Harley's back, and this time she's forming her own team — Margot Robbie's solo Harley Quinn movie has been confirmed to be an adaptation of the comic Gotham City Sirens. On its own, this revelation doesn't seem like much (apart from the fact that this comic marks the beginning of Harley and Poison Ivy's romantic relationship), but thanks to its position in DC Comics chronology, we may now know the plot for Ben Affleck's upcoming movie The Batman.
Gotham City Sirens follows on from a much-loved #Batman comic, continuing many threads from the critically acclaimed Hush and the sequel comics Heart of Hush and Batman R.I.P. Catwoman plays a very large role in this story, with Poison Ivy and #HarleyQuinn also appearing. In fact, the #GothamCitySirens comic could not exist without the events of Hush and the proceeding comics.
Gotham City Sirens begins with Catwoman battling a two-bit criminal known as Boneblaster, and she's not faring well. After the events of Heart of Hush, Catwoman is still weak from her heart surgery. This allows Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn to capture her — because Catwoman learned Batman's secret identity in Hush, Ivy is determined to pry this knowledge from her.
Selina's knowledge of Batman's secret forms the backbone of much of Gotham City Sirens, as other villains target Catwoman because of what she knows. Suffice it to say, it's unthinkable for a Gotham City Sirens movie to exist without the events of Hush — and at least without Catwoman being introduced as part of Batman's story.
So does this mean Hush is the plot for Ben Affleck's #TheBatman?
Evil Draws Men Together
Many fans have already speculated that The Batman may be a partial adaptation of Hush, as this comic brings together many supporting characters and villains from Batman's long history. In the comic, Bruce is beset by his old foes, who are acting very out of character and seem to be united in force just to torment him. He begins to suspect that someone is behind all of this, and together with Catwoman he investigates.
Along the way, we encounter many faces from Batman's past: Nightwing helps out for a time, Oracle lends her thoughts on the matter, Tim Drake is kidnapped by someone who appears to be Jason Todd, who was presumed dead. This turns out to be Clayface in disguise — but Hush sets up the possibility that Jason is alive, which was continued later in the Red Hood arcs. And we all know how #BatmanvSuperman teased that plot...
Eventually, Bruce and Selina track down the man behind the curtain — the eponymous villain Hush — who is revealed to be Thomas Elliot, Bruce's friend from childhood. This results in a heartwrenching finale, in which Elliot is killed (but not really, because comic books), and we see a more human, vulnerable side to the jaded and battle-worn Batman.
Also, Bruce breaks up with Selina after their brief romance, suspecting her to have been in league with Hush. Bruce has really got to work on his trust issues.
Hush is a really fantastic comic, known to be one of the best in Batman's vast library of tales. Because Hush utilizes Batman's entire rogues' gallery, as well as having him team up with the Bat-Family, this comic would be the perfect choice for The Batman, which is set many years into Bruce's time as the Dark Knight. Not to mention, there's an epic showdown with the Joker that calls back to both Death in the Family and The Killing Joke, and naturally we'd love to see this on the big screen.
If The Batman does adapt Hush then key players from Gotham City Sirens could be introduced prior to the solo movie's release, which makes sense as the Sirens are all Batman villains. Plus, Hush sets up Batman's own role in Gotham City Sirens beautifully...
Keeping Gotham Safe
In the awesome final arc of Gotham City Sirens, it's revealed that Batman was actually the one pulling the strings this time — he persuaded Catwoman to invite Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn to team up, in order to keep the two villains busy while Batman dealt with more important matters. Ironically, he believed that the trio working together would actually make Gotham a safer place, and as Harley points out, he was right.
"Did you think, with all the chaos he was dealing with at the time, that he would just let you two roam the streets?"
In her fury at being manipulated, Poison Ivy uses her powers to destroy an entire city block, challenging Batman to fight her. Which he does, and swiftly takes her down. But Catwoman isn't happy.
Annoyed at how she too had been used, Catwoman says she'll handle the situation herself — then she gives Harley and Ivy a head start, telling them to escape before Batman captures them and sends them to Arkham Asylum.
The upshot of all of this? Not only does this choice of comic material suggest that The Batman will partially adapt Hush, it also means that Batman is certain to play a small, but significant role in Margot Robbie's Harley Quinn solo movie. And for once, this won't be a gratuitous cameo but an important plot twist.
If the DCEU play their cards right, with The Batman and Gotham City Sirens they could add to the broader story unfolding on the silver screen, truly mirroring the complexity of DC's comic books for the first time.