SUMMARY: A fun visual effect with a Magic 8-Ball plot
A skilled and creative card magician with a background in math, Caleb Wiles has a rare ability to produce effects that are truly clever. Caleb first appeared on the radar almost ten years ago, when he published a 70 page book called High Spots. ?All Signs Point to Yes was first published in MAGIC Magazine, and later in Caleb's 2010 book, Six Pack.
??You begin by introducing the concept of a magic 8 ball, which you shake to reveal answers. The spectator selects and signs a card which is returned to the pack. Then the 8 of Spades is introduced as the best a card for a magic 8 ball, which is drawn on its back. Now you ask it a series of questions; and with a shake it reveals first the colour (red or black), and then the suit. Finally the spectator himself shakes the 8 ball, and then turns it over to discover that it is in fact his signed card!
What you get for around $10 is an instant digital download of the video which teaches the effect. ? The entire file is only around 25 MB in size, and runs for around 8 minutes, of which the first couple of minutes has the performance. Caleb does a good job of performing the routine to his spectator Blake, who appears genuinely and increasingly amazed as the routine progresses. There are close-ups for some of the moves required, so no complaints whatsoever as far as the video is concerned.
Caleb does a fine job in explaining everything needed to perform the trick, including the set-up, sleights, and patter. It's not a complicated trick as such, and while some sleights are required, these are all briefly taught and explained.
?Competence with several sleights is required, including a !@#$*, DLs, and a twirl change. I especially love the fact that the shaking of the 8-ball provides a great justification for the moves required for the change, and helps hide it. The multiple lifts need to be performed completely cleanly, but that is of course well within the competence of intermediate magicians. If you don't know the twirl change, Caleb does briefly teach it, and it is an essential and important part of the routine, so if you can master that, you should be able to do this trick fairly easily; there's not a lot to remember once you're set-up.
Caleb has come up with a very fun presentation, and the whole 8-ball concept feels fresh and amusing. It does require of course a signed card, which the spectator can keep as a memory of the trick. The routine also has a natural development, with the 8 ball first revealing the colour, then the suit, and then the final climactic twist: the chosen card, which has magically transposed onto the reverse of the 8 ball. Caleb also explains a simple way to reset the trick so you can immediately perform it to another spectator or table.
All Signs Point to Yes is an ideal "worker"; and it's a fun and amusing routine that spectators will find engaging and surprising. Given that it's relatively easy to learn, and if you already know the sleights required it won't require much investment of time to perform, it's well worth a look.
- BoardGameGeek reviewer EndersGame