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Did it ever occur to you that maybe I'm just a product of a judgmental, overprotective society?

—"David Gets Hard"

Gaylord[1] "Nurf" Nurfington is a Behavioral Correction Camp camper at Camp Campbell. He is characterized as the stereotypical bully among the campers.

Appearance

Nurf is stocky with a light complexion with freckles, green eyes, and slightly spiky red hair. He has a large nose and a cleft chin. Nurf wears a ripped yellow t-shirt that exposes his lower stomach and belly button, a pair of brown shorts and dark brown shoes.

Personality

Nurf is an angry child who finds joy in constantly tormenting the other campers. He is, however, surprisingly aware of his problems and actively tries to change his habits[2]. He is rather organized about his bullying and is rather insightful and articulate. Similar to Max, he uses rather crude language.

Nurf seems to be very aware of the chain of events that led him up to becoming the bully is today, and is stated that "it all started when I joined the ballet" in "David Gets Hard". He ultimately says his behavioral problems seem to be stemming from a vast variety of issues, but that he doesn't allow society's labels to define who he is.

Although he is usually seen as the bully of the camp, he is shown to have sympathy and understanding too at times, such his statement in "Reigny Day" that he only bullies Neil on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and nondenominational holidays, as he "understands that Neil celebrates the Sabbath". Upon being given a platypus egg to raise with Preston in "Eggs Benefits", he becomes extremely protective (as well as physically abusive towards Preston) and solemnly vows that their "child" will be raised better than how he was.

Despite how intelligent he seems to be, most of the time he carries himself as a violent brute. As such, he only responds to similar violence, as demonstrated when he ceases his violent behavior only after David accidentally slaps him while tripping. After this experience, he goes to lie down and, overall, manages to tone down his behavior by the next season. In Season 2, he rarely showed any signs of aggression at all (except for in "Eggs Benefits" where he seems to have negative feelings towards Preston.)

In "Attack of the Nurfs", forming a tight friendship with his copies (Nurf 2 and Nurf 3) allowed Nurf to realize that the thought of bullying others hadn't crossed his mind at all during that time. Nurf 2 says that the art of bullying makes no sense when you have friends. Nurf says, "it's almost like my lack of companionship forced me to fall back on the only learned behavior I have from childhood," and Nurf 3 concludes, "violence against others." This led him to give up bullying for the rest of the episode. However, Nurf ultimately had to unleash a barrage of sick burns on an ensuing army of Nurf copies in an attempt to stop an impending bullypocalypse. The subject of these included body image issues and insecurity/abandonment issues involving his father, which the copies were sensitive about as well. While explaining what he learned about the effect of friendship to the rest of the camp, he finds they they have entirely deserted him, leaving him visibly saddened. While he isn't back to aggressively bullying people, he still does so from time to time.

He's also a bit racist but friendly at the same time to foreigners. This shown in "Foreign Exchange Campers" where he welcomes Brian with open arms and claims to have grown fond of him, angered at Nikki and Neil when they focus on Max and not helping Brian with the scavenger hunt, and being proud of him when he thinks he's won the scavenger hunt. However this unusually kind behavior is overshadowed by his ignorance as he can't understand that Brian is American and thinks he's is from Korea and can't understand English. He also nicknames Brian "Kimchi" as he thinks "Brian" is a non-english name. His ignorance greatly angers Brian and when he reveals himself to be a spy he claims "ah had to suffer you more-ons all day!" and is likely referring to Nurf.

Nurf is also very in tune with the "delicate ecosystem" of Camp Campbell and how each camper's behavior can affect everyone else. He was well aware of the incoming Butterfinger Effect (read: [1]), though despite his warnings the effect overtook the entire camp, including him, by getting his head stuck in Space Kid's helmet. Although Max realized that behavioral changes should (in general) be embraced, Nurf did not, and was still eager to cause destruction in an effort to put things back to the way they were.

Trivia

  • Nurf has a large, seemingly endless supply of knives, as he keeps pulling several of them out of thin air in the episode "David Gets Hard". Max asks where he keeps getting all these knives, to no avail.
    • He also stabbed cleanly through each of David's hands in this episode, with seemingly no severe or long-lasting effects.
    • Luckily, none of the campers were stabbed, despite threatening Harrison directly, as well as flying into a rampage, slashing at the group of kids, and cornering Nerris while advancing on her, near the end of the episode.
  • In the episode "Anti-Social Network", it is revealed that his mother is in jail.
    • She later makes an appearance in "Parents' Day" in her convict's uniform with her hands chained up behind her back, and an armed guard supervising her the entire day, so her sentence is still ongoing as of that episode.
    • In the episode "Bonjour Bonquisha", he also reveals that his mother just got pregnant at the time in hopes of getting his father back. She does not display any outward signs of pregnancy when she later appears in "Parents' Day".
  • Nurf has expressed a desire to stab his father to "end the cycle of violence", as stated in "David Gets Hard". David is shocked at this and Nurf's reply is, "well what do you expect? I'm just a kid!" This essentially confirms his father has been physically abusive to Nurf.
    • During a short musical montage in the same episode, he is shown acting out a scene in which someone is displaying physically aggressive behavior, and another person is shown putting up their hands in self-defense before getting a hand around their throat. This hints very strongly at Nurf being the one defending himself from his father.
    • When his copy Nurf 2 is revealed in "Attack of the Nurfs", the first thing he says is that the sun feels great on his deep-seated father issues, indicating that these are severe and long-standing issues.
  • Nurf is shown a Rorschach image in "David Gets Hard" that seems to depict sexual intercourse. His reaction seems to indicate that he has bore witness to (e.g. his parents), or been victim of such an act. David and Gwen's reactions seem to indicate it may be the latter.
    David Gets Hard, Nurf rorschach test

    Nurf interpreting a Rorschach test in "David Gets Hard".

  • According to Cameron Campbell Nurf has Gynecomastia otherwise known as "moobs", however this was most likely a derogatory or ignorant comment from the insensitive Campbell.
    • Campbell has also insinuated that his allegedly tiny ding-dong being the root of his bad behavior, although it's been explicitly stated that his bullying patterns are from having learned nothing but violence as a young child (prominently featured in "David Gets Hard", "Eggs Benefits" and "Attack of the Nurfs").
  • According to the writers, Nurf was a difficult character to incorporate into the story.[3]
  • He is revealed to be lactose intolerant in the episode "Space Camp Was a Hoax," after he eats the cheese slices that they were supposed to use as a launching pad, and gets sick afterward.
  • In the episode "David Gets Hard", Nurf is shown punching and cracking Space Kid's helmet, despite the helmet being bulletproof in the episode "Escape from Camp Campbell" after Mr. Campbell used it to shield himself from the bullets. This implies that Nurf is unnaturally strong.
  • Though he is infamous for his love of violence and knives, he is also shown to have a love for art. As he is seen caring for his tomato garden in "Escape from Camp Campbell" and as he is seen to be able to mold his face perfectly as a clay sculpture in "Jermy Fartz".
  • In the episode "Anti-Social Network", it is revealed that he explored his sexuality in the past, with a boy called Chris, implying he may either be bisexual, pansexual, or gay.[4]
    • He is also seen reading a men's magazine in the teaser trailer, further hinting at a sexual interest in men.
  • Nurf, whose full name is stated as Gaylord Nurfington ("Parents' Day") is among few characters in the show to have their last names revealed. This is alongside Preston Goodplay, Cameron Campbell, Neil Armstrong Jr. (Space Kid), Edward Pikeman, Jermy Fartz, Stephen van Petrol (Petrol), Billy Nikssilp (Snake), Dolph Houston, and Meredith Miller (Ered).
  • Nurf states he believes he needs corrective lenses in "David Gets Hard", but that his mom won't take him to the optometrist.
  • Like Nikki, Nurf is shown to believe in Santa Claus as shown in "A Camp Camp Christmas, or Whatever". Albeit both having the belief that Santa Claus is real, they have completely different reasons for it. Nikki believes that Santa is real because he's the one handing out all the presents whereas Nurf believes that Santa is real because he suspects Santa to be the one drinking up all the leftover Christmas beer.
  • Nurf, along with Nurf 2 and Nurf 3, all pierce their bellybuttons during a montage in the episode "Attack of the Nurfs", though by the very next episode ("Who Peed the Lake") it is clearly shown that he no longer has the piercing.

References

  1. Parents' Day
  2. Camp Camp Panel Panel @RTX 2016
  3. Camp Camp Panel @RTX 2017
  4. Anti-Social Network - Episode 2 - Retrieved June 26, 2017
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