There have been many versions of the Triumph effect over the years (here’s another we reviewed recently), and perhaps the most unexpected thing about the Unexpected Triumph is that it has (probably) never been published before – since it uses well known gaffs and moves to achieve it’s effect. But let’s get into some detail.
The effect is the classic triumph effect – spectator picks a card, which is returned to the deck; the deck is shuffled part face up and part face down; in an instant all the cards right themselves with the exception of the chosen one. There is an added kicker in this version in that all the cards (apart from the selected one) change colour at the end.
What do you get?
You get the necessary gaff cards and a link to download the short – less than 7 minutes! – instructional video. You need to supply a regular deck of cards to make up the whole effect. On the plus side, it does come in a nice little black box…
The use of gaff cards makes the final stages of this very clean. The mix looks extremely fair and can be handled very openly, the righting of the cards is instantaneous and the colour change reveal is also very open. (By the way, this is an effect which will work best at a table, not in the hands, in order to get the visually appealing spreading of the cards.)
The ad-copy is a trifle misleading. A couple of sleights are needed. The first – a force – is not even explained – it simply says use your favourite (face up!) force. Not a deal breaker for most magicians, but certainly an omission.
The second, a ‘half pass’, is at least shown on the video, and there is oodles of cover with no heat on the move. However, it does make the ad-copy a bit dishonest. Reset will take a while – so I don’t think you’d be doing this lots of times in an evening. And, of course, the deck can’t be used for anything else.
The teaching itself is fairly basic. It is all performed by a magician wearing gloves, who’s face is never seen (hence Magician Anonymous) and there are no verbal instructions, just a few subtitles to follow. This isn’t a massive problem since the routine is very easy to do, but it wouldn’t have taken the creator much more effort to improve this.
Is it an unexpected triumph?
Although my instant reaction was a bit negative, it has grown on me a bit. If you can get over the couple of ‘moves’ then I do think it is a clear and strong routine. I don’t think it will fool many magicians, but that’s not what performing magic is about! If you don’t have the skill/time to learn a traditional triumph routine using a regular deck, then this is certainly worth a look. With the extra colour change at the end it makes it an impactful routine.
Available direct from Merchant of Magic for £28.99 (at time of writing).
Review copy kindly provided by Murphys Magic to whom dealer enquiries should be directed.