Posts Tagged ‘Harley Quinn’

The Jester Rises – A Harley Quinn Elseworlds Story

April 12, 2021

Harleen Quinzel was fuming as she walked through the streets. She had never been rejected so harshly and so abruptly. She had gotten through school with flying colors and gotten her license to practice but she was too young to start her own practice and nobody was hiring. She had been desperate so she applied and was then hired by Arkham Asylum to be a staff psychiatrist. It was pretty rough. Some patients were nice but a lot of them were creepy or violent and totally obsessed with Batman. The work was definitely interesting but not very rewarding. Most of the patients had no interest in their treatment.

One inmate had started to draw her attention. She heard so many rumors and whispers about him that she could not help but be curious. He was a frequent guest in Arkham and he was back yet again. When she was assigned to do a series of interviews with him, she had gotten nauseous with fear. She swallowed it all down, put on her best professional demeanor and then stepped in to try therapy with The Joker.

Much to her surprise, it was not as bad as she expected. She knew Joker was playing with her but he was charismatic and interesting and engaged in her questions even if he rarely gave a straight answer. She even caught herself laughing at some of his sick jokes. She started looking forward to their sessions and made excuses to visit him more often. She started thinking about him at home, on the way to work, on the way home to work, and then all the time.

She finally broke down and turned off the security cameras and confessed her love to Joker. She told him that she could help him escape and that they could be together on the outside. He told her no. He told her that he was not interested in a groupie and that there was no way that she would understand his genius. He ratted her out to the administration and Harley had been summarily fired and sent home. She had never been so angry. She had been a fool.

If Joker was not going to be her partner, then she would beat him at his own game. She tested out her own clown makeup and had sewn her own costume. She borrowed some engineering books from the library to create her own gadgets. Not returning those books would be her first crime. Joker had made her feel like a fool so that is what she would be. Gotham would learn to fear The Jester. That would really piss him off. She had to figure out how to get on the news as fast as possible.

She briefly considered tracking down Catwoman for a team-up. She thought that another woman might be sympathetic to her plight and Catwoman was a total pro. Still, she was too stealthy for the splash that Harleen wanted to make. She thought of Poison Ivy but she knew her file and knew that she was more of an ecoterrorist which had no overlap with the Jester’s goals. Maybe sometime in the future. She seemed really smart and cool.

She also considered knocking on Aaron Helzinger’s door. The big guy, also known as Amygdala, would be an absolute powerhouse to team up with. She had built a rapport with him while treating him in the Asylum. However, he was completely unstable and tended to go on rage-filled rampages so he was not very dependable. Also, she would feel pretty guilty about recruiting him. She had adjusted his medication and returned him to enough normalcy to be released to a halfway house to see if he could be released outright. There was no need to bother the big lug.

That left her on her own until she had enough street cred to bring on henchmen. She was pretty sure that was how it worked. She geared up, carefully applied her makeup, and grabbed her gear. She broke into a car and drove it toward Gotham’s First National Bank. She gunned the car to top speed and drove it up the stone steps and through the front façade of the building. She climbed out of the car and shot the first guard with her boxing glove gun. She slapped the other guard with a hand buzzer that knocked him out.

Somebody in the crowd yelled out. “Who are you!?”

Harleen gave her best smile, eyes wide, posing for pictures. “You can call me The Jester.”

Media Update 7/23/20

July 23, 2020


The Old Guard

Charlize Theron is definitely the best female action star and quite possibly may be the best action star full stop. She is at the very least top ten. I adored her in Mad Max: Fury Road, Atomic Blonde, Mindhunter, Aeon Flux, and the Fate of the Furious. She has such a commanding presence that studios should definitely be using her like crazy. In this, she is an immortal soldier who leads a squad of immortal soldiers who travel around as freedom fighters. They have to face off against a pharmaceutical company who is targetting them specifically. Theron is the grizzled soldier who has been living for several millennia. Relative newcomer KiKi Layne is the young upstart who is new to the team and the immortal life. Chiwetel Ejiofor plays a well-meaning researcher who has evidence of the team. Harry Melling is a Martin Shkreli-type pharma bro. The story is based on a graphic novel by Greg Rucka who also created the awesome Stumptown comic and worked on Wonder Woman. The story is very well-told and the characters really resonate. The action scenes are some of the best I have ever seen. I definitely recommend it.


Harley Quinn (2019)

This is the new animated series that premiered last year. This series actually comes off as a mix of a comic book show and a sitcom with the characters constantly getting into awkward situations. The humor is very R-rated with plenty of gore, cursing, and craziness. The show is centered around Harley’s attempts to strike out on her own after breaking up with Joker. She is living with Poison Ivy as she tries to get her life together. The supervillains of Gotham come off as petty and cliquish and it is very funny. The show also goes pretty deep into the roster of DC Comics characters and also pokes fun at previous Batman projects. I am interested to watch the character’s arcs and see the jokes they come up with. The show is definitely pretty graphically violent but not overly much for most people, I think. It also has an all-star cast including Kaley Cuoco, Lake Bell, Alan Tudyk, Ron Funches, Diedrich Bader, Christopher Meloni, JB Smoove, Jim Rash, and so many more. I recommend this show.


Z Nation

I had seen this show available for streaming for quite a while but I kept passing it by. I think mostly because of The Walking Dead. This show is definitely not TWD. This show focuses more on the zombies and follows more than one storyline and the characters have more goals than just surviving. They need to get an asymptomatic carrier across the country in order to study his blood. They are guided by the last surviving member of the NSA, a computer geek played by DJ Qualls. There does not seem to be a star of the show yet as everybody gets a little time in the spotlight here and there. But I would go with Kellita Smith as a former National Guard member who seems to almost have fun in the apocalypse. I also really like the silent sniper character played by Nat Zang. Anastasia Baranova plays the group’s tech expert and I really like her style. I love to hate Keith Allan as the wise-cracking criminal whose blood is so important. There are plenty of other characters but I am trying not to get too attached in case some of them die. The show has a lot of action but also has offbeat humor mixed in with the drama. I recommend the show but be warned it is fairly gory.

Music of the Week:
Tyler the Creator – A Boy is a Gun

TOOL – Fear Inoculum

Migos, Nicki Minaj, Cardi B – MotorSport

Vice Girl – They Live, We Sleep

BRADIO-幸せのシャナナ

 

Weekly Update:
– This week’s theme is “Get Yourself a Crew”
– I watched more Elementary Season 2
– I watched more Watcher videos
– I watched more Supergirl Season 5
– I watched more Rizzoli and Isles Season 4
– I watched more Legends of Tomorrow Season 5
– I watched more Hannibal Season 1
– I finished The Flash Season 6
– I watched Ooga Booga
– I watched Head of the Family
– I watched Dollman
– I watched Supersonic Man (Rifftrax version)
– I watched Dolls (2019)

 

Girls’ Night -A Harley Quinn Story

April 8, 2020

“You’re not going straight, are you?” Ivy asked. She was tending to a couple different venus flytraps but she was paying attention to the conversation. Mostly.

Harley Quinn laughed. “You know that I’ve never been anywhere close to straight,” she said and then she shrugged. “I’m not going all goody-two-shoes, Red, I’m just talking about kicking a little ass.”

“Criminal ass,” Ivy noted with a slight smile. “You’re talking about busting criminals. A lot of the people you worked alongside previously.”

“That was with Mr. J,” Harley said and then corrected herself. “Joker. I’m done with that, it always ended in tears.”

“It always ended in Batman,” Ivy said. “He would abandon you and then Batman or Robin or Batgirl or whoever would catch you. Batman always wins.”

“Exactly,” Harley said. “I don’t want to fight Batman anymore. I just want to do my thing.”

“What is your thing?” Ivy asked, turning toward Harley. “You don’t want to fight Batman and you don’t want to be with Joker anymore. Wait, that’s still the case right?”

“Oh Hell yes,” Harley said. “I’m done with him forever.”

“Because the only reason I allowed you to stay here was that you promised,” Ivy said sternly.

“Geez Red,” Harley said. “I’m done. I’m here with you now. I also don’t just ‘stay here’. I pay rent.” She said the last with a slight pout.

“Sometimes,” Ivy said with a smile.

“That’s going to change,” Harley said defensively. “I’m changing.”

The truth was, Harley had already changed a lot. She still had a lot of the chemicals that had ‘created’ her flowing through her veins. However, it seemed like some of the mania in her head had cleared thanks to the correct balance of medications. Ivy had helped to cultivate the correct treatment with consultation from Bane of all people. When Harley had finally broken with Joker, Ivy had taken her on a trip out of the country. That meant that Harley finally got some sun and stopped using facepaint. She had started to shake up her style now that she was not trying to please anybody but herself. She had abandoned her trademark pigtails and had gone with a sidecut instead. She died her hair multicolored and wore whatever she pleased. She was happier.

“Is that why you bought the armor?” Ivy asked. She gestured over at Ivy’s new acquisition which had been meticulously designed.

“It’s hardly even armor,” Harley said dismissively. “It’s just the chest piece and some leg plating. I can’t do all my flippy stuff if I’m weighed down too much but this stuff is bulletproof in case things go to crap.”

“Are you expecting that things will ‘go to crap’?” Ivy asked. “I don’t want you hurt out there.”

“These streets are rough out there, Red,” Harley said. “But it’s just in case. Everything is going to be fine.”

“Is it?” Ivy asked. “You still haven’t exactly explained your plan here.”

“Well,” Harley said. “I don’t really have anything against criminals. A lot of people get left behind and they gotta survive the best they can. What I don’t like are people like Joker, like Black Mask, like Scarecrow. The dangerous assholes. The killers. What I wanna do is take them out. While we’re at it, we might as well take their money. Maybe Batman will be grateful we’re helping him do his job.”

“I doubt it,” Ivy said. “but it is a fairly noble plan.”

“So are you in?” Harley asked. “Do you want to join the team?”

“Team?” Ivy asked. “Harley, you know I love you but I’m done fighting. I’m a scientist again now and I just want to develop things that are going to save the world with ecology, not violence. I’m just Ivy now, no poison. I’ll always support you, though.”

“That’s alright, Ivy,” Harley said and leaned in to kiss her. They shared a sweet but passionate kiss. “Like I said, I’m putting together a team for this. You can party with us anytime but you don’t hafta. I understand.”

“Good,” Ivy said. “I’ll always be here when you come home.”

“You’re so sweet, Red,” Harley said.

There was a sound in the living room and Harley spun around, she just suddenly had her oversized pistol in her hand by instinct. She pointed it at the door that led into the living room.

“Who’s there!?” Harley yelled out. “Show yourself.”

Catwoman walked into the room with her hands up and a confused look on her face. “It’s me, Catwoman,” she said. “You invited me here to talk over your proposal.”

“Oh yeah!” Harley said with a smile, setting her gun aside. “Welcome! Can I get you something to drink? Saucer of milk?” It was hard to tell if Harley was serious or just joking. Catwoman just decided to brush the comment aside.

“Cute,” Catwoman said. “I’m good.” She looked around, taking the place in with mild interest. There was nothing really to steal so it was kind of boring.

“Harley!” Ivy hissed. “You invited somebody to our apartment?”

“Yep,” she said. “I needed an out of the way place.”

“Without my permission?” Ivy asked.

“Oooh,” Harley groaned. “Sorry about that, Red. I wasn’t thinking about that, I was just so excited!”

“I know,” Ivy said. “I know how excited you get.”

“Maybe we should meet somewhere else?” Catwoman asked. “I know a few places that would work.”

The doorbell rang.

From around a corner, the porcelain-white mask of Anarky appeared. “Hey, is this the right place?” he asked. “Oh and Renee Montoya is at the front door.”

Ivy looked at Harley helplessly and Harley gave her an apologetic look. “Yeah,” she said. “We should go. Let’s go. Sorry, babe, see you later!” Catwoman slipped out of the apartment while Harley dragged Anarky out through the front door, past a confused Renee Montoya and Grace Choi. Ivy sighed and went back to work.

Media Update 11/23/17

November 23, 2017


The Punisher

This show has been getting some press lately but for a lot of negative reasons. We have reached a critical mass when it comes to spree and mass shootings in the United States. So, a show about an anti-hero who famously uses firearms really has no good release date. This iteration of the character was introduced in Season 2 of Daredevil. The character is way more nuanced and deep than my experience with the character in comic books. An ex-marine, he is not just a goon with a gun. He would probably be the first person to admit that he’s just not sane, though. During the first season, Frank Castle tries to uncover corruption in the military while avenging his slaughtered family. The character feels a lot more focused on this show. The show does a great job of bringing up how we deal with our veterans, which should be a non-partisan issue. Mental health, the difficulty of finding a vocation, and the soldier mentality are all addressed with a great deal of compassion. The show is dark but the good writing and great acting carry it through for me. I read a comment somewhere that the show does not really give a coherent thought on gun control. I agree but do you really want that answer to come from a television show? The show depicts several different facets of the issue and lets the viewer decide for themselves. I definitely recommend it but it might be a little too dark for some.


Batman and Harley Quinn

I was a huge fan of the old Bruce Timm Batman animated series that came out in the nineties. It was a very successful form of the character and the world because it was a great mix of the dark and the light. This movie is a step back into that world, a step away from the darker, grittier Batman seen in the live action DC movies and a few of the animated movies. In this, Batman is the ultimate funny straight man. He gets more laughs from a stoic expression or the squint of his eyes than any bit of dialogue. When he does let slip a joke, it is both surprising and funny. He is accompanied by Nightwing who is a little bit looser than his old mentor and more into cracking a joke. The two get Harley Quinn to act as their criminal informant and she is as zany and crazy as you would expect. I loved how self-aware she was. This is a Harley who has finally realized how bad Joker is for her and how important her friends (like Poison Ivy) are. She also loudly corrects anybody who can hear that she is not a psychopath but is instead a sociopath. Get it right. With so little, the cartoon showed that these characters are part of a bigger world with a history. I ended up smiling from ear to ear through most of it and it was good to take another spin around the block with some old, familiar friends in new situations. I wholeheartedly recommend this as DC Animated is killing it.


Justice League

Nobody is more surprised than I am that I went to the theaters and saw this movie. After skipping Batman v. Superman, I did not think I wanted to see Justice League either but my friends lured me in with promises of Joss Whedon. Wonder Woman was also a truly great movie. Well, the movie had a lot of problems but that is to be expected. The movie introduced Cyborg to the big screen and missed much of the point of him in previous iterations. He used to be a happy, friendly guy who covered up his sadness at becoming more machine than man by being the best person he could be. In this movie, he was a mostly quiet grump. The Flash was that annoying guy at a party who will not shut up and thinks his jokes are just hilarious. Apparently, The Flash is one of the most polarizing performances in the movie. Henry Cavill still does not feel like Superman and instead just comes off as awkward. The villain, Steppenwolf, was basically a video game character and his performance was forgotten by me every time he left the screen.

So was there anything good? Wonder Woman was great again, although they keep sabotaging her character. Batfleck is alright though he seems to mope and get his butt kicked a lot. Affleck’s sense of humor came out here and there and that was definitely welcome. Aquaman was fun, coming off as a loveable asshole. There were moments where the movie showed glimmers of hope that it might dig its way into the light. Overall, I feel like you can build the best house you know how but if the foundations are bad then you will still fail. Man of Steel and BvS are bad foundations. I could see where Joss made it better but Warner Brothers still has a long way to go and that starts by firing Zack Snyder and banning Frank Miller from the set. I definitely do not recommend this. There are tons of superhero movies out there actually worth your time and money.

Music of the Week:
Marmozets – Why Do You Hate Me?

Man With A Mission – Raise Your Flag

Ratatat – Loud Pipes

Wowaka – Rolling Girl

Set Your Goals – This Will Be The Death Of Us

Weekly Update:
– This week’s theme is “Comic Book Team-Ups”
– I finished Blacklist Season 4
– I watched more Blindspot Season 1
– I finished Santa Clarita Diet
– I watched more Sleep Hollow Season 2
– I watched more Van Helsing Season 1

– Happy Thanksgiving!


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