As we get out of our Thanksgiving food comas, DC dropped 2 new episodes today, Titans finale and Harley Quinn.
When the new trailer for Harley was shown at SDCC 2019, we saw a series that looked like a female Deadpool styled series. After the first episode, the jokes aren’t as strong as Deadpool for an MA rated show, but it does deliver a hyperviolent series full of language and an adult swim kind of target audience.
The strongest elements of this new show, lies in it staying truthful to most elements of the characters, while exaggerating others for comedic effect. In the first episode, we see Harley come back to Joker, despite Poison Ivy warning her. We also see Riddler, doing his usual tricks and batman appearing from time to time to stop them. Since Harley is the focus, there was minimal use of Batman, and instead we’re given most screen time to Joker, Harley and Ivy as the main characters. We’re also given exaggerations on Gordon’s character as a stressed and tired cop, while Harley makes jokes at Batman’s expense.
We also get fun action sequences and wacky dialogue. In the first part, we do have some funny moments with Joker as he rips of a face mask, which was one of the more laughable moments in the episode. The other strong moment was the final fight with Harley as she breaks it off with Joker, leading to an all-out brawl against his thugs.
Where the series fell was most of the jokes. While exaggerating Gordon, mocking Batman and the opening scene were all humorous, the majority of jokes from Ivy’s plant and some of Harley’s scenes were weaker. Calendar Man knowing Harley’s incarceration time, leading to a joke from his wife about the porno clown was amusing, but the texting food order joke at the end, as well as the plant and scenes with Riddler, weren’t as strong.
As a series that looked to market itself similar to the kind of content Ryan Reynolds gave us in the Deadpool movies, I expected more low brow humor and on-the-nose jokes about various characters in the DC Universe. Instead, the show delivered a hyperviolent series with some laughable moments, while other jokes fell flat or felt overused.
Overall, this series is worth watching and adds another good series to the DCU line-up of original shows. As the writers deliver more episodes, I hope they go further into some of the dark humor they showcased, and more on-the-nose jokes or exaggerated versions of characters for comedic effect. Otherwise, the only real reason it appeared to have the rating it did was just for the violence, while having an overall lack of any other topics or scenarios that would make for heightening what the show has access to.