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The Kaylor Option" by Jeff Kaylor and Michael Ammar
"TKO", a utility device by Jeff Kaylor and Michael Ammar, is a short-step up from the classic and, with some practice and a certain knack, can be the answer to many magical questions where vanishing is the best solution.
Essentially a jacketless Topit, "TKO" makes it possible to vanish small object in a blink of the eye and reproduce them afterward. Switches are a breeze, and cleaning up that gimmick, gaff, or extra coin is as simple as can be. All without pulls, magnets, sleeving, and the like.
Now, I have to be honest: I never could stand the Topit. Hey, I'm not about to denigrate the thing; it's one of the best hold-outs in magic and has been since its creation. But I live in a desert and before that in the tropics: perform in a jacket? Shoot, even just wear a jacket? Maybe two months out of the year. So the Topit never had a chance to grow on me; I value comfort over concealment.
So here come Kaylor with his "TKO", released in collusion with Ammar, who is a master of the Topit, and I'm told all I need to do is wear a button-up shirt and lo, a whole new world will be opened to me. And damned if the advertising wasn't right.
"TKO" works wonderfully without a jacket and just the dark-colored button-up shirt. It took me only a few minutes to get it set up and only a few more to move it from shirt to shirt. I didn't have to alter pockets, re-do seams, or anything else major (there is a little sewing involved, but it's minor and taught on the video).
Then the fun began. And I'd swear there were a couple of times during practice I almost fooled myself.
Using it is pretty easy. However, there's a certain knack or feel to using it, just as I would imagine there is with a traditional Topit. It's not hard to get down, but it will take a lot of practice: be prepared to drop lots of things before you get it just right (and even after, but there's a section on the DVD that covers this). I learned quickly the ad copy was right: routines are basically going to fall into two categories. Some routines are going to rely on misdirection to work, others are going to rely on simple mechanics. This means that pretty much any level of performer will be able to make use of this little magical gem.
But, as with such things, there are some drawbacks. First, you have to wear your shirt tail out, untucked, to be able to retrieve objects. This is far too casual for me in most of my performance environments so what I vanish has to stay vanished. This means my biggest use of "TKO" is to clean up a routine, ditch the gaff or gimmick, etc.
Also, "TKO" only works with small objects: think coins, a few cards, that kind of thing. I'd love to use it for stuff about as big and heavy as a full deck of cards (or an iPhone for that matter) but that's pretty much a no-no with "TKO".
Still, those are two minor things. Just being able to clean up my "Three-Fly" and pull off a few dozen routines requiring switches makes this one worth the money and then some. Reproductions would be nice, but aren't necessary for my use. You may feel differently.
"TKO" is a great, new generation of the classic Topit hold-out, one definitely worth a look if the requirements and drawbacks fit your needs. If they do, you're ready for some truly visual, miracle-class magic.
Kaylor Option" by Jeff Kaylor and Michael Ammar
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