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RayJ

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Reply with quote  #1 
So some time ago I noticed that Target had begun to occasionally have some "specialty" Bicycle cards for sale.  I would make it a point to stop and look in the toy section when I was in a Target.  Same for Walmart, but Walmart never seemed to have much that interested me.

Then about a year ago I was in Target and saw a display box with a variety of cards from Theory11.  I was very surprised to say the least.  I think all of them were $9.95 or something like that, same as full retail on Theory11.com.

Around that same time I noticed the same thing going on at Barnes & Noble Books.

Then yesterday I was in Walgreen's and noticed this:

WagsCards.jpg 


Kind of blew me away.  Not only Theory11, but all sorts of "specialty" Bicycle cards.

So to anyone that might still wonder what is going to happen now that Cartamundi owns USPCC, I don't think you have much to worry about.




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DJ

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Reply with quote  #2 
Nice find!
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Anthony Vinson

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Reply with quote  #3 
It's been going on for several years at Barnes & Noble, Books-a-Million, and Target. At least in the Atlanta, Georgia metro area. 

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Mike Powers

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Reply with quote  #4 
I've seen the large displays of custom decks at Barnes & Noble too. I'll never spend $10 for a deck of cards. 

Maybe the good side of these displays is that non-magician customers become aware that there are tons of back designs on "normal" cards and will be less likely to question the validity of non-standard designs that we might use. I know that many don't find this to be an issue. But I still wonder what people think about those artsy back designs when they're used during a magic performance.

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RayJ

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Reply with quote  #5 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Powers
I've seen the large displays of custom decks at Barnes & Noble too. I'll never spend $10 for a deck of cards. 

Maybe the good side of these displays is that non-magician customers become aware that there are tons of back designs on "normal" cards and will be less likely to question the validity of non-standard designs that we might use. I know that many don't find this to be an issue. But I still wonder what people think about those artsy back designs when they're used during a magic performance.

Mike


Yes, I'm sure the proliferation of "different" backs does alter peoples view of normalcy.  However, and I have said this previously, my wife and I play cards with a number of friends and we rotate houses.  Bikes are very much in the minority in any of the houses.

I've never bought into the idea that magicians gain anything by using Bikes.  But if others do, I say go for it.  Do what works for you.
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RayJ

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Reply with quote  #6 
Regarding prices, I am ashamed to admit that I have spent $10.00 on decks of cards.  Some I just "had to have" in my collection.  I did participate in the Kickstarter campaign for the Jerry's Nuggets and I think the cards are shipping very soon.
I will report on them when I get them.  Part of me wants to open them, part says they will likely be worth way more than I paid in under a year to those who "missed out" on the initial offering and want some from the first print run.

How crazy is that?  Yet it happens.  Beanie Babies and Cabbage Patch Dolls anyone?


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Intensely Magic

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Quote:
Originally Posted by RayJ
Regarding prices, I am ashamed to admit that I have spent $10.00 on decks of cards.  Some I just "had to have" in my collection.  I did participate in the Kickstarter campaign for the Jerry's Nuggets and I think the cards are shipping very soon.
I will report on them when I get them.  Part of me wants to open them, part says they will likely be worth way more than I paid in under a year to those who "missed out" on the initial offering and want some from the first print run.

How crazy is that?  Yet it happens.  Beanie Babies and Cabbage Patch Dolls anyone?




Will the first run be identifiable as such. Mine are arriving today, along with a couple of stripper decks. This is my first and only time I plan to pay this for cards. If I do step up, it will be for the Copag Slimline at 4 bucks a deck.

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Intensely Magic

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Sounds like Krispy Kreme Donuts. While they were somewhat hard to get, they were very special. Once they built bunches of stores and put them in grocery stores, nobody cared and they BK'd (of course, cooking the books didn't help).

A magicians deck of cards is always suspect - period. I can recall arguments that poker size cards were immediately questionable, as the cards the layman used were always bridge size. I guess the popularity of Holdem changed that.

Sometimes the card backs can make interesting patter. I intend to use the Jerry Nuggets story when I use that deck. It's interesting and will reduce the heat, I think.

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RayJ

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Reply with quote  #9 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Intensely Magic


Will the first run be identifiable as such. Mine are arriving today, along with a couple of stripper decks. This is my first and only time I plan to pay this for cards. If I do step up, it will be for the Copag Slimline at 4 bucks a deck.


I would think the initial print run will be identifiable as such.  Perhaps subsequent runs will be marked V.2 or such?

I've noticed that when cards "sell out" from their original print run they can be seen listed for "stupid money" prices later on.  I'm not sure they actually get the prices they are listed for but I'm sure some do.  

I didn't buy mine as an investment, but to actually play with.  Might never use them in public, we'll see.  Let us know how you like yours when you get them.  I didn't buy any strippers or such, just some of the vintage and some of the modern.
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RayJ

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Reply with quote  #10 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Intensely Magic
Sounds like Krispy Kreme Donuts. While they were somewhat hard to get, they were very special. Once they built bunches of stores and put them in grocery stores, nobody cared and they BK'd (of course, cooking the books didn't help).

A magicians deck of cards is always suspect - period. I can recall arguments that poker size cards were immediately questionable, as the cards the layman used were always bridge size. I guess the popularity of Holdem changed that.

Sometimes the card backs can make interesting patter. I intend to use the Jerry Nuggets story when I use that deck. It's interesting and will reduce the heat, I think.


I agree that sophisticated spectators will always suspect that a magician is using or might be using trick cards.  Not that they even know what "trick" cards are!  

The only "surefire" way to combat it is to do like Harry and only use borrowed decks.

They don't have to know that you can still put "work" into their cards to enable you to do certain things.  
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Mike Powers

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Reply with quote  #11 
Another way to combat the perceived "trick deck" syndrome is to give the deck away. With cheap Bikes you can give the deck away at a cost of $1.20 or so. If someone expresses the view that the cards are tricky, which is fairly rare, I'll just give them the deck as a gift at the end of the performance. I might say, "The magic is in the hands, not the cards."

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MagicOrthodoxy

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Reply with quote  #12 
As far as I know Cartamundi has not taken control of USPCC yet - the deal was supposed to close at the end of the year

Branded Theory 11 cards have been in retail stores for at least a year, places like target and barnes and noble, but I can remember 3 or 4 years ago seeing unbranded T11 decks at my local grocery store. They were second printings that didn't include the gaff cards, but instead had extra add cards. 

But for performing magic? I Never ever use custom cards .... all my trick decks are red bikes, so to stay consistent I never change it up



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Mike Powers

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Reply with quote  #13 
Same for me MagicOrthodoxy - red Bikes.

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RayJ

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Reply with quote  #14 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MagicOrthodoxy
As far as I know Cartamundi has not taken control of USPCC yet - the deal was supposed to close at the end of the year

Branded Theory 11 cards have been in retail stores for at least a year, places like target and barnes and noble, but I can remember 3 or 4 years ago seeing unbranded T11 decks at my local grocery store. They were second printings that didn't include the gaff cards, but instead had extra add cards. 

But for performing magic? I Never ever use custom cards .... all my trick decks are red bikes, so to stay consistent I never change it up




Yes, the agreement to purchase USPCC "in principle" still requires regulatory approval and that take a while.  It is still expected to be complete by the end of the year.

The important thing is that just because USPCC has been acquired, it doesn't mean that anything necessarily will change.  USPCC has been bought out several times in recent years.

From Wikipedia:

Meanwhile, the company would itself be acquired several times during its history: starting with Diamond International in 1969, Jessup & Lamont in 1982, Frontenac in 1989, and then a return to self-ownership in 1994 before finally becoming a subsidiary of Jarden which was in turn acquired by Newell.

I've been part of a couple of mergers and/or acquisitions in my career.  I find that in general they are very positive.  There can be some hiccups, sure, but history shows there is little to worry about regarding USPCC changing drastically.
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