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The Clones From Brazil

The Clones From Brazil
Copyright 1981 by Ron Bauer

"...C'mon, you rotten little... Say 'Heil!'... C'mon... Heil!..."

But, no matter how much he squeezes it and teases it, the tiny puppet-like orange sponge ball, its angry plastic eyes glaring over a wedge of black sponge mustache, says nothing...

"You probably don't know what this... No, it's not a sponge ball with a face. It's a CLONE!... I made it! I bought the formula from a wildlooking old BRAZILIAN guy... That is, he SAID he was from Brazil... but he spoke with a GERMAN ACCENT...

"Now that I think about it, if his hair and mustache would have been BLACK instead of GRAY... This CLONE could be HIM!... Of course, HE didn't have ORANGE SKIN... and he was TALLER!

"Anyway, I made up some of the formula... CLONE JUICE ... Now I can make a CLONE whenever I please... I'll show you."

The magician produces an EYE DROPPER containing ORANGE FLUID... "CLONE JUICE." He squirts it into his hand... another CLONE appears.

"Thought I was KIDDING, didn't you?... These little devils are FUN, too. Watch this... It's called CLONE TOGETHERNESS... I hold one in this hand, one in this, and... No. That won't work... I'm one hand short for showing you what I mean... May I use one of yours?"

A spectator offers a helping hand, which is immediately filled with one CLONE, the other being held by the magician.

Using his free hand, he again brings the EYE DROPPER into play... VISIBLY sucking one CLONE from his hand and squirting it into the spectator's!

"...It's a simple case of knowing your RECOMBINANT DNAs... the rearrangement of GENES, and STUFF LIKE THAT... I don't know what any of those words MEAN, but the old guy with the GERMAN ACCENT told me to experiment until I get the right design... For example, hold them again and I'll demonstrate how RECOMBINING works..."

The spectator holds the CLONES tightly, but instead of smaller, they feel as though they're getting BIGGER!

"Oh, Oh! I think I know what's wrong. This idea is so new, there must be A FEW BUGS IN IT! Open your hands and let's see..."

There are BUGS IN IT, all right. About a dozen red and black sponge LADY BUGS have joined the two CLONES held by the spectator.

"Oh, well. I'm not discouraged... After all, scientists have only known about combining GENES for a relatively few years. And, they're always DESIGNING better ones. But there's one thing that bothers me... Instead of calling these things CLONES, I wonder why they don't call them DESIGNER GENES?!"


Click to Enlarge

And, that's THE CLONES FROM BRAZIL which I wrote for Patrick Martin in 1981. Although I've made certain changes in Patrick's original CLONES presentation, the trick is still unmistakably... his concept. And what a GREAT concept. It has all the surprise and participation features of its predecessors, MULTIPLYING RABBITS and SPONGE BALLS, but the EYE DROPPER idea tied into the CLONE premise is a major leapforward for this classic effect from a theatrical standpoint. It provides the needed logical connection for staging and building a complete PLOT.

Hence this version. THE CLONES FROM BRAZIL, as you can see from the illustrations, resemble a particularly notorious character from recent history. Rumors arise from time to time that he, along with certain cohorts, is still alive and well in South America. As a matter of fact, a movie called The Boys from Brazil was made on a related theme. Could this film be the basis of my original thinking?... YEP!


Put the BUGS and the EYE DROPPER in the right jacket pocket. One CLONE goes in the left jacket pocket. Keep the other CLONE in a BAGGIE.

  1. Show the BAGGIE. Take out the CLONE. Put him on the table, squeeze and poke at him a few times.
  2. Put the BAGGIE into the left jacket pocket, at the same time secretly palm the other CLONE.
  3. With your right hand, bring out the EYE DROPPER and show the ORANGE FLUID.
  4. Squirt the ORANGE FLUID into the left hand which opens to show a CLONE. (The details for this move are in the original CLONE instructions.)
  5. Put the empty EYE DROPPER into the right coat pocket. Pick up one CLONE with the right hand and put it into the left, which is held palm down as in the illustrations labelled THE RB SPONGE PASS. Don't do the pass yet. The action of the PLOT is structured to prepare the audience for the later action.
  6. Pick up the other CLONE with the right hand and close your fingers around it. You now have both hands closed, palms down, each holding a CLONE.


    About 1959, for the Don Alan version of the Benson Bowl, I worked out this technique to solve a certain problem. During one part of the trick, a sponge pass of some sort was required without cover of the wand. Since the conditions I was most frequently under were surrounded, I especially needed cover from those watching over my left shoulder. So, I developed this UPSIDE DOWN version of the standard sponge move.

    I never thought much about it over the years until this CLONES trick came out. Once again I needed cover on all sides. Look at FIGURE 1 and 2. They show the correct way to hold the CLONE, both for purposes of showing the "face" to the audience and making the PASS possible. Actually, FIGURE 2 shows what you do as your left hand moves slightly to the right in FIGURE 3. Sandy Kort's illustrations show it better than I can tell it. Just remember that the audience is prepared for this handling in Step 6. Match the PASS to this action.

  7. Put both CLONES back onto the table. Ask a spectator to hold out a hand palm upward. (Always have the spectator put out a hand before you proceed in tricks like this.) Pick up one CLONE with the right hand and apparently place it into your palm-down left hand as in Figure 3 of the RB Sponge Pass. This time, however, as the left fingers close and mask the right fingers, the right fingers straighten. This action brings the CLONE back near the fingerpalm. See Figures 1 and 2. Simultaneously turn the right palm downward... close the left hand as though holding the CLONE... as you reach for and take the CLONE on the table with the right hand. This action automatically compresses both together. Then take these, as one, and place them into the spectator's hand, directing him to close it and turn it over like yours. All this action must blend.
  8. Remove the empty EYE DROPPER with the right hand and show it Then apparently suck the CLONE out of your left hand and squirt it into the spectator's hand. (Once again I refer you to the CLONES instructions.)
  9. Put the EYE DROPPER back into the right coat pocket and secretly steal the BUGS.
  10. Open your left hand to show that the CLONE is gone. Ask the spectator to open his hand to show that both CLONES are now together.
  11. Help the spectator hold the two CLONES in both hands, secretly adding the BUGS.
  12. Tell the spectator to open his hand to reveal two CLONES and the dozen or so LADY BUGS.
  13. Put all of the CLONES and BUGS into the BAGGIE.
  14. Thank Patrick Martin.
Copyright 1981 by Ron Bauer