Review – The Joker/Daffy Duck #1: Desthpicable Me

Comic Books DC This Week
The Joker/Daffy Duck #1 variant cover, credit to DC Comics.

The Joker/Daffy Duck #1 – Scott Lobdell, Joey Cavalieri, Writers; Brett Booth, Penciller; Norm Rapmund, Inker; Andrew Dalhouse, Colorist, Luciano Vecchio, Backup Artist

Ray – 5/10

Ray: The last wave of DC/Hanna-Barbera one-shots featured three hit one-shots, and one unmitigated disaster in the form of The Flash/Speed Buggy, by the creative team of Scott Lobdell and Brett Booth. So naturally, the move is to give the exact same creative team another one-shot in the next wave of crossovers! The Joker/Daffy Duck is not nearly the same level of trainwreck that one was, but it’s still undeniably the weak link in this wave. The problem is that there’s very little suspense and very little in the way of anyone to root for. It’s just two of the most unpleasant characters in either universe going nuts around each other. The story begins with Joker massacring the population of a comedy club while delivering a set, but he’s consistently beset by incompetent henchmen. Daffy, meanwhile, has a customer service issue with ACME, and heads to their office in Gotham to settle a score. While wandering around the warehouse, he stumbles into Joker killing one of his henchmen – and after a series of misunderstandings, winds up employed as Joker’s #1 henchman.

Joker kills at the club. Credit to DC Comics.

After Daffy’s initial argument with ACME customer service, there’s very little humor in this issue, which is a problem for a comic about a clown and a talking duck. Daffy proceeds to whip Joker’s henchmen into shape and assist Joker in his various schemes, helping Joker set up a much more efficient routine. But while Daffy is a jerk, he’s not a killer, and once he finds out that he’s working for the deadliest man in Gotham, he decides he has to do something about it. So in the finale, he sabotages Joker’s plot and leads to his boss being captured by Batman – but after a routine blowup after hearing Batman insult ducks, he winds up tossed in Arkham as well. Kind of a downer, cynical ending for the issue. It’s also by far the shortest read of the four one-shots, with a lot of double-page spreads and splash pages. The backup is the better of the two story, as indie writer Joey Cavalieri proves that he can embrace the concept’s absurdity. Daffy cons his way into Arkham Asylum to do what countless other therapists couldn’t – cure the Joker. Along the way, he winds up accidentally unleashing an army of villains. Fun, clever story with a deep cut cameo that’s almost worth getting the issue. Almost.

To find reviews of all the DC issues, visit DC This Week.

GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.

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