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Jermay's Mind Reviewed

Four DVDs, over 8 hours and $75 bucks. Is it gem or is it rubble? Stay tuned to find out.

Effect/Method

Check out the ad copy for a list of effects. But in general terms, you're getting a whole bunch of "standard" mentalism effects with the Jermay touch. It's a whole lot more than just a touch. He's taken classic mentalism and brought it up to date and made it feel/seem even more impossible.

This impossible feeling comes mostly from his methods which rely partially on his adaptation of classic gimmicks, but mostly rely on verbal skills, attitude, timing and just generally being "ahead" of his audience.

You'll find all the classics here: Pendulum work, ESP cards, Tossed Out Deck, Drawing Dups, Q&A, Living/Dead test, and more. However, the last thing I want you to think is that this is just the same old same old . . . not even close. Jermay has added touches and subtleties and that extra "something" to methods that make them even more deceptive than you've, likely, ever seen.

Ad Copy Integrity

The ad copy is dead on. Oftentimes in ad copy you see statements like, "He is a virtuoso, and he conveys the illusion of real mindreading better than anyone. When he is onstage, he is simply hypnotic. He has devised some of the most groundbreaking mind reading material of the decade . . ." and you just have to assume that it's hype. However, in this case, it's absolutely true.

Even the ad trailer may make you think that it's over-hyped, but it's not. It really is that epic. I'm not even talking about liking or disliking the effects. I'm talking about methods that are so pure and so solid that the audience almost has no choice than to believe that you really are doing what you say you're doing.

Product Quality

The DVD set covers everything in great depth. He covers all the "standard" techniques used but then dives into the most important stuff which is the subtlties and scripting and preparation neccessary for creating the miracles possible with this material.

Before I dive more into the teaching segment, let me get out of the way a couple of problems. First, during the Zen Apprentice explanation segment, they stopped production and the camera man and Jermay had a conversation about the problems with the length of the segment and a few other things. Then they continued on as normal. That was a segment that clearly was meant for the cutting room floor.

The only other problem was the explanation for his design duplication. There were two things that happened during the performance that were never explained in the teaching segment. First was an effect that happened. My gut tells me it was a moment of extreme luckiness which would fit perfectly with the teachings and discussions covered on the DVD — Jermay is very good at harnessing and orchestrating luck. The other issue with the design duplication is a discrepancy in the method. It's a small detail, but it's something that needed to be covered, and it wasn't.

Those two issues aside, this DVD is flawless. Jermay covers everything. There are so many tips, tricks, ideas, concepts, systems, etc. that he is passing on to the willing student that it's easy to see why they say that he conveys the illusion of real mindreading better than anyone. This is the kind of DVD set that you'll want to watch over and over. There is so much information packed in here that you will absolutely have to come back again and again.

The DVD was shot beautifully with soft lighting and was very "warm" to watch. The whole thing was a pleasant experience, and thank you production gods for including a "play all" button.

Final Thoughts

After watching the explanations, I watched some more footage of another performance. In this case, I went into the performance knowing how it works, knowing the methods, tricks, etc. yet there was a moment in the show that was just so powerful and amazing that it moved me to tears. If you want to learn how to truly connect with your audience and truly create the illusion of mindreading, this is what you've been looking for.

Final Verdict:
5 Stars with a Stone Status of GEM!

23 Comments

  • Steve Black says:

    Hi Jeff,

    Really pleased to see you back and I really hope your health problems are in the past !! I agree 100% with your review . I bought this at the Blackpool Convention 2015 and am still learning subtleties even after several sessions watching/rewinding etc. This is not cheap BUT does represent fantastic value.This is a must buy!!

  • John Shimko says:

    After a review like THIS, how could I NOT order this? SOLD ME, ordered tonite!

  • Andreu says:

    Great review Jeff, and I’m glad you’re back! 🙂

    As usual the material of Jermay seems to be top quality. One of the most respected characters in the mentalism world.

    Best!

  • Jordan A' Vive says:

    I have it and it is absolutely amazing!
    So many useful information and strong routines.
    I use his tossed out deck in my show it is a great method!
    I also really like the ways that he gets the additional information.
    This is a good stuff.

  • Wow! First of all, I’m finding if it has Vanishing Inc name anywhere near the product, it is going to be great.

    Second, Are you kidding me? A ton of information for a great price. I’ve been looking at possibly doing a full mentalist show and this looks like a great addition to my library to learn from.

    Incredible!

  • Thanks, I’m not looking for beginner stuff so this is perfect.

  • Wilder Rua says:

    So with the two issues you found with the drawing duplicate. Will it prevent you from recreating the effect?

    • Jeff Stone says:

      @Wilder – Thanks for watching. To be honest, I’d have to go back and re-watch that section to refresh my memory on exactly what the issue was. However, from what I remember, I think I think that he still taught a full method for the effect, but that he left out a detail (or two) from the performance. I’m 95% sure that you’ll still be able to do the effect, but until I make time to re-watch it I won’t be able to say for sure.

  • Jeff Sherwood says:

    Great review as always Jeff. I am always looking for more mentalism techniques to add to my show. You sold me on this one. Kudos brother.

    • Jeff Stone says:

      @Jeff – Thanks! If you’re into mentalism, you’ll be very happy with the techniques on here. It’s the kind of thing you’ll want to watch multiple times.

  • Rich says:

    Is this, by now, too old of a product to comment on? I hope not! It’s an 8-hour DVD, so maybe you’ll forgive this lengthy comment…

    Your 5 star review enticed me to begin with, but when you put it at #1 on your 2015 year-end review, I had to get it. I’m not disappointed! It really is an amazing insight into what magic can be. In one of Jermay’s lectures to a group of insiders, he asks who considers themselves to be magicians, mentalists, or something in-between. How many of us who perform magic have ever considered the ramifications of what those differences mean? It’s not easy to say, “Pick a card, any card” and then go “coins across” and then say, “But seriously, let me read your mind.”

    So a curious thing I learned about myself is that mentalism, in general, is not what I’m cut out for. I mean this as a positive reflection on the DVD set; that’s how thorough this is. It’s not just enough to learn a new trick or method here; Jermay digs deep and asks YOU who you are as a performer.

    Thus, you are so correct when you say “If you are into mentalism you will be very pleased with this.” And even though I don’t think mentalism will ever be my “thing,” there’s enough here to learn presentation ideas, a philosophy or point of view, being yourself, and so on. So in that sense, there really is something for everyone here, mentalist or not.

    A few points of clarification for your readers:
    1) you mention “… they stopped production and the camera man and Jermay had a conversation about the problems with the length of the segment and a few other things.” This doesn’t happen during the Zen Apprentice explanation, but during one of his recorded live lectures on Disc 4. These lectures are fantastic, but it’s a little like the Oscars when someone is being rushed off the stage during their acceptance speech. Obviously Luke Jermay was given a set time to give his lecture before it was the next guy’s turn (we never see the next guy), and Jermay was interrupted and told his time was almost up. Frustrating for us at home is Jermay’s reaction: He still has other effects he wants to share! And we never get to them, ugh. Jeff is right that some of this should have been edited out, but it’s not as though Jermay was having a problem with his own production staff. The explanations are all here…except for one. (See #3 below.)

    2) Many of the gimmick ideas will require arts & crafts–nothing new, right? But also some require additional purchases, for instance an ESP deck, a special deck for the Tossed Out Deck, etc. Again, nothing new, right? You can’t consider this a fault, because obviously with a DVD project this massive he’s going to need to go beyond the every day. I only mention it because the ad copy mentions “a thirty-minute no-prop mentalism show.” That’s great, obviously! But who would be surprised to learn that the prop-less stuff is amongst the more difficult to master of these routines? This is not beginner material. (Again, not a complaint, but an observation.)

    3) The real point of my writing this reply: Jeffro’s mantra is to examine ad copy and verify its truthfulness. I’ve gone back to look at the description on Murphys Magic, and I think the OOTW effect needs clarification. Yes, the ad copy is spot on, promising Jermay’s “Out of this World Presentation.” The catch is that the method is not taught, only the “Presentation.” Now, for most magicians, OOTW is an established enough effect that there’s not much need to go over the method, and Jermay says as much in his “explanation.” (“I don’t have much more to say about this, just watch the performance…” i.e. presentation is all.) But even if you know the basic handling (i.e. the basic stack setup) for OOTW, you won’t be able to learn how to perform Jermay’s presentation. Jermay explains how his presentation solves many problems with OOTW, such as the fact that it can take a spectator forever to deal all the cards face down on the table. His solution is fantastic. But the deck is apparently shuffled fairly more than once, which you can’t do with the standard OOTW stack. Also, in the standard presentation there is the problem of uneven distribution of cards–what if there are 40 cards dealt in one pile and 12 dealt in the other? Jermay’s presentation is fantastic but doesn’t address any of this whatsoever; the methodology is up to.

    You can’t say the ad copy is “wrong”, but reading it you feel you will learn a new presentation of OOTW. Yes, you will learn a new presentation of OOTW, but you won’t be able to perform it just from what the DVD teaches.

    This is a near perfect DVD set. Even someone who isn’t a mentalist will learn valuable ideas from this Jermay offering. Like Jeff Stone, I highly recommend it. Even though I’ve learned mentalism isn’t quite right for me, I’ve also learned so much about what “magic” means, in all its senses of the word.

    • Jeff Stone says:

      @Rich – Thanks for the thorough review. Regarding the part where they stopped to discuss the length of the clip, you and I are talking about two different things. I’m referring to a segment that was during the explanation in the studio, not during the lecture. It was a part where they just forgot to snip it out during editing.

  • Geosin says:

    Hi Jeff
    Thanks for the review. Bought this on your 5* recommendation. SPOT ON! Great review, great product. Thanks for sorting out the wheat from the chaff.
    Keep up the good work….

    • Jeff Stone says:

      @Geosin – Thanks for watching! It’s funny that you mentioned wheat/chaff. When I first started writing reviews I was considering that as my tagline: Separating the Wheat from the Chaff. Ultimately I, of course, went with Gems and Rubble. 🙂

  • Hello, Jeff! Great Review.

    Yes, I think that have a problem with the explanation for Double Drawing effect. Jermay guess the second person’s name and show for the public the person who made the drawing. In the explanation it is not possible. Did you make contact with him?

    Leo.

    • Jeff Stone says:

      @Leo – Thanks for the comment. I haven’t spoken to him about this. However, at this point, I’d have to go back and re-watch the video to remember exactly what the issue was. It’s been too long since I’ve seen it. 🙂

  • Kristoffer Lindén says:

    You should watch his premise and premonition set it gets even stronger there.

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