Written by John Teo

John Bannon is well known for his card tricks that have simple but interesting plots, powerful effects, but fairly easy to do without having to resort to heavy sleight-of-hand.

ESP By The Numbers is another one of such effects.  It does not use playing cards but ESP cards with different numbers printed on them.

The performer wishes to test the intuitive capability of a spectator, and introduces a deck of ESP cards which also have a different number printed on each of them.

In an open manner, the spectator chooses 5 ESP cards and places them in a row.  The performer then shows the ESP Ability Test card – it depicts a row of 5 ESP cards that have different symbols.  When the spectator turns over her 5 selected cards, they consist of the same 5 ESP symbols as that shown in the Test card, and also arranged in the exact same manner!  This proves the intuitive or ESP capability of the spectator.

Just when you think the effect is over, the spectator is asked to add up the numbers on her selected 5 ESP cards.  The performer then shows that the numbers on the other ESP cards that are not selected are all different.  The spectator’s total matches exactly the predicted total printed on the back of the ESP Test card.  There is a comical element in presenting this predicted total to the spectator, which is nice.  Another coincidence to convince the spectator of her powerful ESP capability!

ESP By The Numbers has a double climax.

You receive a deck of the specially printed 25 ESP cards with numbers in a nice presentable box.  You also receive the special ESP Ability Test card with the predicted total printed behind it.  Video instructions are available for download from the internet.

The effect works on a popular matrix force.  John uses a special version of this force called Matrix Reload.  In the video, John teaches another (playing) card effect using this force.  He also shows a special mixing technique called “Deal, Drop, Flip”.  This enhances the randomness of the cards, but actually does not mix them at all.  You get 2 great effects for the price of one!

This is a very good investment.  You get the professionally printed cards in an attractive box, a great routine with a double climax, and another effect using playing cards.  (10/10 star rating)