There’s a moment in Batman and Harley Quinn when Nightwing asks Harley why she’s working for minimum wage in a superhero-themed bar inspired by Hooters instead of using her background as a psychiatrist to help people, make some legit money, and truly get back on the straight and narrow.
All images: Warner Bros.
While it’s none of Nightwing’s business what Harley does with her free time or how she lives her life, Batman and Harley Quinn‘s post credit stinger suggests that, at least on some level, Nightwing’s question stuck with Harley and she took it to heart.
The scene opens on Wendel, a sad, middle-aged man describing how, after his wife left him for a pizza delivery man, he sank into a deep depression that made it nearly impossible for him to leave his house (that he shares with at least eight cats) and caused him to develop a crippling case of obsessive compulsive disorder. What’s more, Wendel now finds himself unable to use the bathroom anywhere except for within his own home, a development that’s taken a toll on his productivity.
Wendel knows that he needs professional help to get out of his troubling predicament and because this is one of DC’s animated universes, of course he came to Dr Harleen Quinzel for counselling. We quickly learn, though, that Wendel hasn’t found Harley practising in a proper office once again, oh no, he’s on her daytime reality television show in front of a live studio audience.
Harley explains that, by law, she’s required to let Wessy and her viewers know that she isn’t currently an accredited mental health professional, something that the audience cheers at as she comes to sit with her patient and hear his woes. Harley can understand West’s issue with peeing in front of other people and explains how she helped a cellmate of hers at Arkham get over it when they were made to share a cell with glass walls and a toilet in the middle of the floor.
The key to getting over depression, Harley continues, is learning to appreciate the good things in one’s life and the only way to really appreciate things is to work for them. Then, in a move pulled right out of the Dr Phil guidebook of “How to Take Advantage of Someone’s Mental Health Crisis For TV Ratings“, Harley reveals that she’ll offer Wessy access to a real therapist if he manages to make his way through an insane obstacle course on live television.
Ultimately, Wendel fails to make it through the course, but the audience is entertained and Harley closes out the segment with a sage bit of advice that’s essentially a warning about reality television:
“Wendel is headed back to his crummy house and all those cats without getting the help he so desperately needs. Oh well! That’s it for today’s show! Till next time, folks. Be good to yourselves, ’cause everyone else in the world is probably out to get you! Buh-bye!”