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Review of Secret Passage (DVD & Gimmicks)

Official Review

January 31st, 2015 1:59am
Reviewed by Josh Burch
I have to admit, I am a Jay Sankey fan boy. I have been a long time fan and I own a few of his products. Jay is a great magic mind. Secret passage is an interesting idea but I am a little confused concerning the effect. When I first saw it on the market I thought that it was neat that Sankey had come out with a new effect but even after watching the trailer I was confused as to what the effect was. Hopefully this review will help to clear things up for potential buyers.

Basically this is a gimmick that gives the magician the ability to push a marker through its lid, stretch the lid to twice its size, push a marker into its lid, and make a mini marker grow into a full size marker.

The gimmick will come to you a little squished, if you store the gimmick with the marker it should take the right shape after a little bit of time. Also it is some what fragile, it will work for hundreds of performances for sure but you still need to be careful.

Breakneck: A marker shrinks for an instant and expands back out to full size. The performance here is pretty awful, the effect is not clear. He started into the patter, performed the magic and moved right onto the explanation before I realized any magic had happened, even after I had played with the gimmick and watched the trailer it wasn’t clear to me that any magic had happened. I showed the clip blindly to a few other people and they were as lost as I was.

This felt like the kind of performance that my beginning magic students give, without any patter or motivation. It takes away from the trick considerably. I don’t feel like it is a bad effect at all and it is very practical. The way that Sankey presents it is confusing, and confusion is not magic.

Penetrating: With the cap on the back end of the marker the magician is able to push the pen through the marker cap. This is a very cool idea that is super visual and funky. The performance is much better in this demonstration and the handling is just as simple to do as the first.

Melting Point: The cap stretches in this and becomes twice as long. Jay acts like this is obscure to some extent, in my view it is one of the clearest handlings he shares on the DVD and it is just as easy to do as the others.

He tries to explain his thinking behind his lack of patter. All that I can say is that with another trick this thinking may apply but with this particular effect you have to give the audience something or you are bound to confuse rather than amaze. This is not the kind of effect you can do silently.

Invisibly: The marker cap jumps from the magician’s pocket back onto the marker. This is a fun little piece of magic to perform off the cuff during a larger piece of magic. It is not the kind of trick that will stop your show but it is a quick piece of magic that you can easily do with the Secret Passage gimmick.

Flippin Stick: Jay cover’s his ideas on the classic flip stick move. His handling has helped to improve the angles on my current handling. This is a great move and can really stun people. It’s not original to Jay but there are no crediting problems.

Full Grown: Jay presents this almost as a throwaway idea. It goes very quick, I was really intrigued by this and thought that it would have been nice to have a more developed handling of the trick.

Jay’s a pro and a legend in his own right. This is a cool gimmick and you can pull off some neat effects with it. There is some problematic magic theory taught here which will hurt the magicians trying to use this but if you want to achieve any of the effects taught then this is a viable resource.

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