Having a friend during times of hardship benefits fictional characters as much as it does real people. In fact, the latter are able to further understand their own relationships through the former going through catastrophe after catastrophe, decade after decade.

RELATED: 5 Ways A Red Hood/Harley Quinn Team Up Would Work (& Why It Wouldn’t)

A case in point is Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy, the real dynamic duo of DC Comics. Since Harley left the Joker in the rearview, her relationship with Pamela Isley has been an emotional anchor for the character whereas Poison Ivy retains a piece of her humanity through her friend. Both Harley and Ivy have lengthy comic histories which have brought them together on more than one occasion to the delight of readers.

6 Harley, Ivy, & The Riddler Under A New Batman (New Earth)

Bruce Wayne’s death leaves an enormous vacuum in Gotham City, one that nearly the entirety of his vigilante family tries to fill. A new hero also means a new dynamic with their predecessor’s rogues’ gallery, and the Riddler is on the case in Christopher Yost and Pablo Raimondi’s Battle for the Cowl: The Underground.

Tagging along is Harley Quinn, who is terrified when Poison Ivy arrives and nearly kills Riddler in defense of her friend until she’s clued into their partnership. Ivy had been controlled by Black Mask via certain chemicals on her body but had managed to reject his influence and find Harley. They end up on Catwoman’s trail after she is knocked unconscious by the new Batman, secretly Wayne’s troubled protégé, Jason Todd.

5 The Seeds Of The Gotham City Sirens Are Planted

In a prelude to the Gotham City Sirens, Derek Fridolfs and Peter Nguyen’s Bruce Wayne: The Road Home: Catwoman sees Selina Kyle and Poison Ivy attend a meeting of criminals that features an auction.

RELATED: DC: 10 Things That Make No Sense About Poison Ivy

A goldmine for someone like Selina, she is somewhat disappointed when Harley crashes the party in pursuit of her stolen hyenas and diverts Ivy’s attention through a scuffle with security. The two cannot resist an opportunity to give each other an up in life. The story ends with Catwoman nabbing her prize, a cat statue, with assistance from Harley and Ivy, and practically begs for the three to reunite for more mischief.

4 The Birth Of The Gotham City Sirens

A Gotham without Batman needs protectors… aside from that, it’s simply more dangerous for one to live in the city; it’s with this fear that Catwoman proposes an alliance with Harley and Ivy. Paul Dini and Guillem March’s Gotham City Sirens follows the trio’s escapades following this momentous decision and with it, gives rise to a fan-favorite team of Gotham’s greatest female characters.

It would end tragically with Harley betraying her friends for Joker, but remains a significant bright spot before the timeline-altering events of Flashpoint.

3 Harley & Ivy Let The Dogs Out (Prime Earth)

The dawn of the new continuity brings about opportunities for the creators to refine and refocus on what makes DC characters precious to fans. Embracing the chemistry between Harley and Ivy, Jimmy Palmiotti and Amanda Conner pair the two for a poorly-executed attempt at animal liberation in Harley Quinn #2.

Animals slated for euthanization are set loose by the duo only to run freely into the streets in every direction. Harley tangles with a bounty hunter, courtesy of a contract on her head, and incidentally draws the freed animals back to her by hurling the hunter through a butcher shop window. Ivy retrieves the cats and birds with a little help from her plants and this chaotic episode is temporarily put on hold.

2 Harley & Ivy Uncover The Truth

Concerned with the attempt on Harley’s life during the animal shelter incident, the duo tries to uncover the source of the bounty placed on her head. Their mission is constantly interrupted by assassins making a play on Harley’s life, but Palmiotti and Conner once again subvert readers’ expectations with the truth. Harley Quinn #6-7 reveals, following an exhaustive search, that Harley is placing the bounty herself. During the night, she sleepwalks to her laptop and issues the hit on her own head.

RELATED: DC: 10 Best Versions Of Harley Quinn

The two decide to turn the tables, going after the bounty hunters at a guild meeting. Instead, Harley confesses the bogus bounty and only has to put one assassin down before the rest decides to forfeit their attempts at the hit. Fortunately, Big Tony is the one who pulls the trigger and saves Harley from having to lift even a finger. Characteristically chaotic, dark, and funny at the same time, this is quintessential Harley and Ivy.

1 Ivy Seeks Mental Health Treatment

Befitting the characters’ respective conditions and histories, it’s perhaps only more fitting that their stories begin to suffer calamity in the end. Tom King and Clay Mann dream up a poignant narrative in Heroes In Crisis where the Justice League found a psychiatric hospital, the Sanctuary, which offers mental health treatment for superhumans suffering from trauma. Ivy seeks help at the facility at Harley’s insistence but is killed during a massacre there.

A wonderful addition to DC canon and touching that it stars cult favorites, Harley and Ivy, this story arc demonstrates the strength of the love between the two characters. Ivy eventually returns with help from Wally West and a rose she gifted Harley, poetically reuniting the kooky couple once more.

NEXT: Justice League: 5 Members Poison Ivy Would Destroy (& 5 Who Would Demolish Her)



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