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DC Universe's Harley Quinn is one of the most graphic and obscenely hilarious entities in all of comic book TV, with a fully welcomed barrage of F-bombs, sex jokes and bloodshed surrounding Kaley Cuoco's villainess. Perhaps the show's most far-reaching joke came during a Season 2 scene where a highly opinionated character donned a "Release the Snyder Cut" T-shirt, in reference to Zack Snyder's long-rumored and long-anticipated director's cut of 2017's Justice League. Given the scene's snarky approach, many Snyder Cut fanatics took it as an affront, but one of the showrunners has cleared the air.
Both of Harley Quinn's showrunners took some time to engage with the fandom during a Q&A session through DC Universe, and among the many topics that they were asked about, it's no surprise that the "Release the Snyder Cut" scene was addressed. As it turns out, Patrick Schumacker wasn't implying the character represented the entire Snyder-embracing community, and he didn't even think the shirt joke would reach viewers' eyeballs. In his words:
Honestly, I put the shirts in there as an internal joke, and assumed those would never make it into the final cut haha. Ultimately these guys were comedic to me because of how deep their toxic fandom ran, (particularly the one guy). And I don’t think he’s representative of all the Snyder Cut enthusiasts AT ALL. In truth, I had cold feet about keeping the shirts but I’m glad we did at the end of the day, and the Snyder Cut fans’ response has been outstanding. Such great sports!
While Harley Quinn has definitely poked fun at DC's constantly reworked storylines and origin stories, the Release the Snyder Cut T-shirt (as well as the "The Last Jedi is not canon" shirt) felt quite a bit more explicit with its viewpoint. After all, the guy wearing the Snyder shirt was sharing his largely misogynistic high-horse opinions about Harley Quinn and her "Mary Sue powers" being content better suited for 12-year-old girls. It's not impossible to see why the Snyder fandom's non-toxic sectors might have been irked by the scene.
To be sure, it sounds like the feedback showrunners Patrick Schumacker and Justin Halpern got was far more positive than negative, with many viewers understanding the inherent satire. (Not to mention a rare Gotham reference!) The best response to the scene, by far, came from those who turned the "Release the Snyder Cut" T-shirt into real-world merch, where proceeds from the purchases are being donated to The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.
Patrick Schumacker went further to talk about not just the jokey scene in general, but also to directly state his support for the "Release the Snyder Cut" cause. In his words:
On my island in Animal Crossing, I have a custom sign that reads 'RELEASE THE SNYDER CUT' that you can see when you fly in. I'm for it. I'm a completist who wants to see it released. I want all director cuts to be released.
And if that wasn't enough, the Harley Quinn showrunner also sent some visual proof of his signage within Nintendo's latest Animal Crossing released.
It still remains unclear whether or not the world will ever actually watch Zack Snyder's idealized version of Justice League, even though the movement has gained tons of support from year to year. Not just from passionate comic fans, but from some big names in Hollywood, and the director appears game to keep teasing everyone with what might have been. It's doubtful that Harley Quinn's random gag will tip the scales in either direction, but every step counts.
At least there's more of Harley Quinn Season 2 on the way, with the animated series airing Fridays on DC Universe. While waiting to hear whether Season 3 will be on the way in the future, get hyped up for the streaming service's well-reviewed new entry, DC's Stargirl, and hit up our Summer 2020 TV schedule to see all the other shows arriving on the small screen soon.