Review: Harley Quinn #22

Harley Quinn is leaving LA and heading back home to Brooklyn.  Little does she know that an old enemy, Zena Bendemova, has returned and sworn vengeance on Sy Borgman and Harley for killing her.  Meanwhile, Madam Macabre’s son Mason is in a fight for his life from the prison gangs who are out to get him.

The Positive

Harley 22 3A lot has been going on while Harley has been out in LA.  First her old friend Sy Borgman’s nemesis has been brought back from the dead in a shiny new cyborg body, and killing Sy and Harley is the first thing on her to do list.  She lays a trap for Harley at the airport, but they should know that Harley isn’t that easy to kill.

A whole team of sexy soviet assassins in short skirts lay in wait, but they aren’t enough to put our Harley down.  As per usual the action and violence is extremely over the top, but it’s done in a fun cartoonish way.  Harley is her usual quick-witted self as she fights back with a crossbow made out of rubber bands and pencils.

On the flip side from the soviet assassins, Mason’s scenes in prison are much less zany and carry a sense of real danger.  Harley splits her team to help solve the different crises.

The Negative

The story shifts tone pretty dramatically from the attempted hit on Harley and the prison fight in the first half to the sillier second half with Harley looking for pancakes.  The pancakes are quickly forgotten as she has to be reminded of all the problems they are facing.  It’s quite the shift and it brings down an otherwise good book.


The Verdict

This is more of the classic Harley Quinn that we have come to enjoy over the last 22 issues.  The cartoonish opening is mostly balanced by a more serious tone in the second half.  Hardin’s art captures Harley’s manic energy well.  Except for the tonal change in the second half, this is a great book and a very fun read.