The Boys… How do you even begin to describe a series such as this one? Deranged? Sure. Grotesque? Absolutely. Offensive? To some, perhaps. But no single word fully encompasses the boundary pushing madness of The Boys better than Diabolical. And The Boys season three is exactly that. It’s downright diabolical. And I loved every blood soaked second of it.
Season three of the hit Amazon Prime original series is now streaming. The story picks up where the second season ended. Hughie (Jack Quaid), Buthcer (Karl Urban), M.M. (Laz Alonso), Frenchie (Tomer Kapon) and Kimiko (Karen Fukuhara) continue their quest to bring the supes of the world to justice. This time around, they have a secret weapon that just might level the playing field. And they’ll need it now more than ever. Homelander (Antony Starr) is unhinged. He’s the most powerful man alive, leader of The Seven, and the greatest threat to the American public. And only The Boys can stop him.
When you turn on The Boys you have to expect a certain level of debauchery. You understand it will be a graphic viewing experience. That’s part of the appeal, and a major reason that millions of viewers tune in each week. It’s a far cry from the super hero fair you’ll see in the MCU of in the CW’s Arrowverse. Earlier this year I spoke with creator and producer Seth Rogen about the creative freedoms allotted to him and his team as they bring the series to life.
“We’ve never been told we couldn’t do something that we wanted to do” – Seth Rogen
That level of freedom is rare when dealing with major projects like The Boys. The original source material, a series of graphic novels written by Garth Ennis, are (believe it or not) even more deranged than the television adaptation. Season one started off with a bang (literally). Seeing the vibrant red mist of blood and chunks of flesh spattering across Hughie’s face as A-Train sprints directly though Robin in episode one was a shocking moment that caught viewers off guard. It set the bar for the tone of the series. Since then, The Boys has had to up the ante in order to achieve the same level of shock value. And yet, they continue to climb that latter and ring the blood soaked bell of success perched at the top. Season three reaches new heights (or lows depending on your views) of depravity and it doesn’t waste any time in getting there.
The Boys differentiates itself from the slew of other superhero content by presenting the question, “What if the super heroes… were bad?” Superman is the primary hero examined through that lens, with Homelander acting as the villainous Superman stand in. Batman has always feared for the safety of the world if Superman were to turn evil. It’s happened in the comics a time or two and other adaptations have examined the idea, as well; including Brightburn in 2019.
In the graphic novels, The Boys frequently utilize “Temporary V.” A chemical that gives humans temporary super human abilities and allows them to stand a fighting chance against the ‘supes’ that they are hunting. That happens very early in the comics, but doesn’t get explored within the series until season three. It’s a smart choice to save this plot point for a later season. Up until the point, the series has established The Boys as a group who despise super powered being because “Nobody should have that power.” This makes the choice to utilize the drug all the more impactful.
Jensen Ackles (Supernatural) joins the cast this season as Soldier Boy. He’s a Captain America spoof with a dark side and he’s the only supe who stands a chance at taking on Homelander. He’s also the only reason I might get my wife to watch The Boys with me. She’s been very vocal about her… appreciation for Jensen as an actor, ever since he was announced to join the cast. He encompasses the character to its core and fits in with the established cast perfectly.
The Boys season 3 is a blood soaked, nudity filled exploration of super human exploitation. It is everything that you want it to be (and perhaps a bit more). This is the show that keeps on giving. I literally never want it to end. 10/10