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by Moonshadow

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Couples by Moonshadow

Unfortunately, some of our magical effects have something of a "who cares?" stigma: pick a card, lose the card, find the card . . . and our audience is thinking, who cares? Couples gives spectators a "stake" on the effect, creating audience involvement and interest.

You're performing walk-around at a party and a couple, sitting at a small table, catches your attention. They ask to see some magic. You introduce yourself and they introduce themselves as Jim and Mary. They laugh and enjoy your magic, and are thrilled when you say, "I'm going to do something really special for you. This is a short story about losing . . . and maybe finding . . . your special person."

You take out a normal deck and ask Mary to remove one of the Queens, "which will represent you. Perhaps you can select a Queen that you have a connection with." You ask Jim to do the same for "one of the Kings, which will represent you." You then ask that Mary sign her Queen and ask Jim to sign his King. You have them exchange cards and then to "put six more cards under your signed cards. Turn over the top card and make sure it's the card signed by the person you love." Mary and Jim do so.

You ask for Mary's packet and say, "in any relationship there are ups and downs, and sometimes we say and do things we shouldn't say or do, and too often we kind of lose the person we love . . ." and turn over the signed king and add a couple of cards on top of Mary's cards so the signed king card is now buried in her packet of cards. You do the same with Jim's packet, with Mary's signed queen. "Sometimes," you say, "we just kind of lose track of someone we care for . . ."

Making free selections of color and suit, the couple loses and then finds their lost card, their lost love . . . and they keep those cards as souvenirs.

With two female spectators, each can select a Queen; with two male spectators, each could select a King or Jack. The effect can also be performed for one person; that person would select a card and write the name of something favorite on it (a pet, a person, a vacation spot, etc.). That card is then lost and then found by the spectator.

No sleights; no setup; use any deck; the spectators get their signed cards to keep. This is an effect you will use and one your spectators will love!

Based on and adapted from

  • Jim Steinmeyer's "Remote Control" and his "9 Card Problem"
  • Martin Gardner's "How to Perform the Seven-Card Trick"
  • David Soloman and Eugene Burger; later was refined by Eugene Burger in Teaching Magic
  • (full credits are provided in the instructions)

1st edition 2018, 6 pages.
word count: 1846 which is equivalent to 7 standard pages of text