Writer: Tee Franklin
Art: Jon Mikel
Colors: Andrew Dalhouse
Letters: Taylor Esposito
Publisher: DC Comics
Release Date: March 21st, 2023
Everything’s finally out in the open in Harley Quinn: The Animated Series – Legion of Bats! #6, as Harley’s alliance with the Bat family (rocking her new identity The Red Bat) is revealed to her main squeeze Poison Ivy and her Legion of Doom. Fireworks are going to fly as Nightwing, Damian Wayne, Batgirl, Vixen and even Wonder Woman show up amidst the chaos, and Harley and Ivy’s relationship may not survive.
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I’ve never been sure which Earth Harley Quinn: The Animated Series is set on, but on this Earth, Batman’s in jail and Nightwing, Damian Wayne’s Robin and Batgirl have taken over protecting Gotham City. Harley Quinn, wanting to change her ways, has started fighting crime with them and even pieced together her own Bat-style costume to become The Red Bat. The most enjoyable moments of the series have been when Harley’s in the field fighting beside the Bat Family, her personality a perfect fit with the gleefulness of Batgirl, the deadly seriousness of Nightwing and the always bratty Damian Wayne. In Harley Quinn: The Animated Series – Legion of Bats! #6, it’s all about Harley and Ivy and their “betrayals” of each other. Harley feels Ivy has betrayed her by getting cozy with her ex and Ivy feels betrayed because Harley has been “jaunting around” with the Bat Family. It makes for a tense back and forth throughout the issue.
I love their relationship, writer Tee Franklin has always made the relationship feel realistic. The pair have to work their way through emotions we’ve all had to work through at one point or another with someone we love. They’re both strong independent women who have their own dreams and agendas, but like any relationship where two people love each other and want to have a life together, there has to be compromises, even when one person can take out a whole city with a devastating assault of plants. There are interesting things going on around the couple also throughout the issue, with Livewire and Nightfall (who I’d love to see get a miniseries of their own) having their own surprising face-off and Vixen and Wonder Woman (two characters I’ve rarely seen interact) having a wonderful bonding moment. It made me want to see more of this Earth’s Wonder Woman, who seems very much the embodiment of Lynda Carter’s classic Wonder Woman, radiating strength and dignity and inspiring everyone she meets. My only issue with the book is that it wraps up the Black Mask plot much too quickly and easily and feels anti-climactic after the build-up over the course of the miniseries, but overall, this was a fun conclusion to the story.
Jon Mikel’s art style on Harley Quinn: The Animated Series – Legion of Bats! #6 feels like a fusion of John Romita Jr. and Kevin Maguire, with a nearly infinite variety of facial expressions on the characters and a grittiness to the art that makes it feel more suited to Harley Quinn’s regular book than a book set in the animated series universe. Still, I enjoyed the way the quiet scenes between Harley and Ivy were drawn. It felt intimate and their emotions radiated through the artwork.
Harley Quinn: The Animated Series – Legion of Bats! #6 is a good finale to the miniseries that perfectly sets up the next season of the animated series. We get some great scenes between Harley and Ivy and this Earth’s version of Vixen, Wonder Woman, Nightfall and Livewire are complex and interesting. Recommended.