Product: Bitplay BANG! Desk Lamp Price: $299.00 at Dynamism Rating: Recommend* As a child of the 80's, I've fond memories of the Nintendo Entertainment System, specifically the joys of pixelated 8-bit hunting playing Duck Hunt (that darn dog!). A similar joy can be had while arming yourself with Bitplay's "interactive object d'art", BANG!, a desk lamp that gives new meaning to "lights out!"...
Earlier this year, Carrie over at our Family Channel took a moment from hours of candle sniffing to demo the BANG! at the New York International Gift Fair. Afterwards, even as a non-gun type, she admitted she found the shoot-the-lights-out gimmick remarkably fun. And like her, I found myself begrudgingly putting aside my usual "no guns in the house" stance after recognizing the BANG!'s gun remote was no different from that NES gun remote from my childhood or a carnival rifle. Like Carrie noted, it's the Clapper 2.0.!
The all-white plastic gun remote is solid in hand, and is unlikely ever going to be mistaken for the real thing, with a range somewhere around 50 feet. Pull the trigger and the gun emits a the recognizable canned sound effects of a 1950's cowboy TV show shootout. It's a humorous touch which steers the BANG! clearly over onto the side of comical. So don't worry, nobody is going to call the police, even late at night.
The minimalist all-white lamp itself is bigger in person than I judged from the pictures, with a very solid base and design that wouldn't look out of place in an IKEA catalog. Upon unpacking, the only assembly is adding an appropriate low watt bulb and attaching the lampshade to the tilt mechanism. Once on, step a few feet back, and turn around like your favorite gunslinger. The lampshade flips up when shot on, then plays dead/turns off with another pull of the trigger, the lampshade tilting downward. Even my pacifist, hippie-childhood girlfriend had to chuckle, calling it "ridiculous"...but in that bemused tone where you know the person wouldn't mind trying it out.
Pros: Turns a mundane habit into a fun opportunity, decor-neutral design, "gun" control feels solid but is obviously fake. Cons: Expensive, "Now where did I put my gun?" could be misconstrued, obviously not for every home/person out there. Our Ratings: Strong Recommend Recommend* Weak Recommend Don't RecommendApartment Therapy Media makes every effort to test and review products fairly and transparently. The views expressed in this review are the personal views of the reviewer and this particular product review was not sponsored or paid for in any way by the manufacturer or an agent working on their behalf. This specific product was provided by a retailer for testing and review purposes.