Harley Quinn Annual 2021 #1
Written by Stephanie Phillips
Art by David LaFuente, Marco Failla, and Jon Sommariva
Colors by Miguel Muerto
Letters by AndWorld Design
The Rundown: Kevin and Solomon Grundy enlist the aid of Mr. Freeze to help find a missing Harley.
Kevin and Grundy seek Mr. Freeze’s assistance in their search for Keepsake. After a heated engagement, Kevin explains his motives. At an earlier point in time, Harley and Kevin are skateboarding when they meet Keepsake, who reveals himself as a previous associate. After an unusual conversation, he invites Harley to dinner. Later, when the pair are interrupted by Kevin, a simple exchange turns into a brawl. Afterwards, Kevin discovers something unusual. Then, he recruits Grundy to help him solve a mystery. The two then have a series of deadly encounters with Gotham’s most notorious villains.
Back in the present, Mr. Freeze decides to help Kevin and Grundy with their search. Meanwhile, Harley finds herself in a surprising location with Keepsake. When a deadly confrontation ensues, Keepsake’s alludes to a potentially harmful master plan. Then, Kevin and Grundy reunite with Harley. Afterwards, the trio aid Mr. Freeze in a surprising manner. The episode ends with a surprising cliffhanger.
The Story: Phillips has created a fun and exciting detective adventure including the two unlikeliest of heroes. And I am here for it. I really enjoyed Kevin and Grundy’s interaction with varying bad guys. Especially, when Keepsake was mentioned. What an interesting villain. It is not often a character is given such specific and unusual flaws in their nature. The different opinions on it are both amusing and horrifying. For all Keepsake’s uncomfortably ridiculous antics, his partnerships and potential mania may bring a disturbing new situation to an already volatile Gotham City.
The Art: The illustration in this issue matches the playful vibe of the story. The colors are bold or bright and changes with the different locations of the story. So does the drawing style. However, the varying techniques serve to differentiate the nature of each major villain.