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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Tricks & Effects » » Final Answer v Bet Your Bucks (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Potty the Pirate
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I've been using Scott Alexander's "The Final Answer" for a few years now, and I just bought Cody Fisher's "Bet Your Bucks". Here is my comparitive review:
Both routines allow the performer to load a signed bill into a lemon right in front of the audience. I find TFA is more elegant, though a fair bit more ballsy. The FA gimmick is much more compact, but it requires quite a bit of practise to get it right. Essentially you have to learn one fairly simple sleight. BYB is sleight-free, and the loading is SUPER FAST! Still, FA also loads in mere seconds, overall I'd say BYB is a bit easier for loading.
Once loaded, FA is all over, you're now free to enjoy performing your routine. BYB still requires an additional "move". This is very easy, and sleight-free, but it is problematic, as this move tends to talk. I spent two days designing a gimmick to reduce the talking, and eventually came up with a virtually silent method here. I was rather disappointed at the loud noise on Cody's DVD, which could only be covered by loud laughter from the audience.
In FA you give the lemon to your helper BEFORE you take their money, you must show the lemon at this point, in the version provided.
In BYB you give the lemon to them AFTER you take their money. You don't have to show the lemon if you don't want to, it can be in a nest of boxes, or anywhere.
With FA the lemon can't be examined too thoroughly, though in my opinion, this is no problem, as long as the performer displays the lemon, the spectator who is helping can have a good long look and will see nothing. The spectator can cut the lemon open.
With BYB the lemon can be examined fairly thoroughly and cut open by the spectator.
The routine given with FA is very thorough, and includes several performances by Scott Alexander - stage, close-up, parlour. BYB routine is never demonstrated on the DVD, though the script is given. I'd say the BYB routine has MUCH less comedy and gags than FA, though each contains some great ideas.
Overall, I rate FA considerably higher than BYB. It takes more practise to learn, but BYB requires a lot of time organising props and method. Once learnt, FA is easier to set up. FA could be used to pretty much do the same routine as BYB, and vice-versa, but FA is stronger in my opinion, because the lemon goes out into the audience BEFORE the money is taken from the spectator.
So if you want the simplest, most elegant solution, FA remains top of the tree for me. The method is simple, but not as simple as BYB, which is the Bill to Lemon for Klutz's. Problem here is that Cody doesn't tell you how to deal with the talking problem, and I think many performers will need to address this matter.
There is also a way to combine the benefits of both methods. I realised I could offer a bill to lemon which would allow:
A lemon to be given out to the audience BEFORE the bill is taken from the helper. Or, the lemon can be given IN EXCHANGE for the bill.
A spectator signs and folds his own bill, the performer never touches it
A folded signed bill is fairly placed into a container, which is then never moved, and the performer never goes near the container again.
Audience member takes lemon from nest of bags himself and examines the lemon, it is sealed. He then cuts open the lemon himself to discover his signed bill.
This is all possible, I wonder if anyone can figure out what I've done to make this work? But I find the method too complicated, and will likely never actually use this method, as FA is so elegant already.
After several days of pondering over BYB, I've realised that for me the best use for this gimmick is a totally different trick. I love the BYB premise, and now I've decided to use the gimmick to perform Watch to Nest of Boxes. That's the other benefit of BYB, you don't have to use the gimmick for Bill to Lemon. In fact, you can make ANY small object appear somewhere impossible with BYB, with FA, you're pretty much restricted to a bill, or maybe a signed card.
So my ratings overall:
Final Answer: 9/10
Bet Your Bucks: 7/10
The Final Answer remains for me, just that, the Final Answer!
Doug.
shpf100
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I can't comment on FA or BYB, but I do own the Lemon Game by Doug Malloy and it is a fantastic routine, lots of comedy. Complete and is considered one of the top 3 bill to lemon routines out there. It seems that the final answer for bill to lemon routines comes down to 3 choices which depends largely on your performance style and or performance requirements.
Scott Alexander
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Thanks Doug,

The whole idea behind TFA was to give multiple ways to get the job done so the performer could build a routine. This means that the real "final answer" is to combine methods and routines to suit your own style and presentation.

S
-Scott




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MikeDes
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Thanks Doug. That was a really helpful post. I have been using TFA since it came out and I'm pretty happy with it. I was considering BYB but frankly, once I really like something and it has gotten in my act it takes a lot for me to replace it. I even use it for family shows with a child and a parent as the "volunteers". TFA is a great routine. Let me know if you ever want to see a video of it...maybe we can trade. Smile
Potty the Pirate
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Using the Bet Your Bucks gimmick to perform Watch to nest of boxes is going really well. This is actually far better for me, than using it for Bill to Lemon! Cody has come up with something really clever, and I'm sure other magicians will come up with more variations. You can use the gimmick to effortlessly steal/exchange ANY small object, a watch is easy! And I think the basic routine could be the same using a spectator's watch as using a bill. Destroying the watch will be the fun part, and it doesn't require fire to get the best laughs.
Although I rate Final Answer higher for Bill to Lemon, Bet Your Bucks is also really cool.
flimnar
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I actually prefer "Bet your Bucks", although they are both quality products.
To state the obvious, it really comes down to priorities and personal preference. I owned the Final Answer, and it really is terrific. Scott Alexander does an excellent job with the DVD's, and the gimmick is amazing. However, the "ballsy" aspect mentioned above was a bit above my comfort level, although I suspect it won't be for many performers. Bet your Bucks certainly provides a more comfortable and heat-free way to load the lemon, and that is--for me--a higher priority. Again, I realize everyone is different in this regard. The "talking" problem with Bet your Bucks is an issue, but one that can be resolved in a number of ways.

Flimnar
"This one goes to eleven..." Nigel Tufnel
kenodad
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I am putting my plug in for Whit Haydn's Teleportation device; clear premise, very funny gags and it happens twice! (to a lemon, then an egg). I have closed my shows with it for years; gets a great reaction. My only criticism is having the bill go to an egg, which is a bit messy, but probably worth it. I have left that phase out sometimes.
John
Ustaad
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Quote:
On 2007-03-09 02:51, Potty the Pirate wrote:
* In FA you give the lemon to your helper BEFORE you take their money.

* In BYB you give the lemon to them AFTER you take their money.


This is a strong point in favor of TFA.

However both effects, TFA as well as BYB, play equally strong IMHO. The selection of one of the two effects will really depend on ones priorities and personal preference & style of performance.

Smile
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"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." - Arthur C. Clarke.
Alym Amlani
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Quote:
On 2007-04-09 00:00, Ustaad wrote:
Quote:
On 2007-03-09 02:51, Potty the Pirate wrote:
* In FA you give the lemon to your helper BEFORE you take their money.

* In BYB you give the lemon to them AFTER you take their money.


This is a strong point in favor of TFA.

However both effects, TFA as well as BYB, play equally strong IMHO. The selection of one of the two effects will really depend on ones priorities and personal preference & style of performance.

Smile


Though true, Cody has a subtlety that addresses this...
Logic Defied
matthewjohnson1234
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I had the pleasure of seeing Alym perform "The Final Answer" and I don't mind saying....It Flawed Me!

Matt
Alym Amlani
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Aww shucks! Thanks Matt, that really means a lot to me. That was right before I purchased Cody's routine which is also *very* deceptive. I love using both - it just really depends on the mood I'm in Smile

I have a review of BYB here:
http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/searc......=4876552

We should really meet up soon for a coffee!
Logic Defied
takeachance
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I have the final answer, I really like Malloys routine in The Lemon Game I think its funny, is BYB as funny a routine as Dougs Lemon Game?
Scott Alexander
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Ok...here goes....
TFA is meant to be a treatice on how to get a bill into a lemon that will withstand casual examination by the spectator. The jokes, the lines, the misdirection,the routine, and even the timing aren't really the crux of the DVD's.

Those who purchace it are privy to what I call the the **** trap... which, I think, is the real bargain of the entire product. It is a no fuss, real world, down and dirty way of hiding the necessary work. This is what doesn't read in the ad. The real test is...can you walk into a real world situation, (bar, livingroom, close up, formal etc., take a lemon... and balls out, do a routine,which hides the no-no, and kills, even on the fly.... TFA provides that. To me, this is the litmus test of the BIL. Jarrow had it...I just took it to the next level.

I am not knocking any other product...all I am saying is... mine is a catch all...not just dedicated to a certain routine, with certain props, in a certain setting kind of investment. Mine crosses genres, conditions, and constraints.

In fact...I am going to do the routine in the WC Field's bar, at the Magic Castle next week and guess what...it will be different than what you see on the DVD...why...because it can be!

This is my point.

Love to those who get it,

Scott
-Scott




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Ken Dumm
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Scott's right,

The info on the DVDs, in my opinion, is the real bargain of the product. I've adapted his info and have even taken it to a new level in a walk-a-round situation without the supplied gimmick. I've very grateful to Scott for sharing this info. It's taken my BIL from "great trick" to a reputation maker.

I don't know Scott or benefit from the sale of any his products. Just a grateful receipient of incredible knowledge.

Thanks Scott.

Ken
Magic Arty
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I have Final Answer. I will never part with it. It is an awesome tool to provide BIL in any situation. That is nice!

Arthur
atsmagic
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Feeling real happy now!
Review King
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Quote:
On 2007-05-04 22:36, Magic Arty wrote:
I have Final Answer. I will never part with it. It is an awesome tool to provide BIL in any situation. That is nice!

Arthur


Arthur, do you have, or have seen Cody Fisher's "Bet Your Bucks"?

Christopher
"Of all words of tongue and pen,
the saddest are, "It might have been"

..........John Greenleaf Whittier
Magic Arty
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Chris, I have not. I am curious, however it doesn't sound like it has the versatility of Final Answer.
Do you or have you?
Arthur
atsmagic
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Feeling real happy now!
Review King
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Arthur I've seen them both. Both are of the highest quality.
"Of all words of tongue and pen,
the saddest are, "It might have been"

..........John Greenleaf Whittier
Fabio P
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Hi,
is there anywhere in the web a clip of both TFA and BYB?
I would be eager to see them
Thanks/Fabio
korttihai_82
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None of em has web demo and I doubt there ever will be. Final Answer was supposed to be performed behind the big lake in some tv show by Mr Alexander himself but I am not aware if the shot got into final show. You might try to PM about it to him. Same with Bet your bucks, I don't think there is demo video avaible of it and I doubt there will be one, but you might as well PM mr Fisher about his creation.

J-M
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