The best images of Harley Quinn, DC’s craziest antiheroine

Harley Quinn is a clear example of a relatively new character that has become in a very short time one of the most recognizable and loved by the general public.

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His evolution has been gradual, but very consistent and in keeping with the times we live in, since from the initial relationship of toxic dependency he had with the Joker, always appearing as his eternal (and complacent) lover, he has managed to develop a strong personality and independence that makes him an object of adoration by the fans.

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Next, we are going to take a brief tour of the short (but intense) career of the most insane antiheroine in comics.

1. Animated Origins

Harley Quinn debuted in the 22nd episode of the first season of Batman: The Animated Series , broadcast in 1992, as Joker’s girlfriend and henchman, always pending to satisfy the maniac’s wishes.

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Dr. Harleen Frances Quinzel met the Joker while working at Arkham and from the beginning developed an obsessive relationship of dependency on the dangerous psychopath, fascinated by his insane personality.

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2. Mad Love

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Mad Love (Crazy Love) , winner of an Eisner Award in 1994, was responsible for launching our beloved harlequin to ultimate stardom. Made by Paul Dini and Bruce Timm, it is within the continuity of the animated series and would later be adapted for a chapter of it.

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Despite its humorous tone and cartoonish look , Mad Love is a violent story of abuse and unrequited love . His mastery is in navigating between these two waters without frivolizing the subject, but delving into it in a subtle way, so that it is, at the same time, a story for all audiences and a story for adults.

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Harleen Quinzel is an unstable and manipulative woman, but there is no doubt that she is a victim , and the toxic dependency that she develops with the Joker will mark this first stage of the character in the vignettes.

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3. Officially in continuity

Harley would debut in the official DC Comics continuity in a special written by Paul Dini within the No Man’s Land saga . Unfortunately, the most interesting thing about that comic is the Alex Ross cover , which would become an iconic image of the Joker and her.

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This image would be honored even in the movie Suicide Squad , through a flashback of Harley remembering her “love” story with the Joker.

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It would also have a sort of revision/continuation on a back cover by Ross himself.

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4. First solo series

In October 2000 the first title of Harley debuted, under the baton of Karl Kesel to the scripts and with Terry and Rachel Dodson at the head of the graphic section. In this series, the antiheroine would begin to seek her own personality away from the influence of the Joker, although it was still impossible to completely separate her from the maniacal clown.

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5. Siren of Gotham

Paul Dini would take the reins of his creation again in a new header shared with Catwoman and Poison Ivy. Gotham City Sirens (2009-2011) delves into Harley’s bipolar personality and his adventurous side, now further and further away from the Joker’s influence.

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6. Makeover

We can say that the modern version of Harley Quinn (the one that has become popular among the general public) appears for the first time in the graphic novel Joker (2008), the work of Brian Azzarello and Lee Bermejo. In this story, Harley is presented as a disturbed and dangerous stripper, as well as a bodyguard and sexual and fetish interest of the Joker.

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The combination of this look designed by Bermejo with the typical (and sexist) sexy uniform of a nurse with a cap was released by Harley in the video game Batman: Arkham Asylum , whose enormous success ended up making the character tremendously popular among the gamer community and gave him an even more prominent role in the sequels Batman: Arham City and Batman: Arkham Origins .

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7. From submission to empowerment

In 2011, taking advantage of the reboot that led to The New 52 initiative , DC Comics decided to bet heavily on the character in their comics.

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First, Harley becomes part of the new lineup of the Suicide Squad (Suicide Squad) , where it still continues today, already within the Rebirth initiative .

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On the other hand, since its new regular header debuted, it has continued to be one of DC’s best-selling titles and one of the funniest and most parodic series within the superhero genre, with a surreal and metafictional tone, as well as a constant breaking of the fourth wall.

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8. Big screen debut

With Suicide Squad (2016), Harley is definitively launched into stardom, being adored as an icon by the general public, thanks to an update of her wardrobe and a slight change in her attitude that makes her the most interesting character in the film ( something that was not very difficult either).

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9. Harley & Ivy

Ever since the two characters met in the animated series, it has been speculated that their relationship went beyond simple friendship.

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Recently, in their comic book series, authors Amanda Conner and Jimmy Palmiotti made it clear that they were a couple, “untethered by monogamy.” Quite a breakthrough for the character and a brave attitude on the part of the publisher.

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While Harley’s love for the Joker is obsessive and dependent, her love for Ivy is natural, spontaneous, and most importantly, reciprocated.

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10. Controversial Harley

With success came controversy. While some of her see her character as a dangerous hypersexualization and an apology for gender violence, others have elevated her to a feminist icon within the world of comics.

In addition, his success has surpassed this medium, becoming a character known practically all over the world. We have Harley Quinn for a while…

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11. Scrambled, but not together

Harley was originally created in the animated series as a denunciation of domestic violence and toxic relationships.

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However, the Joker’s abuse towards her became increasingly violent and dangerous, bordering on what was acceptable within a medium such as comics.

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In Suicide Squad , a large part of the story focuses on this toxic relationship of submission, showing us a model NOT to imitate , but with how dangerous it is that their characters are so attractive to the general public.

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Fortunately, in the comics, Harley has finally managed to break the dependency relationship she had with the Joker, after being abandoned by him for the umpteenth time. And when Ella Harley decides to end something, she forcefully does so…

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