The "straight-washing" of Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy from DC Comics was very much a thing earlier in the year, an editorial edict to remove the relationship between the two that had developed under the creative lead of Jimmy Palmiotti. Amanda Conner and Chad Hardin in the Harley Quinn comic book, and then the animated series. The character was written out of Harley Quinn as that creative team left, and the new writer given instructions not to use Poison Ivy. The character was meant to have been killed off in Heroes In Crisis, and when that didn't take, turned into a monster in the Harley Quinn & Poison Ivy mini-series – which also didn't take, though a passionate embrace between the two was removed. Even the copy for their solicitations had to be rewritten to remove any suggestion that these were another other than best mates. Even though Harley was prominent in the Joker War Zone, and scenes set in Poison Ivy's lair, the two didn't meet, and it concluded with Poison Ivy in full vegetation control, Black Orchid-style, marching on Gotham seeking revenge. Of course, there have been a number of editorial departures since.
But in today's Batman #103, a glimmer of what may be. You may have had an inkling with Bleeding Cool's Batman Gossip from a month ago. We stated "ss you can see, Harley has a plant pot of Poison Ivy she talks to, in her new Little Santa Prisca, Gotham apartment. And that's not all she does with it. Naughty Harley."
It does, at least, tease what may be coming, regarding Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy. In the previous 5G DC Comics plans, I understood that Harley Quinn would have died during The Joker War and her killer, Punchline, would have replaced her as the new Harley Quinn, just as many other DC characters would have been replaced. That is no longer happening, and so perhaps, just perhaps, especially given the lesson of the Harley Quinn TV show, DC Comics may be setting up a reconciliation.
Right now that is just a plant pot of course. Which, I am told, is the situation that DC editorial types believed would have come out of Heroes In Crisis with the actual Poison Ivy, reduced to a bud, and cared for by Harley. But Batman #103 may at least point towards a reconciliation…
Oh and yes, the pre-mentioned "Bat Bat" as well…
BATMAN #103 CVR A JORGE JIMENEZ
Written by: James Tynion IV
Art by: Carlo Pagulayan, Danny Miki, Guillem March
Cover Art by: Jorge Jimenez
Batman and Ghost-Maker go toe-to-toe to decide which of them will remain Gotham City's hero. The city is changing faster than ever in the aftermath of "The Joker War," and with this change comes increasing dangers as Gotham's citizens demand that Punchline be released from prison! Plus, Harley Quinn faces certain death at the hands of Clownhunter! Release Date: 11/17/2020 Retail : $3.99