Draven Reviews: Cody’s Comedy Book Test

approved Title: Cody’s Comedy Book Test
Artist: Cody Fisher
Producers: The Magic Estate
Retail Price: $64.95
Learning Difficulty: Easy
Length of DVD: 52 minutes
Notes: You’ll need to spend about another $50 bucks or so to get everything else you’ll need to perform this routine that isn’t a gimmicked magic prop.

•    Instructional DVD
•    Gimmicked Book

•    Play All
•    Scene Selection

Cody Fisher’s comedy book test has been audience tested and magician approved!  Imagine going onto stage and handing out a couple of different books for the audience to look through.  Three people participate, and all three times you read their mind to what word they are thinking of and the entire time the audience is rolling with laughter at the comedic byplay that you’re engaging in on stage.  This is a hilarious, customizable, stage or parlor perfect routine for anyone who wants to add an extra little comedic punch to their lineup.

The main prop that you get with this product is a gimmicked book that allows you to force a couple of different things on your audience members.  Since you know what it is that you are forcing the books that you use for the test can actually be anything.  In the DVD the books used are “The Notebook”, and “50 Shades of Grey”.  These are used to maximum comical impact, but if you were say doing a kids show it wouldn’t be hard at all to substitute out for different books and change the patter up a little to make it work.  So I’m a huge fan of the customization that you can do with this book test.

The book you receive is a small paperback joke book.  With proper care you can get a lot of use and long life out of it.  If you use the two books seen in the DVD, along with the marker, the card stock you’ll write your revelations on, and the gimmicked joke book you’ll be happy to know that the entire act will fit and travel nicely inside a simple brief case.  Minimal amount of props, packs small, plays huge, and with the right amount of interacting with your audience you’ll get a fun act that you can milk for five to ten minutes and not feel guilty about it.

The DVD is about an hour long.  Cody explains to you how to use the book, and how to set up the routine.  He pretty much hands you his script, and as I’ve said it’s a hilarious one.  With some cleaver word play, you’ll be able to keep your audience in stitches from start to stop.  The video starts off with a live performance of him doing the routine for a comedy club.  It’s helpful to see how he improvs where he needs to and where he’s just running off script.

Since you can use any book that you want for this book test you could in theory just use something off your shelf.  If you don’t already have “The Note Book”, and “50 Shades of Grey”, and you don’t want to use anything else you own, then you’ll be pleased to know that you can pick up a pocket dictionary, both books used in the video, and some card stock for about $50 bucks.  Amazon is your friend.

I loved this book test, and it will be one I’ll use in my own shows.  It’s easy to perform, with minimal sleight of hand required. You’ll need some audience management skills but nothing that should be too hard to master, if you haven’t already.  It’s a highly practical routine to perform, looks great in person, and it plays well for camera too.  I highly recommend you get this book test if you like comedy, magic, and mentalism all rolled into one!

When I give my product scores below I am measuring them on a scale of 1 to 10. 1 Being absolute the worst score possible, and 10 being the absolute best, making a score of five average. The four points that I grade upon is Product Quality, Teaching Quality, Sound & Video Quality and Overall Quality.

Product Quality: 7
The price on the product isn’t that bad, but you could be in to spend more money depending on what books you want to use and what you already have at your disposal.

Teaching Quality: 9
Cody is funny, entertaining, and easy to listen to.  It’s fun to re-watch the DVD just to see him perform for a live audience.

Video & Sound Quality:9
Great video and sound.

Overall Quality: 8
This is a great book test.  It’s funny, practical, packs small and plays big.  It’s versatile in performance and how much time you can get out of it.  This is a great product!

Have a product you want reviewed?  Want to see if it will stand up to the Draven Seal of Approval?  Contact me directly at draven@williamdraven.com to find out how your product could be on the next Draven Reviews!

About William Draven

William Draven is a professional magician and sideshow performer living in Los Angeles, California. Follow him on Twitter at WilliamDraven or on facebook at www.facebook.com/thewilliamdraven
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