Review: Dead Lock by Michael Murray

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What is Dead Lock?
Dead Lock was initially launched at the 2019 Blackpool convention and sold out immediately. Since then, demand for this product has been so high that each subsequent delivery has sold out before it has even hit the shelves thus making it the singular most successful MindFX release ever!

Using the custom manufactured Dead Lock gimmick you will be able to give your participant the ability to intuit the specific four digit combination that opens the padlock (supplied). Alternatively, you can use this lock to correctly intuit your participants exact date of birth, having them open the lock by entering this date as a four digit combination.

Pushing things further, an exclusive Facebook group has been created for owners of this product which houses bonus routines and additional handling suggestions that are bound to delight those who purchase this item.

Note: Access to a 35 page e-book is included with purchase.

REVIEW

Dead Lock by Mind FX and Michael Murray is a superb, specially made combination lock that allows for incredible mind reading effects. The combination lock comes tucked away in a velvet bag inside a nicely designed tin container. The link to the video instructions are in the top, inside lid of the tin. The 31 minutes online video instructions feature Michael Murray performing the two main routines in studio and then explaining them. 

The first routine is where the spectator becomes the mind reader. The performer sets the four row combination lock to a certain combination that will unlock it. You ask the spectator to intuit the combination of the lock that the performer set the lock to. The performer gives a hint to the spectator that the lock was set to the month and day of a birthday. The spectator is given the lock and tries to pull open the lock to show that it is indeed locked. The spectator is then asked to use any four random numbers that are different than the four digit numbers that make up the month a day that the spectator originally thought the combination was set to by the performer.  The lock does not open. The spectator is then given an option to either try to again use a random set of 4 numbers or to use the month and day that he originally was thinking about.  The spectator can keep on choosing to use random numbers and no matter how many times he tries, the lock will not open. The spectator can then use the month and day of the birthday that he initially intuitively thought was the combination. The lock opens. The lock will only open to the month and day that the spectator initially, intuitively thought the performer set the lock combination to.

No questions are asked. There are no switches of locks. No electronics. After the performer initially sets the lock to the 4 digit number, the performer never touches the lock again. The lock from then on is only handled by the spectator. The spectator himself turns the wheels to the numbers. The spectator himself opens the lock. This is a great effect.

If you do not like the spectator being the mind reader, as I don’t, the second, alternate handling, is a direct mind reading routine where the performer intuits the exact birthday that the spectator was merely thinking. The spectator is asked to think of the month and day of anyone’s birthday. No questions are asked. Nothing is written down. The performer then openly re-sets the combination of the lock to the numbers that the performer thinks will match the exact month and day of the birthday that the spectator was only thinking about. The spectator is given the lock to try to open it and it is of course locked. The spectator is then asked to try any four random numbers that do not match the date and day that the spectator was thinking about. The lock does not open. The spectator can keep on trying to open the lock using different, random numbers but the lock still does not open. The spectator is then asked to turn the combination lock to the date and day of the birthday that he was thinking about. The spectator is then able to open the lock. Brilliant. This is direct, pure mind reading at its best.

There is a bonus routine in included but it is a bit more involved, and I personally would not do it. It also comes with access to a 35 page ebook. There is also a special Dead Lock owner’s Facebook page with additional thoughts and ideas. 

The methodology is extremely clever and seamlessly blends with the routines. The lock itself a nice looking brass combination lock. There is absolutely nothing suspicious about this lock. It looks like a normal combination lock that you can find in any hardware store.

The lock comes in three sizes: original (small) = 20mm x 61mm (height includes clasp), medium = 28mm x 77mm (height includes clasp) and large = 38mm x 88mm (height includes clasp). For close-up I prefer the original (small). You can use the medium for close-up, parlour or even stage. The large is strictly for stage use.

There are also two different versions available. The US version and the standard version. If you are going to use this lock in the United States, you must get the US version. In the USA, people write and think of the month first and then followed by the day. Due to the methodology used, people using this effect in the United States must get the US version. Likewise, in Europe and elsewhere where people think and write the day first followed by the month, the standard version should be purchased.

Dead Lock is my favorite lock effect. It is easy to carry and easy to perform. The fact that the lock will only open when the spectator turns the numbers to the thought of month and day of the birthday he was only thinking about and will not open to any other random number, really fooled me. This is a wonderful effect and extremely well made. I purchased several. Highly recommended.  10 out of 10 lucky charms.      

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ning
Ning Cai is a Singapore Literature Prize nominated author, who was also long listed for the Epigram Books Fiction Prize in 2016. A bestselling writer, she is also recognised for her illusionist/ escapologist stage character Magic Babe Ning, and recognised by Channel News Asia as South East Asia's first professional female magician.

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