Wednesday, May 14, 2014

I Reads You Review: HARLEY QUINN #1


WRITERS: Amanda Conner and Jimmy Palmiotti
ART:  Chad Hardin
COLORS: Alex Sinclair
LETTERS: John J. Hill
COVER: Amanda Conner with Paul Mounts
32pp, Color, $2.99 U.S. (February 2014 – second printing)

Rated “T” for “Teen”

Harley Quinn created by Paul Dini and Bruce Timm

Harley Quinn is a DC Comics fictional character; she is specifically a super-villain in the DC Universe.  However, Harley Quinn was first introduced on the animated television series, Batman (also known as Batman: The Animated Series), which debuted in 1992 on the FOX Network.  Harley was created by Paul Dini and Bruce Timm and made her first appearance in the episode “Joker’s Favor” (September 11, 1992), as a female sidekick of The Joker and his eventual accomplice.

Harley Quinn made her first comic book appearance in The Batman Adventures #12 (September 1993), DC Comics’ comic book spin-off of the animated series.  Harley received an origin story in the one-shot comic book, The Batman Adventures: Mad Love (cover dated: February 1994).  Produced by Dini and Timm, Mad Love revealed that Quinn had been Dr. Harleen Frances Quinzel, M.D., an Arkham Asylum psychiatrist who falls for the Joker and becomes his accomplice and temporary sidekick.

I read Mad Love years ago.  I ignored the previous Harley Quinn comic book series, but decided to give a shot to the 2013 launch of a new Harley Quinn series, after find a second printing of the first issue.  Harley Quinn #1 (“Hot in the City”) has Harley starting over in Coney Island, Brooklyn.

According to Robert Coachman (of the law firm Coachman and Coachman), an anonymous benefactor has left Harley some real estate.  She has inherited a four-story building, complete with residential and business tenants.  This new life does come with complications.  Harley has expenses and someone is stalking her.

Harley Quinn #1 is good, not great.  I like the art by Chad Hardin (pencils and inks) and Alex Sinclair (colors).  Amanda Conner and Jimmy Palmiotti’s story is playful and engaging.  It’s also violent, partly in a Looney Tunes cartoon kind of way, although some characters are killed or grievously wounded.  I’m still debating as to whether I want to read more, but I’m intrigued.


Reviwed by Leroy Douresseaux

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