Harley Quinn’s “The Bachelorette” is a mess of wasted and missing potential

Harley Quinn, after realizing that she is in love with Poison Ivy, decides to swallow her feelings and throw Ivy the best bachelorette party in history on the island of Themyscira, which has become a vacation resort following Wonder Woman’s disappearance into the Phantom Zone last season. However, due to some alcohol and shenanigans, Harley tells Ivy exactly how she feels about her and invites her to run away together.

Meanwhile, King Shark is called back to the ocean to honor a commitment he isn’t looking forward to.

Boy… this was not that great.

First, there is the wasted potential of a commercialized Themyscira. Harley Quinn plays fast and lose with comic book tropes and gleefully so and, so, when Eris shows up dressed in black and acting sketchy, the first thing I thought was, no way are they making this plot that obvious.

And they did.

Why did the commercialization of Themyscira have to be a generic bad guy plot? It was so trite and predictable. Why couldn’t it simply be the Amazons realizing, without Wonder Woman’s constant preaching and nagging, that money was kinda neat? It just seems so late in the game for the show that has taken such delight in tearing down comic book cliches to suddenly trot them out center stage.

The relationship between Ivy and Harley Quinn has been a sometimes frustrating, and sometimes interesting knot of complications where no choice is the right choice and someone is always going to get hurt and so, to see the series stoop to another cliche: Two people getting drunk and ending up in bed together, vowing to chalk it up to a mistake and vowing it would never happen again… twice… for the sake of what felt like cheap humor, felt like it belonged on a episode of Family Guy.

The bachelorette pairing of Mrs. Freeze, Catwoman, and Ivy’s friend from kindergarten who I am not even going to bother looking up never really worked. While Catwoman was a source of some ice-bucket to the face frankness that I rather enjoyed, Mrs. Freeze’s gag about her husband being dead never really landed and the kindergarten friend was never funny. Why wasn’t Batgirl invited? That would have been fun.

I did laugh about all of the vehicles from Themyscira being invisible, though. The invisible jet hitting birds and leaving bloody streaks next to the passengers was quite inspired.

Finally, the King Shark B-plot. Guys, I love King Shark. I think he’s one of the best things about this series, but this B-plot was such an unbelievable ground-level waste of time. It trotted out the boring Little Mermaid, “Under the Sea” parody that we all saw coming from a mile away and it just never ended. The song was terrible, the repeating gag about pooping wherever you want in the ocean was stupid… nothing about it worked. Nothing about the King Shark storyline was funny. It was, without a doubt, the lamest thing that Harley Quinn has ever done.

I guess that they’re planning on tying the whole King Shark story about getting married to the first person you met as part of the motivation when they inevitably break up Kite Man and Ivy, but come on…

I like, despite everything, that Harley Quinn does like to kick its plot in the behind every now and then to keep it going and, while Harley has lost the drive to become a major supervillain (which is disappointing), I’m at least gratified that she finally laid all of her cards out on the table and told Ivy how she feels about her. The episode might have been a let down, but at least the plot progressed.

Consistently, this show has been very good and has set a very high bar for itself. Keep that in mind as I say that this has been the weakest episode of the series so far. It’s the weakest episode in a consistently strong series… meaning that it’s the weakest Mr. Universe contestant on the stage. By itself, impressive but, when viewed with the others, not so much.

I also can’t shake the feeling that this show has lost itself in the recent unrequited love story it’s gotten bogged down in and, with only one more episode to go this season, it looks like it’s going to remain this way unless something majorly exciting and interesting happens.

Correction: Kindly pointed out to me on Twitter: There are actually four more episodes this season, not just one.

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