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Playing Cards and Literature: Bicycle Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde Decks by Alakazam Magic

20 Aug

As you can know from previous articles on this blog magicians prefer standard court cards of playing cards which are familiar to their audience. Even in case of serious redesign of playing cards magicians want them to be quite simple. It’s because any intricate and complex design can divert people from their magic tricks and make them suspect that playing cards can be marked.

These decks were produced by the American magic company for magicians. So while faces of the playing cards were quite seriously (as for magicians) redesigned they are still based on Bicycle standard playing cards and have rather simple design.

Bicycle-Dr-Jekyll-and-Mr-Hyde-Playing-Cards-Boxes-Sides

These decks are inspired by the novella. But they are dedicated to the different personalities of Dr Jekyll. That is why court cards have to symbolize some things but not some characters.

Court cards from the Bicycle Dr Jekyll Deck use framed (recoloured) Bicycle standard royals. All these frames, embellishments and neatly written court card signings (behind the royals) have to reflect Jekyll’s status of the gentleman of high society and the elegance of the Victorian era (1837 – 1901).

Bicycle Mr Hyde playing cards got more serious redesign than Bicycle Dr Jekyll playing cards. I can even say that Bicycle Mr Hyde playing cards are more redesigned Bicycle Dr Jekyll playing cards than Bicycle standard playing cards.

The King of Spades: Bicycle Dr Jekyll Deck – Bicycle Standard Deck – Bicycle Mr Hyde Deck

Bicycle-Dr-Jekyll-and-Mr-Hyde-Playing-Cards-King-of-Spades-comparison2

The Queen of Hearts: Bicycle Dr Jekyll Deck – Bicycle Standard Deck – Bicycle Mr Hyde Deck

Bicycle-Dr-Jekyll-and-Mr-Hyde-Playing-Cards-Queen-of-Hearts-comparison

Skulls on court cards of Bicycle Mr Hyde playing cards don’t symbolize Mr Hyde directly as he wasn’t a skeleton. I have to think that these court cards should indirectly symbolize him as death-doing person. The overall design of Bicycle Mr Hyde playing cards is based on the following chain of associations: evil – bad – unclean and disgusting. But the cards had to be also made as the direct opposite of Bicycle Dr Jekyll playing cards. So they are mutilated copies of playing cards from the Bicycle Dr Jekyll Deck.

King of Spades: Bicycle Dr Jekyll Playing Cards and Bicycle Mr Hyde Playing Cards

Bicycle-Dr-Jekyll-and-Mr-Hyde-Playing-Cards-King-of-Spades

King of Hearts: Bicycle Dr Jekyll Playing Cards and Bicycle Mr Hyde Playing Cards

Bicycle-Dr-Jekyll-and-Mr-Hyde-Playing-Cards-King-of-Hearts

King of Clubs: Bicycle Dr Jekyll Playing Cards and Bicycle Mr Hyde Playing Cards

Bicycle-Dr-Jekyll-and-Mr-Hyde-Playing-Cards-King-of-Clubs

King of Diamonds: Bicycle Dr Jekyll Playing Cards and Bicycle Mr Hyde Playing Cards

Bicycle-Dr-Jekyll-and-Mr-Hyde-Playing-Cards-King-of-Diamonds

Queen of Spades: Bicycle Dr Jekyll Playing Cards and Bicycle Mr Hyde Playing Cards

Bicycle-Dr-Jekyll-and-Mr-Hyde-Playing-Cards-Queen-of-Spades

Queen of Hearts: Bicycle Dr Jekyll Playing Cards and Bicycle Mr Hyde Playing Cards

Bicycle-Dr-Jekyll-and-Mr-Hyde-Playing-Cards-Queen-of-Hearts

Queen of Clubs: Bicycle Dr Jekyll Playing Cards and Bicycle Mr Hyde Playing Cards

Bicycle-Dr-Jekyll-and-Mr-Hyde-Playing-Cards-Queen-of-Clubs

Queen of Diamonds: Bicycle Dr Jekyll Playing Cards and Bicycle Mr Hyde Playing Cards

Bicycle-Dr-Jekyll-and-Mr-Hyde-Playing-Cards-Queen-of-Diamonds

 

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