One of the most exciting things that we saw at SDCC was the premiere of the DC Universe Harley Quinn series which is gory, gross, curse-laden, and totally wonderful. The trailer was released during the con and we were surprised by just how many deep cut Batman characters the show includes. So to prep you for your new favorite adult animated show we’ve selected some of the weirder characters to introduce you to in the lead up to DC Universe’s Harley Quinn.
This brilliant inversion of Batman began his life as a villain and occasional anti-hero as a zoologist who specialized in bats. His obsession with cute critters led him to create a serum which transformed him into a monstrous man-beast. Though Batman did help him find a cure, Dr. Kirk Langstrom loved having sonar powers and decided to transform back. His wife did too; for a time she became the monster known as She-Bat.
There have been a few people who have taken on the mantle of the Reverse Flash who is basically just the evil version of the classic DC character. Since 2012, that role has been filled by the now-deceased Daniel West. And in case you’re wondering just what the Reverse Flash does, he goes very very fast and kills people utilizing the magical, scientific, wonder of the Speedforce.
The humanoid shark is another character you might know from the DC TV shows and animated movies. Which is hilarious as he is one of the strangest villains in comic book history. “The Shark God” has been a furious killer, a successful crime boss, and a member of the Secret Society of Super Villains. And did we mention he’s a giant shark that can walk?
Though his name may inspire jokes, the reality of the Calendar Man is often far more terrifying. This Bat-villain has been both comic relief and a brutal serial killer. In case you didn’t get it from his name, Calendar Man loves dates and calendars and always plans his crimes and kills around them.
This Wonder Woman villain making an appearance makes a lot of sense in the context of the female-led super-anti-hero show. She has at times been an average hot lady in a suit and a supervillain imbued with the powers of a Cheetah goddess. Most recently she was turned into a demigod by Ares in an attempt to locate the mysterious isle of Themyscira. She was also a were-cheetah for a short period of time, only able to transform at the full moon but that all changed when she made a deal with a sorceress so she could control her powers.
From a real god to a maniacal man who thinks that he’s one. Maxie Zeus is one of the oddest DC villains as he’s basically just a really cranky Greek history teacher. After his wife died (or left him depending on the origin) he became crazed and decided he was the Greek God Zeus incarnate. Like many of Batman’s baddies, he decided to become a gangster and ended up in Arkham. Seeing as Harley Quinn starts with a big breakout that’s likely where we meet Maxie.
Metallo has long been a classic Superman foe and it looks like he’ll be appearing in Harley Quinn’s new outing too. The most well-known version of the character is a metal-robot with a human brain whose only mission is to kill Krypton’s Most Famous Son. So you know, just a casual killer robot joining the cast of a new superhero cartoon.
One of the best things about Golden Age supervillains is the simplicity of their names and in the case of this baddie his moniker sums it up. Over the years the character has evolved from a man in a mask to a shapeshifting monster all the way through an exoskeleton wearing menace and a power recreating malleable mass. Despite his strangeness, Clayface is one of the more recognizable of Harley’s apparent rogue’s gallery.
Another invention from Wonder Woman and William Moulton Marsten is this creepy character who was originally a murderous woman-hating sociopath. That honestly sounds like a pretty timely foe for Harley and one that she’d be well equipped to battle after dating the Joker for so many years. In later appearances, he gained telepathic powers which he used to manipulate and terrorize the opposite sex. Basically, he sucks and we can’t wait for Harley to kick his butt.
A newer addition to the canon, this old man/cyborg was first introduced in Amanda Conner and Jimmy Palmiotti’s popular Harley Quinn run. His name really explains it all and the ex-government agent and OAP cyborg befriended Harley and later moved in with her. He’ll likely be a recurring character and potential ally for the heroine as she embarks on a life without the Joker.
Easily the most outrageous addition, KGB is one of the few characters Batman ever killed–bricking him into a wall–and this Soviet supervillain is a very ’80s oddity. He’s a contract killer and mass murderer who was originally trained by the KGB but was later retconned as a universal contract killer who goes by simply “The Beast.”
Look. He’s a man who straps himself to a giant kite and flies around causing chaos. He also has a variety of Kite-weapons and even has a selection of differently sized kites to “overwhelm his enemies.” Is he the best supervillain ever invented? Well, he’s pretty high up on our list.
Queen of Fables
Inspired by the evil queen from Snow White, she’s a magical and maniacal villain who is “the embodiment of all evil in folklore.” She first appeared in the Justice League of America comics and is often hunting for her fairytale foe. It’s another very interesting addition of an unexpected female antagonist for the new show.
Harley Quinn hits DC Universe later this year!
Images: Warner Bros., DC