Harley Quinn #25 is published by DC Comics, written by Stephanie Phillips, art by Matteo Lolli and David Baldeón, colors by Rain Beredo, and letters by Deron Bennett. Harley has been trying to track down her killer, enlisting the help of Victor Zsasz. Her killer was revealed to be her, but an alternate-reality version of herself. In this issue, Harley plans to defeat the Harley Who Laughs with the help of an unexpected ally.
The plot has taken a massive swerve since the introduction of multi-dimensional forces. The murder mystery aspect is dropped by Phillips and replaced with a hide-and-seek story. There is a killer out there that we now know of, and more figures are being dropped. The frantic energy of previous arcs has resurfaced in Harley Quinn #25. Phillips has opened completely new areas of this small corner of the universe and punched holes in others. It has derailed my expectations of the book and made it almost impossible to guess what happens next. But Harley Quinn’s “death” at the start of the comic has not been forgotten. It leads to one of the more sentimental aspects of the issue. The battle at the end is a mixture of callbacks and expansion, paving the way for the next chapter filled with madness.
The character development in this issue is fascinating as the introduction of other Harleys, accessing and analyzing the character’s personality from alternative sources. But at the core of it all is the Prime Harley, which can gravitate towards the most. A new figure is brought into the book that serves as the support for the main character and the start of a wider explosion. The dialogue continues to be phenomenal. New concepts aren’t bogged down by exposition that could slow down the story’s progress. The main villain of the arc possibly needs more of a voice to provide us with more motive. While this take on the Batman Who Laughs is insidious and brilliant, she could do with more depth or menace.
The art is superb. Baldeón and Lolli have similar art styles, which works in favor of the comic. Baldeón illustrates an alternate Earth, hinting that it is a separate story at the start. Having different creators for each Earth brings variety to the comic and a subtle deviation from what looks like the norm. The storytelling by the artists can be phenomenal, often revealing things that don’t need speech to clarify. A quiet moment with the hyenas provides as much of a backstory as a word balloon. The fight scenes are crazy and incredible, full of movement and lively action. The sense of speed and aggression is excellent, with both artists including terrific facial expressions to the faces of the characters. The character’s designs are remarkable and show the immense talent of the creators involved.
The colors continue a theme that this book has followed since its inception, depicting Harley as the most vibrant part of Gotham. The buildings are dingy and dark, while the main character is this beautifully intense blend of red and blue. And this seems to be the case on other Earths too. But more bright colors are included in this issue, from flashy cars to portals to all sorts of pieces that needed to stand out. The lettering is flawless, as always, within this book.
Harley Quinn #25 showcases just how unpredictable this series can be from one issue to another. The “Who Killed Harley Quinn” arc has been transported in a direction that was unforeseeable at the beginning, and it has branched into a story verging on a Crisis. The energy and ability to balance tones will always make this book infectious. The art is glorious and full of personality, which is this comic’s most important aspect.
Harley Quinn #25 is available now wherever comics are sold.
Harley Quinn #25
Harley Quinn #25 showcases how unpredictable this series can be from one issue to another. The “Who Killed Harley Quinn” arc has been transported in a direction that was unforeseeable at the beginning, and it has branched into a story verging on a Crisis. The energy and ability to balance tones will always make this book infectious. The art is glorious and full of personality, which is this comic’s most important aspect.
William is a screenwriter with a love of comics and movies. Once referred to Wuthering Heights as “the one with the Rabbits.”