The Butterfly Effect is a slightly difficult effect to explain, but I’ll have a go. A deck is shuffled and then the spectator deals through the deck making various choices on the way. In spite of an incredibly fair procedure you are able to show that you have predicted the result in advance.

I’ll be honest – this fooled me the first time I saw this. Peter bills it as a magician fooler and in this instance it certainly did. The principle involved apparently goes back to the 1940s, but I’ve not seen in before, and Peter brings to it an interesting presentation device, based on the Butterfly Effect principle.

peter nardi - butterfly effect reviewThere have been some discussions about originality – since it is apparently similar to some other published effects. I have not seen the other effects myself, so am going to trust Peter on this one and try to avoid wading into unnecessary controversy.

Some set-up is involved, but the setup gives you what is, in effect, an incredibly fair looking force. It is essentially self-working, though the ability to give a false shuffle or cut makes it even stronger (a false shuffle is very briefly explained on the DVD – but if you want to go into more detail on these techniques we highly recommend the False Shuffles and Cuts Project).

What’s in the box?

The DVD runs to 32 minutes and clearly explains not only the basic effect but some variations. A nice parlour version is taught and the DVD contains the necessary artwork for you to print if you would like to use this version. There are also some presentational variations for the close up performer.

Included with the DVD are a couple of cards which help you to perform the original version and a small business card with an alternative (more deceptive) setup which makes the effect even more fooling.

I really like this. As Peter says, the challenge will be to make the presentation interesting and to provide a proper rationale for what could be a reasonably lengthly dealing procedure. He does give a number of ideas of ways to reduce the procedure and also a number of alternative presentations. I think most readers of this site would have no problems coming up with these things.

Re-set is not quite instant, but nor is it very arduous. You could probably get away with doing it in front of spectators, though I would probably see this more as a one off effect. I’m not convinced I would ever use the ‘gaff’ cards provided for the revelation – though I really like the parlour options or the variation he suggests with ‘aged’ cards.

It’s a great little release – with the right presentation you will have both a fooling and an entertaining set piece.

The Butterfly Effect is available from the Merchant of Magic for £22.99 at the time of writing.

Review copy kindly provided by Murphys Magic to whom dealer enquiries should be directed.

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