A wonderful asymmetrical transposition!
Transpositions can be one of the most powerful visual effects in magic, and this asymmetrical transposition comes from Scott Robinson, described by some as an "underground legend" in magic. This effect was originally published in Trapdoor magazine, and several magicians have done different versions of it; this is Scott's take (the name is also his), which he has been refining and performing for over 25 years.
?You begin by introducing the "five card trick", showing the four queens, and allowing the spectator to select a random card as the fifth card, which is added to the packet. Now the magic begins: first the packet is then shown one card at a time, and the spectator's card has vanished - all that remains are the four queens. Then there's another moment of magic: you reach into your pocket and pull out the four queens one at a time! And what about the packet of queens in your hand? That's revealed for the final twist: it has turned into the spectator's selection!
What you get for around $10 is an instant digital download of the video which teaches the effect. The video is just under 8 minutes long in total, and begins with a performance with a spectator, followed by just over 6 minutes of explanation. The file is a 175 MB download, and the quality is excellent, with good sound and visuals all round, as well as several camera angles, including close-ups of the cards.
?Scott does a good job of explaining everything. Even though it's not a long video, he doesn't waste time, and covers all the essentials cleanly and smoothly; I wasn't left with any questions by the time the explanation was done. I also appreciated the fact that he gives attention to all the small details that really help make this trick work, including how to display the cards at critical points, and careful wording of the patter. A real strength of the video is that it not only explains the method, but also all the details of the presentation.
Skill with some basic sleights is assumed and required, such as false counts, p**ming, and some steals and other moves. So this trick will be beyond the beginner, even though Scott does briefly explain these moves. There are also quite a number of small nuances about the handling to remember, with some important subtleties and convincers that help maintain and sell the illusion.
This effect can't be formed entirely impromptu, because a small amount of preparation is required, but no gaffs are required - it's all sleight of hand. Since the effect involves a card to pocket, you'll also need the appropriate attire. But it is a powerful effect with some very surprising moments, and as the routine progresses there are three moments of real magic, the final one being the strongest when the four queens are shown to have turned into the spectator's chosen card.
?As far as asymmetrical transpositions go, this is a very fun and strong routine, that has had the benefit of Scott's careful refinement with the experience of more than two decades of performance. So it's something tried and proven in the real world. As such it's a real worker, and is something that once learned and mastered can be used over and over, for example if working tables in a restaurant setting.
For the intermediate magician, The Queen Thing is well worth the effort to learn, given the impact it has, and the striking impression that an asymmetrical transposition can create. Well done Scott Robertson!
- BoardGameGeek reviewer EndersGame