Harley Quinn 65 hit stands Wednesday, and with it, Harley’s final trial commences. There is no surprise as to the nature of the last trial, or the emotional impact it would have, both on Harley and the reader. Harleen’s mother is dead.

Harley Quinn 65: Cover 2 Cover

The “A” cover looks like traditional Harley cuteness at its best. Harley repaired her name, which also happens to be the title to the comic, and in the process has tape, band-aids, thread, thimbles and all sorts of stuff flying all over the cover. Of course Harley gives us her cute little wink.

The “B” cover is more realistic Harley sprinting away with bank bags and her hyenas. The cover looks cool, but neither cover really relates to the issue inside. As much as we love cute and adorable Harley, this issue missed the chance to illustrate a truly moving cover related to the story inside.

The End Finally Happens

Harley Quinn 65 A lost little girl
Harley Feeling the Loss

This story thread haunted the pages of the Harley comic for some time. At long last, in Harley Quinn 65 the final tragedy takes place. Harley’s mother is dead. The first five pages of this issue dedicate themselves to Harley and the pain and brokenness she feels. For those who lost loved ones, several of these panels strike very close to home.

There are two panels in particular that pop to me. The first being the “man of comfort”. Someone walks up behind Harley with tea. By the color of the jacket, I’d assume this to be Joker. It makes the great point of what pain makes us think. Harley dumped Joker and walked away from him for good, yet when we are overcome with pain and loss, we often turn to what was comfortable. It doesn’t mean what is best, simply what we were comfortable with. Despite knowing all he did to her, Joker is Harley’s familiar.

Harley imagines support from Joker
Harley Imagining Support

The second scene, Harley cries out in pain, not knowing what to do. The panel switches to a sepia like tone and sitting next to her? Her mother. Harley’s mother passes on one final piece of motherly advice before Harley returns to reality. Harley does not know the full meaning of the suggestion to swim to the island yet, but she goes for her own reason – to run. Harley gives up on the world and runs to her own sanctuary island.

A Familiar Face

Harley Quinn and Mirand'r square off
Mirand’r looks for her Champion

Five days later, a familiar face appears on the island. Mirand’r shows up seeking Harley. When at last they meet up, Harley demonstrates her current state of mind. Harley has gone full primitive, donned in a grass skirt and coconut shell bikini, to protect her island.

Harley launches an attack against Mirand’r complete with pirate accent. The attack should have immobilized Mirand’r or possibly killed her, except there’s one problem. Mirand’r is intangible, insubstantial and Unt-OUCH-able. Mirand’r tries to bring Harley back to reality with, what else? A comic book of course! Her mother chews out Lex for going near her daughter, but even that won’t snap Harley out of her running away state.

Harley Quinn 65: The Final Straw

Luckily after the failure of the comic book, Mirand’r plays her ace in the hole card. She has one more shock to jolt Harley out of her funk. Mirand’r is dead too.

Mirand’r’s tragic personal story is the last hope to bring Harley back from the brink and make her are about the world once more. It also makes the stakes of the ‘Angel of Retribution’ a bit more clear. I’ll let you read the last few pages to see how things turn out. Harley’s life just got a whole lot more interesting.