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The Inexplicable Thrift Store Find (Gimmick and online instructions) by Phill Smith
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comic-book
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Looking for a self-working trick? Here it is!

The Inexplicable Thrift Store Find, created by UK-based Mentalist Phill Smith, is a bizarre and intriguing self-working piece of magic. It is based around a fictional vintage novelty, the kind advertised in the back of the comics of yesteryear. The trick is a simple game - the spectator rolls a random number on a totally fair die, and follows the pre-printed instructions included in the game. As the game plays out, it finishes with a punchy, surprising finale that reveals that the player's random actions were predicted long before the game began - not by you, but by the game itself.

The Inexplicable Thrift Store Find resets instantly and everything can be examined by the audience. It works every time, and no one knows how... except you.

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A Charming Little Gem Report this review
Pro Privacy ON (login to see reviewer names) on January 15th, 2018
Like everything Phill Smith does, this is a beautiful product with a unique approach. You receive a made-up game presented as a nostalgic thrift store find complete with a carrying box, some small cards, a game piece, and a 20-sided die. Nothing is gimmicked. Phill is a professional graphic designer, and it shows.

The cards are laid out, and your spectator rolls the die to genuinely select a number. (They can actually just name a number out loud, but the die is a better approach for several reasons including the board game plot.) Based on the number, an initial card is arrived at. Each card then directs what happens next, until the final reveal that predicted everything in advance.

Having performed this several times now, it's been somewhat more charming than amazing. Think "head scratcher" more than "pants wetter." I'm going to play around a little with the patter to see if I can punch up the reveal. And despite being presented as a board game that "works every time," it can't really be repeated for the same audience. (To be clear, though, it does work every time. It's just that repeating it would likely tip a key part of the method.)

I think this is a great trick to use as a change of pace in a close-up performance or an informal gathering, especially to transition from magic to mentalism. It's also perfect to leave on your coffee table at home when guests come over.
It's participatory (spectators roll the die, move the game piece, and turn over the cards) and suspenseful, easy to do, completely examinable, and you could even carry the cards in your wallet if you wanted to do without the box.

The method is based on Phill's published work, but even if you're familiar with it this is an application with high quality props. So you're also essentially getting a method that can be applied in many seemingly unrelated effects without using the board game props or plot. If you want more explanation of the method or lots of other effects, the book (mentioned in the tutorial video but not named here to avoid exposing the method) is well worth it.

Given the combination of originality, production quality, charm, utility, portability, and ease of performance, this gem is well worth the price.
6 of 6 magicians found this helpful.
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Beautifully designed and clever Report this review
Verified buyer Pro Privacy ON (login to see reviewer names) on March 2nd, 2018
Phill Smith is an extremely sharp mentalism creator and writer. Since I am familiar with his writings, when I saw him perform this, I knew immediately which clever technique of his made it work. And that technique is brilliant. Positives: The props look great, the patter backstory of what the thing is is terrific, it is nearly self-working, and it is indeed puzzling. Negatives: It does work every time, but it works exactly the same way every time. So if you perform it for a group of folks, they will undoubtedly be clamoring for you to repeat it. You can't. And finally, while this is a wonderful little trick, I think that it's more of a mentalist/magician stumper than a showstopper for laypeople. It's not something like bending a coin using The Xpert or doing PowerBall 60. For me, those things make laypeople go crazy; the effects look spooky-real. You need to really work on this to make it spooky-real, but even then it's more of an impromptu one-off or middle-of-the-close-up-act thing. Which isn't bad at all...
2 of 2 magicians found this helpful.
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Pretty sweet Report this review
Verified buyer Pro Privacy ON (login to see reviewer names) on January 20th, 2018
This is a nice little effect. Practically self working and pretty much fool proof. The method could be applied to other effects.

The props are very nice, well made and look great.

The only problem I can see coming up is that the trick is really not repeatable for the same spectator or group. Since the spin is that it works every time and nobody knows how. People may be interested in seeing it work if a different number is selected but the outcome will be exactly the same, so no bueno.

With that being said I really like every other aspect of the trick. You just have to be able to say no.

I would give this somewhere between 3 and 4 stars. It's fun,easy to do and a head scratcher but it's not gonna blow minds.
2 of 2 magicians found this helpful.
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VINTAGE MENTALISM AT ITS BEST Report this review
Verified buyer Pro Privacy ON (login to see reviewer names) on January 18th, 2018
Phill Smith has created one of the GREATEST, original effects that I have ever learned. The Inexplicable Thrift Store Find is a pure mystery. No one knows how this works, except the game and YOU! ADD TO CART & Keep Reading!

I will not expose any of the workings besides what Phill has released; especially as I purchased this completely blinded - not knowing what I would be getting, however I am so glad I picked this one up as I love Phill's work, I couldn't be happier. This is such a vintage, old back in the day style props that you receive & the teaching is flawless. Phill covers everything in one video straight through for almost 20 mins or so. I promise you will be adding this to your kit or arsenal the moment you finish the video.

Oh by the way did i mention that this is COMPLETELY SELF WORKING; EXCEPT! For a few minor things that have a tiny bit of memory but honestly - Phill has already taken care of for you, so if you are a mentalist, or are already in mentalism you may know what I am referring to so there's no worries on the memory part, but the best thing you can do is practice practice, practice! P3. Please, don't worry about this part - it is so minor that once you receive this and go through the process of the tutorial it will blow your mind from the way things start to escalate with the phases as the effect builds stronger and stronger as you continue on throughout the ITSF!

I give this my strongest recommendation & know you will all love the creativity and originality that went into this effect. Don't go digging for information. If you like Phill's work, and think you would like to see what this mystery is all about there is no need to hesitate, take the opportunity while it is here you will be glad you did! I can't wait for Phill's next release coming shortly on the Alakazam Live Product launch! Order The Inexplicable Thrift Store Find NOW!

- Andrew
2 of 2 magicians found this helpful.
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