GT we need to talk. *hands you a cup of a tea*
Mainly we need to talk about Harley Quinn.
First let me say that, this entire movie looks like it’s going to be a mess. I’ve kept tabs on it since I am also quietly a huge DC fan... but my god do the movies they make for my favourites tend to suck. Dark Knight and Dark Knight Rises are not without sin.
Moving back to the topic at hand... a few days ago we got this:
I am not going to lie, I am not the most familiar person with Suicide Squad and they are drawing from a few of it’s incarnations (IIRC). But mainly, what sticks out like a sore thumb, the chick standing in the middle. This is not my Harley.
WHAT IN GODS NAME IS THIS:
This is not about the shorts or the skimpy out fits. Harley IS sexy, that is part of her personality. She’s a beautiful, sexy, smart (crazy smart actually, no pun intended) blonde woman. So why is she dressed like she got lost in a Spencer’s somewhere in the Midwestern burbs?
I blame this Harley on two things:
1- Arkham Asylum Harley:
And Joker by Lee Bermajo (released no long after Dark Knight):
Harley is a sex worker and a coke addict... along with Joker. Which *heavy sigh*... just a big truck load of NOPE. I don’t think I finished the comic because it was just so, weird. So tragedy porn-y.
The irony of all this? The sexism that they display with Harley is almost identical to the objectification and abuse Joker submits Harley to through out their relationship. She’s gone from successful shrink, so basket case after being driven insane by the only person who could do it Joker, to falling for him when realizing their crazy matches. She then has a whole wonderful arc where Joker is dead and she realizes how horrible he was to her, and that she can be her own person and grow. She develops friendships with Catwoman and Poison Ivy. She had agency. It’s only whisked away when she goes back... Harley and Joker are a perfect example of a toxic relationship, but Harleen Quinzel loves Jack Napier. And that’s what I feel like is missed with Harley.
When Harley takes off the jester ears, and washes her face when she goes home. She is Dr. Harleen Quinzel. She’s not as comic like as Joker who has grown larger than life, he is an entity at this point. Harley is still very much human, and that getting lost.
I want Harley to be sexy, but I don’t want it to be the main display about her. Hell most of her career she was covered FROM HEAD TO TOE. I didn’t know Harley was blonde when I first started reading her stories until I saw her take off her hat. Until I met Harleen.
I’m going to say this and hear me out, but they picked Margot Robbie for a reason and it’s not her acting prowless. I get it, she was in Wolf of Wallstreet, as a sex pot. She was in that failed Will Smith grifter film, as a sex pot grifter. She’s SEXY. That’s awesome, work queen, etc. BUT
I need my heroines and villainesses to pack more of a punch than just being sexy.
Catwoman in Batman Returns was sexy but she was also kind of nuts, and furious at woman being damsels. She insisted on not being a damsel, she became Catwoman to protect and avenge HERSELF. But she also went home and went to work as Selina. Catwoman is a facet of her shattered personality. That’s what makes the DC characters so interesting, most of the villains are still PEOPLE. They aren’t XMen where their powers define who they are. No quite the opposite, who they are directly influenced the Villains and Heroes they became.
I’d just love to see a female hero or villain in a comic book movie with DEPTH. They gave us an entire subplot for Hawkeye (that MADE SENSE) and I still couldn’t figure out the motivation of Nat (Black Widow) with Bruce in Avengers 2.
Honorable Mention to another fallen group of heroes/villainesses: Sand Snakes
I’m waiting out another scene. But that first was stiff and kind of cheaply done. Reminded me of season one TBH it’s why I am waiting this out. Obara’s story about Oberyn coming to get her is one of my favourites, but it wasn’t believable when we saw it last week. The story shows so much about how the Dornish view their women. You are not born into the world weak and useless if you’re female. You are strong and capable, but you have to choose.