DART TAG (SPIDER-MAN)
I was wondering what would break first: your spirit, OR YOUR BO- what? Oh sorry, wrong Tom Hardy role. Why Tom Hardy, you ask. That’s because he will be playing Eddie Brock in the upcoming Venom movie. So in the spirit of that film, I thought I’d showcase something that only exists for its context to Spider-Man, but without any mention of Spider-Man on my part. I give you the Dart Tag Venom Blaster.
THE BLASTER ITSELF
The Venom blaster was actually part of the Spider-Man vs. Venom set in the Dart Tag line, released as a tie-in with the film Spider-Man 3 back in 2007. It uses a pretty unique mechanism as far as I’m aware, featuring an air pump and 3-tier staged trigger. This allows you to fire each of the 3 barrels one after the other in semi-auto fashion, or just mash the trigger down to launch all 3 simultaneously. The shells of both the Venom blaster and the matching Spider-Man blaster in the set are the same aside from the colors, but beyond that, they are unique. Being Spider-Man themed, the ergonomics are a little strange, but perfectly functional. You secure the blaster to your inner forearm using the Velcro strap, with the trigger in reach of your middle and ring fingers. While on your arm, the most awkward part of the operation is by far pumping up the air tank as it takes a decent amount of force to actuate the pump handle, particularly when you get close to maximum pressure. That being said, they do stay pretty secure on your arm, and the cloth Velcro strap doesn’t cut into your arm the way the plastic watch strap things on more recent arm blasters do. The performance isn’t the best, but keep in mind these came out well before N-Strike Elite was even a thing, and they’re licensed blasters, so it’s pretty easy to forgive. While it won’t hit very hard, you do effectively have a 3-round burst strapped to your arm which can be somewhat concealed fairly easily, especially if you’re already holding a blaster in your hand. That way, when your younger siblings think its safe because you’re out of ammo, you can blast them with an extra 3 shots they didn’t know existed. That’s how you know you’re the cool older sibling: subterfuge and treachery. The Spider-Man vs. Venom set originally came with the 2 blasters, 1 in each color scheme, a Dart Tag vest for each, a set of Vision Gear goggles that also matched, and a total of 12 Dart Tag darts, 6 for Spider-Man, and 6 for Venom. I, however, picked mine up second hand, and as a result, only have the Venom blaster. No Spider-Man anywhere. But if Marvel wants to use any of my review in their current Tom Holland Spider-Man movies, I’d be more than willing to license it out to them.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
Movie politics aside, I was actually one of those kids growing up who didn’t really care about Spider-Man, the character, but I thought Venom was awesome. Pair that with Nerf and it was fairly inevitable that I would pick one of these up sooner or later. And to be fair, the movies I’ve seen that had Tom Hardy in them, for the most part, I thought he did a good job. Overall, my opinion on the blaster is it’s a bit dated but still fairly fun and I’m glad to have it. Do I think the movie will be any good? I think Mad Max said it best when he said “Hgrmngr rgn rgmrn mrgrnm…”