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David Regal: Premise, Power, & Participation DVD Library (Vol 1-4) Review

Official Review

September 24th, 2004 4:50pm
Rating:
Reviewed by Bryce Kuhlman
It's a wonder to me how David Regal can produce so much material. When I watched his "Tricks" series, I found a number of gems amidst a lot of stuff that I wouldn't use. Not to say that it was somehow "bad" or "substandard", it just seemed too much like warmed-over Marlo for my tastes.

I got a much better feeling about this set of DVDs. While there were still only one or two gems, I felt that the rest of the content would be useful to a wider range of magicians. In fact, I think you'd be hard pressed not to find something useful on these DVDs. David has an amazing talent for taking standard effects and giving them interesting presentational twists.

Since I really don't feel that a review of each DVD would be worthwhile (or fun, for that matter), I'll give you the high- and low-points… at least from my perspective.

Premise
It's been a very long time since I've actually wanted to put someone else's routine into my repertoire. "Exhibit 'A'" definitely breaks that trend. All I can say is "WOW!"

I also found "Shred of Proof" to be interesting. For those of you doing mentalism, take note: there are much more interesting ways to reveal your prediction than a piece of card stock sealed in an envelope.

I had a problem with the volume levels on this DVD. I kept reaching for my remote to boost the sound when David was speaking and then turn it down during the applause. This could easily have been fixed in editing.

Power
"Face It, You've Changed" fooled the crap out of me. A signed card changes it's back color without the magician ever touching the card. Cool!

If you read what I said above about Exhibit "A", that goes equally for "Fill in the Blank Transpo". It's the same method and the effect is just as good.

Side Note: if you're interested in card splitting, David has some nice coverage of the topic on Volume 2 (Power).

Participation
I didn't find anything amazing on this DVD (not that you won't). I did notice for the first time that the performer has some verbal ticks that could be removed with some rehearsal with a script ("Here's what I'd like you to do."…ugh). "Mucilaginous Monte" has some nice sequences, but it's all done in the hands, which seems odd for a table-based con game.

Regal Walks Erect
"Journey to Love" is a nicely structured piece of dramatic comedy (though the script could be cut quite a bit). I also felt is was a bit of a stretch to get from the premise of "Swindle Transpo" to the actual events that take place. "Got a Light" is clever, but there are simpler methods to achieve the same effect.

"The Very Last Card" was fun and entertaining with a great climax and clever method. While I'm not a big fan of "story deck" routines, the fact that "After Hours" was not very politically correct made it somewhat interesting.

Product info for David Regal: Premise, Power, & Participation DVD Library (Vol 1-4)

Author: David Regal
Publisher: L&L Publishing
Average Rating:  (2)
Retail Price: $120.00
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Manufacturer's Description:

Volume One

PREMISE



Look at Me, I'm Special (unpublished) - A four-Ace production that leads to an ultra-clean moment of magic.

Carried Away (from Constant Fooling) - An any-deck, any time incredible transportation.


Eight Ball (from Constant Fooling) - Ink slides off a playing card and forms itself into an eight ball!

Tenacious Climber (from Constant Fooling) - This entertaining approach to the Ambitious Card plot leads to a climax that will fool all.

Coins Through the Table (from Constant Fooling) - Stand-up versions of this plot are few and far between . . . and this one is a killer.

Exhibit "A" (from Penumbra) - A stunning handling of Hamman's Signed Card plot. Magic just seems to happen.

Sum of the Parts (from Constant Fooling) - A spectator shuffles a deck and selects a card, then a demonstration of playing card mathematics (and visual changes) ensues in which cards "add up," finally totaling the selection!


Shred of Proof (from Constant Fooling) - An eerie revelation with dozens of applications.

My Best Friend (from Close-Up & Personal) - A chop cup routine with a difference . . . in the form of a small mouse.

Chink-A-Drink (from Constant Fooling) - The classic assembly with a logical kicker.



Volume Two

POWER



Isolated Force (from Close-Up & Personal) - A unique and convincing force of a card in which the back of the card is never seen.

Half & Half (from Star Quality) - A signed card changes color in an atypical fashion.

Perfectly Oiled (from Star Quality)- A very clear Oil & Water effect that builds to a no-moves climax.

Face It, You've Changed (from Constant Fooling) - A spectator selects a card, examines it and signs it. Its back changes color . . . in spite of the fact that the magician never touches the card.


An Incredible Journey (from Star Quality) - A signed card invisibly travels into a card box that has been placed inside the magician's jacket pocket.

Not Quite Dead / Haunted Pack (unpublished) - A demonstration of supernatural forces that uses a classic method in a novel way.

A Magic Lesson (from Constant Fooling) - A tongue-in-cheek explanation of Card to Pocket leads to an inexplicable magical climax involving a spectator's signature.

Holding On (from Star Quality & Constant Fooling) - A playing card is signed. The magician stands and reaches under the table with an empty hand. When he presses on the deck, the selection passes through the table.


Prophecy Pack (dealer item, details of construction explained) - This is the incredible hands-off prediction effect Regal used to fool all and sundry when he moved to the West Coast.

Penny for Your Thoughts (from Close-Up & Personal) - A glass of pennies is examined-the dates are different. The spectator selects a penny while the performer's back is turned, yet the performer tells him the date.

Fill in the Blank Transpo (from Constant Fooling) - One of Regal's current signature pieces-a clear and spotlessly clean transposition of two playing cards.



Volume Three

PARTICIPATION



Lucky Seven (from Constant Fooling) - An incredible self-working prediction effect, presented complete with Regal's latest touches.

Control Yourself (from Constant Fooling) - A shuffled-deck impossibility. Two spectators are given the ability to find their own selections.

Clandestine Collectors (from Close-Up & Personal) - A handling of the collector's theme with some uniquely sneaky elements.

Not This (from Constant Fooling) - Anytime, anywhere impromptu mentalism. All you need is paper and a pencil.


Coincidence Deck (from Constant Fooling) - A display of amazing sympathy that can involve everyone in the room.

A Simple Woodcutter (unpublished) - Spectators shuffle the deck, yet the top card matches the magician's prediction . . . which is carved into a plank of wood.

Off-Color Thought (from Constant Fooling) - A visually perfect switch with myriad applications.

Mystic Poker (from Close-Up & Personal) - A new plot. The spectator draws any card that can be found in a royal flush onto a blank card . . . then the magician magically prints the other cards needed to fill out the hand!


Mucilaginous Monte (from Constant Fooling) - A monte with sequences that will slay.



Volume Four

REGAL STANDS ERECT

The Stand-Up Magic of David Regal



Journey to Love (from Constant Fooling) - This impossible prediction injects comedy and audience by-play into Don Wayne's "Room Service" plot (based on a wonderful Larry Becker method).

Swindle Transpo (from Close-Up & Personal) - Subtlety is layered upon subtlety in a playing card transposition that can play on the largest stage.


Got a Light? (from Close-Up & Personal) - Two matchboxes are examined, then proceed to perform an incredible series of animations. A combination of the "Sympathetic Matchboxes" and "Acrobatic Matchbox" plots. Perfect for walk-around.

The Very Last Card (from Constant Fooling) - A card-elimination routine that utilizes test conditions to create a devastating outcome. This will bother people.

Bonus Routine:

After Hours (from Constant Fooling) - Regal's contribution to the full-deck story genre, this is distilled entertainment guaranteed to generate applause.


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