DESCRIPTION: Everyone knows what a Sharpie is… So, it’s time to give it a twist! After you have used a Sharpie, ask a spectator to hold it tightly in their fist. Slowly rotate the pen as you pull it from their hand… it comes out impossibly twisted in the middle! Write the word, “twist” on a little piece of paper, and explain that you are going to prove the ‘POWER OF WORDS.’ You wrap the paper around a Sharpie and ignite it. With a flash, the Sharpie is twisted! Before you put away your Sharpie, you take a moment to hold it at the fingertips and twist it as if it’s made of candy.

JUNKIE THOUGHTS: Spiraled is a fun quickie to do with the ever-present magician’s friend, the Sharpie. The description and trailer above says it all. You offer your Sharpie to a spectator to sign a card or write a word. You take it back and give it a twist. The Sharpie comes out permanently disfigured in a twisted shape. It can be fully examined and you are clean. Great trick.

The idea of twisting a pen is not a new one. Lubor Fiedler did this years ago with regular writing pen. This was released separately and with the Paul Harris Astonishment set. I believe the grandfather of Sharpie magic, Jay Sankey, may have played with this plot as well. However to my knowledge Jimmy Strange is the first to apply the twist to a Sharpie.

The effect itself is relatively easy to do. There are some clothing requirements to do the effect as taught on the download. However, if you are adept at sleight of hand you could probably work out a method that does not rely on sleeves and elastic (see what I did there?)
The gimmick (if you call it that) is well made and is indeed fully twisted. A surprisingly unique and interesting object.

Spiraled comes with everything you need including a normal Sharpie (a thoughtful inclusion). The instructions are available as a download which is where this product starts to fall short. The instructions are terrible. I’m not sure if its Jimmy Strange himself on the video as all you see is a set of hands. This seems to be shot from a camera sitting on a desk with only one angle and no movement. The demo of the effect is terrible and does the effect no justice. In fact the demonstrator fumbles often and rarely accomplishes the effect without some sort of mistake. This is ridiculous and frankly unacceptable. What does it take to re-shoot, and re-edit a video? My nine year old son can shoot, re-shoot and edit video on his ipad in about 15 minutes. For a product to be released with this kind of instructional video is inconsiderate and in my opinion a bit of a ripoff. The video does get the point across and thankfully, the price-point is low but its really no excuse. There are four routines included and again the explanation is terrible. The routines aren’t bad (they’re actually pretty good) but it seems the demonstrator just came up with the routines about 10 minutes before he sat down with a camera to film them. He fumbles through each of the routines to the point where its clear he’s never performed them. (that must be why there’s no performance on the download). The final routine utilized the Lubor’s Lens which is from the original version of the effect. Spiraled does not come with the Lubor’s Lens so you’ll have to dig through your magic drawers or the Astonishment boxed set to find one. The effect is great and worth it if just to fool yourself. Lastly, it only comes in black Sharpie, so if you’re one of those individuals who use blue, red or green, you’ll have to change your tune… er, color.

FINAL THOUGHTS: Overall I enjoy the effect. Its easy, visual and interesting. It provides what David Regal calls a Unique Magical Item. The effect could even be done in the spectators hand which I think would be incredibly powerful. The price is decent (I mean you get a normal Sharpie with it so that’s a deal). While the download is a terrible example of instruction, don’t let that dissuade you from checking this out. If you like the effect give this one a try.

 

Spiraled by Jimmy Strange, $15.95 – Available from your favorite magic dealer. Dealers contact Murphy’s Magic, www.murphysmagic.com