To celebrate Harley Quinn’s 25th anniversary this Batman Day, Bruce Timm released a thank you video to fans highlighting 25 Harley Quinns from the past 25 years.
Quinn was created in 1992 by Timm and Paul Dini for Batman: The Animated Series. Voiced by Arleen Sorkin, her first appearance was in “Joker’s Favor,” one of the best short Joker stories ever told. She was an instant sensation. Two years later, Dini and Timm won an Eisner and a Harvey for her origin story, Mad Love. She hung around the animated continuity for years, eventually appearing as the grandmother to two Joker gang twins in Batman Beyondand making an appearance in almost every Batman animated adventure that followed.
Harley’s transition to the comics happened in 1999’s “No Man’s Land” series, where Gotham was isolated from the rest of the USA by a massive earthquake and left to fend for itself. It ended with Lex Luthor funding most of the rebuilding in an extensive land grab, while the Joker shot the Commissioner’s wife in the head on Christmas. In hindsight, though, this seems like a relatively light and cheery time.
It wasn’t until 2013 that Harley became the character we know and love today. Amanda Connor and Jimmy Palmiotti took over the book and immediately set about knocking down the fourth wall (fortunately not load bearing in Harley’s world). They’ve run the book as a comedy since, and they have a new story leading off this year’s Batman Day special issue. And DC has put out a collection of Harley stories through the years, where Connor and Palmiotti are well represented.
Let’s see how many of the Harley Quinns you can recognize from the video. I got 13, with a vague memory of another 6. Take a look!