Season 2 of Harley Quinn on DC Universe was guaranteed to play with the sexuality of its characters. As such, one of Batman’s enemies was hinted at being gay in the last episode. But, although it’s a member of Harley’s crew, it’s someone other than Harley or Ivy.
In Episode 2, “Riddle U,” Harley and the crew, struggling to keep the lights on at their lair, hatch a plan to steal a battery giving power to Riddler University – which Riddler is using as a hideout and to run a scam.
Harley and Poison Ivy infiltrate the campus under the names Heather and Isidore. Clayface tags along, disguised as co-ed Stephanie and proves to be an asset when it comes to getting them in and keeping their disguises foolproof – not to mention in the presence of Barbara Gordon.
Through the course of the episode, it becomes clear Clayface has been carrying on a charade as Stephanie at Riddler University for some time. “Stephanie” even has a boyfriend and a questionable relationship status. That’s right, Clayface is hinted at being gay.
Chad, the would-be boyfriend, doesn’t know about Clayface’s ruse as far as anyone can tell and wants to be official. Clayface has eyes for other big men on campus but complains about being an “almost-girlfriend” and is afraid of running into Chad at a frat party held outside Riddler’s control room.
The power source ends up being a hamster wheel they abscond with and force Riddler to run on to power personally. Campus life comes to an end and power is restored to the crew’s dilapidated mall lair.
Clayface, meanwhile, doesn’t wish to commit to relationships. He has too much fun pulling heists and capers with Harley and the gang, but he can’t help adoring Chad and his text messages.
While it’s possible the show could be showing Clayface as an over the top actor who has become lost in his role as “Stephanie,” the show ends with Clayface in his regular mud form receiving a text message from Chad and gushing over it.
There is even a moment where Poison Ivy tells Clayface to snap out of his role as “Stephanie,” but Clayface doesn’t listen.
There is definitely a feeling that the show leaves you questioning whether Clayface’s relationship with Chad is part of his acting or it’s something he’s actively pursuing outside of his obsession with acting.
A few people became Clayface in the past in varying iterations, none of whom were gay. One had a wife in Lady Clayface and they perpetrated crimes as a couple.
Still, the character’s shapeshifting ability always begged the question: did he lead double lives having relations with men and women?
DC Universe Original content really pushes diversity and sexual orientation. Doom Patrol and Swamp Thing both have gay characters in Negative Man and Liz Tremayne. Young Justice Outsiders gave Aqualad a boyfriend and Harley Quinn will explore a romantic spark between Harley and Ivy.
Wonder how Kite Man will feel about that.
Harley Quinn streams exclusively on DC Universe. Season 2 dropped early thanks to the stay-at-home orders tied to coronavirus.