Harley Quinn #31 Review

Writer: Tini Howard and Heather Anne Campbell
Art: Sweeney Boo and Filya Bratukhin
Colors: Sweeney Boo and Lee Loughridge
Letters: Hassan Otmane-Elhaou
Publisher:  DC Comics
Price: $4.99
Release Date: June 27th, 2023

Harley Quinn and Captain Carrot face off in Harley Quinn #31!  Harley used a Cosmic Treadmill to travel to Earth-26 to help fix the havoc she inadvertently caused there, but Captain Carrot, having seen all his friends get wiped out because of her, isn’t the forgiving type.   Will the two kill each other or find a way to work together to fix Earth-26?  Also, Poison Ivy returns home!  Two-Face is gunning for revenge!  And what happens when Lady Quark finds out that Harley broke her promise not to visit other Earths?

If you’re interested in this comic, series, related trades, or any of the others mentioned, then simply click on the title/link to snag a copy through Amazon as you read the Harley Quinn #31 Review.

The Story

Even though I’ve never been a fan of Earth-26 and Captain Carrot, I enjoyed Harley’s time on Earth-26 last issue and in Harley Quinn #31.
It’s a more somber Captain Carrot we get here, his team having been wiped out by Backseid (Yes, Backseid) the Earth-26 version of Darkseid.  And it’s all because Captain Carrot’s master weapon, the Vorpal Fish, the weapon that was the Earth-26 version of the Ultimate Nullifier or the Infinity Gauntlet, was summoned by Harley to Earth-Prime right as Captain Carrot was delivering the killing blow to Backseid.  Harley used a Cosmic Treadmill to travel to Earth-26 and return the Vorpal Fish to Captain Carrot, hopefully reversing what happened.  And no, I’m not smoking high-grade weed, all this really happened over the last two issues. This issue, Captain Carrot and Harley battle amidst the gravity and logic-defying landscape of Earth-26, which is pretty much like the Looney Tunes universe without that wisecracking bunny and temperamental duck.

Harley fits into this Earth like a tailored suit, adjusting to the cartoon physics almost instantly and giving Captain Carrot, who’s pretty much the equivalent of Superman on this Earth, a run for his money.  It’s more proof of how formidable Harley Quinn is.  I’ve been enjoying her transformation over the years from the wisecracking girlfriend of the Joker to a fierce anti-hero who’s trying to be a better human being but isn’t afraid to kick some tail when pushed into it. Later in the issue, once she gets back to Earth-Prime, she takes on Two-Face again, this time with a little help from Earth-26, and the fight is a blast (literally).   Two-Face is becoming more of a nemesis for Harley than he’s been for Batman in a long time.  If Harley has a Rogues Gallery, Two-Face should be a member of it.  He’s become obsessed with killing her ever since she disrupted a major bank heist a few issues back.  This guy really holds a grudge!

Poison Ivy is back and there are some great scenes between she and Harley.   I love the relationship between these two, I feel it’s the best relationship in comics these days.  The two are a perfect match, Harley’s impulsiveness and Poison Ivy’s quiet intellect playing off each other wonderfully.  It’s great to have her back in the book again. I’m not sure how I feel about the ending of the issue.  Let’s just say I found it a bit annoying and I took a point off because of it. Otherwise, this was another enjoyable issue and this book is still in my top 3 favorite DC books. There’s a backup story where Harley dreams she’s in an anime version of Gotham City, battling the Joker.  It’s a very brief story with some fantastic art.  I enjoyed it!

The Art

Sweeney Boo’s art and colors on Harley Quinn #31 are crisp and dazzling.   I was so glad when she was brought onto the book, her art fits the book perfectly and Harley’s rarely looked better.  Sweeney always strikes the perfect balance between manga and old school Jack Kirby-style work. Filya Bratukhin’s art on the backup story is equally beautiful.  Filya’s work is reminiscent of Geoff Darrow.  It’s incredibly detailed.  On the opening page of the story, there’s a splash page of a giant robot tethered inside a matrix of hundreds of wires, gears and metal columns, and each one is so detailed and identifiable that it’s mind-boggling.  It makes me wonder how long it took Filya to draw it.  I found myself going back to that page numerous times just to take in each minute section of it.

Final Thoughts

Though the ending was frustrating, the rest of Harley Quinn #31 was great fun, finishing Harley’s journey to Earth-26 and bringing her back to Earth-Prime and into Poison Ivy’s arms.  It’s action-packed, with some great character moments and art.  Recommended.


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