Penn and Teller Fool Us ("Spoilers" OK)

Anyone see tonight’s episode of ITV’s “Penn and Teller Fool Us” and have any thoughts about the tricks performed?

Was this a repeat from the show they did a year ago or is this a second special with the same idea?

It was the first of 6 new episodes with the same format as the original special.

I watched it. I thought they did well to have the young kids go first - they were very sweet, and did a good job, but were clearly not up to the level of the other performers. I was quite pleased when the older guy at the end managed to fool P&T. And Penn’s trick involving firing off a flash at the studio camera to make it blow out just as Teller made his “escape” was pretty great, I thought.

I’ll watch pretty much anything involving Penn & Teller. I missed the first season of this one but will probably catch the rest of this season.

Any chance on finding this on the internet or American tv?

There was only one previous show, which originally aired about 6 months ago - IIRC the overall quality of the performances on it may have been a bit higher, I suppose at the time they didn’t know if the show would be picked up for further episodes.

I agree about the young kids - I guess generally I’m less impressed by tricks that are all about owning/manipulating a fancy apparatus (though do I appreciate they still take a lot of skill to pull off.)

Anyone else watching this?

I thought the card trick done by the French magician on this week’s episode was amazing.

His setting up P & T to guess wrong was even better then the actual trick. Last weeks was pretty week, but I really enjoyed this weeks episode. Even the guys with weak tricks had good patter.

When did Jonathan Ross become “TV’s own Mr Magic”?

On the first act, I figured that the dice only had numbers 2-6. How did he make sure that the right phone got the number 1 on the letter though?

Forced choice, and maybe two dice. He put it at one end. The only choice was 1 or 6.

He lets the host stick the numbers on randomly after the phones are all in the envelopes, so even if he forces which envelope the phone goes in, he can’t determine the number on the “right” envelope. He does handle the dice briefly before putting it in the box though (and kind of awkwardly keeps the host from putting it in himself), so I think your right about multiple dice, he has six dice on him, and puts the correct one in after the phone is in the numbered envelope.

Still not sure how he knows which envelope has the phone though, his back is turned when it goes in, and the host shuffles them afterwards.

He’s the last one to shuffle the envelopes. He may very well be determining, or altering, which is which.

For the first episode, the guy who had them take cards from the first and second thirds of the deck, and then counted down to the 18th and 43rd cards seemed pretty easy to me.

He asks Penn to cut about a third into the deck, and then for Teller to cut the remainder of the deck in half. So he knows they’re going to pick cards around the 18th and 43rd cards +/- 3 cards or so.

So he marks the deck in some way when they’re placing the cards back on it - he never shuffles it or anything, and he knows where the cards are sitting. But they may not be the 18th and 43rd cards - they may be 20 and 40 or something in that range.

But when he’s counting the cards - he’s counting quite rapidly and putting down the cards as he goes, but I think the count and the number of cards don’t sync up. I can’t tell for sure because the camera angle cuts several times during it, but it appears he knows he has to get to the 16th-20th card and 41st-44th card and just has to double up some cards or count faster than he’s putting them down to ensure that by the time he’s at the right card the numbers he’s counting down sync up.

Maybe they ruled that explanation out or something, but it seemed pretty obvious to me. Maybe I’m missing something.

About the second episode - I don’t quite understand what Penn was hinting at - or I guess maybe laymen weren’t meant to understand - when he asked the duo that if he and teller knew the trick exactly, would they be able to pull it off? And the guys immediately said “thank you for your time” as if they knew they were caught. Were they trying to imply that they figured it out because they needed to be a certain size, or maybe a certain speed to sprint to the back of the theater? I’m not quite sure I understood what was going on there.

The French guy with the card trick has been the best act so far, with him anticipating their guess and throwing it in their faces being the best moment.

I inferred that Penn and Teller couldn’t pull off the same trick because neither has an identical twin.


I know the premise is that P&T just indicate they know how it’s done without telling the viewers, but that always comes across as anti-climactic to me.

I’m just watching the first season. Does ANYONE know how the hell they did the cell phone trick that ends up inside the fish??

The box on the seat has a speaker tuned to a mic back stage. Teller puts the phone next to the mic after he catches it, making it sound like the phone is in the box. Then when he goes and gets the table to cut up the fish, he brings the phone back with him, and then just makes it look like he’s pulling the phone out of the fish.

Agree with this - format seemed a bit awkward. P+T make great tv, so I thought it was pretty good, but the dialogue about revealing the trick was flat as a pancake.

Like that guy who had the spike in the bag - Penn said I think I saw you sleeve the spike there son - yeah I did mate - alright then ta ra.
It’s hard to make this into good tv.