Too Perfect Theory

Today I was looking at Michael Vincent answering questions on Instagram, and it gave me a flashback.

Someone asked a question about “The too perfect theory”. This theory is really interesting but, maybe misunderstood.

The theory goes as follows. Let's say that we are doing an out of this world routine. The theory would state that we have to make 1 or 2 mistakes in the out of this world. The reason being that if all of the reds are in one pile and all of the blacks are in the other, it would be “too perfect” and it might look like that was the intention all along instead of a coincidence.

Enough people say  “The goal is magic so it should be too perfect”, however, the effects where the too perfect theory applies to are usually effects that are not “magical” in its essence.

The effects where the too perfect theory applies to are coincidence based effects like “Out of this world” and “Do as I do”, these are highly improbable but, not magical.

The fact that they are not magical is not a bad thing, it is a crazy coincidence and if you play it right it will feel real.

The too perfect theory, however, states that if it is not too perfect it will feel more real.

The question is then again, does the effect feel complete? Does the coincidence feel complete? Yes, it might make it feel more real if it is presented well however, that is the point IF IT IS PRESENTED WELL.

If you present a coincidence based effect well and you wouldn’t apply the too perfect theory it would still feel real and if presented really well, it might even feel so real that it is almost magical.

I hope this gives you something to think about.


1 Kommentar

  • Ken aka Magi-Ken

    This over coincidenced version is one aspect (probably the primary one) of the too perfect theory. Another aspect is that of trying to present magic in a way that proves that it was not accomplished in certain more obvious or by a host of likely to be suspected means. This is often referred to as “over proving,” but sometimes is also hailed as a way that makes the “miracle” too perfect. Why too perfect? Because by ruling out what are not the methods, supposedly to make the trick perfect and impossible, the Occam’s Razor factor kicks in turning this “Too Perfect” trick into a “what is left” pointer to the real method for those already “in the know” or otherwise sharp enough to solve what the magician has unwittingly turned into a puzzle to figure out instead of a thing of beauty and mystery to simply enjoy. This may not be what most are talking about when they speak of “the too perfect theory,” but I have heard it applied in this way at least once by Penn & Teller on Fool Us. And by others the who, when, and where, of which, I no longer recall.

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