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Poison Ivy # 2 review | Batman News

Poison Ivy # 2 review |  Batman News

When I received my copy of Poison Ivy # 2, I was very careful. I’m not saying that the first issue was the best I’ve ever read in comics, but it was really a breath of fresh air – at a time when comic book characters have gone through so many changes and mischaracterizations – to finally feel like Ivy has come back to its right. It was like seeing an old friend again. But I know comics. You can pick up the first edition of a new title, and it will be fantastic, and then the next edition can immediately dive into quality, ruining the whole series. Has the second edition of Poison Ivy do it? Let’s take a look.

The second edition, disappointed enough, does not do much to move the story forward. Instead, it takes place almost exclusively in a café with Ivy thinking about herself and her relationship with the world and the people in it.

Right from the start, remember how I said I hoped this Ivy series was not just about Ivy’s relationship with Harley again, and how I complained that the first edition already focused too much on the relationship? Well, jokes about me, because the very first page of this cartoon is a huge spread of Harley and Ivy together, romantic. It IS drawn with fantastic art, with Marcio Takara continuing to prove that he is the perfect artist for an Ivy book, along with the colors of Arif Prianto. I love how all flashbacks are shaded with warm colors: yellow, orange, etc. They always emphasize the burning feelings Ivy has towards the past. Whether it’s a comforting moment with Harley, the violence Ivy would inflict on her enemies, or the rage she feels against her powers being taken from her.

Back to Harley, but I keep struggling with how much she defines Ivy’s character now. She lives rent-free in Ivy’s head in this cartoon, with all her thoughts on Harley, and even wears a necklace with Harley’s triple diamond symbol on it. If we’re going to overshadow an Ivy solo book with her relationship with Harley, I might as well explore why that relationship does not work for me. Going back to Harley and Ivy’s first meeting, way back, 30 years ago Batman: the animated series, why did Ivy care about Harley more than any other human? It was finally over sympathy for Harley as an abused woman who did not even seem to know how to help herself. Essentially: it was a shame. It can be argued that Ivy can see much of her old self in Harley, since she was once exploited by Jason Woodrue for her experiments, which is what made her Poison Ivy. But the thing is, having sympathy or empathy for someone is not the same as putting them on a pedestal. Ivy said in the previous issue, if there is one person in the world who deserves the beauty of the world, it is Harley. What? Harley has never really been a great person, and once again Ivy cared about her because she felt sorry for her, not because Harley on her own did anything to prove that the human race is truly valuable.

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I know it’s an unpopular opinion right now, but I’ve never been able to buy Ivy’s recent desperate love for Harley. In fact, I see the relationship as something Harley fans wanted, because they saw Ivy as the best relationship option FOR Harley. But it does not matter whether the relationship was created for the sake of Ivy’s character or not: there is no doubt as to why this cartoon was green-lighted in the first place. Only after tens of thousands of hearts and retweets given to each Harley / Ivy post on twitter did DC dare to give Ivy another book. While G. Willow Wilson definitely seems like she wants to address the other controversies surrounding Ivy’s character, this cartoon feels like another thinly veiled Harley / Ivy story.

But let’s talk about how G. Willow Wilson handles these controversies surrounding Ivy’s character, and it definitely seems that she’s aware of them. These controversies have mostly been seen on twitter, but one of them has been whether Ivy eats meat or plants, and Wilson comes out and swings on that controversy, giving Ivy a long monologue about how she is a predator, and the substitute vegans eat In fact, they end up harming plants when they think they are helping. Dang, that’s a battle word! But I appreciate how strongly Wilson came out in addressing the small part of Ivy’s character.

I also loved the flashback sequence of Ivy shouting at Gardner for disturbing and taking away her powers. It does very well to show the different teams in Ivy’s character. Part of her is self-righteous as she seeks to “save the earth” by destroying its worst oppressors: humans. And since Ivy is now a human being herself, she believes that she must also be killed. But in retrospect, it’s an honestly selfish part of Ivy who simply misses the power she once had. It speaks to a more sinister and selfish side of Ivy, one she’s never honest about. She liked to have the power to mutilate her enemies as she wished, even just stupid men who would beat her. She enjoyed having the power to create her own paradises and, I guess, the feeling that she was interconnected and important when it came to protecting the green.

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But a problem with all this still persists and gets bigger in this case. There is a lot of talk about Ivy’s inner means instead of really pushing the story forward, but the book is still struggling with whether it will define Ivy as a hero or a villain. The key to this chapter is that Ivy meets people: a poet / thief and a friendly cafe manager, etc., who reminds her that some people can be very redeemable, but she is consistently determined in her mind that they should be killed. for the common good. She even makes sure to plant the mushrooms inside them so that they eventually die, although she rationalizes that it will be painless. So what should I do about this? It’s as if the story wanted to plant seeds for Ivy who changed her suicide course by getting her to help some people and be reminded of humanity’s redeeming qualities, but it’s totally ruined by her so inexplicably letting people go to her death as she herself caused. Near the end of the story, she gets in her van, and reveals that she has kept the mushroom corpses of two of her displacing victims, with whom she speaks by name as if she were Norman Bates. Should I sympathize with Ivy or be intimidated by her?

Of course, I wonder if the point of this is that we hear everything from Ivy’s insane mind, and from that perspective, her reasoning would not make any sense at all. But I get more of the feeling that this is more confusion on DC’s part about how they want to perform Ivy’s character, but it’s quite too late for a reception of how horrible her actions have been in this book so far.

Recommended if…

  • You see Poison Ivy as “Harley’s Girlfriend”
  • You will see where the “who is Poison Ivy” debate continues
  • Marcio Takara’s lush, floral artwork would fit well in your collection

All in all

Poison Ivy # 2 is less a major advance to history and more a reflection on who Ivy’s character is, given how she is seen by many today. Wilson still generally has a good voice for Ivy, but some history flaws make me wonder if this miniseries will be worth it in the end.

Score: 7/10

Disclaimer: DC Comics provided Batman News with a free copy of this comic for the purposes of this review.

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