Review – Harley Quinn #74: Trial by Firepit

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Harley Quinn #74 variant cover, via DC Comics.

Harley Quinn #74 – Sam Humphries, Writer; Sami Basri, Artist; Hi-Fi, Colorist

Ray – 9/10

Ray: This is Sam Humphries’ last standard issue on Harley Quinn before a massive jam issue next month, and there is a lot to cram into this finale. We just found out that the mastermind behind Harley’s misfortunes was none other than Granny Goodness, whose clash with Harley kicked off this run. Of course, with Harley the way she is at the moment, it’s hard to tell what’s genuinely a plot point and what’s her mind slipping a little. Well, this issue wastes no time with dispensing with those suspicions, as Granny Goodness emerges in the flesh with a big surprise—an infant fire pit that’s growing under Los Angeles and threatens to turn Earth into another Apokalips if its allowed to grow fully. This kicks off a plot that’s much larger-scale than Harley’s usual fare, and briefly threatens to overshadow the emotionally driven plot that’s been the hallmark of Humphries’ run.

Descending. Via DC Comics.

Well, I shouldn’t have worried—the last act of Humphries’ run is as strong as the first, complete with a brilliant callback to an obscure Granny Goodness story that shows her darkest moment as a young trainee of Darkseid. Even at her darkest, Harley makes her attempt to appeal to Granny’s better nature—but because she’s Harley, there’s a clever twist to this moment. Easily the best part of this issue comes when Harley is finally able to put her demons to rest, having one last reunion with her mother and with Alicia before helping Alicia’s daughter find her own peace and lay her mother to rest. I’m not sure about the ending with Booster—I think we all know there’s only one true pairing for Harley, and it’s with a certain green Gotham rogue—but I trust Humphries. While it’s Palmiotti and Conner who wrote the defining Harley run, this one might be my favorite.

To find reviews of all the DC issues, visit DC This Week.

GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.

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