If DC was a person who decided to buy weed for the first time, they'd definitely be that poor sap who ended up smoking oregano. AM DISAPPOINTED IN HOW THIS ISSUE SMELLS.
Long story short, because hey, it's an annual and has got lots of pages! Harley is minding her own business in Coney Island when she gets a call from Poison Ivy, saying she was caught and locked up in Arkham, so now it's up to Harley to break her out, because no one understands Ivy like her, and a court will just throw her in jail for life. So, one highjacked parachute (from a skydiver about to make a dive) later, and Harley is flung from her rooftop catapult, aimed towards Arkham... she doesn't quite get there, but after a short pizza detour, she eventually drives the rest of the way.
Inside Arkham, Harley finds Ivy with a touch of amnesia, working up some formula. Apparently two docs have given her a compliance drug that'll where off eventually, Harley doesn't take kindly to this, some physical altercations later, and a big jar of a hallucinogenic breaks and everyone goes off on some trippy day dream.
Ivy has a splendid time with Swamp Thing, then as he fades, she and Harley burn down the corporations and drown a perverted bumble bee. The lady doctor is locked up in Arkham and ends up on a beach where Harley's Godzilla, or something. Harley dreams up a team-up with her superhero creation, Hurl Girl. And the dude doctor thinks himself of a Sherlock Holmes type, and Harley as Jack the ripper.
Eventually they all come too, and the real mastermind is standing above them... Some weird egg looking dude, who was using Ivy to make a potion that would get people to like him. You see, he's been in the middle of a rough streak, is about to get evicted, and is just pretty sad. Solution! Harley offers him a room in her building and that's that.
After Harley, Tony and Ivy help egg guy move in, Ivy calls Harley up to the roof where they share a moment... just as Harley opens a jar of the concentrated hallucinogenic she swiped from Arkham, which Ivy believes will effect all of Brooklyn, which doesn't really bother Harley.
Flat out, this was one of my favorite recent issues of Harley. I definitely enjoy the Harley/Ivy dynamic this book has every couple of issues than the original stuff going on in the regular book. That's not to say the book isn't fun, which I feel like I shouldn't need to point out, but I just love Harley and Ivy together, and I think that element of the greater DCU in the title sort of grounds it a little bit. It was just a fun, goofy story, and the humor was pretty top notch with a bunch of good bits. My favorite was probably the Egg dude saying he was going to give them his secret origin, but decided not to because they're all jerks, and teased them saying it involved everyone from Wonder Woman, to Apokolips, to the Metal Men, etc. Just a super fun issue.
Art was on point too. John Timms handles most of the art duties, and given how some of the recent tweaks to the regular book's visuals have rubbed me the wrong way, I'm starting to find myself more of a fan of Timm's style. There were certain panels in this issue where the style really reminded me of Dustin Nguyen, with less use of shadows, a thinner line, and a side of cheesecake. Then there were the guest artists who were all great. Stjepan Sejic needs to draw more Harley, I'll just say that much.
Just a great issue overall, had a lot of fun reading it.
THE SMELL REVIEWS:
I read digitally, but I also bought the print version of this issue just to try out the smells, and I'm about to tell you whats what with how this one smelled.
- Leather: Yep, that smells like leather!
- Sun tanning lotion: I use regular stuff, but I'm sure that's what the banana butter stuff smells like
- Pizza: Smelled like some sort of spiced meat, so sure, that's pizza!
- Cannabis: Total let down! Maybe it's because I've been around a bunch of big time weed smokers through out my college years, but I was expecting something that smelled like a skunk's taint. That's what weed smells like to me. Initially, I smelled it and went totally wrote it off, but I keep smelling it and I'm starting to get it, but let's just say it's probably the smell of some pretty shitty bud. Smelled more like a hacky sack or the inside of one of those hippy dippy nature stores you sometimes see in a mall, so... close enough? DISAPPOINTMENT!
Fun fact, the Comixology page has a disclaimer that you can't smell anything... because it's digital. I thought that was pretty dumb initially, because why would you need to say that? But then again... I can totally imagine someone smelling their iPad.
Fun possible fact, I believe Apple rejected this from the iOS store. No where to be found on the DC app last I checked. That's dumb.