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APOLLO – By Nicholas Lawrence & Worm – A Review

APOLLO – By Nicholas Lawrence & Worm – A Review

APOLLO – by Nicholas Lawrence & Worm – A Review
Red or Blue Backed

Here’s the Ad Copy:

APOLLO is a unique and realistic Finger Through Card & Restoration effect, that’s ready to perform right out of the box! You’ll LOVE performing Apollo LIVE and for Social Media. It is an excellent stand alone effect but also a great follow up to any Torn and Restored tricks.


Here’s what happens… Grab a playing card and with your finger start to push on the center of it… Push and twist until your finger bursts through the card! After this small feat of destruction, cleanly display the ripped and frayed card impaled on your finger. Show the card 360 degrees with absolutely NOTHING to hide!

It’s actually pierced…

Remove your finger and display the destruction again briefly, then with a quick twirl of the card it instantly restores itself… Leaving NO trace of the hole on either side of the card!
Show the card front and back with nothing extra in your hands!

(This mechanical gimmick looks like a normal playing card from your audience’s perspective and only you know the secret…easily switched for an examinable duplicate card and end clean)… 26 minutes of detailed instructions with Nicholas Lawrence & Worm!

My Thoughts:

I really like gimmicks. Maybe it’s just me… but it seems gimmicks now-days are far more complex than gimmicks in years past. Nicholas Lawrence (Revolver, Blade, Titan, Reduction, Impale etcs.) and Worm are specialists in creating gaffed cards and effects carried to extremes.

First off.. if you go to the link below and watch the trailer you’ll see exactly what you get with APOLLO. Now, you’ll not see everything you get.. but you’ll see precisely what the audience sees. This is a finger through a card effect. It is not taught as part of a routine, but as a stand-alone sleight created to instill mystery and temporary confusion.

If you have owned the Cigarette thru the Quarter effect, then you have a very basic understanding of how this effect works. APOLLO is more sophisticated. Sticking a finger or thumb through a card requires a very different set of logistics to make it realistic.. and APOLLO is realistic to a fault. Even jagged edges and residue are built-in to add realism to your performance.

APOLLO is more than simply pushing your finger through a hole. There is a little work to be done both before and after the penetration. This is NOT complex work.. but it’s something need to do to make it as strong as possible. You are not left hanging. Four different methods are taught on the online tutorial…

The Napkin Method – my personal favorite – that uses both a napkin and a card. The napkin aids in concealing the ‘work’.

The Thumb Through Method – a slightly quicker method than above that allows me to stick my big, fat thumb through the card.

The Finger Through Method – Nicholas’ favorite method.

The Quick Pierce Method – Leaves the spectator wondering what happened, and how…

-Plus- there is a section on switching out the gimmicked Queen for a normal card to make everything examinable. Because of the gimmick, you cannot hand out the card as is.. unless you switch the two.

The video is typical Murphy’s quality. The sound and video are what you would expect for the price. The tutorial is 26 minutes in length.

Everything about the gimmick is performance ready. NO DIY. After watching the video you can immediately perform APOLLO.. although I recommend practicing to eliminate unwanted angles. (They are not a major problem, but may rear their nasty head if you DON’T practice a little.)
This is a well-made gimmicked card. It is ideal for this type effect, and should last a long time under normal circumstances. I recommend APOLLO to any of my friends and readers who enjoy these type effects.

$29.00 .. From Murphy’s Magic and their Associates..

Review by Rick Carruth

The Vault – Ambitious Aces by Chris Wood – A Review

The Vault – Ambitious Aces by Chris Wood – A Review

The Vault – Ambitious Aces by Chris Wood – A Review
(-Plus- a 2nd bonus effect from Mark Lavelle)
Part of the new ‘One Shot series’…

This is the Ad Copy:

What you see is what you get!
Welcome to the Murphy’s Magic Supplies One Shot series!

Each one-shot download is hand-picked from our amazing At The Table lecture series and features one proven powerhouse magic trick — all shot in one continuous take.

That’s right! No edits, no fancy music or effects — just awesome real-time magic from our talented artists.

We consider this a one-effect teaser for the entire lecture. We know that, if like what you see, you will definitely want to check out the artist’s full At The Table lecture!

On this download, Chris Wood teaches you his impossible Ambitious Aces routine. All four aces are lost in the deck and then rise to the top! He repeats this three times and each time it is more fooling than the last. ultimate challenge Ace routine.

If you love this download, be sure to check out Chris Wood’s entire At The Table lecture for an incredible low cost.

My Thoughts:

Chris, headquartered in southern England, is a former Secretary of the society, a director of the Centre of Magic Arts and a gold star member of The Inner Magic Circle. He is an extremely personable guy.. and a pleasure to watch and listen to…

AMBITIOUS ACES is a very familiar effect, performed by magicians around the world. Chris Wood’s Ambitious Aces is certainly true to form.. but different in so many ways. Ambitious Aces can be heavy on the sleights, but Chris’ version is heavy only on psychological sleights. Don’t know what that means? Buy the video.! (I’m not being flippant..)

This is a three phase routine that brings the Aces to the top three different times.. three different ways. Each phase uses a different method.. yet there is only one true sleight employed.. on the third phase. (I will go ahead and tell you it’s a John Carney Versa Switch, which is NOT a knuckle-buster.)

The ‘sleights’ used to accomplish the first two assemblies are both psychological sleights that make the audience believe you’re doing something you’re not. Chris gives credit for the first two moves to Justin Hines.. from his Non-Automatic Card Tricks booklet. They are slick, no doubt, but probably shouldn’t be repeated for the same audience. They are good enough to fool many magicians the first time around.. as Chris uses skillful verbal misdirection to conceal the dirty work.

Chris credits Aaron Fisher and Harry Lorayne, among others, for some of the well-timed moves that serve as real convincers. A Sadowitz move brings everything to a smooth conclusion.

This effect is shot in one continuous video.. thus the name ‘One Shot’ series. There are NO frills or music.. just the magic and thoughtful instructions. The video and sound are typical Murphy’s Magic quality. The video runs 37 minutes, although there is a second bonus effect included by Bro. Gilbert, featuring Mark Lavelle, and titled Number Pick. I’m thinking it was originally featured on Mark’s At The Table lecture, but I’ve been known to be wrong.. once. So.. Ambitious Aces is 25 minutes and Number Pick is 12 minutes. The download itself is 634 MB…

You will have no problem mastering Ambitious Aces.. with a little practice. I would rate this as an advanced beginner level effect. I like this new concept from Murphy’s.. and I suspect you will too. For six bucks, you can’t afford NOT to buy it. I recommend it to my friends and readers.

$6.00 .. From Murphy’s Magic and their Associates.

Review by Rick Carruth

The Vault – Presage by Ethan Zack & Michael Blau – A Review

The Vault – Presage by Ethan Zack & Michael Blau – A Review

The Vault – Presage by Ethan Zack & Michael Blau – A Review
Instant Download..

The Ad Copy:

PRESAGE: noun: A sign or warning that portends or foreshadows a future event.

Presage is a devious tool allowing you to predict a thought of word or card. From the minds of Michael Blau & Ethan Zack, two up and comers in the magic world comes a device which can be used in a plethora of commercial & casual routines. Whether you’re a seasoned performer or a hobbyist, Presage is easy to use and guarantees a maximum reaction every time! With bonus performances and tips by Chris Ramsay and detailed explanation on the simple gimmick construction, you’ll be performing this minutes after learning the method.

No thumb writing
No switches
No sleight-of-hand required
Great for an opener or closer for strolling
Can be used to predict words, numbers, cards etc…

Be two steps ahead of your spectators at all times so you can concentrate on what matters… being a badass.

My Thoughts:

PRESAGE by Ethan Zack & Michael Blau has been around for a little while.. but it’s one of those effects that didn’t get as much press as it should in the beginning, and I think it’s time for a revisit.

First, the magi asks the spectator to name a card.. any card. When the card is named there is a comedic moment.. and the magi says “..lets just do it this way”, and thumbs or fans through the deck, asking the spectator to select another card. Once done, the selection is lost back in the deck.

There is a small coin envelope attached with a rubber band to the card box and the magi may, or may not, tell the spec this envelope will play a roll in the effect… eventually.

The magi takes the card box, which also happens to have a couple of post-it notes attached to the back side, and writes a prediction on the note. The magi asked the spec to name his card.. and turns the card box to show the identity of the spectator’s card written on the post-it.

That gets a smile. But we want more than a smile… right?

Almost as an after thought, the magi asks the spectator.. “..oh, remember that card you named when we started this effect.. What was it?”

The spectator say.. ” It was the__ of___”

The magi removes the coin envelope, opens it and slides out a business card/paper with the identity of the FIRST card scribbled on it.

This is when you get your REAL reaction…

A portion of the video is Chris Ramsay.. performing Presage in real time for a spectator. He emphasizes the comedy side of the performance and leaves the tutorial to Ethan and Michael.

This is an effect anyone with the know-how can perform. It does require a certain amount of setup. You’ll need an Exacto knife, a size one coin envelope (or the equivalent), a few sticky notes and a rubber band. A few minutes later.. you’ll be performing Presage.

Watching the video will give you a good idea of the handling.. and whether or not it’s for you. I will say.. it’s definitely for me. It’s easy to perform and sets your spectator up for whatever you want to perform next. Considering the cost.. $9.95.. it’s quite a fair cost.

The guys do a good job of teaching and explaining. The video quality is good, sound is good, and the total length is 23:30.

There are additional tips provided and a second method of performing Presage designed for performers with advanced skills.. as in being familiar enough with one of the primary stacks you know the position of a card after seeing the proceeding card. The only skill you need to know to perform Presage is the ability to force a card, Hindu force or otherwise.

There is a certain amount of setup.. so you cannot immediately perform this effect again. You will need about 30 seconds to yourself. Not a big deal….

Those of you who perform walk-around will enjoy performing Presage. It’s a nice cross between a bit of mental magic and an opportunity to make your spectator smile.

$9.95 .. From Murphy’s Magic and their Associates.

Reviewed by Rick Carruth for Murphy’s Magic and The Magic Roadshow.

The Vault- BONELESS by Sultan Orazaly – A Review

The Vault- BONELESS by Sultan Orazaly – A Review

The Vault – Boneless by Sultan Orazaly – A Review
Video Download

The Ad Copy says:
The section of penetration of objects through matter in magic is one of the most popular. Visual penetrations through matter are few and they can rarely be shown live.

BONELESS is a visual insight that is great for live performances and social media. Never before has such a visual effect been so easy to implement.

My thoughts:

I have a soft spot for visual magic. If it happens quick.. and if it looks impossible.. I like to carry it on my person.

If you’ll visit the link at the bottom and watch the video.. you’ll get a good idea of the illusion created by Boneless. Watching the video is a much better way of getting an idea of what to expect. Basically, the magi begins by holding a card in front of his middle and forefinger.. and the card instantly seems to penetrate the fingers and reappear on the back side of the fingers. It’s a very nice illusion.. and not hard to accomplish as the gimmicked card does most the work. Once you have a gimmick created, you could perform Boneless in minutes.

This type magic isn’t for everyone. It’s not what you could call an effect, and it’s hard to find a place for it in a routine. Yet, it gets your spectator’s attention and draws attention to whatever else you may have in a pocket.

Sultan Orazaly has a number of effects on the market.. including Hallucination, Regeneration, ICM, Korobox, Nomad Coin and Elastic Bill. Most are quick effects like Boneless.

There’s an upside.. and a downside.. to effects like this. If you want to open the package and perform it immediately.. you’re out of luck. Since Boneless is an instant download and requires a gimmicked card, there’s a certain amount of DIY involved. Some folks enjoy creating a gaff. It helps to be able to recreate a gaff should yours wear out or break. I’m sure the cost of Boneless would be at least twice as much if the gimmick was pre-made.

On a scale of one to ten, I’d say making a gimmicked card is a 3.8 on the difficulty scale. It’s not too hard.. and is the essence of the trick. Everything is taught in an included video packet… one for performance (2 minutes), one for explanation (7 minutes) and one for construction of the gimmick (10 minutes). None of the videos include vocal instruction, but opt for written video instruction and performance video. You will have a full knowledge of everything you need to know after watching the videos. Nothing out of the ordinary is needed to construct the gimmick. No trips to the hardware store. 😉

Again, watching the performance video shows you precisely what to expect. There were NO surprises.. and if the gimmicked card is constructed as shown, you should have a quick ‘little something’ to create instant interest in what comes next..

I recommend BONELESS for the cost. $9.95 is a small price for a strong gimmick that’s a one-time cost. Learn the secret.. and make all the gimmicks you want….

$9.95 .. From Murphy’s Magic and their Associates..

Reviewed by Rick Carruth for Murphy’s Magic & The Magic Roadshow