Photo: Courtesy of DC Comics.
With what they're dubbing a "scenticular" comic, DC Comics is going for the '90s nostalgia double-play. Not only is the superhero house debuting a series of comic books featuring one of the most dynamic villains from the seminal '90s cartoon, Batman: The Animated Series, but they're also making it "Scratch 'N Sniff."
For those of you too young to remember the technological relic, "Scratch 'N Sniff" refers to novelty items coated with a chemical substance that releases an odor when scraped with a fingernail. It was most commonly used on stickers, achieving popularity in the mid-'80s before fading away by the second Clinton administration.
And, while giving Batman the olfactory treatment might have upset Caped Crusader purists, Harley Quinn (The Joker's spark plug girlfriend/accomplice) is the perfect character for the gimmick. The issue begins with Quinn living in Coney Island, where she manages an apartment building. But, she eventually gets a whiff of the outlaw life and returns to Gotham City to break her homegirl Poison Ivy out of Arkham Asylum.
The comic itself, Harley Quinn Annual #1, will feature four scents: leather, suntan lotion, pizza, and a mystery smell that co-writers Jimmy Palmiotti and Amanda Conner are keeping under wraps. But, after revealing to MTV that they had to change the fourth smell to "fresh cut lawn clippings" for the international version, it sounds like someone might be growing some dank buds. (Ivy, we're looking at you.)
In another attempt to avoid litigation, DC is marketing the inaugural issue as a "Rub-and-Smell" rather than "Scratch 'n Sniff," but that likely won't stop readers from being brought back to their childhoods. After all, scent is the most powerful memory trigger.