As a svengali deck, the Trilby has the advantage of not needing to re-orient the deck before showing the change of cards from indifferent to all key cards. You don’t turn the deck around for a different display, you simply have to shift your grip. With a single move, the indifferent and key cards may be separated to create a “force” deck with the top half consisting of force cards and the bottom indifferent cards. However, by definition, a svengali already acts as a force deck so I don’t see any real advantage here other than that one can allow a “free” selection of a card by spreading the top half of the deck as opposed to the classic svengali force.
The accompanying DVD teaches effects to perform with the Trilby. Many, such as “card at any number,” having a spectator select his card at the top of several piles of cards, transposing a stack of key cards with indifferent cards may be done with a conventional Svengali.
Using the stripper functions, the DVD teaches tricks such as cutting to four aces and a so so card to pocket (actually, you’re finding the selected card in the deck that’s in your pocket - if you understand the principles of a stripper deck you’ve already figured this one out). There is an exceptional triumph effect. It’s a version of John Bannon’s 'Play it Straight.' There’s also a stripper version of “Out of This World.”
The ads also tout the Trilby’s ability to work as a color changing pack where a deck apparently changes colors from red to blue and spectators select a card and it’s the only red card in a blue-backed deck. These features could be accomplished with a specially constructed svengali deck, but it’s good to have them here as part of the Trilby.
Transitioning and "Killer Trick"
To change between the functions of a svengali and stripper deck, the Trilby must be “transitioned.” In execution, this requires a switch of part of the deck. Of course, a switch of part of the deck is easier than a switch of an entire deck, but if I’m already switching part of a deck, why not switch everything? And unfortunately, there are no specialized routines that are taught on the DVD that take advantage of this feature. You pretty much use the Trilby as a svengali to perform svengali tricks, and then can use the Trilby as a stripper pack to perform stripper tricks.
The DVD is thorough and offers excellent instruction. Liam Montier has done a great job of compiling and teaching the various moves and effects. But in the end, the Trilby Deck is an intriguing oddity that does competently function as two different gimmicked decks. But with no killer effect to take advantage of both features in a single routine, I’m simply inclined to just stay with conventional gimmicked decks (if I use them at all).