A lot of these types of tricks and illusions are similar to those done by Chris Angel, also an excellent, younger illusionist/magician. I enjoy both, and saw this program recently for the second time in a few years.
As with Angel, I enjoy this type of close-up magic, done in public, more than the elaborate illusions involving being submerged, buried, etc.
And Blaine's quiet, low-key (almost laconic, at times) style is an interesting contrast to Angel's more frenetic pace and personality - but their differences work well for each.
As he completed the card-switching trick with running back Smith in the Dallas Cowboys' locker room, and later did a similar switch with one of the coaches, and then and
another man with his friends on the street - you could get a sense of what he was doing with the cards. The result was Smith having two black aces where he thought he had the two red queens, and similarly (with different card sequences but the same results for the other men).
You had a sense as he moved the original two cards, and then posed the question for the participant to concentrate and be assured as to which of the original cards on top or bottom within his grasp (only one card was used with the coach) ---- of his succeeding with his movements in making the switch, but this made the trick all the more interesting. We all know there was no "magic" or extrasensory power which caused the switch, and knowing his precise sleight-of-hand was responsible made it completely, and all-the-more, fascinating.
Some have suspected that camera cutaways or splicing sequences instead of all tricks being done without pause as depicted are part of the presentation. This is always possible, but in the sequence where the chosen card appears in the little girl's back pocket, as he sits at a lunch table with her and her mother - it seems impossible as revealed, to be possible legitimate. All seemed to be done in sequence, with no camera tricks or interruptions. If the others were in any way confederates, the mother is a better actress than Meryl Streep, and the girl superior to Shirley Temple at her best.
But, whatever, the guy is deft, clever, and with so many performers in every genre so loud and frenetic, I find his low-key approach an enhancement to enjoying his work.
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