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Slash & Burn

Harley and Ivy travel to the Central American country of Costa Verde in search of a rare plant whose essence Ivy can use to control people. However, they’re captured by the president’s forces and tossed into jail on his whim. The corrupt president also accepts millions in donations to protect his country’s rain forests while he’s rumored to take triple the amount in bribes from private companies to continue logging and development. Environmentalists take stands at these remote locations while the companies hire mercenaries to threaten them.

A pair of mercenaries known as Slash and Burn have been hired by a company to clear out a section of the forest. They brazenly confront Harley and Ivy who has used her power on the president to give them a heavily customized ATV to travel to and through these remote areas. Instead of falling for Harley’s attempt to charm them, Burn unleashes some pyrotechnics at the vehicle and in turn they’re knocked unconscious by a small explosive device that Ivy launches in their general direction.

Some time later, Ivy’s determination is rewarded when she locates and secures one of these rare plants. Slash and Burn catch them both off guard, launching an attack against the women. Their efforts are considerable though not a match and are left behind humiliated by defeat.

The two men are probably a couple. Dini wrote a bit of dialog in which Burn introduced himself and Slash to Ivy and Harley and referred to Slash as his partner. The word “partner” is lettered in bold to draw reader attention. It’s a subtle gesture in a story filled with over the top cartoon style violence. This may seem an inconsequential point, but nation wide marriage equality was a dream in 2004 when this story was published.

Slash and Burn created by Paul Dini and Bruce Timm. Art by Bruce Timm and Lee Loughridge. They appear only in Harley and Ivy #2 (2004), also collected in Harley and Ivy The Deluxe Edition.

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September 25, 2021
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