not really about tricks and methods (although Pure Effect does have a few) they hold pride of place upon my bookshelf.

Again, discussing the routining of a particular item is of benefit because it teaches us how to develop routines of our own and to put them together in a much more entertaining way.
MagicSquare
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Taking up Mark's point,

I think this chess effect is something of a special case...

Remember, Derren openly explained how he did it as part of the show itself (and, for once, he did so with reasonable accuracy!).

In that sense, he clearly decided to make the explanation part of the "greater effect" --- which, in itself, is an intriguing presentational issue.

However, the recent focus of this thread has been about why the chess experts appear not to be aware of a method that we assume they would all know.

So, I think this is slightly different from a first-order "how did he do that?" discussion (which is not something that I would tackle here anyway).

The matter seems to be more about the possible use of tricksy editing and the very particular nature of TV magic. I think this could be a productive vein of discussion here.

Personally, I am rather wary of effects which are amplified in the editing room, but I suppose one could argue that this is the televisual equivalent of utilising subjective "point of view" or whatever.


Mark, as a matter of courtesy, I feel I should probably address your direct question :
[
Answer me this question please. If you knew how it worked ( the prediction, I mean)...who would actually go out and perform the Chess Effect?
]
No, I wouldn't. However, I was not discussing the prediction element, only the self-exposed mirror chess section.

I know it is an arguable point, but I feel that I am essentially speculating about presentational subtleties, rather than direct matters of method.

e.g. How (and, perhaps, why Smile) do you go about performing an effect to a group of people who already know the method?
Pekka
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When people are saying that the Russia Roulette was not a good thing for Derren Brown and he needed to change his approach for this new series, have you ever thought it could be other way round?

How long could have he done the 'Jedi' type baffling mindreading? How many series, how interesting, and how short? Remember, average viewer has a relatively short attention span, there is a limited amount of effects that are completely baffling but not repetious (sp?), and if effects are too similar they are not interesting.

Now, Mr. Brown can openly do magic tricks also. I believe one of the best tricks I have seen on TV was 'Smoke' and why? Because we saw the dumping of the cigarette. It's relaxing, he doesn't mind, we saw a glimpse. But how the hell did he know that card.

It is funny, it is baffling, but it is not as serious.
I truly believe that this will start a new era which will take him to right there on top of the massmagic world. U.S.A, be ready. The gentleman from England is coming.
Dario_Bauer
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Just because he told you how to do it doesn't mean that is how it was done.....


I think we should be sticking to discussing the presentation and effect's, not the methods.
"War is God's way of teaching Americans geography"
Bill Hallahan
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Quote:
However, the recent focus of this thread has been about why the chess experts appear not to be aware of a method that we assume they would all know.

I’m something of a chess fanatic, although I’m not very good at it. (Sad, huh!).

Many players know this technique, although I have no idea what the percentage is. I read about it in a chess book myself. It was either in “How to Cheat at Chess”, by William Hartson, a very funny book to a chess player, or it was in one of the non-serious chess books written by chess grandmaster Andy Soltis. (Soltis has written over a hundred chess books!) I think it was in the former book though.

The method there only involved three players, two players who were much stronger chess players than the “performer”, but the method obviously extends through chaining to more than two strong players.

Frankly, the method seems obvious to me, which is probably why Derren Brown was willing to reveal it. Of course, since I read about it before ever thinking about it, perhaps it’s not as obvious as I imagine.
Humans make life so interesting. Do you know that in a universe so full of wonders, they have managed to create boredom. Quite astonishing.
- The character of ‘Death’ in the movie "Hogswatch"
kuffs
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I can't find any info on “How to Cheat at Chess”, by William Hartson can you help me a bit, please Smile

Thank you in advance for your time

Kuffs
Mark Roberts
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Quote:
On 2004-04-29 08:23, MagicSquare wrote:
Taking up Mark's point,
e.g. How (and, perhaps, why Smile) do you go about performing an effect to a group of people who already know the method?



Actually, I have done this often to other magicians Smile

I've taken a trick that is most commonly achieved by using a basic method. I've then performed the trick but changed the method and watched them scratch their heads.

It's great fun Smile

I think that here, as has already been discussed, Derren knew that the method was widely known. However, that wasn't really the effect he was after. That was just the decoy. The real effect came when he predicted the amount of pieces left by each player. Clever, clever thinking!

As I've said before, you've just gotta love the guy!
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