- Alternate Character Interpretation: Is Harley simply another victim of Joker's abuse, who has been led down a path of wrongdoing and deserved to become an Anti-Hero who is more-or-less on friendly ground with a good chunk of the DC universe, or is she really just another psychopath, who was all too eager to go crazy in the first place? While writers in general seem to prefer the former, several readers have pointed out in recent years that someone who fell in love with and actively emulates the Joker obviously shouldn't be seen solely as a sympathetic character. A great deal of this is Depending on the Writer; it's hard to believe that she's the same character sometimes between volumes (e.g. her murdering hundreds of children with bombs disguised as game consoles in one issue, and then being jovially embraced by the superhero community in the next).
- Author's Saving Throw: A Saving Throw based on something that happened before the series even started. Prior to the New 52 series beginning, DC announced an art contest based around drawing a page for the #0 issue that ended with a panel described in the script as a naked Harley about to commit an Electrified Bathtub Bath Suicide. This sparked a Flame War over an apparent misogynistic eroticisation of a woman's suicide, made worse by the fact that the script didn't include any of the dialogue, or indicate that it was meant to be contextualised as a fantasy sequence. When the issue was published, the final panel of the page showed a fully-clothed (well, as much as she ever is in the New 52) Harley Riding the Bomb instead.
- Base-Breaking Character: Sure, Harley has a huge fanbase, but there are also a lot of people who hate her for various reasons and wish that she would go away, such as them finding her to be annoying, Harley being shilled and too easily forgiven for her past crimes, Harley getting too much Wolverine Publicity, etc. And dont even get us started on those who want her to go back to her classic outfit versus those who like her the way shes currently dressed.
- When it comes to Harley Quinns characterization, there are generally two camps: Those who love her as she is now(a Deadpool-ish anti-hero), those who want her to go back to her roots as a villain and being the Jokers sidekick just like in the animated series where she came from.
- Big-Lipped Alligator Moment:
- Harley's odd dream when she's knocked out in Skate Club.
- There have been a few times when Harley and Ivy had gone on major Acid Trips from some drug or another.
- Broken Base: The New 52/Rebirth series, thanks to Harley Quinn's characterization (where she's depicted as a hyper-violent comedic Anti-Hero), and the general tone of the comic (a mix of fanservice, humor and violence). For some, Harley has become a poor rip-off of Deadpool, especially as the series avoids interacting with the rest of the DCU, and find it doesn't gel with the Suicide Squad comic where Harley is also a major character. On the other hand, the series has continuously sold pretty well, and a fair proportion of its readers like the humour and lack of heavy ties to other DC comics, in contrast to most of the rest of the New 52.
- Crazy Awesome: One issue has Harley save Santa Claus by going inside him to fight off his inner demons. Need we say more?
- Crossover Ship: She's commonly paired with the rather fitting character Deadpool.
- Draco in Leather Pants: Harley unsurprisingly gets a fair amount of this, due to her very sympathetic backstory, along with being really cute.
- Harsher in Hindsight: In Harley's Little Black Book Issue 1, Harley reveals that she has always been a fanatical Wonder Woman fan. If you've read that comic before playing Injustice 2, then it makes what happens between Harley and Wonder Woman in the game even worse for Harley herself(not that she shows it).
- Hilarious in Hindsight:
- Some fans loved to ship Harley and Deadpool. So, New 52 Harley meets a Captain Ersatz version of him (named Red Tool) and they have a brief relationship.
- The infamous bathtub panel was understandably nixed... yet Margot Robbie would later gain mainstream fame for both a Bathtub Scene in The Big Short and for playing Harley in Suicide Squad (2016).
- Just Here for Godzilla: The issues (in Volume 3) with the backstory written by Paul Dini with the classic Harley and Joker versions from Batman: The Animated Series. Lampshaded by the cover of the issue 19◊.
- Les Yay:
- A lot, especially in the New 52 series where hardly a scene goes by with Harley and Ivy that doesn't hammer home that the two are Friends with Benefits. There is even a scene where Harley kisses Ivy on the mouth.
- The New 52 road trip special has been accused by many fans as implying that Harley, Ivy, and Catwoman spent the entirety of it having sex with each other.
- In Harley's Little Black Book Issue 1, Harley reveals that she has always been a fanatical Wonder Woman fan, so what does she do when she first meets her? Knock her out and take off her clothes, of course. Later we get some more Harley style bonding.Harley: How cool is it that we're wearing each others clothes?! It's like we're Girlfriends.
Wonder Woman: My suit is... moist.
- and later
Harley: Sorry, I got excited.
- Issue 3 has Zatanna, and Harley spends at least half of their conversations making not so overt come-ons. She also tries to grab a ghost girl's breasts.
- And don't forget that Harley really likes Power Girl. At one point, Harley mentions that she tried to summon her while Harley was in the shower. Power Girl refused to come, specifically citing that she knew Harley was in the shower.
- Misblamed: Sam Humphries got some hostility from Harley/Ivy shippers for not depicting Ivy enough in his run, with accusations that he was part of a homophobic plot by DC to "de-gay" Harley.note In a fan Q & A, he said that he wanted to feature Ivy, but was ordered not to by the editorial department because she was being used in other comics.
- Recycled Script: The twist-ending and premise in Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy (2019) comes straight out of The New Batman Adventures episode, "Growing Pains" — right down to someone's last words to a dear friend being, "Run...!"
YMMV / Harley Quinn