“For everyone watching. If you have a dream, never give up believing in your dream, living your dream, and doing something everyday to make that dream happen,” announces Ryan Hayashi as he prepares for the final trick in a superb card and coin routine, “but remember, no matter who you are, no matter how hard you work, or how good you think you are at what you do, there will always be an Asian who takes it to the next level.”

Such is the gut-busting punchline to the “epic monologue,” Hayashi delivered during his excellent Fool Us performance. The routine was an impressive, yet hilarious take on one performed by Penn & Teller themselves. 

Another standout line:    

The amount of mental energy I’ve invested in creating this act could demolish planets. This is the most epic monologue in the history of magic for I am here to inflict psychological damage and that means you’ve now seen the devastation I can generate using two hands.

While Hayashi seems to take his Japanese heritage quite seriously in his  “Samurai show” and Karate Dojo, he’s not afraid to lean into a larger-than-life caricature of the impossibly slick, imposing man-from-the-east stereotype for some killer laughs.   

I’ve now seen Hayashi perform exactly one trick, and he’s already one of my favorites. I’m looking forward to diving into his body of work.