Harley Quinn #75
Written by Sam Humphries
Art by Sami Basri, Nicola Scott, Emanuela Luppachino, Ray McCarthy, Ramon Villalobos, Ngozi Ukazu, Joe Quinones and Riley Rossmo
Colors by HI-FI, Annette Kwok, Tamra Bonvillain and Ivan Plascencia
Letters by Dave Sharpe
The Rundown: Harley will wake up in a nightmare she doesn’t know how to escape; a birthday roast.
It’s Harley Quinn’s birthday and she has no intention of celebrating it with anyone in her life. Unfortunately, her subconscious has different plans and those plans include a birthday roast where the people in her life tell her all about how the worst aspects of her define her the most.
In another story tied to the Joker War, Harley must fight to stay alive as her fight with Punchline leaves her mortally wounded and weakened.
The Story: For all the promise of this issue, the story was just ok. Having Harley explore her fear was fine, but the story itself took way too long to get a point it could have made five or six pages in. All of the vignettes were visually interesting, but they all amounted to the same story being told over and over again. Humphries has done great work redefining this character and making her stories unique, but this issue just falls flat emotionally. There are moments that work, but those parts can’t save the whole.
The second story, which takes place after Harley’s encounter with Punchline, should have been expanded. It was done really well and could have served as a better catalyst to have Harley confront her inner demons as she struggled to survive an attack from both the woman who replaced her and the man who seemed to define her.
The Art: All of the artist brought something interesting and visually fun to their moments throughout the issue. I liked the use of different visual styles to tell the different parts of the story.