Out Of This (Joker) World
by Mike Rogers
This handling of Out Of This World was shown to me by Harry Reed and Ed Turner (Arlane) in Philadelphia back in 1959. Both had collected several jokers as a result of removing them from new decks. What follows can be used for Out Of This World using red and black cards as in the standard version; however, it looks real neat using the jokers and separating the red backs from the blue backs.
I take no credit for this excellent routine. Harry Reed is no longer living and I’ve lost touch entirely with Ed Turner. My effort here is to simply record their handling of what has become a classic in card magic.
The routine is unique and quite different from the Paul Curry handling, though the end result is the same. The spectator mentally separates the blue backs from the red backs.
Start with a deck of cards having nothing but jokers, 26 with red backs and 26 with blue backs. Have a spectator shuffle the pack. After the shuffle, and from this point on, the deck is always handled face up with the jokers showing. Fan the deck in your hands with the jokers facing the viewers and the backs facing you. Remove one card of each color and place, back side up, on the table as “Leaders.”
Now, remove cards one at a time and have the spectator tell you whether to place it on the blue leader, or the red leader. Caution him not to tell you until you have actually removed the card from the fan. Though it appears you are randomly removing cards you actually take cards of only one color, let’s say red backed. You place the cards, face up, (joker side) on the leader of his choice for each card. The cards are placed in a ribbon spread as in the standard Curry version.
Continue this process until you have placed about twenty cards on the table. In other words don’t remove all the red backs, just most of them. Close the fan and hand the deck to the spectator asking him to again shuffle. With a gesture of your hands imply that you want him to overhand shuffle; however, it doesn’t matter how he shuffles. It’s just that an overhand shuffle doesn’t mix the cards quite as much. Good management is necessary if he does a riffle shuffle, for you want him to handle the cards face up. After he has shuffled just once, take the pack back. The point being, we don’t want him to mix them anymore than necessary.
Casually show him the backs so he can see the cards are “well” mixed. Do this quickly as you don’t want him to notice that most of the cards have blue backs. Just a quick glance will do the job. As long as he sees a few red backs mixed with blue back s everything looks copasetic.
Again fan the cards with the backs towards you. Now, you have to do a bit of adjusting to place most, but not all, of the blue backs to the left side of the fan (in other words, they will be the top cards when the fan is closed). This adjustment is not difficult as there are very few red backs remaining in the deck. You make the adjustment as you remove two new “leader” cards. Place these new leaders under the wrong colors just as in the standard Out Of This World handling. If you need to shift more than one or two cards in the fan to establish a block of blue backs to the left just act as if you want a certain card for a leader, and then change your mind inserting it back in the fan, then removing another. This adjustment takes but a few seconds and it looks quite natural.
Once you have a large block of blue backs to the left, close the fan and hand the talon to the spectator, jokers up, and have him deal the cards to the new leaders. When he has about ten cards remaining in his hands stop him saying, “It’s not necessary to deal them all as it gets a bit boring at some point.” With that line take the talon from him.
Verbally recap what has been done. He has shuffled twice. The cards were well mixed, and at this point show him the remaining cards are WELL MIXED. This is an extremely strong selling point. Remind him that all the tabled cards are exactly where he wanted them to be. He has to agree, as everything is true.
You are now set to reveal that every card on the table matches it’s leader. Finish as you would with the standard Out Of This World handling.
Many magicians have come up with various ways to handle the clean up move. Here’s how Harry Reed did it, and it’s the method I’ve always used. Scoop up the spread of correct cards and flip over the entire batch spreading them a bit as you do. Instruct the spectator to look at them to “See how he did.” As he starts to look at them his actions create perfect misdirection for your clean up move. Scoop up the wrong color batch, but leave the end leader on the table. Flip over the scooped up cards and drop them on top of the end leader. This swaps the leader from one end to the other and the cards are now correct.
It’s a great trick.