Can Poison Ivy & Harley Quinn Only Be Together In Other Realities?
Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn are back together again in DC Comics today – but only in the Dark Knights Of Steel comic book series. Which is retelling familiar tales of DC Comics in a fantasy Medieval setting. Including bringing Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy together again – but only in this context.
DC Comics has had an… interesting history in the portrayal of this relationship. Established in the Harley Quinn comics from Jimmy Palmiotti, Amanda Conner and Chad Yardin, it revealed a schism within DC Comics editorial, between those who wanted to see Poison Ivy as a queer anti-hero, finding her place in the DC Universe alongside Harley Quinn and her own transformation from Batman villain to a more complex protagonist. And those who wanted the classic Batman villain and love interest to Bruce.
Bleeding Cool covered the schism as it was portrayed across Warner Media, with some fascination. Previously portrayed for years in the comic book line as a couple, recent times has seen that relationship 'straightwashed' – at least as far as the comic books were concerned. The relationship was removed from the Harley Quinn series, the new writer was forbidden to use Poison Ivy and he put Harley in a relationship with Booster Gold. The Harley Quinn & Poison Ivy mini-series portrayed them more as a Thelma And Louise couple, and concluded with a page-splash peck-on-the-forehead that was redrawn at the last moment. On Valentine's Day, DC posted Valentine's Day-themed posts that singled Harley Quinn out as being single. Then DC changed the solicitation copy for a Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy statue from showing a same-sex couple. to just showing "good friends". All this was happening while the Harley Quinn TV show doubled down on Harley and Ivy as a couple, getting married even, as Harley Quinn's new writer struggled when he was asked to comment on the couple.
Editorial fought against creators, with corporate plans for Poison Ivy to return to the classic model stymied by creators who didn't want to play ball in the end the character was literally torn into two versions, before later being recombined and reunited with Harley Quinn in the Batman comic books.
For about two seconds before they were split up again, in Harley Quinn's own title.
With a promised 2022 Poison Ivy series from G Willow Wilson and Emma Rios returning Poison Ivy to a single eco-terrorist model, if one brooding about Harley (though no sign yet).
And even in the upcoming Flashpoint Beyond, Poison Ivy appears to be returning to the Batman tease…
As Detective Comics #1050 teased World's Finest #1.
Seems that Poison Ivy can only find happiness, fulfilment and a purpose while also passing the Bechdel Test if she's in another reality or continuity. But then, as Scott Snyder says, everything happened, everything matters. Which, of course, is another way of saying nothing happened, nothing matters. Dark Knights Of Steel #5 is published by DC Comics today.
DARK KNIGHTS OF STEEL #5 (OF 12) CVR A DAN MORA
(W) Tom Taylor (A) Yasmine Putri (CA) Dan Mora
Betrayals and assassinations have brought the world to the brink of war! As the Kingdom of Storms and Themyscira prepare for invasion, the El family is reunited at last to mourn their father…but what secrets does Bruce Wayne have that could prove vital to the future of the land?
Retail: $3.99 In-Store Date: 03/01/2022
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