Dr. Quinn, Criminal Profiler
Kami Garcia sets up a fascinating take on Harley and Joker in this first issue. We get a departure from Harley’s well-established profession as a psychologist and see her instead in the role of a criminal profiler who works for the GCPD and is a lecturer at Gotham State University. Seeing her in this different light immediately pulled me into the world that Garcia is setting up. Harley is written smartly. We spend a lot of time in her head and POV as she works on trying to solve Joker cold cases from years prior.
There is an interesting juxtaposition of art choices in this book so far. We have Mico Suayan delivering gorgeous black/white/gray panels for what is happening in the present, while Mike Mayhew details the past in a different colorized style. The present has a roughness to the sketches that works well with the atmosphere that is being set up, while the past is a bit too clean. Clearly, this is done on purpose to help reflect a difference within Harley Quinn, in how she perceives the world before and after a traumatic event.
If I had to nitpick one thing, it’s that Mayhew’s style loses me in some panels. I cannot tell if what I am looking at are characters drawn or models that have been brought into Photoshop and filtered into looking like drawings. While that is not an invalid style of work, it is just not something that speaks to my tastes. Regardless, this is a solid beginning and worth checking out. The pacing is well done and the issue is educational for those who aren’t serial murder junkies.