Who Is Harley Quinn? Suicide Squad’s Psychotic Cheerleader Explained

Forget the lizard face guy, the gang member who can shoot flames from his hands, the martial arts woman and Will Smith, who can basically just aim really well. All of the internet chatter about the upcoming movie adaptation of DC Comics’ Suicide Squad – the gang of imprisoned supervillains forced to save the world against their will – is about Harley Quinn, the wise-cracking psycho punk cheerleader played by Margot Robbie from The Wolf Of Wall Street. For fans, this is the long-awaited big screen debut for a character that’s had their eyes on stilts on page, screen and Playstation since 1992, and who is considered one of the greatest Batman villains of all time. But for the as-yet un-enraptured here’s the skinny on the year’s most talked-about anti-heroine. Who is Harley Quinn? You’re about to find out.

She’s The Joker’s On-Off Girlfriend

As the popularity of Donald Trump has proven, who couldn’t love a cackling, violence-loving, acid-scarred megalomaniac with outlandish hair? Not Dr Harleen Frances Quinzel, MD, that’s for sure. An intern psychiatrist at Arkham Asylum, she fell for The Joker while analyzing him, went suitably insane and started helping him out with his escapes and Gotham-flattening schemes dressed in a jester costume which got more Dita Von Tease by the series. In numerous strikes against animated feminism, she kept going back to The Joker despite him consistently trying to kill her.

She’s Complicated

Flipping back and forth between good and bad, madness and sanity, Harley’s ultra-violent schizophrenic personality is down to a very troubled back-story. Her obsession with The Joker was triggered by the suicide of her college boyfriend. Her broken family was full of thieves, con-men and slobs. She once cheated on Bruce Wayne by snogging Batman. The one time she tried to mail herself to a tropical island for a well-earned rest, the plane crashed on an island ruled over by – oh yes – The Joker, whom she was forced to marry shortly before being flung into a volcano. Wouldn’t you go on a murderous rampage or two?

She’s A Cross Between Jennifer Ennis And Timmy Mallet

Endowed with superhuman athletic and gymnastic skills and immune to poisons and toxins thanks to a potion given to her by her BFF Poison Ivy, Harley Quinn’s main weapon is a large wooden mallet. She-Thor, anyone?

She’s Done Time In Arkham

At the end of her own DC Comics series, Harley admitted herself to Arkham, realising that she needed help to conquer her issues. However, all of her parole applications were rejected by none other than Bruce Wayne, until she helped Batman foil the Ventriloquist. Yes ‘good behaviour’ in Gotham literally means saving the entire city from catastrophe.

You May Well Have Killed Her Already

Dressed like an understudy for Babymetal and back to her wicked ways in the arms of The Joker, Harley Quinn was one of the enemies in the Batman: Arkham video game franchise, voiced by Tara Strong. In downloadable content, Harley is both a final boss and a playable character – in the forthcoming Batman: Arkham Underworld mobile game, you can play her accompanied by pet hyenas.

READ MORE: ‘Suicide Squad’ – Trailers, Cast, Release Date And Everything You Need To Know