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You Know Who card by Paul Brook

PostPosted: Sep 24th, '08, 14:16
by Tom Lauten

I have written my review here but there is more from others in the review request thread...

They say:

A single card is removed from the wallet of the performer.
The card contains five Polaroid photographs each of a different person; their faces have been blacked out. One of these five people has committed a bank robbery.
Is it possible for your volunteer to correctly name the culprit?
Could they be influenced to select the criminal?
The volunteer is asked to look over the five suspects and name the guilty party. This is a 100% free choice and no equivoque or verbal subterfuge is used in this truly free selection.
Once the selection is made the performer smiles wryly and proceeds to proves that the selected person is in fact the robber.
Besides proving that the volunteer is correct, the performer can also explain exactly how the volunteer was influenced in his/her choice!
This effect is an ideal way to explain the power/process of influence.
Works 100% of the time!
No other objects are needed other than the You Know Who card.
A very strong piece of mentalism that you can carry EVERYWHERE!

I say:

Well, Paul Brook knows how to make up some seriously intriguing mentalism products. Following the release of his Thought Reader Card, Paul has offers us his “You Know Who Card”.

As you can see from the description this is a single “credit card size”, laminated card that allows you to perform a “psychological influence” demonstration/routine. This is a one-on-one effect.

The artwork on the card is very well done. It seems Paul has (once again) brought to bear the results and observations from his development and extensive “field-testing” of the effect to produce a most efficient and useful series of graphics to achieve “what needs to be done”. The illustrations on the card are just that, drawn illustrations and some people may feel it is a bit “prop-y” but if presented in the context of “a visual example of the techniques used to influence people” I think its manufactured look can be justified.

The instructions and guidelines are comprehensive to say the least! You will get the card in a tidy little envelope with instructions allowing you to download the support material from an online location. Paul outlines how the routine plays out, the basics of the workings and a script for every “eventuality”.

It must be clear that this is NOT a magic or out-and-out mentalism effect per say. This is a means of being able to illustrate the effect of how a person can be subtly “influenced”, by a number of factors, to arrive at a pre-determined and specific selection. Paul has made sure that one can perform this, every time, without quibble or vagueness. You will need to remember a series of details and ways of describing things but this is no hardship and Paul’s documentation gives you all you need to know and more.

This is a good ice breaker for close up performers who present their mentalism performances with a “psychological influence” approach. This is not a show stopper or closer but rather a (technically) foolproof, plausible convincer for the premise of an “influence” set.

The workings and thoughts behind “You Know Who” are very clever indeed. Some serious thought and work has gone into the card, graphics, support materials… the whole thing really, and the product is first rate. You will need to practice your presentation and get your approach and scripting straight in your own head to make the most of the wealth of material within this modest card. Embrace the premise fully; practice and you will have a really strong starting point for your “mental influence” performances.

PostPosted: Sep 24th, '08, 15:00
by Mandrake
£15 may seem a stiff price for what you get but it's one of those items which starts the creative juices flowing freely. There are plenty of additional and alternative ways of presenting this and, even if it does seem like dumbing down a bit, an out and out magic effect can be done with just a little bit of thinking outside the box. Or in this case, envelope!

PostPosted: Sep 24th, '08, 15:28
by Tom Lauten
I agree.

There is a danger that if...

1) One does not use it (as it stands) as a precursor to an influence style of presentation

and or...

2) If you don't make that influence spin gripping enough

and or...

3) If you do present the effect as a stand alone "mentalism trick" could get an "Oh right..ok, yeah I see what you mean... that's interesting." response.

Even with the effect the way it comes out of the package that could (I feel) be a risk with a couple of the possible outcomes, not with all, some are very gratifying no matter what, but a couple could be less gratifying if handled weakly.

So yes, I would think you would need to redress the presentation and the reveal in a more "cut and dry" "proof-positive" way for a "one-off", casual mentalism presentation.... or use it the way it comes as that launch point for an "influence" set.

PostPosted: Sep 25th, '08, 17:39
by Romy Rafael
I almost buy this...but after carefull tought....I'll stick doing Quiin's DUPLICITY........since I already get the hang of it...and it is less propy......I dont need to pull out five Picture

in the audience mind & eyes...I only use two index card/Bussines Card and a Pen

PostPosted: Sep 25th, '08, 19:15
by Beardy
this isnt 5 pictures sire, it is one card, with 5 pictures and everything needed printed on it

PostPosted: Sep 26th, '08, 10:55
by storm01
At this moment in time I personally dont think there is anyone better producing new "stuff"

Some of Pauls ideas may be borrowed from other sources, but the psychology he uses to add depth and meaning to his scripts are amazing.

PostPosted: Oct 8th, '08, 15:37
by lindz
Usually I make 1 great pirchase a year and 50 that range from good to very poor indeed or good but don't suit me, well I already had my great purchase this year and that was the extractor so wasn't expecting to much more from this year well I have to say I now have 3 great effects purchased this year, The extractor being one, Paul's thought reader card being 2 and this being the 3rd also on a side not Simons directors cut coming a very close second behind all these so I have had my fair share of great magic this year which is very unusual. This item the you know who card is a thing of pure beauty which is staying in my stealth assassin with the thought reader card and straight away there is a 20 minute act for whenever I need it between these 3 items. One thing I will say about Paul is that the e-books supplied are very thourough as in they have 50-60 pages on this one little card when most e-books of this type have only 10-15 pages so Paul does go through every little niggle,nuance,sublety very very thorough indeed to give you your money's worth and to make you understand how it works properley. All I can say is put your prices up Paul this and the thought redaer are worth 10 times the amount paid plus I wouldn't want these getting in the wrong hand's some seriously strong stuff here, if you could not guess already 10 out of 10 from me.

PostPosted: Oct 8th, '08, 15:42
by Replicant
I agree with lindz; Paul's PDF instructions are among the best I have ever seen supplied with a magic trick.

PostPosted: Oct 15th, '08, 01:23
by Lee Smith
Credit card time............