Harley’s second season is almost over, and things come to a head on many fronts. There’s the army of Parademons, the returned Justice League, a looming wedding, and the unresolved issues between Harley and Ivy. They manage to wrap up almost everything, and still leave some unpleasantness for the finale. There are some interesting developments for this “Lovers Quarrel.”
Last episode ended with Poison Ivy, under Dr. Psycho’s sway, showing up to kill Harley. She makes some comical protestations about things she hasn’t said yet as Harley does her best to avoid becoming plant food. There’s a last-minute rescue as the unlikely hero of the moment, Kite Man, swoops in to save Harley. Joker looks on, amused, and talks about his late food order.
As Harley and Kite Man banter about a tux, the returned Justice League moves through the city, taking on the Parademons. Not only did Flash disappear last episode with no explanation, but now Green Lantern is nowhere to be seen. Continuity is not this show’s strength. There are some cheap jokes about aliens and language amid the battle. Back at the mall of villainy, Dr. Psycho keeps abusing his amplified powers by torturing the captured Clayface and King Shark. Riddler warns Psycho that things aren’t going his way since the heroes returned, which the megalomaniac does his best to ignore. Harder to ignore is Darkseid, using a Parademon to relay some reminders and threats. Never one to face reality, Psycho goes further into crazed denial.
Harley and Kite Man arrive at his apartment, which is a stereotypical bachelor mess. Harley rants about Psycho’s Jedi mind trick, and then manages to get some help from Sy, who isn’t completely gone after all. Now resembling Max Headroom (second nod to the 80’s icon this year, after Agents of SHIELD), Sy gives them some advice for how to resist Psycho, but it’s based on some very outdated things. Eventually, they improvise a few things and Harley dodges a question about the League’s return.
You know you’re doing well when Riddler is the one that’s coming across sane, but he has some very reasonable concerns about what’s happening in the city, which Psycho dismisses. While Riddler keeps trying to get his point across, Batman and Harley end up fighting while making odd Wesley Snipes references. Superman and Wonder Woman make a half-hearted attempt to talk Ivy down (heroes aren’t ever shown well on this series) and Wonder Woman seems to never think to use her lasso to snap Psycho’s control. Harley lets a few more things slip about her feelings for Ivy, but fortunately, Kite Man is both dense and easily distractable.
Ivy has now been joined by the enslaved and powered-up Clayface and King Shark as they fight a League that seems indifferent to property damage and possibly killing the villains. The fight goes on for far longer than this group should be able to last against the League. While Sy coaches Kite Man through more gadgeteering, Harley finds herself saying something that surprises even her as she tries to reach Ivy. After Superman threatens Ivy with banishment to the Phantom Zone (kind of extreme there, Supes), Harley offers to go with her, but then the League falls prey to one of Ivy’s more… interesting… powers. As Kite Man soars overhead, Ivy runs off, capturing Harley again.
At the mall, Psycho’s ranting gets interrupted when Darkseid shows up to collect what’s owed. Psycho’s ego knows no bounds as he tries to bargain with Darkseid. Kite Man shows up with some devices to protect them from Psycho’s influence. Kite Man tries to talk Ivy down and go the Disney True Love’s Kiss route, but of course, they’re not going to let him be the hero. After he gets swatted aside, naturally it falls to Harley to snap Ivy out of it. Together again, Ivy and Harley defeat Psycho. Darkseid apparently gets bored with the overflowing emotion and goes home.
For a lot of normal shows, this would be all’s well that ends well. But, since there’s one more episode to go, you know something had to happen. Defeated but not done, Psycho does one last evil deed, using his powers to not only reveal Harley’s big secret, but broadcast it all over Gotham. It’s a nasty ending with a lot of spillover they’re evidently going to deal with in the final episode.
What I liked: It was nice to see the League back in action. Sy’s technical info being hopelessly out of date makes perfect sense for the character. Harley trying to deal with her emotions is entertaining to watch. There were a few good lines amid the chaos.
What I didn’t: As usual, the heroes look like idiots. I’m not sure I follow the logic of Darkseid just wandering off. Despite his being shown as a fool so often, I feel bad for Kite Man.
I’ll give this a 3.5 out of 5. It’s going to be interesting to see how this plays out in the finale. The show will return for a third season, but, like all DC Universe original content, it’s moving to HBO Max.