- Kaley Cuoco’s portrayal of Harley Quinn in the animated series has made her a formidable superhero that fits the comic book genre perfectly.
- The animated series has a closer connection to contemporary comics than the big-budget franchises, allowing for a deeper exploration of character arcs like Poison Ivy’s transformation from villain to hero.
- Despite possible delays due to the ongoing Hollywood strike, fans can look forward to more irreverent and humorous adventures from Harley Quinn thanks to the dedicated animation team behind the series.
Harley Quinn declared himself independent of the Joker back in season one, And rightly so! An intriguing, even seductive, character with a self-determination not found in other former pals, especially when compared to Marvel’s answer: Bucky from Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014).
Seemingly endless variations of Joker’s former sidekick Harley Quinn have appeared in the media from time to time Batman: The Animated Series (1992-1996) to birds of prey (2000). But lately, Harley has proven that she’s capable of insane popularity herself. Did Kaley Cuoco steal her screenmate Margot Robbie’s tiara, or did the veteran comedy actress fall on her face due to the animated action series format?
Let’s get something clear…
Kaley Cuoco has played a superhero before. And not as a voice actress and without the many Wonder Woman costumes she wore big bang theory. No, early in her career (post-Canadian cereal commercials) Kaley was on a little show called ” Charmed. Before the CW restarted the franchise in recent years, Kaley played a wayward witch in need of a mentor. Well, mentors – like the Blessed Sisters.
An episode in particular (Charmed: Battle of the Hexes – Original Series, 2005) follows Kaley (as Billie) as she finds a strange belt in the dusty files of Homeland Security that ends up giving her superpowers familiar to every comic book fan. As a born superhero, she rips open cab doors, dodges bullets, and throws baddies with ease, it’s clear from this early appearance that Kaley Cuoco was destined for a role in the comic book genre.
After serving faithfully to Harley, Kaley Cuoco is cast in the Season 5 sequel. With the coming joker 2 (2024) fans of DC’s darker side will get a glimpse of Lady GaGa as Harley Quinn. This perfect balance creates a nice, symmetrical juxtaposition by which to judge the proficiency of character execution. For the sake of argument, and Lady Gaga and Margot Robbie aside, Kaley Cuoco presents incredible claims about why she might actually be the best Harley Quinn any times.
Put the suicide squad aside
Despite mega-budget incarnations from Harley birds of prey (2020) to The Suicide Squad (2021), the current canon of animated Harley Quinn episodes correlates much more closely with contemporary comics than with the film franchises. In the late 90’s there was a trend of turning a villain into a hero as evidenced in the film releases poison franchises, as well Dead Pool. More recently, Poison Ivy has changed her role as the villain, portrayed by Uma Thurman, in the not only terrifying but godly film Batman and Robin (1997).
Poison Ivy’s transition to heroine alongside her de facto conscience, Harley, is most visible towards the end of season four. The final, metamorphosis (out August 20, 2023) will experience a breathtaking conclusion as Harley investigates an unsolved murder; Meanwhile, Ivy tries to take down the Jons and the Joker announces a sudden, surprising career change. Will Batman have a guest appearance? Will this be a breaking point for poison ivy – and will she break badly?
Traditional DC comics prove to be the semi-romantic foil for the love triangle that eventually develops between Batman, Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn. Forget Catwoman; The dark knight has his hands full with sociopathic bridezillas! Luckily for the younger viewers, this particular storyline hasn’t yet wormed its way into the episodes as Max sticks with the action Harley Quinn. But as for poison ivy, don’t be surprised if her powers of nature don’t catch Swamp Thing’s attention.
Will she land on her feet?
Luckily for Harley fanatics, the director recently released a teaser image for season five to ease fan concerns about the ongoing writer and cast strike. While the WGA and SAG (Writer’s Guild of America and Screen Actor’s Guild, respectively) may have slowed things down on HBO’s new Max streaming service, that doesn’t mean our bold and unorthodox wildcard won’t show her pale face soon enough.
Harley Quinn is tough, resourceful, independent, and if she gets her more illicit tendencies in check, she might even prove to be a good role model. She stands for loyalty, she truly protects the young and defenseless and Harley doesn’t rob the poor. There are multi-million dollar corporations that subscribe to less dubious ethics than Harley Quinn. Let’s hope the murderous version of Lady GaGa comes in joker 2 doesn’t ruin it all.
For four seasons, Harley’s independent animated series has proven irreverent to the Batman mythos and able to frame occasionally serious themes of loyalty and betrayal in a more pleasant humorous context. Comedy serves the series well, and alongside the award-winning animation team, even a prolonged Hollywood strike is unlikely to stop Harley doing much more. Stay one step ahead of Harley’s crazy antics Catch Harley Quinn at Max.