Birds of Prey (And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) is a live-action adventure romp featuring multiple DC Comics characters. Leading the film is Harley Quinn – an unhinged villain and former girlfriend of the Joker.
If you have watched Birds of Prey you will know that the film is a colourful caper, which is heavy on comedy, quirky characters, and action. It is also a movie which draws some inspiration from a fan-favourite episode of Batman: The Animated Series which is a must-watch story for anyone who enjoyed Birds of Prey.
What to watch after Birds of Prey?
One of the main story beats of Birds of Prey is Harley Quinn’s never-ending battle to evade everyone that she (and the Joker) wronged during the course of her criminal career. At various points during the movie, Harley crosses paths with hoods and mobsters who want to even the score, with Harl dodging them at every turn, often with hilarious results.
This idea was previously used in the popular television series, Batman: The Animated Series in the episode Harley’s Holiday (1994). If you have never watched this 20-minute cartoon, it is one you must seek out.
In Harley’s Holiday, Harleen Quinzel is released from Arkham Asylum after doctors declare her sane and rehabilitated. At first, Harley is excited to be out of Arkham and back in the real world, free of a life of crime; but things soon take a dark turn.
On her first day of release, Harley decides to indulge in a spot of retail therapy. But a mix-up over a security tag leads Harley to believe she will be sent back to Arkham, and the situation soon escalates.
Without giving too much away, one minor incident (that could have been easily rectified) escalates into a kidnapping, some road rage, and a hilarious showdown in central Gotham. The episode is pure farce, but completely in keeping with both the tone of the series, and the characterisation of Harley Quinn.
Why should I watch Harley’s Holiday?
Harley’s Holiday is not only one of the best episodes of Batman: The Animated Series, it is also one of the funniest stories featuring Harley Quinn. It is the first stand-alone Harley tale to appear in Batman: The Animated Series, and is highly regarded by fans, receiving an IMDb rating of 8.5/10.
If you found Birds of Prey to be enjoyable, then there is no reason why Harley’s Holiday would not provide you with the same level of entertainment. The episode might be short in comparison to a feature-length film, but it manages to deliver a truly fulfilling adventure, in a tighter running time.
It should also be noted, Harley’s Holiday isn’t the first episode of Batman: The Animated Series to have inspired the live-action movies. Take a look at my post: Best episodes of Batman: The Animated Series for movie fans to see other examples of TV-to-movie inspirations, should you want to delve even deeper into this series.
Where can I watch Harley’s Holiday?
Harley’s Holiday has appeared on numerous VHS, DVD, Blu-ray, and digital video releases of Batman: The Animated Series. Currently, the episode can be found amongst the complete DVD and Blu-Ray boxsets of the show.
I have previously provided a review of the Batman: The Animated Series Blu-ray boxset over on my sister blog, It’s A Stampede!. If you want to read why it is an awesome boxset to have in your collection, then head on over to It’s A Stampede! to give the post a read.
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