On September 11, 1992, the "Joker's Favor" episode of Batman: The Animated Series aired on Fox Kids, notable for the first appearance in any medium of Harley Quinn, an undeniably likeable associate of The Joker voiced by Arleen Sorkin.
In the interim 25 years, the character made the leap to the printed page at DC Comics and has become a major star on a variety of platforms, including live-action feature films -- so much so that DC Co-Publisher Jim Lee has dubbed Harley Quinn the "fourth pillar" of the company, after Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman.
Naturally, DC isn't letting this milestone pass without some celebration. CBR has the first details on September's Harley Quinn 25th Anniversary Special, scheduled for release nearly 25 years to the day "Joker's Favor" first aired. Creators contributing to the one-shot include the longtime creative team of the current Harley Quinn ongoing series, co-writers Amanda Conner & Jimmy Palmiotti and artist Chad Hardin, plus Harley Quinn co-creator Paul Dini (the writer of "Joker's Favor," who has recently been co-writing back-up stories in the Harley Quinn ongoing) and a story from Chip Zdarsky & Joe Quinones, who collaborated on Marvel's tonally similar Howard the Duck. This marks Zdarsky's first work for DC Comics.
Additionally, Conner is illustrating a portion of the special, along with the main cover. Jim Lee has illustrated a variant (with the character in attire similar to Margot Robbie's version in the Suicide Squad film), as has Harley Quinn co-creator Bruce Timm.
"Jimmy and Amanda have come up with a great version of Harley that keeps her relevant for today’s readership," Dini told CBR earlier this month of DC's recent Harley Quinn stories. "It keeps her fun. It keeps her funny. It’s always true to the character, and it’s always new. I really enjoy being surprised with everyone else each issue to see what they are coming up with."
CBR has the first look at Lee's variant cover to the issue, plus the solicitation text for the issue. DC Comics' full September 2017 solicitations are scheduled to debut online at 5 p.m. Eastern time on Monday, June 19.
HARLEY QUINN 25TH ANNIVERSARY SPECIAL #1
- Written by AMANDA CONNER, JIMMY PALMIOTTI, PAUL DINI and CHIP ZDARSKY
- Art by AMANDA CONNER, CHAD HARDIN, JOE QUINONES and others
- Cover by AMANDA CONNER
- Variant covers by JIM LEE and BRUCE TIMM
- Celebrate twenty-five years of Harley Quinn with this collection of stories by some legendary Harley talent and some who’ve never drawn her before! How does Harley manage her insanely jam-packed life on Coney Island? What haven’t we seen from her past with the Joker? And can even Harley’s psychological acumen crack the twisted mind of…Robin, the Boy Wonder?
- One-shot • On sale SEPTEMBER 6 • 48 pg, FC, $4.99 US • RATED T+