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Harley Quinn Before and After: Transformation of the DC Character

harley quinn before and after
Harley Quinn (Credits: Studio)

Harley Quinn, the famous DC character, was created by Paul Dini and Bruce Tim. She appears in the American comic books produced by DC Comics and later in the series. She first made an appearance in Batman: The Animated Series in the 22nd episode, “Joker’s Favor,” which aired on September 11, 1992.

She was portrayed as Joker’s henchwoman, partner, and love interest. Though she was supposed to be in only one episode, she ended up being a recurring character on the series and has starred in many series and off-spins ever since.

In this episode, we can see Harley working as a psychiatrist at Arkham Asylum under the name of Dr. Harleen Quinzel. She falls in love with Joker while working at the asylum. She joins forces with him because of her love and turns into his crime partner and love interest.

Harley Quinn before and after

Harley Quinn (Credits: DC Comics)

Unfortunately for Harley, her relationship with Joker got complicated because of his lack of interest in her, and thus, she decided to move on from him. This was a turning point in Harley Quinn’s story and character. From here on, the character was painted with various changes, be it her physical appearance or her character development.

Harley Quinn turned into a more specific and complex character. The fans of the series have been excited about her change over the decades, and the turns and growth in her character have only added to her popularity as a major, fearless female character. Let’s walk through the changes that Harley Quinn has gone through over the years and take a look at her transformation.

Harley Quinn Before and After

After her debut, Harley Quinn has been seen in many DC series wherein we can see her growing as a woman as well as in her profession. Due to this, the audience perceives her as a mature and independent woman who takes charge of her own life and makes her own independent decisions.

When she made her debut, Harley had a growing obsession with Joker, and thus, she tried to dress up in a similar way. We can see her in red and black attire with a color dominating on each side. Further, she justifies her character by topping her head with a jester hat, covering her face with a white mask, and again going for black around her eyes.

Despite being in an abusive relationship with super-villain Joker, she accompanies him in all his crimes and activities. In “Batman: Arkham game series,” we get to witness a change in Harley Quinn’s hair. Here, she has dyed her hair.

As we move on to the “New 52” comic series, Harley is completely free of Joker’s influence, and we can see a significant change in her outfit, which is no longer computed in ways to please Joker.

In this series, Harley Quinn wore a red and black leather top paired with same-colored shorts and long, knee-length socks. She topped it with an oversized jacket to keep her look hardcore. Her hair is dyed red on one pigtail and black on another, complementing her outfit.

harley quinn before and after

Harley Quinn Before and After (Credits: first image: CBR, second image: DC Comics)

Harley Quinn has had one major love interest in her early days as Joker. Her love was quite unrequited with him, and thus, we see her ending ties with him. Later, she is seen in a relationship with Poison Ivy. It’s interesting how her costumes and styles have changed with the change in her love interests. However, her relationship with Poison Ivy is a positive one, completely opposite of what she had with Joker.

In 2019, Harley Quinn got her own animated series called “Harley Quinn,” which ran across four seasons. This show is very well-liked by the viewers for its setting, characterization, and animation tactics. From Jester outfits and Ninja styles to modern attires, we can see Harley Quinn portraying a strong-willed and fiercely independent woman.

Harley Quinn’s transformation in various series has received multiple reviews from the audience. At the same time, some seem to appreciate her modern attires and disposal of Joker, while others objectify the character because of the strongly sexualized outfit ideas and point out her desperation to fit in the hard-core world. It’s been really interesting to watch the journey of Harley Quinn turn into a strong lead character.

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