Joker/Harley: Criminal Sanity #1

Writer: Kami Garcia Artist: Mico Suayan, Mike Mayhew Publisher: DC Comics Release Date: October 9, 2019 Cover Price: $5.99 Critic Reviews: 17 User Reviews: 23
7.9Critic Rating
7.9User Rating

In Gotham City, where heinous acts of violence are a daily occurrence, the GCPD relies on Harley Quinn, a young forensic psychiatrist and profiler, to consult on their toughest cases. But Harley is haunted by one unsolved case-the night she discovered her roommate's body marked with the signature of a notorious serial killer known as The Joker.
Five years later, the case remains unsolved and a new series of horrific murders occur throughout the city. As the murders escalate, Harley's obsession with finding the depraved psychopath responsible leads her down a dangerous path. When the past and the present finally collide, Harley has to dec more

  • 10
    Kabooooom - Matt Morrison Oct 10, 2019

    It remains unclear if this version of Harley will remain free of The Joker's curse. Somehow, I doubt it. But with fantastic artwork and a well-executed set-up, this story remains one to watch even if it does start to tread a well-worn path as it continues. A must-read for any fan of Harley Quinn, true-crime buffs and anyone looking for a different sort of detective comic. Read Full Review

  • 9.6
    Forces Of Geek - Lenny Schwartz Oct 10, 2019

    The art here is tops. Suayan and Mayhew are each at the top of their game. It has a feel to it much like the television show True Detective with the way time is shown. But it is an intriguing concept and the first issue is well handled. I am in it for the long haul now, no matter what. Read Full Review

  • 9.5
    The Pop Break - Rachel Freeman Oct 11, 2019

    Kami Garcia has given us a Harley/Joker story that is, if you follow true crime, totally plausible. Which is probably what makes this Joker even more unsettling than he already is, but it also makes Harley's obsession with him more understandable. Same amount of obsession, but for a totally different reason. Read Full Review

  • 9.5
    AIPT - David Brooke Oct 9, 2019

    This is highly enjoyable and complex look at serial killers from the perspective of a young forensic psychiatrist and profiler. Frankly Harley Quinn wouldn't need to be the lead character for this to work as well as it does. Joker/Harley: Criminal Sanity is an absorbing and at times horrifying dark psychological thriller. Don't miss it. Read Full Review

  • 9.0
    But Why Tho? - Lizzy Garcia Oct 9, 2019

    My main qualm with the issue is that it ended abruptly. The issue also takes its time fleshing out the world so the pacing feels a tad slow. But overall, this is a fantastic start to the series. Fans of true crime and Harley Quinn absolutely need to pick up Joker/Harley: Criminal Sanity #1. And while there are currently two Harley related DC Black Label series running, I am happy to report they are both very different and very good. Read Full Review

  • 9.0
    Multiversity Comics - Gregory Ellner Oct 11, 2019

    Far from the typical take on the mad love relationship, "Criminal Sanity" promises quite a lot of terror for crime show fans. Read Full Review

  • 9.0
    Flickering Myth - Ricky Church Sep 18, 2021

    Joker/Harley: Criminal Sanityis a very unique and intriguing take on the relationship between Harley Quinn and The Joker. Garcia excels at the characterization of both central characters and finds new depths for readers to explore. The tone of a psychological horror/crime thriller fits perfectly within the world of Gotham City and gives Harley an exciting twist to her usual appearance. The artwork from Suayan, Badower, Mayhew and Kwok is detailed, rich and gruesome with their character's expressions and body language, city backgrounds and grisly crime scenes. Fans of either characters or of the psychological crime genre will definitely get a kick out of this well-written and visualized book. Read Full Review

  • 8.6
    Geek'd Out - Cameron Kieffer Oct 11, 2019

    Speaking of Joker, despite having top billing in the title, the Clown Prince of Crime doesnt appear anywhere in the issue. Not unlike the killer in Seven, he exists as a force of nature to move the narrative forward, his actions appearing only in flashback. Even Batman only appears in a single panel, during one such sequence that provides one of the books more emotional moments. Read Full Review

  • 8.5
    Weird Science - Jim Werner Oct 9, 2019

    In conclusion, this issue was way better than I would've expected.  I am so glad that the DC Black Label gives teams the freedom to work within a mostly uncensored realm with these characters.  This issue would have never worked otherwise.  With graphic and controversial content, the creative time had a huge gamble in terms of success.  I think that this proves if you truly do your research into what story you want to tell then it will pay off very well.  There are plenty of things I look forward to seeing in the next issue that was set up here.  I absolutely cannot wait to meet the Joker in this world. Read Full Review

  • 8.0
    Geek Dad - Ray Goldfield Oct 9, 2019

    It's a strange comic, but it's also a very good one " both the art and Harley's internal monologue are executed near perfectly, and the creeping sense of tension throughout works very well to get Joker's presence across without him being seen. Read Full Review

  • 8.0 - Jenna Anderson Oct 9, 2019

    Whether you're a true crime buff or a fan of Harley Quinn, this debut issue will surely captivate you. Read Full Review

  • 8.0
    The Beat - Cori McCreery Oct 9, 2019

    All in all, Harley/Joker: Criminal Sanity is a must buy for anyone who loves a good murder podcast, or any procedural TV junkies, and a recommended buy for everyone else. Read Full Review

  • 6.4
    Comic Watch - Nicholas Osborn Oct 12, 2019

    The well-researched psychological insight, drastic use of colors, time jumps, gritty tone and even uniquely original cast of characters just aren't enough to save Joker/Harley: Criminal Sanity#1 from the pitfall of just not being all that entertaining to read. Read Full Review

  • 6.0
    Dark Knight News - Kendra Hale Oct 12, 2019

    For me, the flow wasn't here and the book actually ended a bit awkwardly. It felt like it was missing that climax that makes you want more… like you have to know what's next. I look forward to seeing if the story amps up, and if we'll get those moments next issue. Read Full Review

  • 6.0
    Horror DNA - James Ferguson Oct 25, 2019

    I love this new perspective on the Joker and Harley's connection. I'm glad that Harley is shown in such a strong role and judging by how she feels about this case, she's going to tear the Joker apart when she finally gets her hands on him. This is particularly interesting because the clown prince of crime doesn't even appear in this issue. He's referenced quite a lot, but never actually seen. The story is a little clunky at times and the art can be awkward in the flashbacks, but there's still a long way to go in this nine-issue series. Now that the foundation has been set, I'm eager to see where this journey takes the characters. Read Full Review

  • 5.0
    Batman-News - Nicholas Finch Oct 10, 2019

    This is a very "my mom just bought a new crime novel and she's reading it aloud at night" kind of story. It's not particularly intriguing so far, beyond how any crime story is intriguing: there's a murder and you want to catch the guy. Harley isn't that interesting here, Gordon isn't that interesting here, and I'm not really seeing many other characters stepping in to fill that void. Hopefully in future issues, we'll see the series go beyond that, but judging by the scenes trying to convey emotion in this issue, I'm not sure if we're going to see it pay off. Read Full Review

  • 4.0
    Newsarama - Kat Calamia Oct 10, 2019

    Harley/Joker Criminal Sanity #1 has a very unique premise, especially in a comic landscape flooded with Harley titles, but the story's stagnant dialogue and execution makes for a lackluster debut. Read Full Review

  • 6.5
    Darkseid24 Oct 9, 2019

    This isn’t a bad comic, but my problem is, that the character doesn’t act like Harley at all. Actually she is pretty unrecognizable & I would never think of her being Harley Quinn, if the comic wouldn’t constantly mention her name. Harley is suddenly a genius, who graduated early from high school& is superior to everyone else. She is also a talented profiler. That’s not Harley Quinn, she slept her way up to her degree& is more like the mass murderer groupie she despises in this story& while in Harleen this origin story of her is adressed& changed in a believable way, this story just portrays her as a genius. Harley being in this consequently seems rather forced& DC rather should have created a new character than using her.
    Al more

  • 7.0
    ohhaimark Oct 11, 2019


    -I actually really liked this one. This could be the best Black Label book yet, depending on how Last Knight sticks the landing.

    -The art is really impressive. Mico Suayan's especially.

    -Honestly, I love this take. It feels like a proper out-of-contuinity story, with a nice Elseworlds vibe to it.

    -This is also a Black Label that earns the Black Label. It isn't contrived maturity like Damned. It isn't toned-down like the others. I guess that has to do with the subject matter, but when it needed to be graphic, it got graphic, but not in a flashy, over-the-top way.

    -I don't know. I'm just really interested in this one. I'm not reading a superhero comic like it at the moment, more

    + LikeComments (5)
  • 6.0
    Spacey Medicine Oct 15, 2019

    Wow yeah this is just what we all needed, Mindhunter/Batman crossover fanfiction.

  • 8.5
    EDiakota Oct 12, 2019

    " I've seen a lot of dead bodies. Maybe you'd like to become a part of a crime scène ? "
    - Harley Quinn

  • 7.0
    Psycamorean Oct 10, 2019

    I'm not sure how to feel about this issue. There are things about it that intrigue me, but Joker isn't one of those things, and neither is Harley, really. I just like the type of story they're going for. The pages about famous serial killers, although I already knew everything the writer googled for them, were the highlight for me. I guess just because I'm interested in serial killers and how they work. Which is why this story is intriguing, but it loses its luster when you remember that Joker isn't a real person, and any dissection of how he works is completely based in fiction, and therefore any analysis derived from it is not that interesting to me.

  • 10
    LunaMoody Nov 6, 2019

    This was my first Black label comic that I've bought. I must say the it is very well written and the art is just amazing.

  • 10
    I Review Comics Jul 30, 2020

    I shy away from about 90% of Harley Quinn's stories. I had a hard time getting through Injustice 2 whenever I had to play as the character. I had no interest in the Birds of Prey film because the character is the epitome of being loud and over the top. I also find the character to be painfully unfunny in most instances.

    Shockingly, I'm a big fan of the DC Black Label versions of Harley Quinn. They let me know that there is a great character buried underneath the fluff. I just wish DC would choose either the Criminal Sanity version or the one from Stjepan Sejic's Harleen and make it canon. The Deadpool lite version of Harley Quinn was old about a decade ago and at this point just burns my soul.

    Kami's voice for Harley more

  • 9.0
    Batman Jones Oct 13, 2019

    Loved it. Much stronger writing (and even art) than Harleen #1. One of the better Harley stories I've read.

  • 8.0


  • 7.5
    Gizmo Oct 12, 2019

    I like the concept, I like the art, both the color and black & white. The color art is in a photo-realism style, which rarely works in comics, yet it seems to work well here. That being said, It feels like this creative team is inexperienced with comic books: the layouts often don't flow and the dialogue can be disjointed and even downright cheesy. I can't take a grown women seriously that demands you call her Harley Quinn rather than her real name. I don't mind re-imagining her as a different, real-world character, but drop the supervillain moniker if you're going to go in that direction. Overall, the first issue has me intrigued but technical flaws are weighing it down. We'll see whether the creative team gets into a groove as the series more

  • 10
    VicSav Oct 9, 2019

  • 9.5
    Justin Ray Oct 12, 2019

  • 9.0
    FBCH32 Oct 10, 2019

  • 8.0
    pablo Oct 9, 2019

  • 8.0
    Grifter Oct 10, 2019

  • 8.5
    A May Feb 14, 2020

  • 8.5
    BitchWitcher Aug 6, 2020

  • 8.0
    Tinman Nov 5, 2019

  • 8.0
    tonpas1989 Nov 15, 2019

  • 7.0
    haniballecto Dec 21, 2019

  • 6.5
    Silver Rocket Oct 16, 2019

  • 6.5
    Walt's Comics & Books Oct 20, 2019

  • 4.5
    KnM Sep 23, 2020

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