Mentally Exposed review by RomanosMentally Exposed is a new DVD from MagicTao with 5 quite different effects…

Bends Across

This is an interesting take on coins across incorporating a coin bend. First of all a coin bends in the spectator’s own hand. Then the bent coin travels to join a pile of normal coins – again in the hands of the spectator. I think this is a creative variation on the theme and the fact that the magic all seems to occur in the spectator’s hand makes it very strong. Some basic coin-handling skills are needed, but they should be within the reach of most with a little practise. And the moves are all demonstrated clearly.

Drawing Duplication

Does what is says on the tin – you are able to reproduce a picture drawn on a business card by a spectator. You will need to make a little gimmick to work this one – but it is very easy to make – if you can use a pair of scissors you should be ok. There’s nothing radically new here, but it is a nice simple way to achieve this effect and a few subtleties are built in.

Phone Trick

Some spectators make up a random phone number which you then call, and the person on the other end names a card that your spectator has already selected. This utilises a very subtle little principle – though you probably need a smart phone to use the principle. This is one of those ideas that is so simple yet is a killer. This was one of the few effects on the DVD with a live performance recorded – and it went down very well. I think you will love performing this. For me it is probably the strongest effect on the disk.


Spectator places your business card into the deck and the two cards it is trapped between match the prediction which was written on the business card before the trick started. A clever little gimmick (which you will have to construct) makes this a virtually self-working trick. For me, although the insertion of the card is very free, the routining is ever so slightly contrived. Although a table isn’t essential, it does make the handling slightly easier. I’m not sure the effect has the wow factor of some of the items on the disk – and I am aware of other (non-gimmicked) methods to achieve a similar effect. But I like the gimmick and wonder if it has other possibilities – especially as part of a bigger routine.

Switch Pad

As its name suggests this is a utility device which will switch one small item for another. It is easily constructed with only limited craft skills. The routine supplied is a bank note serial number divination – which is only really explained in outline. But I think other ideas will easily come to mind. Could be a useful and low-cost option for when you need to switch one paper/billet/note for another.

All in all I think this is a good value collection of some strong magic. Romanos is certainly a creative guy (although he’s not going to win any prizes for the names of these effects!) and has a knack for making simple gimmicks which can provide a strong effect. I think you will be performing one or two of these straight away, and the others are useful starting points for further development.

Mentally Exposed is available from Merchant of Magic (with thanks to MagicTao who kindly provided a review copy) for only £15.99.

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