The current Harley Quinn comics for DC Rebirth have been nothing short of fun. We've seen her end a zombie apocalypse, travel across the world and form her own punk band. But now, the storylines are beginning to get more serious. Her recent breakup with Poison Ivy has given her room to think about how life would be if she stayed with the Joker. He is slowly making his way back into her life, both in dreams and subtle gifts. A story arc entitled "Joker Loves Harley" is coming our way in January, starting with Harley Quinn #11. In those stories, we will be introduced to a "newer, kinder" Joker.
As a huge fan of Harley and her comics, there is nothing that could turn me away from this series. But upon reading about the Joker's return, I couldn't help but think: What's the point? I believe that Harley's comics are much better off without her ex-boyfriend's involvement, and here's why.
It's A Repetitious Mess
By now, we can assume most fans are familiar with Harley's origin and the extreme abuse she endures from the Joker. While I do appreciate emotional flashbacks of Dr. Quinzel's therapy sessions (which her current comics have given us), bringing him back in an ongoing story does nothing more than repeat history. What more could be done? The Joker is selfish, manipulative and incapable of changing his sadistic ways. His presence in Harley's comics will not make the stories more interesting. She has what it takes to embark on her own adventures.
What Happened To Closure?
In her previous New 52 series, Harley had an intense moment with the Joker that seemed to signify the end. Bringing back many past emotions, that moment took a toll on Harley and gave her the motivation to reinvent herself. The return of the Joker only gives this visceral encounter less of an impact. Most importantly, it looks as if she never recovered from it at all.
Her Independence Is Meaningful
#SuicideSquad and the #DCEU have not explored the independent side of Harley yet — and that's just fine. When introducing her character, there's no argument that the Joker must be connected. As for her comic books, there's a completely different story. The main focus of her current series is how she has moved on with her life — relocating to a new town, befriending new people and finding herself again. She is a symbol of hope for those who have suffered abuse, proving that no one is a victim forever.
Harley's villainous antics and past dependence on the Joker are often overshadowed by her strengths. Her relationship with the Joker and the horrible treatment she experienced does not define her character. She is more than just a love interest, and her comics should continue to exemplify that.
The current Harley Quinn issues are available in comic book stores everywhere.
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Who do you think is Harley's true love? Share your thoughts in the comments down below!