Review of The Greatest Card Trick In The World
By The Magic Oval - Thursday, December 28, 2023
Here's a review of Hector Mancha's The World's Greatest Card Trick from The Magic Oval blog. It is published here in its entirety with their permission.
So there I was, with half our discretionaries spent on a single card trick, hoping like heck that I could get a good review out of this. That would count as being a professional magician, right?
Héctor Mancha is selling “The World’s Greatest Card Trick”, his Fool Us fooler routine, on Vanishing Inc. for a cool half grand. What justifies the price, you might ask? Well, he's going to teach you himself, live, over video chat.
The Q&As about this product are not being answered on the store page, with a direction to email them for any questions. Emailing them doesn't allow for any details about anything really, besides the contract and scheduling the call. Nothing to do with the trick itself. That's understandable, though.
However, for a trick that you can probably have an idea of after rewatching that cut a few times, it's a little worrying. Not something I would purchase normally, especially since it's supposed to only be for professionals, and it's far from a normal product.
But somebody has to review this thing. So there I was.
And no, Steve Faulkner’s review doesn’t count. If any product needs a review from an unknown, it’s this. I paid full price and owe nothing to anybody. Besides, I trust that Héctor wouldn’t intentionally do this, but I’m sure that his session with Faulkner went a little differently than it would have if he didn’t know that there was a review happening.
Héctor is very responsive over email. He was also flexible, allowing me to reschedule. Overall, the communication between him was personable and enjoyable despite being to the point.
As the meeting approached, I grew more and more nervous. When the day arrived, I frantically tried to reorganize my desk so it would be suitable for learning the trick, propping my laptop up on a dresser and grabbing a cup.
Héctor was on time for our call, coming online 3 minutes before the scheduled start of our session. He spent a full 7 minutes getting to know me, after which we got right into things. He took care to address any questions I had, asking if I had any more to make sure on more than one occasion.
The call lasted 50 minutes, with most of it after our introduction being dedicated to the basic handling, but for the last 15 minutes we covered the "pro" version, which was not performed on Fool Us. He was his usual charming self, and I had the impression that the call would have been more like an hour or an hour 10 if I had had more questions.
What I was most surprised by was the smoothness of the move that was cut from the Fool Us performance. Why the flippity-dip is there that awkward cut in the episode?
This is not a move you're going to catch. I have no idea why they cut it from the performance, it's slick as heck, at least when Mancha does it. The card had been switched well before I thought it had been. When he first showed me, I was surprised. When he showed me the "pro" version? I was flabbergasted. I haven't been fooled like that in a long while. Very, very clever.
He used a mannequin to represent the spectator when he demonstrated the handling, which worked out well enough for the most part.
And then he taught me the version that fooled me harder than the cut Fool Us performance, and guided me through it. And then he fooled me again even harder with the "pro" version after teaching me the version he did on Fool Us! And then taught that!
Somebody on Vanishing Inc.'s unusable Q&A section for the trick seems to think the gimmick for the advanced version is "complex". The description says "more complex". This does not mean complex, and it isn't very complex. You may have to buy something, but anyone can make this gimmick.
Before we go any further, I should note that I am not a fan, and he has no idea that I'm reviewing this. I actually struggled to think of any questions to ask him, because all I had seen of him was his FISM-winning performance and his Fool Us performance. I stand to gain nothing based on the outcome of the review, from anyone. I might be better off writing something really controversial, honestly, but instead I'm just going to give my candid thoughts.
So we get to the question at the crux of this thing, the question anyone seeing that price tag must wonder. Is this product concept worth it? Does the live personal instruction add that much that a video or book couldn't?
Well, if you're a fan of Héctor, of course it is, if you can afford it and are a pro who will actually use it. It wasn't just about business, he was very willing to engage you and wanted to get to know me a little before we got into it. You do get something in the mail, but I can't say any more about that.
Outside of that, if you just want to know the secret, no, it isn't worth it. If you are a professional who loves the routine and intends to put this into their act as a closer? Yes, it is. It's much more deceptive than the edited Fool Us performance shows.
The personal instruction is invaluable, with a FISM Grand Prix winner giving you live advice on how you look performing the move. I have a good internet connection, so your experience may vary, but Héctor had a good internet connection too, so there was very little latency even though we were talking across the Atlantic Ocean.
It could be argued that this is underpriced, if you're really going to get use out of this trick. A FISM Grand Prix winner is willing to do multiple video sessions with you, indefinite instruction until you can satisfactorily perform the trick, and he's ONLY charging 500 dollars? You may wonder at this about-face, but there were two serious misconceptions I had at the outset of this undertaking.
First, I wasn't aware of how deceptive the part cut from Fool Us was. Everything I was worrying about with regards to that was irrelevant. Second, I hadn't realized that you could schedule multiple video chats. I was under the impression there would only be one, with email only after that. Considering these two things, my opinion of the price has changed significantly.
Overall, not a purchase I can see anyone who buys it for the right reasons regretting.
I rate this product a Worth It out of 10.
NOTE: This review was republished from The Magic Oval, a new magic blog, with their permission.
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