REVIEW: ‘Harley Quinn,’ Issue #29

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Harley Quinn #29 — But Why Tho

Harley Quinn #29 is published by DC Comics, written by Tini Howard, art and colors by Sweeney Boo, and letters by Steve Wands. As Harley has been warned by Multiversal beings, she heads to Zatanna for help and protection. There is a backup story written and drawn by Adam Warren, colors by Alejandro Sanchez, and letters by Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou.

The plot of this issue is fantastic, with much more of a structure than the first issue. There is also a perfect blend of clarity and chaos. Howard channels the multiversal madness well by opening with it, creating an ominous feeling before putting it on the back burner. It means that there is something comic that the reader knows about but Harley doesn’t, raising the tension. Harley goes for help with a fantastic idea for a guest star. Howard matches the energy of this Harley book well with the guest star Zatanna, keeping the tone light and funny. But it can also verge on the dark and emotional. I found that the caveat added strength to the story. But the answer to the puzzle was slightly easy to guess. It leads to a fun action scene and heart-to-heart with another cameo, but the early foreshadowing meant that I could see where it would end up. It is still a compelling moment, then curtailed by an utterly bizarre final page, shaking things up dramatically.

What is happening to Harley in Harley Quinn #29 is fascinating and incredibly deep. The crisis she is in is largely due to the absence of Ivy, but there is much more emphasis to the word crisis within DC. Her voice is filled with a lot of pessimism and anger, but still with that love for other people. When she does lash out, it isn’t out of anger at the person she’s shouting at. Her narration is present throughout the issue, often in quiet moments where there isn’t dialogue. Other characters have their own distinct voices too. Two-Face is like a mobster and cartoony. One of the other figures included is whimsical and positive, the other straightforward but helpful. The different tones and personalities in the book give more life, and I think a newer cast has refreshed the atmosphere as well.

The art is fantastic again. It’s an issue that can carry the story just by visuals alone. Some of the reactions are brilliant. Like with the first chapter, the costumes and outfits Boo creates are magnificent and perfect for the characters. Due to being called on at home, Zatanna has been given something alternative to her fishnets and hat look. It’s a flowing gown with a stunning pattern within the fabric. The opening location is magnificent and huge in its scale. Whilst there is only action towards the end of the comic, Boo has a way of making small moments dramatic, boosted by Harley’s exuberance.

The colors are gorgeous, with many warm and inviting tones used. In both Harley and Zatanna’s rooms, there is a lot of pink and purple. It makes the book whimsical and energetic. But the colors change frequently for each location, setting the tone and the atmosphere. For example, when the scene changes to a villain’s hideout, the panel turns black and gloomy. The lettering is also really good and so pivotal to the storytelling at points. There is a point when Harley is at her most vulnerable, almost talking to someone within herself, and the word balloon is small and the text is faint. It might be hard to read, but being almost imperceptible is the point, I believe.

The backup story is eccentric but beautifully made. It follows the weird ending of the main story, offering up multiple possibilities from a hilarious standpoint. But the final possibility left me genuinely lost for words, unable to determine whether it was true or just a mind game.

Harley Quinn #29 is settling in and shining. Now that all of the elements of the plot have been introduced, Howard is starting to explore and excel with them. You can never think you have the plot nailed in your mind as there will always be a curveball coming out of nowhere. Boo is such a perfect fit and is crafting a world that feels like Harley is the centre and belongs in it. The team has slightly changed the personality of the book from Phillips’ run but is establishing their own identity. 

Harley Quinn #29 is available where comics are sold.

Harley Quinn #29


Harley Quinn #29 is settling in and shining. Now that all of the elements of the plot have been introduced, Howard is starting to explore and excel with them.

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