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The first installment of DC’s Harley Quinn in the new 52 gives the Batman support villain a run at the big time – but, fails to expand her character past the practical jokes and over sized hammers.
Quinn in the confides of a Batman story works. She only appears in small doses and her bonkers crazy attitude is nicely weighted out by the rigid seriousness of the Bat.
But, to read about her day to day tasks can quickly becomes tedious and boring.
Harley Quinn is the perfect read for long term fans of the Jokers gal, but the story is often hindered by banality with only select brief references to a larger story arc – blink and you could miss it all together.
In her home surroundings of Brooklyn, Quinn is setting up a new life for herself after her old apartment was blown up by the Joker, but even out of Gotham her past keeps catching her up.
The introduction of Gotham assassins is the perfect opportunity to add jeopardy to Harley, but the story fails to deliver.
Instead we are left to follow her daily tribulations like finding a new job or paying rent.
One of the strengths of the book is Chad Hardin’s art and Alex Sinclair’s colour work. Both accompany the story perfectly with a cartoon style and bright colours that help to remind us that Quinn is no longer in Gotham and things shouldn’t be taken too seriously.
The Harley Quinn run would be the perfect pull for younger fans who are looking for a PG version of Deadpool with cartoon violence and fast quips, but don’t expect a deep story.
Writers Amanda Conner and Jimmy Paliotti seem to be hinting the story is going somewhere, but it seems like it’s on slow burn and this run could take several issues to properly get going.