Chasing Strange: Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy

Today Tom highlights how refreshing it is to see DCs Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy show some non-traditional love, plus kudos for giving character depth


I know a bunch of you ship­pers are so glad to hear that Harley Quinn is in a non-monogamous re­la­tion­ship with Poison Ivy. While a part of me was kind of blasé about it, an­oth­er part of me could only laugh his fat ass off.  Not be­cause there’s any­thing par­tic­u­lar­ly hu­mor­ous about the sit­u­a­tion, but be­cause DC slipped a big one past everyone’s noses, and no one sneezed.

Check the word­ing from DC: “They are girl­friends with­out the jeal­ousy of monogamy.”  So not only is this re­la­tion­ship ho­mo­sex­u­al, but it’s non-standard-conforming.  Is it an open re­la­tion­ship?  Is there a third par­ty in­volved?  No clue, re­al­ly.  However, is that our busi­ness?  Probably not, but dammit, peo­ple want to know anyway.

With the char­ac­ters in­volved, my money’s on an open re­la­tion­ship.  I’ve had a few of those in my day.  Works re­al­ly well, but only if you got the right peo­ple, which can be a bitch.  However, the point I’m try­ing to make is DC, a com­pa­ny known for screw­ing over any­thing that isn’t fit for a GOP con­ven­tion, is giv­ing a bit of the fin­ger to the main­stream view of a re­la­tion­ship as a bi­na­ry com­pound.  It’s re­fresh­ing.  It was also a long time coming.

Let’s get the le­gal bull­shit out of the way: polygamy is il­le­gal.  However, polyamory is not, un­less you live in one of those states that thinks “One Nation, Under God” was al­ways in the Pledge of Allegiance, and has an un­healthy num­ber of church­es that were once someone’s trail­er.  You can love as many peo­ple as you can (and quite frankly, you SHOULD!), but you can only mar­ry once.  I guess they didn’t like the idea of peo­ple be­ing TOO hap­py, right?

nykkdjf6ckqp8y4lpHK-oThat’s the point, right there, in that last para­graph: You should love as many peo­ple as you can.  I don’t mean fuck­ing them, I mean that emo­tion­al bond that tran­scends phys­i­cal­i­ty and changes who you are, deep down to the core.  Love is not fi­nite, nor should it be bound to any one per­son.  In my mind, the real rea­son we ex­ist is to love one an­oth­er.  Be it as friend, kin, or lover, our goal should be to spread that feel­ing, and share in it.  In the same vein, our goal should be to sup­port oth­ers in that jour­ney, as well.

Even if they are vil­lains, don’t they de­serve hap­pi­ness with­in the con­struct that is their sto­ry?  Sure, in a sane world, they’d have both prob­a­bly been giv­en the chair or just got­ten shot by a cop with an itchy trig­ger fin­ger.  But does that mean they have no right to be hap­py?  Or that we have right to deny them, be­cause it sits out­side of our bull­shit, made up 2‑people-to-a-relationship rule?

I’m lik­ing what DC has done, here, and I find it fun­ny that the fact they were es­chew­ing the “tra­di­tion­al” re­la­tion­ship struc­ture, and peo­ple just didn’t seem to no­tice.  Once they saw “Harley and Ivy are a cou­ple!” their brains frost­ed over to the fact they were be­ing giv­en a more pro­gres­sive tid­bit.  I have to ad­mit, I had fig­ured Harley and Ivy were out a long time ago, so I was con­fused by the an­nounce­ment for a mo­ment.  Then I caught on to the big­ger part, and all I could do was feel vin­di­cat­ed, in a way.  I’d lived as an out­cast for the non-monogamous part of my life, as well.  But now DC has said “Hey, we re­al­ize this ex­ists, and here’s some semi-tangible support.”

It doesn’t make me for­give them for killing off Batwoman’s girl­friend over the po­ten­tial (as in NOT FUCKING REALIZED) back­lash over the im­pend­ing nup­tials be­tween them.

Nor does it make me for­give them for un-crippling Batgirl, and thus mak­ing her more bro­ken than ever.

And most of all, be­ing that this is DC, I ful­ly ex­pect to have to write an­oth­er piece in a year or two, giv­ing them a great big fin­ger for ret­con­ning all this in their next big event com­ic, or giv­ing the bull­shit ex­cuse that the Joker bat­ted his eye­lash­es and Harley came running.

DC, do some­thing right, for once.  Let a change for the pos­i­tive stay.  Maybe we’ll all get lucky, and some of these prudes will ac­tu­al­ly open their minds to a new idea, for once.

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I’m that crazy guy that writes things and hosts the Graded PointFive comics podcast.

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