For as long as thereâ€™ve been superheroes, there have been spoofs of superheroes. Some of them hit the mark in terms of comedy; others just donâ€™t have what it takes. â€œThe Paybacks #1â€ by Donny Cates and Eliot Rahal with art by Geoff Shaw takes a brilliant idea and adds in unfunny comedy.
â€œThe Paybacksâ€ are a ragtag group of superheroes who are hired as debt collectors of other heroes. This time theyâ€™re after Night Knight, a Batman spoof. However, heâ€™s out fighting crime. They decide to just go ahead, but things go south quickly.
Itâ€™s a nice idea with a decent execution. The idea of superheroes having debt collectors is ingenious and the comic shows exactly what happens when the go and collect. One thing that Cates and Rahal get right is that put a bunch of superheroes into one space and there will be carnage.
The area the comic falls flat on is its main draw: Humor. Night Knight may be making fun of Batman being â€œthe nightâ€ and â€œThe Dark Knight,â€ but pointing it out like this is amateur level comedy. Not to mention making his real persona a weakling would have been funny if that joke hadnâ€™t been done a million times.
The other characters fall into the same unfunny spoofs. A foreigner whose only English is action movie one-liners, a guy with a van where the inside is the size of a mansion and an angry female who loves to kill. Readers will get the jokes, but they are not particularly funny.
The artwork does a wonderful job of making this look like the typical superhero comic. The characters all look like the typical characters theyâ€™re spoofing. Shaw even gets the gritty parts that many comic books are want to use down right.
â€œThe Paybacksâ€ has a brilliant setup, but the overall experience is okay. The story is mildly interesting, the art is the strongest point and the humor will not get many laughs from readers.
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