Last episode of Harley Quinn ended on a surprising note when Harley and Ivy kissed in considerably more than a friendly manner. Now, in the aftermath, Harley and Ivy have a nice, mature, reasonable discussion about it. And if you believe that, you really haven’t been watching the show. Instead, there’s a lot of chaos as Harley confronts her “Inner (Para) Demons.”
The opening scene has the somewhat-improved Commissioner Gordon getting dressed for work and making some calls. A bit overconfident, he reaches out to the highest office in the land to see about Gotham rejoining the United States from its current No Man’s Land status. But the President isn’t quite ready to deal yet, and sets a condition. Now Gordon has to take out our titular… well, not quite hero to get the city back to its former status. Back at the mall/headquarters, Harley and Ivy talk around what happened and generally fail to actually communicate. This segues into Kite Man being very nervous about Ivy and his next great adventure: introducing her to his parents.
Desperately clutching at anything to stop from thinking about Ivy, Harley calls a meeting of the crew to plan her next move to major villainhood. King Shark and Clayface aren’t really convinced this is either a good idea or her style, but Dr. Psycho is all in for all-out evil. The meeting gets interrupted when Batgirl shows up, trying to warn Harley about Gordon’s new goal. This leads to a lot of confusion, a running gag with Harley randomly kissing people, and a resolution that is pretty much the opposite of what Batgirl was aiming for. There’s also an amusing critique of her costume and codename.
While Dr. Psycho makes an interesting offer to Harley, Ivy and Kite Man join his parents for brunch. It’s an interesting scene and Kite Man is nothing at all like his parents. As much as the man is a goof, I like him a lot better than his folks. The next step in Psycho’s plan takes them to a performance of the DCU’s premier escape artist, a plan that gets ignored, and a theft. One Boom Tube later, and Harley and her crew end up on Apokolips. Harley dealing with Darkseid is entertaining, especially given that the lord of Apokolips is voiced by Michael Ironside, who also played the role on Superman: The Animated Series and Justice League Unlimited. At the brunch, we find out that not only are Kiteman’s parents snobs, which we knew, but a very particular kind of snob, unique to the world of superheroes.
Back in Gotham, Commissioner Gordon gears up with far too many weapons to go gunning for Harley, while Batgirl tries to talk him down. Batgirl ends up with déjà vu when Gordon takes the wrong message from their talk. Gordon goes on down a really questionable path, with Batgirl hiding at this point. It’s a shame Batman is still recovering from his earlier injuries. Darkseid tells Harley what she has to do, and she has a big misunderstanding. There’s an impressive fight, which goes about how you’d think, but Harley gets some unexpected help. I find it on the unbelievable side that Darkseid is unaware of this, but Harley manages to get what she wants. The Lord of Apokolips makes some surprisingly insightful comments, and then Harley is off on her new mad quest, with Psycho enthusiastically joining her, King Shark and Clayface much less so.
Ivy has had enough, and tries to get Kite Man to stand up for himself. When that doesn’t work, she takes matters into her own hands, and goes off on the overbearing parents. It’s a sweet scene, actually, and it’s fun to watch. I think Ivy might have even surprised herself. As the parents stalk off in a huff, Kite Man and Ivy see signs of trouble and agree they should go check out what’s going on at the mall. Which is an all-out battle for Gotham, as Harley and Gordon wage war, each fighting for not quite the right reasons. Oddly, Batgirl sits this one out, I have no idea why. Things get ugly and bloody, as the show loves to do, when salvation arrives from above. On a kite. Ivy basically gives Harley a “What the hell are you doing?” talk, and Harley realizes she’s way over the line. The war ends with a lot of collateral damage, one of the crew walks out over the way things went, and Harley keeps evading what’s really bothering her. It’s always fun when a skilled psychiatrist can’t get a handle on themselves. I’m halfway expecting her past self to pop up and talk to her within the next episode or two.
What I liked: It was great they got Michael Ironside back as Darkseid. Harley’s fight was well done. It was interesting seeing more of what Psycho wants. I liked Batgirl trying to make peace and getting the same bad result on both sides. Harley is going to impressive lengths in the name of avoidance. It was interesting seeing King Shark and Clayface’s takes on what she was doing.
Ivy standing up for Kite Man was great.
What I didn’t: Where was Batgirl or Robin in the big final fight? Actually, where’s Robin been for months? I continue to not like their take on a lot of different characters. I buy Harley deluding herself, she’s good at it and has a track record. But are we supposed to believe that Ivy really doesn’t see what’s going on here?
It was a decent episode. I’ll give it a 3 out of 5.