Harley Quinn continues to be an utter beast of a comic, managing to jump from #14 to #4 on the list for top selling comic books last month. That’s amazing, and very well deserved in my humble opinion. We’re in for a special treat this month regarding our favorite anti-hero: a one-shot where Harley Quinn heads to Comic-Con to pitch a comic book idea she has and the title involves several different artists, just like the #0 issue did. This sounds fantastic, but is it? Is it good?
Harley Quinn Invades Comic-Con International San Diego #1 (DC Comics)
Harley Quinn and her Brooklyn friends attend the San Diego Comic-Con this year. While her buddies are off doing their own business, Harley is out on the prowl to check out what the convention has to offer. Plus, she has a big goal in mind while she is there: to be able to pitch her own comic book, Hurl Girl, to DC Comics and see if they’ll add her to their roster.
I think you have a good shot. I mean, if DC wanted Rob Liefeld at one point, I’m sure they’ll want you as well!
I was going into this comic with high hopes and happily, they were met. This was a fantastic and really funny one-shot tale. I was a little unsure at first (I’ll get into that), but as it went along, it got better and better. Story-wise, it’s rather simple. It’s basically Harley Quinn at Comic-Con and all the hijinks she gets during their time there. It’s nothing too deep or anything, but frankly, that’s not the point. It’s an enjoyable little tale meant to make people laugh and have a good time reading it.
Writing-wise, it’s solid there as well. While it feels a little disjointed at times, the story structure and pacing are pretty good. It’s easy to follow and it always keeps your attention with everything happening in the book, with no slow point at all to it. The dialogue is a lot of fun, with lots of great lines sure to get a laugh. Harley herself is enjoyable and fun to watch when she gets into all of this trouble she causes.
Soul-sucking job? Well with DC fanboys and haters, I can see that.
What’s truly fantastic here is the comedy. This book is just downright funny in almost every way it can be. The funny situations that Harley lands herself in, the references and inside jokes all over the place (the first double page spread has a lot of good ones for instance), the poking fun at DC Comics and the fans themselves, all the background gags, and the expressive artwork that really makes the punchlines hit. Almost all of the jokes here work with plenty of smiles and laughs to be had. There are some moments that weren’t as funny and a gag that was kind of overused a bit too much, but all in all, it’s a really funny comic.
As stated above, the artwork is where I was feeling a bit unsure. Like with Harley Quinn #0, this one-shot contains several different artists drawing the book: Amanda Conner, Paul Pope, John Timms, Stephane Roux, and more throughout the book. The various artists working and drawing the book together worked much better in #0 since it was all taking place within a dream where Harley was previewing artists to draw her book. Here though, the narrative is much more focused and straightforward, so having different artists draw the issue makes it not work as well. The opening part was the worst example, switching quickly between Paul Pope (who only drew a single page out of this whole book), Jaiver Garron, and Damion Scott & Robert Campanella. It really didn’t flow well at all.
Abrupt artist changes aside, most artists’ styles looked and fit the book well enough, bringing a lot of humor and personality to the book. Stephane Roux and John Timms did have the best pages in the whole book with their very expressive looking characters and settings. The weakest though was Paul Pope, whose still didn’t fit the book remotely or even flowed well into the next page. He didn’t even get more than one page, so he felt wasted here in general. The artwork is still good overall though and I do hope to see more specials like this in the future.
I got nothing. This stands for itself.
Is It Good?
Harley Quinn Invades Comic-Con International San Diego #1 is a complete blast of a one-shot that tells a simple but extremely funny story with lots of different unique artists who help bring it to life. For fans of Harley Quinn or for someone who’s just looking for a fun book this week, this’ll be right up your alley. Give it a shot and see what it is all about.