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Harley Quinn #3

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Harley Quinn #3

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Issue number three of Harley Quinn is titled "Love Stinks," and it's the Valentine's Day issue, even though it came out the week after the holiday. The story starts off with Harley watching horrific scenes, and at first she's not impressed or terrified, but as the scenes become more psychotic and gory, she starts to like what she sees. Then, she sees a Nosferatu looking-like man, and he points a shotgun at her, and shoots. When Harley realizes that this is real, she takes the gun away from him and shoots him, realizing that this is not a part of the ride, it's another person hired to kill her, as we've seen from the beginning of this series. We see her getting off the ride, titled "Scare-O-Rama," but overall, Harley's not impressed.

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As she walks away, she reminisces how it's Valentine's Day, and she has no one to share this day with. She sees several couples together, holding hands, kissing, being romantic, but she doesn't like it due to her bitterness. Once she arrives home, she sees one of her tenants, Big Tony, as he's sitting on the steps, holding some flowers. Thinking they're for her, Harley asks Big Tony if the flowers are for her, but he says they're for Queenie, someone he really cares about. Queenie took off with someone else, because Big Tony was playing hard to get, and seeing that crushed him, so he gives the flowers to Harley.

Harley relaxes, takes a bath, and sees more love on the TV, which makes her want to vomit in her bathtub. As she's talking to Bernie, her stuffed charbroiled beaver, he tells her to go out there, and meet new people, because her talking to a stuffed beaver will give the impression that she's antisocial. She looks at some of the plants that Poison Ivy left her (from the previous issue), and notices that some berries grew from one of the plants. They smelled good, so Harley ate some. Shortly after, Harley receives a phone call about the therapist job she interviewed for at the nursing home, and she receives the good news that she got the job. Excited, she gets dressed, and goes out to celebrate.

Outside, we see a corrections officer driving a bus with inmates, driving them to prison, but as Harley walks in front of the bus, the officer instantly falls in love with her. Losing his focus, he crashes the bus into a building, setting all of the inmates free. Once the inmates see Harley, they all instantly fall in love with her too. Creeped out, Harley runs away from them, but they follow her into a hardware store. Harley so desperately tries to look for the hammers, as they are the weapons of her choice, but she settles for other tools, and she takes out the inmates, one at a time. Once the bloodshed is over, a female police officer arrives to arrest Harley, but instead, she kisses Harley, and she, too, is in love with Harley. Harley is uncomfortable about this, and she runs away again, this time heading home.

Harley later realizes that the berries were the cause of all this "loving" madness, so she slingshots the berries out her window. Big Tony shows up after this, wanting the flowers back, because he wants to fight for Queenie. Harley then visits the animals she rescued in the previous issue, now that they live happily in her building, and she realizes that the only love she needs are from her furry friends, as they will always be loving and loyal to her in return. The story ends here, and we see that the next issue will be "One Big Crappy Family."

Harley Quinn number three is a solid issue, but the humor that normally comes with the title character isn't quite here. It's a good Valentine's Day story, but it's not great, there's not much going on as far as continuity is concerned. Still, this is another fun issue with a good, solid story, and the artwork is great, as per the usual that has come from this series. The cover art and colors leave a lasting impression to this issue, and it is a recommended read, especially for fans of the title character. I give this issue a solid three out of five stars, not bad, but not as great as the previous two issues and issue number zero. Harley Quinn #3 is written by Amanda Conner and Jimmy Palmiotti, artwork by Chad Hardin, and colored by Alex Sinclair. Regular cover illustrated by Amanda Conner and Paul Mounts. Variant cover by Tommy Lee Edwards. On sale now for $2.99 at local comic book stores or on digital formats, and has 32 color pages.

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