With a four-year-old in tow, trips to the supermarket are fraught with financial danger.
“Daddy I want yoghurt.”
[picks up sugar dense yoghurt with Lightning McQueen on the front.]
But yesterday, for the first time, my son picked up a Nerf blaster.
“Daddy I want this.”
My answer to these questions is usually no. But this time it was a hard no.
“WHY DADDY WHY?”
Son, Daddy has a better one in his office.
Gizmodo is on a mission to to check out the best new blasters in Australia. And The Judge may be our favourite yet. This super-sized blaster has a huge, 30-dart revolving drum that fires 3 darts at a time!
Alright so the conversation didn’t go exactly like that. It was a lot noisier and clumsier and ended with me buying my kid a really expensive donut, but the point still stands. I said no and the reason I said no is this goddamn monstrosity.
Nerf is calling it The Judge.
The Judge looks like something you’d stumble across in Fallout 3, near the endgame where you’re all powered up and stumbling across the wastelands shredding dudes. It’s a Nerf version of the SMG Mac used before being chewed up by the Predator.
And make no mistake, “Imma have me some fun” with the judge. In fact, I've already had me some fun.
The Judge looks like it might chew down an entire rainforest and in Nerf terms it’s packing some serious power. You can load it up to fire three darts per trigger pull, which is just awesome. You can load up 30 darts for ten blasts. TL;DR it’s no joke.
The best thing about The Judge was the look on my kids face when I arrived home from work and surprised him with it.
The worst thing about The Judge was carrying it home on the bus.
Walking on to public transport looking like an extra from Edge of Tomorrow is one thing (an embarrassing thing) but The Judge is heavy. The knowing smirks I could ignore, the gnawing tug on my joints as I constantly switched arms? I had a bit more bother with that.
The Judge is a beast. After arriving home, I handed it over to my extremely excited son who proceeded to drop it almost instantly because it was almost the same size as him. He could just about handle the thing with his hands in the correct place, but sort of waddled around like like an encumbered RPG protagonist wielding a sword twenty levels above his current build.
There was something comedic about it. Him shuffling about, giggling furiously, struggling with the reload mechanism, launching darts at an oversized Teddy Bear. There’s an inherent drama about The Judge, mainly because of its size. It almost feels like parody. My wife exploded into laughter when I walked through the door with it.
“WHAT IS THAT.”
[reads the side]
“Oh my god it’s called The Judge.”
[more hysterical laughter]
The Judge doesn’t feel as accurate as other NERF products so if you’re a [clears throats] serious NERF enthusiast who wants to pick off enemies from yards away, you might want to look into other NERF products, but if you’re after drama and hilarity it’s hard to go past…
I love the thing. I have only one small regret.
You know how sometimes you’re in the shower and you remember an argument or a great line you could’ve dropped, but didn’t. Well I was in the shower this morning, steeling myself for another journey on public transport with The Judge, when it hit me.
I should have walked into the house like a terminator and said “it’s judgement day” to my wife and kids.