Many villains in comics have a bizarre amalgam of circumstances that turned them to crime or wrongdoing. The Joker’s reasons often come in the form of a desire for chaos, mixed with an obsessive personality, and any long running partner to the Joker would have to have a penchant for both. Harley Quinn fits the bill.

It’s difficult to talk about Harley without talking about the Joker, because he figures so prominently into her incarnation. Harleen Quinzel was a psychiatrist determined to crack Joker's personality and, in time, her obsession caused her to crack, and she aligned herself with his chaotic personality. More recently, however, she's become a huge pop culture phenomenon in her own right, and she's left the Joker behind.

Introduced originally in 1992 on Batman: The Animated Series, Harley Quinn was created by Paul Dini and Bruce Timm. Many Joker plots have since come with a healthy dose of Harley’s chaotic antics in both animation and comics. She's not just the Joker's moll though, and has on more than one occasion teamed up with girlfriend and fellow criminal Poison Ivy. She’s a character that invites sympathy for her damaged psyche, but the moment you drop your guard, she’ll hit you with that oversized hammer.

Conventions and photoshoots have seen Harley cosplayers in the classic jester outfit of Dini and Timm’s design, the punk-inspired style of her Arkham video game appearances, and often alongside her comically oversized hammer. Sometimes solo, sometimes coupling with crafty Joker cosplayers, and sometimes linking up with Poison Ivy, these Harley Quinn cosplayers bring the make-up, exaggerated weaponry, and coy and chaotic expressions to make sure we’re not turning our backs on them for a second. This is the best Harley Quinn cosplay.

 

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