REVIEW: ‘Harley Quinn,’ Issue #15

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Harley Quinn #15  - But Why Tho

Harley Quinn #15 is published by DC Comics, written by Stephanie Phillips, art by Riley Rossmo, colors by Ivan Plascencia and letters by Andworld Design. Harley has been framed for murder and put in jail, only to be broken out by Batwoman. In this issue, Harley and Kate Kane investigate who wants Quinn put away.

The plot of this issue is methodical, but that does not necessarily mean slow. Starting with a cold open away from Harley, Phillips quickly sets up other subplots inside the comic, where coverups and suspicions of Harley’s innocents are formed. This gives us something to come back to as the story switches to the heroes. Whilst the destination seems clear from the start, the introduction of new characters along the way breathes fresh life into the story. There is another brilliant battle before a reveal that has been brilliantly plotted by Phillips. This could not have been predicted a few issues ago, and whilst the seeds were properly sown last issue, it is probably the gut punch that the revelation will have on the characters that is the bigger reward.

For most of Harley Quinn #15, all of the text is dialogue-based. And it is fantastic seeing Harley interact with the very intense and severe Batwoman. They are a great partnership and Kane’s insistence to help Harley is endearing. Quinn putting so much effort into fake identities is both hilarious and in character. The new character fits right into the dynamic purely because she appears normal, wading through the chaotic ones nicely. Towards the end of the issue, narration starts with a monologue that is absolute perfection. Harley talks about masking, in so many forms of the term, and the story that is told is so beautifully specific. The eloquence and depth that Phillips laces within this prose are stunning.

The art continues to be a unique delight among DC’s books. Every panel has been thought through and carries much more than just a simple picture. Whether it is how one character sizes up against another or a facial expression, each one is there to denote power dynamics, humour or chemistry between characters. Batwoman looks amazing under Rossmo’s style, tall and dominant. When she is stood straight, pondering her next move, Harley is curled up on the floor like a hyperactive cat. Rossmo is a master of body language.

The colours are superb. As with other issues in this series, the only parts of the pages that have any bright or vibrant shades are usually the characters, which always ensures they are the focal point of the panel. Plascencia also uses a large amount of white space in this chapter, which cuts any distractions at all and increases the focus even further. The lettering is excellent and the SFX becomes part of the humour.

Harley Quinn #15 is a superb issue filled with energy. This creative team is constantly making this comic one of the most soulful on the market. It brings characters to life in a way that makes them extremely captivating. Being framed for murder isn’t a unique plot concept, but with this group of characters, it becomes individual. The team-up is golden and we are left with the feeling that this final page will be explosive for the relationships of the comic. And this is a book built on relationships.

Harley Quinn #15 is available where comics are sold.


Harley Quinn #15
5

TL;DR

Harley Quinn #15 is a superb issue filled with energy. This creative team is constantly making this comic one of the most soulful on the market. It brings characters to life in a way that makes them extremely captivating. Being framed for murder isn’t a unique plot concept, but with this group of characters, it becomes individual. The team-up is golden and we are left with the feeling that this final page will be explosive for the relationships of the comic. And this is a book built on relationships.