Granted, my relationship with Harley Quinn is grounded in the televised Animated Series. And granted, I'm not one of the people to whom D.C. is selling its attempted-suicide issue of Harley Quinn. But D.C. has probably reached a new low in trying to raise awareness of and interest in its comics by inviting fans to submit naked-suicide-attempt-preparation drawings of The Joker's madcap minion. Since it's asking for submissions of four suicide scenarios, it's likely these panels represent alternatives she will reject in favor of a more direct strategy to confront the source of her ills. Like, say, ditching The Joker to take off on her own as a freelance villain, which would explain why there's a new Harley Quinn comic coming. But the eye-rollingness of delivering Harley Quinn fanservice in the form of her naked body in a bathtub situated beneath an array of power-on toasters, blenders, blow-driers, and preparing to pull the drop-cord ... it's in outstanding bad taste even for an industry already so famous for unrealistic fanservice poses that it's got a lampoon blog all its own.
Some fans are, not unexpectedly, put out by D.C.'s latest tasteless gaffe. The last link also illustrates D.C.'s effort to transition Harley Quinn from the lithe pixielike character who seemed to find a way to show innocent fun through all the awful crimes in which she was involved, into a hypersexualized object of the sort generally lampooned at Escher Girls.
The start of the new comic – as a fanservice machine – isn't exactly the most auspicious way to start the series.
Re-envisioning the slight Harley Quinn as a valkyrie with a man-crushing hammer and a big bust bursting from her brassiere is, to me, all the promise this reader needs that the comic's gone wrong. We've already got butch babes in Wonder Woman, She-Hulk, Red Sonja, and a whole host of others … why not let the one clever little girl show the world what clever is worth? Why not have a comic book that busts its chops to be … you know … comic?
But, no. D.C. has made a marketing decision that girls must bear big boobs, and she's got to be naked in the bathtub as soon as possible.