Harley Quinn: A Fight Worth Fighting For

Harley has had more than enough of the Parademons, thank you

Things are definitely picking up speed as we get close to the end of the second season of Harley’s odd cartoon. Now, she’s shown that she’s willing to take drastic steps to try and actually clean up some of the messes she’s left in her wake. I’m not sure if she’s actually trying to be a better person or just distract herself from the mess of complications that are her feelings for Poison Ivy. Either way, she does indeed find “A Fight Worth Fighting For.”

The episode starts off with Frank, Ivy’s talking plant, on a couch with some random slacker, offering a very intense recap of recent events on the show. It’s almost as entertaining as the framing sequence of the two fanboys earlier this season. When Frank finishes ranting, the scene shifts to Ace Chemical, where Harley ended the last episode by recreating the Joker’s origin to break his amnesia and find the book where the Queen of Fables imprisoned the Justice League. He’s back, but when he starts one of his usual over the top rants, Harley shuts him down, because she is so clearly Not In The Mood. It’s a funny scene, watching Joker trying to adapt to the new dynamic. While she makes her demands of the crazed clown, Dr. Psycho and Riddler continue their own plans. I get this world is its own continuity, but of all the Bat-foes to fall in line with Psycho’s scheme, Riddler seems like an odd choice. At any rate, there are jokes about an extremely long-distance calling plan and the next step in the evil plot.

Joker and Harley argue some more, and he gets shaken by several flashbacks of his recent life, which was a really interesting spin, if exceptionally un-Joker-like. They take off and argue more once Joker finishes figuring out where the book is. Batman tries to figure out what’s going on, and does some very incorrect leaping to conclusions while continuing the weird dynamic this version of the Dark Knight has with Alfred. As Parademons continue their rampage through Gotham, Ivy and Kite-Man meet with an exceptionally dedicated wedding planner.

The very odd couple journey to Bethany’s house in the suburbs, where the woman herself finds out exactly who she’s been dating the last several months. Joker handles this with the emotional finesse you’d expect, but some interesting little bits of his suburban persona leak through. Bethany throws the book at them (literally), but a Parademon flies off with it. Dr. Psycho reaches out and touches someone, and makes an ominous sounding deal, with some help from Riddler’s shrewd mind. The scene also involves a really disturbing episode from Psycho’s childhood. Ivy and Kite-Man continue their plans for the big day, breaking a few traditions along the way. Kite-Man proves to be exceptionally perceptive, but when their preparations get interrupted again, Ivy loses her temper and goes off to take out the man behind the problems they’re facing. She also makes a few interesting comments that shed some light on her own emotional state.

Bickering all the way, Harley and Joker work their way through the giant heap of a nest that the Parademons have been dumping the things they grab in. Joker muses about his relationship with Bethany, and Harley goes from disinterested to irritated. They both make a few cutting remarks about each other, as you’d expect from exes. They get into a huge fight, but the demons keep on coming. Just as they’re ready to make a last stand, including a parting line from Harley, they get grabbed up by a misinformed Batman. The two clowns explain what’s actually going on, bemusing the Batman, but being convincing enough that he listens to their story.

Dr. Psycho gets a lot of unwelcome news and an unexpected guest, but he turns at least some of that in his favor. The incredibly unlikely team of Batman, Joker, and Harley exchange notes on what’s been going on and the weird relationships the two criminals have been dealing with. I wonder if Batman’s ready to go back into his coma yet? They finally find what they need, and a special guest star shows up to free the League, who are not happy about their time in the book. Plans are made, heroes sent out to do the right thing, but then someone catches up with Harley (how they knew where she was, I’m very unclear on) and makes an unexpected threat. The episode ends with Frank reacting to the show in his over the top way.

What I liked: Harley does seem to be making an effort to clean up after herself, which shows some character growth. I’m glad that the heroes are back, although confused at the very limited membership of this League. The Joker/Harley bickering was funny on a really disturbing level. Alan Tudyk continues to be an impressive Joker.

What I didn’t: With a big battle brewing, using the guest star for one brief, simple thing made no sense. As I said above, I’m not sure Riddler was the best choice here. Where are Batgirl and Robin in all this? How’d the person know where Harley was at the end of the episode?

It was an interesting story with some creative ideas. I’ll give it a 3.5 out of 5. Only two episodes left to clean all this up.