Anyone who knows me knows that I am a huge sports fan. One of the sports I enjoy the most is Football. So when I heard that the Oni Press was doing a sports comic book I was intrigued. I got even more interested in the book when I read what the book was about and former football player who beats up on mascots. That really got me to buy into Down Set Fight. Down Set Fight is an original graphic novel by Oni Press. The story is about a former all-star football player named Chuck Fairlane also known as “Fearless” Chuck had it all; fame, money, and endorsement. While playing in a playoff game to get into the big game Fairlane injured his ankle in the third quarter and it looked like he might not make it through the game. They take him into the locker room to get his ankle checked and his father shows up.
Right away, you can tell that there is some tension between him and his father. His father comes in to check on him, and has a confession to make. He confesses to his son that he betted on the game but against him because the odds were against his team to win the game and Alan tells his son to just sit it out to make things easier on everyone. This sparks a fire under Fairlane, and he returns into the game to have the game of his life. The team wins the playoff game and Chuck is having the best moment of his life, until he receives a call from his father congratulating him for the victory, and then another revelation is given to Chuck. He confesses that he had lied to his son and that he did it to light a fire under him to win the game.
After hearing this from his father, it sets Chuck off, he is so angry about the situation that he is ready to take out his anger on the next person he sees, and who is the next person he sees a poor mascot congratulating him for his win. Fearless went off on the poor mascot and then it sparked an all-out brawl where Chuck basically beats up on everybody in his way teammates and opponents. The brawl causes Fearless to lose all he had worked so hard for, but if Fearless was going to go down, and then his father was going to go down with him. He confesses to the police about his father’s gambling ring sending his father to jail.
Ten years pass, and now Chuck is a High School Coach in South Carolina and the legend is still out there of what Chuck had done, during a practice session a random mascot comes to Chuck’s school to challenge him to a fight. Chuck refuses at first, but when the mascot attacks the kids Chuck has no choice but to fight the mascot. That fight ignites a series of mascot challengers to come after Chuck. Who is behind the attacks? No one knows and thus the mystery begins to find out who is behind the attacks.
The story of Down Set Fight was a very clever idea that later expands as the story progresses. The only problem I had with the book was that the person behind the attack was a bit predictable, but aside that, the journey that Fearless goes through to find out who was behind the attack was pretty rad.
The level of mascots and fight scenes were so cool and funny that you can’t help but root for Chuck. Another plus about the book is the message that the book brings up about how easily parents can go too far in raising their kids to be superstars that they forget about their children and all they focus on is the money.
The art in the book was good too, a cartoony style with consistent art, and great use of colors throughout the entire book. Overall, Down Set Fight, was a fun book full of action, a great concept, and great art to put it all together. I recommend this book even if you aren’t a sport fan.
Writers: Chad Bowers & Chris Sims Artist: Scott Kowlchuk Publisher: Oni Press Price: $19.99 Release Date: 2/12/14