Harley Quinn: The Animated Series: The Eat. Bang! Kill. Tour (2021) #4

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It’s a solid issue. There’s some decent but repetitive character development for Ivy. She realizes Harley’s impetuousness annoys her, gets mad at Harley, sulks, reconciles in time for a superhero fight. This time she’s angry they got busted crashing uninvited at someone’s house. It’s very too impetuous girlfriend stuff, with some extremes.

See, they’re crashing at Nightfall’s place because Nightfall’s locked up in Arkham because of the shenanigans at Ivy’s wedding. Only Nightfall’s ex-girlfriend Livewire is there and probably shouldn’t be either. It’s all very awkward, very complicated, with some supervillain powers thrown in. And Harley being unhelpful, whether through inappropriate humor or too much truth.

Writer Tee Franklin’s got the relationship drama down, but she’s rehashing it in every issue. We’re four issues into Eat. Bang! Kill. and I’m pretty sure it’s happened four times. If not more, because Ivy might get re-mad at Harley during the issue. The different settings and supporting cast “help,” but the series is running into its “in-continuity but not required reading” status.

This issue introduces the “Harleyverse” JLA Detroit, with Zatanna, Vixen, and Cyborg fighting a new toxic waste villain who wants to poison Lake Michigan. He’s trying to surpass Ivy as the most poisonous supervillain; she and Harley head to Detroit to stop him (Ivy wants to do something good) and eventually run afoul of Vixen. Franklin gives Vixen a brief subplot, establishing Batman annoying her while she’s out on a date at a society function. It’s good, quick character work.

The book’s got a new artist for most of the issue. Regular artist Max Sarin does a page before Erich Owen takes over. When Owen’s mimicking Sarin, he’s almost indistinguishable. When Owen’s doing his own thing, he’s better. The figures have a lot more fluidity and the faces personality. But once he starts getting going, he reins it back in to match the Sarin style.

The comic’s got lots of good moments, lots of good dialogue. It’s just stuck in neutral.

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