I have already said in another review that the Pizza Paddle is my favorite paddle trick. However, this one is one of the most versatile effects, as it has a more universal theme of eye care. You could perform this in almost any close-up situation.
With this product, you get two pens and a ten minute download instruction video. The two pens are both gimmicked. With one pen, a dot in the middle of ”Dr Prace Eye Care” jumps to the end and then to the beginning. The second pen starts out where the first pen left off and the writing turns blurry when you give the pen a little shake.
The download video instructions are only ten minutes long, but the explanation is very good. Jeff cuts to the chase and gets to the explanation quickly. He covers the handling of a routine that starts with the first pen and ends with the second pen.
The quality of the pens is excellent. These pens should last you a very long time even if you carry them around with you every day. They are standard BIC pens that you could use as everyday pens for writing. If the ink runs out, you could easily take the insert out of any similar BIC pen and insert it into one of the two gimmicked pens.
The moves are really simple. You will need the same dexterity in your fingers as you would for any other paddle trick. If you have reasonably good hand movement, you should be able to do this. In fact, this product makes the paddle move easier than other paddle trick props because the cap of the pen serves as a guide to do the moves perfectly every time. The pens are very easy to handle.
The routine is very angle proof. You could do this entirely surrounded. The only angle that would present a problem is directly underneath.
As for ad integrity, it is mostly accurate, but..
In the ad, he shows the same routine that he shows in the explanation. However, there is a cut in the video because it looks like you can go from the dot moving from the middle to one end, then to the other, to the blurry letters. What you don’t see is that in the routine, he does the dot moving from middle to one end to the other end with one pen, then puts that pen in his pocket, then comes back out with a different pen for the last phase. I think it is still a great routine, but the ad copy was not accurate at that point.
The video does not include live performances. I don’t see it as a problem as he demonstrates what the routine should look like in a “studio” environment. So, you don’t get to see live audience reactions, but frankly, I don’t put a lot of weight on live reactions in a product video. Many times audience members in live reaction scenes are hyped up to over-react and that doesn’t give you any indication of what reactions you may get. On the other hand, it can be helpful to see how real audience members react, and that is not provided here.
I think it would have been nice for one of the pens to look un-gimmicked and be fully examinable. The video explanation says the second pen is examinable, but I say it isn’t. If you have it examined, they are going to see evidence of the method. They may not know how you are doing what you appear to be doing, but they will have a clue. I would suggest you treat these like any other gimmicked paddle and don’t hand them out for examination. See the suggestions section for a thought on how to handle handing out the pen for examination.
AT A GLANCE
The skill level required: 2 of 5.
Audience management skill required: 2 of 5.
Performance angleS: 360 degrees
The reset time required: None
The DIY time involved in advance: None
This is a really nice jumping gem style paddle routine using what appears to be a BIC pen from an Eye Care Clinic. The props are high quality and should last a very long time and the instruction is good. It is a great value for the low price.
Suggestions from the ReviewerAs I said in the review, I don’t think you should hand out either pen for examination. However, you could get a matching regular white BIC pen from your local office supply store and with very fine sandpaper, sand off all of the writing. Then, on your computer, duplicate one of the “Dr Prace Eye Care” labels so you can cut it out, roll it around the pen, glue it so it forms a cylinder than can be slid on and off the pen. print the label so it has the exact same writing on both sides of the pen. Use this as a final phase, either in addition, or instead of the second phase he describes in the video. Show the pen and as you hand it out for inspection, slide the cylinder out and hide the cylinder in your palm.