Dead Reckoning by Peter Duffie

(c. 2004) (Submit Review) (Submit Update)

Effect: Two spectators each choose a card from your deck. You explain that you will conduct a psychic TEST. At that, you show four cards with letters printed on them. One side clearly spells the word TEST. To do this, you say, you will also call upon your invisible assistant from the spirit world. Of course, being from the spirit world, she must be DEAD. So said, you turn the cards over and show the other side of the cards clearly spells the word DEAD. You place two cards on one spectator’s palm, and the remaining two on the other spectator’s palm. When the cards area separated, duplicates of both selections are now printed on the cards! Everything can be examined! Comes complete with required special cards!

Peter Duffie is one of magic’s premier creators of (to use Steve Beam’s term) semi-automatic card tricks. These effects require a minimal amount of technical ability, yet they are commercial and pack a good punch. Two of Peter’s recent offerings are Dead Reckoning and Diablo. Dead Reckoning is an easy spirit writing effect that uses four laminated cards. The cards spell the word D-E-A-D on one side and T-E-S-T on the other. Even though the cards are cleanly shown on both sides, spirit writing appears revealing the identities of two selected cards. Diablo is a very unusual Lie Detector effect using a large card with a 4 x 4 grid marked on it. The grid is filled with the words YES or NO. A spectator is asked questions about the identity of a chosen card, and the answers to the questions are spelled out by moving along the grid. Curiously, the grid always knows whether the spectator is lying or telling the truth. At the end the name of the card is revealed in a surprising way. Both of these effects are very clever and are worth checking out.

(Michael Close – Magic Magazine, May 2004)
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Approx. Price: $14.95 (2005) ***

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