I wonder what Barbie dolls do to him?
...The Barricade is a pretty scary toy, and it’s not even close to being the scariest Nerf gun. (Nerf doesn’t use the g-word; it calls its guns “blasters.”) Indeed, Nerf has become a lot more frightening since I was a kid. In addition to semiautos like the Barricade, today’s arsenal also includes several single-action weapons—guns that don’t use batteries and require you to cock the firing mechanism each time you pull the trigger—and, at the high end, a few full autos, which allow you to keep the trigger depressed while they spew out all their ammo. Nerf weapons feature many other accoutrements, including a variety of ammo-feed mechanisms (Uzi-style replaceable clips, drum magazines, Rambo-like bandoliers); tactical rails, aka places on the gun to mount accessories like the red-dot sight you’ve seen in first-person-shooter video games; and barrel extensions a la James Bond.
Over the past few weeks I’ve been playing with some of the new Nerf guns, and I’ve tied myself in knots thinking about whether ultrarealistic weapons are just harmless fun or whether they reveal something terribly wrong with modern American boyhood...