by Emma Smith, Reporter
If Batman thought fighting Harley Quinn was frustrating, he’s about to find out that’s nothing compared to having to team up with her. Batman and Harley Quinn is here, and it’s going to be a carnival-level wild ride.
Poison Ivy and Floronic Man have stolen a formula that could lead to “Planet of the Plant People” or the extinction of every living thing on the planet. In a race to locate the duo, Nightwing goes looking for Harley Quinn, hoping she can help him and Batman track down her best friend. Once she learns the stakes, Harley insists on coming along to help save the world, much to Batman’s chagrin. Hijinks ensue, and yes, hijinks is exactly the right word for what happens in this movie.
Batman and Harley Quinn is as off-kilter and ever-so-slightly insane as Harley herself. The movie retains the animation style of Batman: The Animated Series, likely thanks in part to Bruce Tim returning to head up the project. However, the tone and story trajectory are decidedly different from his previous work. That being said, I found the wackiness is highly entertaining, even if I also said “what the hell just happened” out loud several times. If you allow yourself to indulge the adult humor, random non-sequiturs, and pop-up references to the larger DC universe, I think you will enjoy it too.
Kevin Conroy and Loren Lester (Batman: The Animated Series) return as Batman and Nightwing with the kind of performances we have come to expect from them. Melissa Rauch (The Big Bang Theory) does an okay job as Harley (for the purists out there – yes, she does the classic Jersey accent). Paget Brewster (Criminal Minds) and Kevin Michael Richardson (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) play off each other well as Poison Ivy and Floronic Man. The cast does a great job with what they’ve been given, but my one major complaint with this movie is the stilted nature of much of the dialogue, so some scenes are still a bit of a struggle.
- Rob Paulson sings “Don’t Pull Your Love” in a completely random bar scene, and it is hands-down the best thing in this movie.
- There is a fart joke in this movie so unexpected and deadpan that it made me laugh so hard I almost fell off my couch.
- Harley has a closet of Harley cosplay.
- This has one of the most abrupt endings of a movie I have ever seen.
- Poor Nightwing gets shafted in the title despite being a major part of the plot.
- Sneak Peak – Batman: Gotham by Gaslight – The first Elseworlds comic is headed home as the next DC Universe Original Film! Get ready for Batman versus Jack the Ripper (yes, seriously).
- Loren Lester: In His Own Voice – This special featurette covers the work of Loren Lester, best known as Dick Grayson/Robin/Nightwing from Batman: The Animated Series.
- The Harley Effect Featurette
- 2 Bonus Cartoons
Batman and Harley Quinn is odd enough that viewers will probably love or hate it, depending on whether they connect with the humor.
ComicsOnline gives Batman and Harley Quinn 3 out of 5 unexpectedly zen Swamp Things.