The very existence of the Harley Quinn animated sequence has at all times been a testomony to its titular chaos agent’s standing as probably the most wildly in style characters Warner Bros. and DC have ever created. As a substitute of making an attempt to straight adapt anyone particular plot that’s outlined Harley through the years, the present has woven a lot of her now-signature quirks, like her love for Poison Ivy and her dalliances with antiheroism, right into a definitive tackle who she is.
As has been the case previously, a giant a part of what makes Harley Quinn’s fourth season sing is its capacity to toe the road between celebrating and taking potshots on the bigger superhero style. However the factor that basically units this chapter of Harley Quinn aside and makes it really feel just like the sequence continues to be nowhere close to shedding steam is the best way it steps again to have greater than somewhat little bit of enjoyable with the truth of how massive Harleen Quinzel looms within the grand scheme of the DC model.
Now that she’s dumped the Joker (Alan Tudyk) for good, established herself as an unbiased villain, and eventually made it official with Poison Ivy (Lake Bell), Harley Quinn’s newest season sees Harley (Kaley Cuoco) reinvent herself as the latest member of the Bat Household.
With Batman (Diedrich Bader) nonetheless absent from Gotham, Batgirl (Briana Cuoco), Nightwing (Harvey Guillén), Robin (Jacob Tremblay), and Alfred (Tom Hollander) want all the assistance they’ll get preserving town’s cutthroat criminals in test. However with Ivy now main the Legion of Doom, Harley’s hero flip isn’t only a matter of switching groups — it’s her signing as much as punch out family members within the identify of justice, and far of this season revolves round what a precarious scenario that’s.
As season 4 opens, Harley Quinn looks like it’s simply poking enjoyable at how Harley Quinn™ has gone by a number of reinventions that made her a much more morally advanced character as she jumped from Batman: The Animated Collection to DC’s comedian books and past. However woven into the present’s jokes about how uncomfortable Harley’s fixation with Nightwing’s ass makes him or the kinky pressure Ivy and Harley’s new jobs placed on their relationship is an fascinating little bit of commentary about what Harley Quinn has come to characterize for DC Leisure and mum or dad firm Warner Bros. Discovery.
When DC Comics’ artist-turned-publisher-turned-president Jim Lee referred to Harley because the “fourth pillar of [DC’s] publishing line” again in 2016, he was speaking about how important a presence she’d turn into within the writer’s month-to-month books, the place she was then starring in 4 totally different ongoing sequence. Not like the opposite three pillars — Batman, Superman, and Surprise Lady — the proliferation of Harley-centric comics spoke to a comparatively latest however undeniably constant development in curiosity from followers fairly than her being a foundational a part of DC’s model identification.
Harley didn’t have a very deep canon in comparison with her friends in her early days of fame, and it wasn’t till author Amanda Conner and artist Jimmy Palmiotti took over the Harley Quinn comics in 2014 that it felt like that was starting to vary. However virtually as quickly as she debuted, followers have been as able to devour new tales about her as they have been wanting to drop money on merchandise emblazoned along with her face. Unsurprisingly, DC Leisure has spent years seizing on this chance with initiatives starting from children reveals like DC Tremendous Hero Ladies to extra mature fare like Batman: The Enemy Inside, each live-action Suicide Squad movies, and Cathy Yan’s Birds of Prey function.
What’s humorous about Harley Quinn sending Harley off to the Batcave to be scolded about her incapacity to chorus from killing is how the present’s tapping into the concept of her being extra of an antihero than a straight-up villain and making enjoyable of how that shift for her throughout DC’s model has typically made it look like the corporate doesn’t know what to do along with her.
As Batman’s extra conventional proteges begrudgingly settle for Harley’s assist monitoring down a masked psychopath who’s mutilating wealthy and exquisite Gothamites, Harley Quinn repeatedly emphasizes that her legal background really makes her fairly rattling good at hero work. Equally, Harley’s personal twisted ethical compass is what makes it considerably straightforward for her to take “no” for a solution when Ivy refuses to present her particulars about who the Gotham butcher could be.
In each conditions, you’re meant to know that — greater than her athleticism or analytic thoughts — Harley’s innate adaptability is what makes her formidable and able to doing issues that others can’t. For all that functionality, nonetheless, you’re additionally meant to know that Harley’s willpower to turn into a member of the Bat Household isn’t working — not less than partially — as a result of she’s been pushed thus far in her life by a forward-moving momentum that’s out of her management.
Harley Quinn stops wanting flat-out saying that its central character’s recognition can solely achieve this a lot to counteract her feeling overexposed and stretched skinny by an enterprise that is aware of how a lot worth she brings to the desk. However as Harley’s stressing about whether or not she’s being true to herself by working with the Bats, it appears very very similar to Harley Quinn’s making an attempt to make some extent about how a personality turning into a giant fish within the IP pond can result in their ending up in messy conditions that don’t precisely really feel “proper” or true to who they’re. What does really feel very on-brand, although, is Harley Quinn digging into all of this whereas sticking to its weapons about preserving Harley’s queerness, crassness, and irreverence concerning the remainder of DC’s model fairly intact — all of that are feats, particularly in Warner Bros. Discovery’s David Zaslav period.
The primary three episodes of Harley Quinn’s fourth season at the moment are streaming on Max, with new episodes dropping each Thursday.https://hactic.s3.us-west-2.amazonaws.com/index.html