With Suicide Squad well on its way to movie theater domination — with Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn at the helm — it’s time to take a look at the small screen. After all, that’s where Harley originated in the first place.
Given that the character was first introduced on Batman: The Animated Series in 1992, why not give her a TV presence? While one may argue she’s in the film universe and those lines don’t cross, take a look at The Flash or even Supergirl adding in the Man of Steel for Season 2.
The line between film and TV continues to blur in the world of DC Entertainment. Warner Bros. is realizing more than one version of a particular character can exist.
With that in mind, now is the time for someone to develop a Harley Quinn-centric TV series. And honestly, it wouldn’t even be that hard.
After all, she technically already exists in the Arrow-verse. It was the Season 2 episode titled Suicide Squad that teased the arrival of Harley, who was being held in an ARGUS detention facility.
It was only a quick sort-of cameo for Harley. The back of her head is seen and her voice, supplied by Tara Strong, is heard as she taunts Diggle (David Ramsey) and Lyla (Audrey Marie Anderson).
What some Arrow fans may not know is that Harley has a second appearance in the series. The character was featured in the Season 2 finale, Unthinkable, in a similar appearance. However, that scene was removed from the episode before it aired.
According to star Stephen Amell (Oliver), during a 2014 convention appearance, the scene was cut from the episode due to time. Interestingly, Willa Holland (Thea) revealed another likely reason why Harley wasn’t part of “Arrow’s” plans.
“Something must have come down from DC or some higher-up above that said, ‘No, you must cease and desist because we’re going to make it into a movie and we can’t have anybody spoil that idea,’” she recalled at the MCM London Comic Con. “We did get to see that little pigtail and the ARGUS uniform and the little treat of Harley Quinn, and it just got ripped away.”
That doesn’t keep her from existing in this world though and given that DC and Warner Bros. are getting more used to the idea of sharing characters between TV and film, perhaps Harley should be their next experiment. In fact, you could have her lead a modified version of the Suicide Squad.
She’s definitely going to need some work when it comes to character design, though. A photo from the set of the Suicide Squad episode of Arrow shows Harley as simply a woman with pigtails and face paint. Meanwhile, Robbie’s version takes a nod from the New 52 origin of Harley, where her skin is bleached by a vat of chemicals.
That’s not to say a televised Harley should just copy the movies, but rather take inspiration from it — and the comic book versions of the character — to create a new definitive look for the small screen.
To be honest, there’s really no downside to reintroducing Harley into this particular universe. It wouldn’t have a negative impact on the film universe and it would bring an interesting new angle to the heroes working together in crossover episodes.
Can you imagine The Flash (Grant Gustin), the Green Arrow, Supergirl (Melissa Benoist) and a variety of Legends of Tomorrow characters having to work with Harley Quinn to help save the world?
That’s something we want to see.