Originally Published: March 30, 2011, on Comicvine.com

Harley Quinn looks to right the wrongs committed against her by the Joker. But she’ll have to make her way past Aaron Cash and her own personal trump card to do so!

The Good

This Harley oriented story arc surprised me because it shows us a side of her we rarely see, the clinical analytical side of a once great psychiatrist. Normally we get the aloof Harley with the giant mallet, but this Hell Hath No Fury arc reminds us that she can be nearly as cunning and manipulative as the Joker.

Aside from Harley, this particular issue also explores the character of Aaron Cash some as he is the last line of defense between Harley and the Joker as he tries to maintain order as Arkham’s head of security. Harley though reveals a shocking secret about Aaron’s past that forces him to relent and let Harley pass as you actually feel your heart strings tug as you see the clear development of yet another tragic character in the Batman universe.

The Bad

Even with a tremendously well-done build up, it was all too predictable that Harley would not be able to pull the trigger when confronting “Mistah J”. Not only because I’m sure DC will never kill off the Joker, but because no matter how much he hurts her, Harley can’t help but be head over heels for the Joker and the entire arc reminds me too much of the Batman: The Animated Series episode “Harley and Ivy” where Harley teams up with Poison Ivy after being fired by the Joker.

This arc, predictable as it was, also just seemed to be a way to make the series even since Ivy already had her love-interest story when she fell in love with an alien plant-man, Catwoman had hers when she had to defend her love of Batman against Talia al’ Guhl, and now Harley has hers with the Joker. I would hate to see this series continue on this three-character merry-go-round since I thought it was more supposed to be about the dynamic between the three villainesses.

Of course, that dynamic seems to be in jeopardy altogether since Poison Ivy and Catwoman are at each others’ throats without Harley around. So we see Selina go off to explore why there is so much police activity going away from Arkham while Ivy goes off to see if the Joker has indeed dug his claws back into Harley and what carnage she is reeking at Arkham. It seemed like a blatant and sad attempt just in order to keep the two other main characters somehow involved in the past couple of issues that have been so Harley heavy.

The Verdict

This title has been teetering on the edge of my comic book pull box list for a while now, but I had hope because I enjoyed the exploration of both the main characters and some lesser known characters in the past couple of issues, including Aaron Cash this issue. There is also hope that whatever action Selina has gone off to investigate will provide a big payoff that will bring the three ladies back together.

Unfortunately, this predictable storyline and outcome left me feeling a little flat after reading it and unless it gets back to the nice and balanced three-character dynamic that it had in the beginning instead of the current rotating stories centering around each individual villainess and having the other two as side-pieces, this could be one of the last issues I pick up for this monthly. Only diehard fans of Batman’s Rogues Gallery rehashing their same gimmicks repeatedly will probably find this comic consistently enjoyable.

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