‘Batman and Harley Quinn’ pays homage to ‘Animated Series’

by RILEY GOLDEN//Entertainment Editor

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The earth is being consumed by climate change, and Poison Ivy and the Floronic Man have decided to reverse it by turning every living creature into plant hybrids.

In the animated movie, “Batman and Harley Quinn,” Pamela Isley, Poison Ivy, and Jason Woodrue, the Floronic Man, break into Star Labs for information about Swamp Thing, to help them create the formula to turn living organisms into plant hybrids.

Batman, billionaire playboy Bruce Wayne, and Nightwing, Dick Grayson, the original Robin, meet the police on the scene after the break-in and begin to devise a plan to track down Ivy and Woodrue. Nightwing realizes that looking for Ivy is going to involve talking to none other than Harley Quinn.

Nightwing tracks Harley to a restaurant called Superbabe’s – a Hooters-esque restaurant with a superhero theme – where she is hiding in plain sight as a waitress.

When Nightwing confronts Harley, there’s a surprisingly good fight scene between the two that ends with Nightwing being knocked out.

Harley ties Nightwing up in her apartment – on her bed – and Nightwing wakes up to her trying to figure out what she’s going to do with him. Harley has gone straight, so she decides not to kill Nightwing and starts changing clothes in front him. She turns around to see that he has “something” she wants, and she tells him she has something he wants.

At this point, if you’re thinking that this movie is very sexual, I was thinking the same thing when I was watching it.

While Nightwing and Harley are obviously hooking up, Batman visits the crime scene where Dr. Harold Goldblum, a specialist in biological warfare, went missing and finds a leaf that fell off the Floronic Man.

Batman hasn’t gotten word from Nightwing, so he goes to look for him and finds Nightwing and Harley playing around in Harley’s bed. Afterwards, Batman and Nightwing try to ditch Harley to follow their new lead. But she demands to tag along to talk her BFF, Ivy, out of sparking the plant-pocalypse.

Batman deduces that Ivy and Woodrue want to synthesize the formula that created Swamp Thing and turn it into a virus.

Harley doesn’t know where to find Ivy, but she takes Batman and Nightwing to a bar where a lot of criminals are hanging their hats right now. This leads into about two to three minutes of twin brothers singing a number, which then leads to Harley performing a two to three-minute number. Honestly, this is not just the worst scene of the movie; this is just a terrible scene altogether.

Harley’s contact at the bar, Shrub, one of Ivy’s lieutenants, leads her and the Dynamic Duo to the location where Ivy and Woodrue are holding Dr. Goldblum and making him work on their formula.

When the three vigilantes step on the scene, one of the coolest animated fight scenes I’ve seen breaks out between Batman, Nightwing, and Harley Quinn vs. Poison Ivy and the Floronic Man. The villains flee and the heroes follow them to Slaughter Swamp, which leads to another fight scene with an awesome appearance from Swamp Thing that ends the fight and the movie.

The style of this movie is extremely reminiscent of “Batman: The Animated Series” (1992-1995), and I love it. Not only is the style aesthetically pleasing, but I grew up watching “The Animated Series,” which remains the best animated material to come out of DC Comics.

Part of that show’s success is thanks to Kevin Conroy, the voice actor of Batman who returned for “Batman and Harley Quinn,” which makes it all the more awesome.

I also love how Ivy and Woodrue’s motivations are that climate change is getting out of control, and they think they need to reverse it. Harley’s response to Ivy when hearing this is “vote Democrat,” which is true and funny.

It isn’t the only funny part in the movie, either. There are a few jokes that fall flat, but the movie is actually quite funny if you’re a Batman fan.

If Conroy’s voice acting didn’t make this movie great, then the art style would. I appreciated most of the humor, however, I did not like the five-minute-long musical number. I give “Batman and Harley Quinn” a 7.5 out of 10.



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