The Arkham Sessions Podcast, Episode #109: “Batman and Harley Quinn”

In celebration of her 25th anniversary, Harley Quinn fittingly takes over the annual “Batman Day” this year. On September 23rd, DC Comics is celebrating the event with special book signings and key new releases of a cover art collection, oversized anniversary issue and more!

Here at the Arkham Sessions, we did what we do best: Analyze the most relevant animated Batman stories. This time, we watched the new DC Animated film, BATMAN AND HARLEY QUINN. Though the story itself is straightforward and the character build-out flimsy, we were able to extract some of the most pertinent issues related to mental health and psychology. For instance, in defense of her sanity, Harley asserts that she is a “sociopath,” not a “psychopath.” What does she mean by this? Is she correct? And does Batman buy it? And were female characters, prominent throughout the movie, given fair portrayals in the story?

We also diligently searched for the heart of the movie and, with the help of one of our friends and loyal listeners–Lauren Ritchie (@penguingonemad)–as a special guest on the show, we discussed why Harley Quinn is uniquely special to us as a character in comics: Her genuine, authentic expression of herself, her willingness to accept her own flaws, and her determination to remain free of constraints and limitations. Because there are other, arguably more positive portrayals of Harley Quinn–and because it is Harley Quinn Day, after all– we decided to list our top 5 favorite Arkham Sessions episodes featuring Harley!

Happy Harley Day!

5. In “Harlequinade,” we take a look at Harley’s unhealthy relationship with the Joker.

4. In our “Suicide Squad” episode, we delve into the live action film and discuss Margot Robbie’s portrayal of Harley Quinn.

3. In our live episode at Long Beach Comic Con, we speak with Harley Quinn writer Jimmy Palmiotti.

2. In “Harley’s Holiday,” we discuss Harley’s release from Arkham Asylum and her struggle with recovery.

1. We called it the most psychologically relevant episode of Batman: The Animated Series: “Harley and Ivy.

The Arkham Sessions is a podcast dedicated to the psychology of the show, Batman: The Animated Series. Have psychology related questions about Batman? Write to us via twitter @ArkhamSessions or on Facebook.

And don’t forget to subscribe to The Arkham Sessions on iTunes to get all the latest episodes!


One Response to “The Arkham Sessions Podcast, Episode #109: “Batman and Harley Quinn””

  1. PH says:

    I don’t think Bruce Timm really wanted to make this movie. It’s not quite as bad as Killing Joke, where he talked about how he never wanted to make it in just about every interview. But he doesn’t seem to have any passion about it.

    And I don’t think Timm actually put forth the idea that the movie is a part of the TAS/DCAU continuity. Someone asked him if it was part of TAS and he kind of just went with it.

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