Leave a Comment
Although the comic book movie genre has arguably been a relatively male-dominated landscape for quite some time, there are certainly female characters who have managed to break into the mainstream. One of the most famous of the bunch is Dr. Harleen "Harley Quinn" Quinzel, who came to life in animation before becoming a silver screen icon in Suicide Squad. She has become widely regarded as a symbol of female empowerment, and while promoting the release of Batman and Harley Quinn, Dark Knight legend Kevin Conroy even admitted that he thinks she's superior to Wonder Woman's Diana Prince, saying:
There's also a big new female audience in animation and they're looking for more interesting characters for them. Wonder Woman is a wonderful superhero but she's not very multidimensional whereas Harley Quinn is just nuts and just has so many different qualities that it's fun for the female audience.
At her core, Harley Quinn is the poster child for persistence in the face of adversity. Although she's often portrayed as a villain, her status as a victim of Joker's mind games has consistently endowed her with a more sympathetic nature than most other DC characters. Beyond that, her struggles to break free from Joker's control (coupled with her more female-centric adventures with Poison Ivy and the Gotham City Sirens team) have evolved her into one of DC's best "multidimensional" characters. To put it bluntly: she's got issues.
Kevin Conroy's comments to HeyUGuys about Harley Quinn's status as feminine icon also seem to echo recent remarks made by James Cameron last week about Wonder Woman. Similarly giving his take on the character, explaining how her the apparent perfection arguably makes her less compelling than a grittier heroine like Sarah Connor from The Terminator franchise.
It's worth noting that there's technically no right answer to this situation. Harley Quinn is arguably more complicated than Wonder Woman in the same way that Batman is arguably more complex than Superman. One is a human character dealing with complex emotional turmoil, while the other is specifically meant to embody the idea of humanity's perfection and the idealization of moral goodness. Kevin Conroy's take on Harley Quinn's perceived superiority to Wonder Woman is neither right nor wrong; it's simply his own opinion and personal preference about a set of characters that he has come to know intimately over the course of the last three decades.
Batman and Harley Quinn is now available on Digital HD, Blu-ray, and DVD. As for the rest of this year's theatrical releases, check out our comprehensive 2017 movie premiere guide.