With the discontinuation of DC Universe, HBO Max has collected all the DC content and is now available to stream. As a DC fan, I prefer the DC animated series to the live-action movies. As someone who was disappointed by Wonder Woman 1984, I wanted to watch a DC title with promise. One series that has been highly rated was the Harley Quinn animated series. This series centers on Harley Quinn getting away from the Joker and building a strong friendship with Poison Ivy. I loved every minute of this show! It’s raunchy, hilarious, gory, and showcases Harley as being the complex villain that she is.
In the first season, Harley (voiced by Kaley Cuoco) finally dumps Joker and tries to establish her credit as a villain. Always living in Joker’s shadow, Harley creates her supervillain team consisting of Poison Ivy (voiced by Lake Bell), Clayface, Doctor Psycho, King Shark, and Sy Borgman. As Harley performs more villainous acts, she’s invited to join the Legion of Doom which infuriates Joker. Throughout the season, Harley has to reckon with how Joker treated her and how her life can’t solely be about getting back at him. She needs to move on and her team helps her do this.
At the heart of this show is Harley Quinn’s friendship with Poison Ivy. In the comics, Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy end up in a romantic relationship. The show develops this as a slow burn with the season #2 finale leading into Harley and Poison Ivy confessing their feelings for each other. Harley needs Poison Ivy as she tells Harley the truth. The Joker doesn’t love her and she deserves better. Poison Ivy needs Harley in season #2 to help her realize she’s getting married to the wrong person. Their friendship is fun to watch.
This show is hilarious! The witty one-liners and subtle references to pop culture are well written. Any show that can make me laugh until I cry is much needed during this time. Watching Harley Quinn provided an outlet to get away from the fact that I’m living through a pandemic. Adding to the comical relief was the way the villains were given personalities. King Shark is a big shark teddy bear. Clayface loves theater and improv, and Doctor Psycho called Wonder Woman a slur which led to him getting kicked out of the Legion of Doom. It’s the hypocrisy of using a slur that gets Doctor Psycho banned even though the Legion kill people regularly.
While DC’s film universe has been mediocre, their animated series is a huge hit. Harley Quinn is no exception. With only two seasons, it won’t take long to finish the series. The Harley Quinn animated series can be streamed on HBO Max.