Penn & Teller's Cruel Tricks for Dear Friends

Penn & Teller's Cruel Tricks for Dear Friends

To be honest I wasn’t all that interested in the tricks in this book. I was much more interested in the anecdotes. For instance how Teller, the more technical of the two, had to find certain breeds of cockroaches so they could be dumped on David Letterman’s desk.

The best chapter in the whole book describes how Teller’s scleral shells were made. This alone, to me at least, was worth the price of the book. If you want to try this at home, do what Penn says in The Most Unpleasant World of Penn & Teller video and only use a very fine grain plaster of paris when making the cast of each eyeball. Just the black and white photos make this look like a very unpleasant procedure indeed.

One section on the Plugs page at the back really dates the book, and possibly me:

Got a modem? Call MOFO EX MACHINA, the bitchin'est BBS in the jungle. Just call 212-764-3834, hit ENTER twice, and type the password MOFO (300 or 1200 baud, 8 bits, 1 stop, no parity).

I’m certainly not going to dial long distance to see if the bulletin board is still up and running.

If you’re a fan, and you can get hold of a copy, it is worth the money.

  • Reviewed on Sunday, 05 November 2006
  • Tagged with book review