Harley Quinn #71 Review

by Carlos R. on March 04, 2020

Written by: Sam Humphries
Art by:  Sami Basri
Colors by: Hi-Fi
Lettered by: Dave Sharpe
Publisher: DC Comics

Harley Quinn #71 offers a fun issue with heartfelt depth to it. This series has come as a pleasant surprise and if you’re a fan of Harley in any form, you should be reading this.

The story starts off with Harley making a sandwich I’m tempted to try out, though the sound effects make sure to let you know this is a Harley special. The following panel zooms out to reveal that Harley is doing some “investigatin’” into the death of her friend, Alicia. Her death was ruled as a suicide, but Harley smells something fishier than Aquaman’s swimming trunks. The issue continues with Harley and Becca, Alicia’s daughter, mourning the loss of Alicia and Becca questioning how her mother could take her own life. Harley reassures Becca that there must be more to the case and she promises to solve it. The story then moves to Harley chasing down leads in hopes of bringing Alicia’s murderer to Harleen-the-Queen style justice.

I’ve sampled different writers of Harley’s varying series over the years and Humphries writes my favorite version. He writes Harley with a believable emotional depth, while losing none of the character’s absurdity. Her dialogue is spot on and Harley comes off as nonsensical and intelligent. That said, Harley doesn’t come off as a master detective and I enjoyed reading through her take on investigating. The sound effects and inflections from Dave Sharpe’s lettering truly sells Harley and her actions. I may not have thought twice about her sandwich if it wasn’t for “SQWOLCH” effect made by her meal. Humphries also makes this issue fairly accessible, reading of the previous issues would benefit, but there’s no reason why a new reader wouldn’t be able to pick up this issue and easily follow along. My only complaint with this issue is its choice to end on a cliffhanger, knowing Harley, she’ll find a way out of the situation, so it comes off as unnecessary to end the issue this way.

Sami Basri takes this issue from good to great. The interiors in this piece are gorgeous, not just Harley and the cast, but the backgrounds and background characters as well. Seeing Rosie’s kids tear through a grocery store and viewing Harley’s conversation with Booster Gold from another table’s viewpoint help to make Harley’s world seem real and that every part that exists matters. And seeing Harley’s wake of destruction in her interrogating scenes adds emotional weight to her vendetta.

Harley’s series has never been better: accessible, great art and absolutely fun. Humphries and team bring their A-game and deliver an issue worthy of Harleen the Queen.

Our Score:


A Look Inside