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Doc Eason Card Under Glass (2 DVD set) Review

Official Review

July 10th, 2015 10:22pm
Reviewed by James Sanden
“Card Under Glass,” created by Heba Heba Al, is a classic of bar magic, and can be seen in the repertoire of many of magic’s luminaries. Now, Doc Eason, a bar magic legend, is teaching his version of this wonderful effect on DVD. However, he doesn’t just teach “card under glass.” He shares a 30 minute show, during which the card appears under the glass no fewer than six times. During the show he performs several classic magic effects, including a two card transposition, the ambitious card, triumph and the 3 card monte, with the selected card appearing under the glass multiple times throughout the entire show.

The performances seen on this DVD were filmed in front of several actual bar crowds, the first performance being an uncut video of the entire show. This is an extremely important element of the DVD set, as not only does this footage show how real world audiences respond to Mr. Eason’s material, but it also shows how he handles sneaking a selected card under his glass multiple times for the same audience.

While the repeat card under glass is a devastating routine, the remaining magic that comprises the show is fairly standard, so one might be tempted to speed through the sections teaching these effects. This would be a mistake. Listening to Mr. Eason describe the structure, organization and motivation for the various effects he uses, it quickly becomes clear the entire show is very carefully constructed to maximize the impact of the magic. He has spent 35 years learning how a bar crowd thinks and has revised and honed this set of effects to guarantee their success in front of what can be a very tough audience.

In addition to teaching the methods for the effects, Mr. Eason also touches on misdirection, maximizing impact with scripting, audience management, contingencies for when the performer gets caught loading the card under the glass, the psychology behind the show’s design, as well as improvising and dealing with difficult spectators. Given that much of the success of “Card Under Glass” is, frankly, a function of sneaking the card under the glass when no one is looking, Mr. Eason even provides a full performance with a “director’s commentary,” where he talks about what’s happening real time during the routine and how he responded to it in order to guarantee the show’s success. This last addition is extremely valuable to any performer looking to add this type of routine to their repertoire.

The set also includes a section called the “Tool Box,” where Mr. Eason discusses the sleights he uses in the show. A number of workhorse sleights are mentioned, including the top palm, spectator peek, top change, double undercut, double lift, milk shuffle, slop shuffle, a fancy false cut, half pass, the 3 card monte hype and ATFUS. While there were a couple of great handling tips offered, in particular a refinement for the slop shuffle that is fantastic, for the most part the instruction was surprisingly brief and short on detail. In fact, several of the explanations could barely be considered a demonstration of the sleight. Such little information was offered it was surprising these sections were included at all, especially considering the sleights were taught during the explanations. And given the level of performance ability required to perform “Card Under Glass,” the viewer of this set should already be able to do a double undercut without a walkthrough, so the viewer would have been better served had Mr. Eason talked more about the real work on these sleights, and the refinements he has learned from performing them over the years.

Unlike a great deal of the current magic being released, the material contained in this DVD set is “real world” magic, meaning it’s been performed thousands of times for real audiences in an unforgiving environment. Every routine is a reliable classic, performed by many magicians the world over. While the handlings are not particularly innovative, they are strong, bullet proof and designed for maximum audience impact. Then, of course, the viewer also gets a postgraduate education on how to get a selected card under a glass multiple times during a show. It should be mentioned Mr. Eason taught this same set of effects on volume one of his bar magic DVD set, but also included his multiple selection routine (which also has a moment when the card goes under the glass), so the potential purchaser has two possible sources from which to learn this routine. If this is an effect you’re interested in, Mr. Eason is the person from whom to learn it.

Available at your favorite Murphy’s Magic dealer

Product info for Doc Eason Card Under Glass (2 DVD set)

Author: Eason, Doc
Publisher: Kozmomagic Inc.
Average Rating:  (4)
Retail Price: $49.95
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Manufacturer's Description:

A classic Bar trick brought to new heights...

With its origins in the magic bars of Chicago, the card under glass idea was popularized by Heba Haba Al (Andrucci). Al taught his version to Bob Sheets, who, in turn, fooled a young man named DOC EASON. Doc spent the next 35 years perfecting the trick and the routine. Slipping a card under a drink with an audience watching his every move is hard enough to do once but, even after telling his patrons he is going to do it, Doc does it an incredible 6 more times!

Also included:
TOOLBOX - instructions on the moves and sleights and psychology.
INTERVIEW - "The Boisterous Participant" (or how to deal with hecklers)
DIRECTORS CUT - Doc explains every step of the routine while you watch him do it! Not just how, but the all-important why. It is an advanced lesson not only of card handling, but of CROWD handling.

MODULAR ROUTINE - each one of the tricks is strong enough to stand by itself. The full routine is over 30 minutes of entertainment! A roller coaster of fun and amazement!


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