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Real World Product Reviews

Reviews from the repertoire of a real working professional!

Issue 4 - December 10th 2014
In this issue:
B`Wave by Max Maven reviewed by Jon Jensen

Max Maven`s wonderful trick, B-Wave, is a favorite of many magicians and has now stood the test of time to become a classic. I have been performing it since it debuted many years ago and I still use both the standard version in my close-up shows, and the jumbo version when I perform platform and behind the bar.

I would have never have thought to review, or give my thoughts on BWave until I saw a professional magician, whom I respect, give a less than stellar performance of this elegantly simple trick. Sometimes it is all in the details and the presentation.

Here is my thinking on presentation. As a young man fresh out of the navy, I joined the ranks of salesmen for Ken Fletchers Magic Masters. For those of you unfamiliar with this ingenious endeavor, Magic Masters was an upscale magic shop that sold quality magic, at an inflated price, to tourists and business travelers in a number of high traffic tourist locations. We wore dress shirts and ties, listened to motivational tapes, and fooled ourselves in thinking we were real salesman. As part of our training we had to learn a concise script for the demonstration of the tricks. Other magicians would often chastise us about this, saying the script turned us into robots without souls, or something like that.

In fact, the script gave us the ability to hone the tricks so the we could maximize their strengths, which in turn meant more sales. As commissioned employees this was very important. David Williamson, a Magic Masters alumni, credits Magic Masters and scripting as an important part of his development into becoming a magic god.

I personally script all of the tricks I perform. It is a flexible process that helps me to make them as magical as possible and it is this process that I used to make B-Wave into what I feel is a real show stopper. Here is my script for using B-Wave, I hope you find it useful.

In the description, we will assume you are using a jumbo B-Wave in which the gimmick card is a spade and club. None of this will fully make sense unless you own the trick.

Performance: 1. I take the four cards out of my case and place them flat against my chest, backs towards the audience, and held horizontally. "I have four cards. They are the four queens: hearts, spades, clubs, and diamonds. I have turned one of them over, reversed in the packet."

2."With my imagination, I am going to take out two of the cards (I make a physical gesture using my right hand, as if I am removing two cards). Do you think they are red or black?" Pause for their response. They will, of course, either name red or black. Depending on their answer you will proceed in one of the following ways.

A. RED. If the spectator names red, I say, "Great. You have eliminated the red cards. That leaves us with the two black ones, spades and clubs. With my imagination, I am going to turn one of them over (I use my right hand to gesture, as if I am flipping a card). Whatever card you name will be the card we use. Spades or clubs?"

They will name a suit, let`s say it is spades. I fan out the cards as explained in the instructions to display their selected card reversed in the packet. I pause for a few seconds to let this revelation register. This is important.

"I was so sure that you would pick the Queen of spades, that I gave it a different color back." Flip the gimmicked card over to display it`s back. Pause for a few seconds.

"And these three cards are blank!" Turn over the three cards left in your hand and fan, showing their blank faces. "You had a free choice, but my only prediction was the Queen of spades."

B. BLACK. If the spectator chooses black, I say, "Great. Now, with my imagination, I am going to turn one of them over (make the hand gesture as if you are turning over a card). Is it a spade or a club? Whatever you name is the one we will use." Let`s assume again that they pick spades.

"Great, you have chosen spades. With our imagination we are turning the Queen of spades around in the packet." Again, make the flipping gesture. "Now, with our imagination, let`s slide these cards back in the packet, with this one card reversed." Gesture as if you are sliding imaginary cards into the packet.

Proceed as described above.

Performance Tips:

1. The brilliance of this trick is that Max uses equavoque in forcing the black cards, followed by the spectators actually getting to choose spades or clubs. It is important when you have the person name either one that you emphasize they have a free choice. This will, in turn, cause the audience to believe they had free choices during the entire performance of the trick.

2. I believe I have made the equavoque equally strong, whether they name red or black, by the imaginary withdrawal of the two cards. This procedure, no matter what color the spectator chooses, makes sense in the context of the performance.

After the spectator names a color, it is important that you proceed without hesitation. You do not want it to appear as if you are doing mental gymnastics during the performance.


The Invisible Deck may be the greatest trick ever invented, against which all other tricks are compared. A card is freely named by a spectator, the deck of cards is fanned out displaying one card reversed, the selected card. What could be more mysterious? What I like about B-Wave is that it has three succesive climaxes. There card is reversed" it has a different color back" the other three cards are blank. It builds into a powerful punch that is stunning to the audience. I perform the invisible deck all of the time, but I perform this just as much. BWave