Third Degree Burn

Jason Palter

Reviewed by Tom Lauten

"Jason Palter… here's a man who cares about producing a good product." That's what Third Degree Burn shouts from the moment you see the cover of the instructions through the plastic bag it comes in. Lift it up and the reassuring heft says more. Open the package and remove the photo illustrated booklet, DVD and white coin envelope containing the very clever gimmick and it's the "halleluiah choir"!

Here's what the ad copy has to say...

Third Degree Burn is the most mysterious, no force, impossible and versatile 'blister effect' you've ever done. Imagine flipping-out a spectator when a blister of any card they name appears on your finger and thumb!

Approach a group of people and ask someone to think of a card, then name it aloud. It can be any card they wish. There is no force. The subject is asked to truly visualize the card in their head; to burn it into their mind. Give them a lighter. After igniting the lighter, they are asked to visualize their card in the dancing flame. You briefly thrust your fingers into the flame, wincing with pain. For the jaw-dropping climax, you slowly turn your fingers around, to reveal the skin on your thumb and finger is now blistered in the shape of their freely-chosen card!

No deck of cards required.
No forcing; works with any card named.
Can be carried with you at all times, fits in your pocket, and is always ready to go.
No reset.

Comes complete and ready to go with the professional custom gimmick, instructional DVD, detailed manuscript, full routine, and bonus effects (including ideas that DO NOT require the use of fire).

This effect does everything it promises.

Now, credit where it is due, a number of other effects have offered a "blister effect" before and they work very well indeed, what's more it is a very convincing visual effect, but none have ever offered a free choice of 52 cards. I think the cool thing is that this is a card trick without cards… kind of an ultimate "do something" challenge effect, one that will leave spectators rather impressed indeed.

The gimmick isn't tiny but considering the fact that you can use it for 52 cards it is quite stealthy indeed. "Lasts a lifetime" stuff. When the work is done the blisters are about 10mm high and very readable. Some real design work, planning and consideration have gone into this clever device. Learning to work the gimmick well will happen over time, I'm getting pretty good with it and if you knew me that is some high praise indeed! Most "non-sausage fingered", upright walking folk will be at full stride with it in an irritatingly short period of time! It will take only a matter of seconds to "do the work" once you are proficient and it is done totally out of site so there are NO angle issues.

The instruction booklet is as clear as a bell. With unambiguous text and clear black and white photos you are taken through every step and stage of the basic work and quite a number of variations. No stone seems left unturned. The DVD is well produced and really gives you all the same level of support and demonstration visually… "You are NOT alone!" The basic effect is offered above in the description but there are some fine variations of presentations to suit all situations appropriate to this kind of freaky effect.

If you like doing bizarre style effects, effects that are there to get visceral reactions, you are looking at the right product. You will never run out of supplies, you will never have to buy another "widget" and with practice you will freak people out within seconds of seeing a live flame. This is an ideal trick for strolling and table magic (if your clients don't mind a bit of "eeeeewww" magic).

9.5 out of 10!

© Tom Lauten, May 2006


Tom Lauten is a special effects artist, magic consultant and reviewer.