Monday, April 23, 2012

Diversions for the Shell and Pea game by Dusty Johnson

So I recently spent $209.50 at the School for scoundrels store. I'm calling it the 'getting me out and performing the shell game purchase.' Shells, Pea can, Scoundrels Touch DVD, Two Books, and Don Driver's DVD on Building a tip. If you're wondering what the next few months worth of posts are going to be about. It's gonna be reviews of this stuff, mostly first impressions type stuff but still. So first up is the "book" Diversions for the Shell and Pea game by Dusty Johnson. I put book in quotes because it is hand-bound affair 19 pages long. As the website claims it contains two routines for the shell game and that's pretty much it. First impression is not a happy one. I was looking forward to adding two routines to my repertoire but... well the first one in the book claims to be magical routine that won't ruffle any feathers. I just can't see my self presenting a routine that ends with a sponge ball climax. So that's one routine down. The other claims to be baffling I haven't given it the hard look yet but nothing jumped out at me as not gonna happen. So I've paid $15 for one routine, it better be good. At least there's nothing in the book limiting my performance rights. I'll probably post again after I've read the whole thing and see what I can take away from it.

On of the good things about writing the posts weeks in advance is that it give me the chance to update them before they go live. I'm here to add I regret spending $15 on this book. It teaches you nothing about working the shells beyond the basic move. The instructions were unclear and confusing, the "real talk" patter was atrocious and unless you perform as children's clown you had better stay the hell away from the first routine in the book or you will have no credibility. For the first routine in addition to the set up for the shells you need a fourth solid shell and a gimmick-ed $5 bill and two green sponge balls. There is switch of one of the shells for the solid one which is unnecessary and suspicions. The whole act requires you to go to your pockets way too much. I can't help but think it at least creates the the door for that as a way to explain the "Magic" If you want a solid shell in the act have it in from the beginning and just never show the bottom until you are ready. No ones gonna think, "Hey, I bet one of the shells are solid". I'd have to see this routine done before a live non-studio audience before I'd believe it could work. I could not finish the the second one it actively confronts and insults the spectator and all the advice the author gives is, keep it up beat so not to upset the spectator.

Here's the only thing you could possibly take away from this book and I've learned it before. If you want the spectator engaged but not actively participating then tell a story. There I just saved you $15.

If you found this review to helpful or you thought it sucked let me know in the comments section.

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