Kami Garcia, author of Joker / Harley: Criminal Mind, tells how she destroyed the famous image of Harley Quinn in her new crime thriller
Kami Garcia, author of Joker / Harley: Criminal Sanity (Joker / Harley: Criminal Intelligence), tells how she destroyed the famous image of Harley Quinn in her new crime thriller. Soon you will meet a Harley Quinn that you have never seen. Red and black overalls, giant hammers and toxic relationships with the Joker are a thing of the past. As comic book author Kami Garcia told Inverse: “I wanted her to become a threat to the Joker.” October 9th, as part of the DC Black Label imprint, the first issue of the Joker / Harley: Criminal Mind comic is released – a story beyond the DC universe written by Kami Garcia and painted by Mike Mayhew and Miko Suayan. This spin-off completely reinterprets the image of Harley Queen, transforming her from a mean siren into an unbending medical examiner at the Gotham Police Department. Upon learning of the murder of his best friend, Harley proceeds to search for the elusive serial killer from Gotham City, known as the Joker. Garcia abandoned the clownish makeup and dressed her character in a leather jacket (which Jessica Jones would envy), creating a Harley Quinn who would not fall in love with the Joker. “This is not a romantic story – in any of its forms, manifestations and forms,” she says. – This is hyperreality. Harley knows what the Joker is, she knows that he is a psychopath and completely incapable of love and sympathy. She preys on him. In terms of dynamics, it is more like Batman, Harley is an adversary and a threat to the Joker. ” At the same time, Garcia describes her Joker as a “daffodil” who enjoys having trouble with Harley Quinn. “He understands that she is good. Harley is no ordinary patrol cop. The Joker does not believe that Harley will ever catch him, but there’s nothing interesting about being followed by some idiot. And he likes Harley getting closer. ” To create a Harley Quinn that could withstand the Joker – one that now really scares viewers in Tod’s new Phillips movie – Garcia had to rethink the iconic image of Harley Quinn. With the help of a close friend, the Baltimore psychiatrist, Dr. Edward Kurtz, they created a new Harley Quinn, trying to “redesign” the classic story. Their efforts were reflected in The Criminal Mind, where Garcia reveals the process of becoming Harley Quinn as a survivor. “We put together a psychological dossier for Harley, because I wanted to make sure that this adult version is psychologically true and real,” says Garcia. – All facts about the character will be based on this dossier. It will seem that you are reading the profile of a real person, and all the facts will fall into place. ” The comic will also accomplish what used to be only in a couple of stories: in fact, it defines the concepts of “psychopath” and “psycho”. Over the course of half the first episode, Harley Quinn provides a monstrously long analysis of psychopathic terms. According to Garcia, the Joker is not a psycho, and thus describing killers – real or fictional – we do a disservice to psychiatry. “There are many films and series that romanticize killers. One of the problems is that people believe these movies and TV shows when they think you’re mentally ill, ”says Garcia. – I argued with people about this even before the comic book: mental illness does not make you dangerous. To suffer from a mental disorder does not mean to be a killer. ” The colored interior pages of the comic book telling about the night when Harley Quinn found her best friend murdered in their apartment. She adds: “When people throw such terms, it annoys me. I think the Joker is scary just because he is not sick. He is not crazy. I don’t even think that he will become a psychopath in the future. I wanted it to be a situation of choice, by analogy with serial killers, when he does something not because he is crazy, but because he likes it. ” Garcia holds steady without revealing any more details about the Harley Quinn dossier, as this concerns several plot twists that will be shown in the future. But Garcia claims: “You will find out that she had an unhappy, abusive childhood.” Garcia explains: “You had a dysfunctional family, you cannot trust your family, and your best friend, the only person you could count on, was killed. If you went through all this, how would it end? And she is a fighter, she survived. She’s smart and formidable, she’s a real strategist – and these skills make her the best at what she does. ” Harley Quinn was created by Paul Dini for the 1990s Batman animated series, which received an Emmy Award. The heroine gained universal popularity due to her appearances in comics and on the big screen, played by Margot Robbie in 2016 in the film “Suicide Squad” and in the new 2020 film “Birds of Prey”. Garcia has mixed feelings about the image created by Margot Robbie, but she was attracted to one thing. “There are scenes where Harley Quinn puts on a Philadelphia eagles t-shirt. Margot Robbie has given her a wise edge, ”says Garcia.