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Review of DVS by Mark Calabrese

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Review of DVS by Mark Calabrese

DVS by Mark Calabrese

“DVS” is the first release in the “Criss Angel Presents” line of magic that is being released through Fun Inc. So what is this miracle system? (Say “DVS” a few times and you’ll get the play on letters and words.) It’s a mystery substance that allows you to perform some perplexing card locations with a borrowed deck. The kit comes with a small container filled with “DVS” and a DVD that offers instructions on using “DVS” and teaches several card tricks.

The Effects

The main effect is Blind Peek which can be performed while completely blindfolded - you really can’t see. You riffle through the cards and a spectator freely stops on one and then the cards are mixed by the spectator. While you’re blindfolded, you deal cards and amazingly, stop on the selected card. This is a great effect. The only downside is that you’ll need to be blindfolded, which you may not want to do in a lot of performing situations. But you can get away with turning your hand away. If you can see the cards, spectators will likely conclude that you are using marked ones.

In the best effect, KopyKat, you can ask a spectator to simply name a card. After the spectator follows specific instructions to freely select a card and reverse it while holding the deck out of view under a table (it can also be done behind the back) - the card is later discovered in the deck reversed. I’ve seen similar versions of this effect and can recreate it using office and other supplies. I do, however, find the method that relies on “DVS” to be slightly cleaner.

There are two effects where someone says “stop” as cards are dealt to the table. Of course, “stop” is uttered at the exact location of the selected card. In one version the magician says “stop,” and in the other, the spectator makes the command.

What is DVS?

Without giving away the secret, I can safely describe “DVS” as a method for marking a card in a manner that you can feel with your fingers. But it also serves a second purpose that to explain would give it away.

The substance comes in its own handy package so you can efficiently store and access it. Note that the case that is provided in the kit is different from that shown in the DVD instructions. The case that you receive is larger so you’re getting more of the “DVS” substance - there’s a generous amount that will last a good while. The case also features a lid that’s easily slid off to get to the substance. The instructions on the DVD are thorough and helpful. There’s no difficult sleight of hand required for the tricks but you will want basic card handling skills.

The DVS material itself is not identified or described (no surprise) so I don’t know what it is, if it’s non-toxic or what. Knowing the properties of DVS, I briefly experimented with some off the shelf solutions found in office and drug stores. Some worked in a similar manner but without a lot of experimentation, it’s hard to say whether they are true replacements for DVS.

Fry Magicians

Overall, I found that DVS accomplishes what the ads state. On the one hand, DVS offers a method that is out of the ordinary and not based on traditional means. As a result, the effects that you can perform with it are magician foolers. On the other hand, in many of the effects, you have to give spectators specific instructions on what to do with the cards and it helps when they know how to handle playing cards. As a result, while many lay people will not make good volunteers for these tricks, magicians who know how to handle cards and can easily follow your instructions will make good ones.

With DVS, you’ll fry laymen as well as magicians. But I generally find this system best for performing for other magicians.

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