Mind Capsules – Harley Quinn Valentine’s Day Special #1 and Spider-Woman #4

Harley Quinn Valentine's Day Special #1
Harley Quinn Valentine’s Day Special #1

Writer – Amanda Conner, Jimmy Palmiotti
Artist – John Timms, Ben Caldwell, Aaron Campbell, Thony Silas
Colours – Paul Mounts, Ben Caldwell, Hi-Fi

Harley is looking for love and what better prospect than millionaire playboy, Bruce Wayne.  There is only one problem though and that is the money she will need to win the charity auction that Bruce is participating in.  Of course, being the reformed criminal that she is, what else is there to do but rob from those that have robbed from others in order to procure such funds?  What follows is a delightfully insane little tale from a whole lot of creators including the scribes of our issue, Amanda Conner and Jimmy Palmiotti.  It is humourous to see Harley set her sights on Bruce Wayne and the lengths she will go to just to get a date with the guy.  The violence is over the top as can be expected in a Harley Quinn book and the issue is a funny one, though its funnies moments are not those that have to do with the violence.  Instead, it is the dialogue and the moments in-between the dreams she has and the violence that follows her.  Sight gags, like Harley using her giant hammer are played out – good for the kids but that is about it.  The only other quibble with the book is having Harley talk like a gangster’s moll from the 1930’s.  It is annoying to say the least yet is inextricably linked to part of her charm and can be overlooked as the book on the whole is just so enjoyable.  The artwork by John Timms, Ben Caldwell, Aaron Campbell and Thony Silas is extremely well done with John Timms’ the best of the bunch.  It’s clean, slick and really eye-catching with some of the best scenes in the book being those where Harley is all done up in her gown, ready to bid on her man.  This was a really great issue, perfect for new readers or those who have lapsed with a great done-in-one story that kept you entertained and glued to the pages from the first to the last.

4 out of 5

Spider-Woman #4
Spider-Woman #4

Writer – Dennis Hopeless
Artist – Greg Land
Inker – Jay Leisten
Colours – Frank D’Armata

In the aftermath of Spider-Verse, Jessica is still on Loomworld, taking a breath and noticing that without the Inheritors in charge, the populace is reverting to a state of chaos.  So it is that she tries to convince her double to take up the reins and lead Loomworld into a new age.  This was a nice little epilogue to the events that have been taking place and while it closes one chapter for Jessica Drew and for Loomworld, it opens a new one.  The latter half of the book finds Jessica needing to talk to Steve Rogers about a personal matter.  After all that has happened, she has looked back upon her life and found that all of it revolves around other people and for once, she would like to take some time for herself, thus, after a little hilarity, she quits the Avengers.  There has been a lot of serious things happening as of late in the book and her life and it was good to see Dennis Hopeless let his hair down so to speak and inject the book with a little humour.  Going forward we know that Spider-Woman gets a new costume that, while a little sad as she has one of the best going currently, is nice to see a change as it has been thirty years or more in the same get-up.  During the second part of the story, Jessica also hangs out with her best friend Carol Danvers and while we also know that Jessica is going to be flying solo, it would be nice to see her and Carol team-up as it would make for a great buddy-comedy.  Now that Spider-Verse has come and gone the book needs to find its own identity and if the stories are as good as those that took place during Spider-Verse, the title should be a lot of fun as it moves onwards.

3.5 out of 5

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