Draven Reviews: Thru by Daniel Bryan

 approvedTitle: Thru

Artist: Daniel Bryan 

Producers: Mystique Factory

Retail Price: $34.95 USD

Learning Difficulty: Easy

Length of DVD:  39 Minutes

Features:

  • Play All
  • Introduction
  • Performance
  • Explanation
  • Copy Method
  • Dummy Method
  • Credit Card
  • Paper Money
  • Routines
  • Phone Version
  • Credits

Thru is a visual penetration effect that passes two organic objects that most people carry on them through each other.  At the end of the effect everything is examinable.

Magicians have been figuring out how to put an object through a dollar bill without damaging the bill for some time.  It doesn’t matter if it’s cell phones, bank cards, pencils, or razor blades, the penetration plot is a classic.  I’m sure Thru is going to also become an instant favorite among magicians everywhere with no small help of the magician Troy who has recently performed this effect on TV- a marketing point the DVD is quick to point out to you.

Like a lot of magic these days there’s going to be some build it yourself goings on with the gimmick you’ll need to construct in order to perform this effect.  Regrettably watching the guy on screen fumble his way through explaining what you need to do is about as exciting as watching paint dry but once you get the right idea you’re pretty much set.  There are a couple ways you can make the gimmick, and those are all explained on the DVD.

The illusion is strong and anyone who has performed the classic pen through bill routine will tell you that the reactions are worth it.  I liked having the option to use different objects other than a pen to perform the effect.  Granted I hated having to build the gimmicks, because I suck at craft projects and I’m probably the last person you want to trust with a sharp knife.  For me I found the bank card or business card version more preferable, but the cell phone just looks so good on camera. Yes the items can be examined at the end, it just takes a little clean up and you’re good to go.

The effect is a practical one to perform.  You can perform this in front of real audiences, not just the kind you get on TV sets, and you can do this almost surrounded.  You obviously don’t want anyone watching over your shoulders, but your front 140 degrees should be good.   Thru can be performed as a standalone illusion, which makes it great for walk around and street performers, or with a little work it could be built into a close up or parlor act.  It’s visual enough that it can play from a distance and still looks just as impressive up close.  Prep time for this illusion is minor and it resets quickly between performances.  I’m not sure if this is strong enough to be a closer of an effect but it’s certainly a great opening piece.  Overall I was fairly impressed with this trick.  I’d recommend it.

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 magic is good, but you’ve got to build a gimmick.

Teaching Quality: 2

The DVD could have been better.  The host was dry, boring, and painful to watch as he fumbles his way through the effect.  There’s no energy, no emotion, and no entertainment in watching him. This 40 minute DVD could have easily been replaced by a page or two of written instructions.

Video & Sound Quality: 2

The video quality is similar to something you’d expect from a home production.  The lighting isn’t quite right, and the shadow of the camera operator can be seen pacing back and forth behind the guy giving the instructions on how to make and perform the trick.

Overall Quality: 5

I’m going to force this product to pass on grounds that the magic is good, and that shouldn’t be penalized by a poor choice for host, or shoddy production standards.  Penetrations are classic plots in magic and this modernizes the X through Bill routine by giving you options to use a range of organic items other than just the usual Pen thru Bill we’re all accustomed to.

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!  Don’t forget to like my blog where all my reviews are posted at www.williamdraven.wordpress.com.

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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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