ByDavid Opie, writer at
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David Opie

After it was confirmed that Harley Quinn would appear in the Season 3 finale of Gotham, fans were sorely disappointed when the finale failed to deliver. We were left to wonder if The Joker himself was working behind the scenes, stealing his puddin' away from the limelight she was promised.

Undeterred by this setback, fans almost immediately began speculating about how Harley Quinn could debut in Season 4 of Gotham instead. Would Barbara Kean return from the dead with a newfound love of baseball bats and homicidal nutjobs, or would Lee Thompkins surprise us all by becoming the Clown Princess of Crime?

Unfortunately, a new interview with producer John Stephens has drowned our hopes of seeing Harley Quinn on Gotham in a multi-colored vat of despair. That's right, guys. After hinting more than once that Harleen Quinzel will appear on Gotham, Stephens has now confirmed that we won't see the Clown Princess of Crime in Season 4 — or any other season, for that matter.

"Are You The Devil?"

In a move that could make viewers even crazier than the residents of Arkham Asylum, Stephens surprised fans at San Diego Comic-Con 2017 by revealing that Barbara Keane will never evolve into the character we know and love. Stephens also boldly claimed responsibility for any confusion:

“It was my fault. I had thought I had said and I might have not said it: We’ll see a Harley Quinn-esque character. Because in our mind Barbara was taking on a lot of the ethos and spirit of Harley Quinn, you know, her love of anarchy and violence. All those things that make Harley, Harley in many ways, we were trying to put into Barbara. So I thought that she was becoming a Harley Quinn-esque character. But we’re never going to see Harley Quinn. Sorry about that.”

This revelation is especially odd considering that Stephens himself has hinted at Harley's involvement on Gotham in the past, and star David Mazouz previously confirmed that Quinn would appear in the Season 3 finale. Yet Stephens's quote suggests that previous hopes of seeing Harley Quinn on Gotham were based on a series of misunderstandings. Instead, Barbara Kean's "Quinn-esque character" is reportedly the closest we'll ever come to seeing the Joker's main squeeze on the show.

Why Harley Quinn Should Never Appear On Gotham

Behind Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman, Harley Quinn has become the fourth official pillar of DC, and it's easy to see why. Fans have had nothing but Mad Love for Quinn ever since the Clown Princess of Crime first won us over twenty five years ago, regardless of whether she's appearing in comics, animation or even video games.

Suicide Squad [Credit: Warner Bros.]
Suicide Squad [Credit: Warner Bros.]

However, Harley's popularity reached Arkham levels of insanity when Margot Robbie brought the character to life in Suicide Squad last year, and demand for her appearance on Gotham has understandably hit an all-time high. After all, Jerome's Joker prototype may be the best character on the show so far, and fans were dying to see the Clown Princess get the same treatment as Mistah J.

All of this suggests that the addition of Harley Quinn to Gotham would be a cause for celebration, but in truth, confirmation that she won't appear will be far more advantageous to the show in the long run. With confirmed roles in and the Harley Quinn Vs Joker project, the animated Batman and Harley Quinn movie, and her recent arc in Injustice 2, and a potential Suicide Squad 2 appearance, there'll be no shortage of Harley on our screens in the near future.

Such a proliferation of Harleys undoubtedly lead to comparisons — and quite simply, Gotham would struggle to compete with the blockbuster budget of Margot Robbie's Harley. Up until recently, wisely chose to avoid using characters simultaneously in both the Arrowverse and the DCEU for this reason, but now that The Flash will appear in Justice League, the floodgates have opened wide. While Gotham isn't part of the Arrowverse, the show has mostly stuck to depicting Batman characters before they've fully embraced their iconic destinies. If the Gotham producers ever changed their minds and officially turned Barbara Kean into Harley Quinn, comparisons between her and Margot Robbie would be inevitable.

That in itself isn't a bad thing. By reimagining the mythos at an earlier stage of Bruce Wayne's life, Gotham has put a commendably fresh spin on a number of iconic characters, including The Penguin, The Riddler and Bruce Wayne himself. However, none of those characters have captured the public zeitgeist as much as Harley Quinn has right now. To add the Clown Princess of Crime to the show would detract from the influence that Margot Robbie's version of the character holds over pop culture.

Sure, she's batshit crazy and sure, there are numerous issues with the way in which her abusive relationship with The Joker has been portrayed so far, but Harley Quinn is arguably DC's most important character right now, and not just because her comics outsell the likes of Superman and Wonder Woman. More than any other DC hero or even anti-hero, Harley Quinn is relevant, appealing to all demographics with a fresh, widespread appeal that few traditional heroes can match.

The Brave And The Bold

It would be easy for Gotham to complete Barbara's transformation into Harley Quinn and instantly boost their viewership tenfold for Season 4. But it's truly commendable that the show runners have resisted fan pressure to bravely tell the story that's right for them. In narrative terms, one could argue that it's simply too soon to introduce The Joker's main squeeze. After all, Gotham hasn't even confirmed whether Jerome is even yet, so there's no need to crowbar Harley Quinn into the story just yet.

One of the most impressive aspects of the show is how it explores the dark, seedy underbelly of Gotham City in a way that the movies simply can't, providing lesser known characters such as Professor Pyg and The Mad Hatter with their own chance to shine. Sure, it may seem somewhat premature for John Stephens to decide that Harley Quinn will never appear in , but for now, using her character would only detract from the other villains in Batman's gallery of rogues. Arkham Asylum is already full enough as it is. Let's leave in the DCEU for now.

Do you think Harley Quinn should appear on Gotham? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below!

(Source: Screen Rant)


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