Review: Harley Quinn: Black + White + Red Chapter Thirteen
Just when you think that this series can’t get any better, this chapter drops. Harley Quinn: Black + White + Red Chapter Thirteen is one of the funniest comics I’ve read in a long time. I actually laughed out loud. Multiple times. For those who don’t know. Harley Quinn: Black + White + Red is a DC Digital First anthology series. Each chapter sees a new creative team and new story. These are generally stand-alone tales with only a couple referencing other series. Through it all, we’ve seen how much the writers and artists bring to the story with so many different takes on Harley Quinn in both the narrative and the visuals.
Patrick Schumacker is the Executive Producer and a writer for the Harley Quinn animated series and he brings his talents to the digital page with this chapter. The story has Harley being recruited by the Legion of Doom and doing what she can to impress her potential new boss, Lex Luthor. What follows is a smart, humorous, touching story that’s more about “Q rating” than villainy. The Legion of Doom is plagued by leaked emails, henchmen strikes, and public perception. And with all of the references within, there’s still moments that are sweet and cute.
Schumacker adds some heart as Harley bonds with Bane who provides her with advice about her potential new job. The scene is one of subtle visual jokes but some tenderness as well. Within the villainous group there’s “decent” people it would appear and some justification of the job (dental!).
Eleonora Carlini provides the art with Tom Napolitano‘s lettering. The style is an interesting one reminding me of something but I can’t quite put my finger on it. There’s a kinetic energy about the style though. Even though much of the comic takes place around a boardroom table, there’s something that pops. The style really emphasizes Schumacker’s jokes. Napolitano’s lettering is so important as well as there’s a bit of dialogue to deliver the punchlines but at no point does it feel overwhelming.
Harley Quinn: Black + White + Red Chapter Thirteen delivers rapid-fire jokes. There’s just so much there for so many people. Jokes cover everything from Michael Cohen to leaked emails to the NFL to the Joker’s former tattoos. Every bit of dialogue is packed with a set up and delivery of a punchline. This is hands down my favorite chapter of the anthology series so far. It got me to laugh and keep laughing throughout with a style that departs what has come before and delivering smart, joke-filled commentary.
Story: Patrick Schumacker Art: Eleonora Carlini Letterer: Tom Napolitano
Story: 10 Art: 10 Overall: 10 Recommendation: Buy
DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review