What can we say about ‘The Boys’? ‘The Boys’ is a refreshing take on the superhero genre. Based on the Garth Ennis / Darick Robertson comic book of the same title, the Amazon Prime series was created by Evan Goldberg and developed by Seth Rogen. The showrunner for the production is Eric Kripke.
With such talents as Anne Cofell Saunders, Craig Rosenberg, Rebecca Sonnenshine, George Mastras and Ellie Monahan on the writing team, the casting department found a dynamic mix of actors and actresses to step in front of the cameras to deliver the lines. Saunders, for example, wrote teleplays for such television productions as 24, Battlestar Galactica, Smallville and Timeless. Consequently, working on ‘The Boys’ was not the writer’s first rodeo. The same is equally true for Rosenberg, Sonnenshine, Mastras and Monahan, respectively, for they have spent years perfecting their talents.
Even though the series premiered on Friday, 26 July 2019, Amazon Prime already picked the production up for a second season before subscribers could fully appreciate the efforts that went into crafting the eight episodes.
The title of each episode is taken from story arcs found in the source material: The Name of the Game (#1-2), Cherry (#3-6), Get Some (#7-10), The Female of the Species (#38), Good for the Soul (#15-18), The Innocents (#40-43), The Self-Preservation Society (#31-34) and You Found Me (#72). As a side note, while there is little doubt that it’s a coincidence, the title track to the original movie The Italian Job is ‘This is The Self-Preservation Society.’ I digress.
Morality takes a Backseat to Fame and Fortune…
Instead of seeing superheroes such as Superman, Aquaman, The Flash and Batman, we find a group of superpowered humans that have no qualms with embracing the darkest sides of their nature. An aspect common to most superheroes is their tendency towards selflessness. Which superheroes in ‘The Boys’ are truly selfless?
Except for possibly Annie January / Starlight (Erin Moriarty), many of the superheroes in ‘The Boys’ do not have a passing familiarity with being selfless. Consequently, being selfless is alien to their way of life.
Except for Starlight…
Most members within The Seven are not free of faults. The Deep (Chace Crawford), for example, coerces Starlight into going down on him before the end of her first day with the team. Homelander (Antony Starr) blows a private jet plane out of the sky because he thinks one of the passengers is blackmailing Madelyn Stillwell (Elisabeth Shue). He was right. The Mayor of Baltimore (Paulino Nunes) was blackmailing the Vought International VP into getting Nubian Prince to locate from Detroit to his city for a lower price, but that is hardly a good enough reason for murdering the mayor and his son.
Translucent (Alex Hassell), because of his power to become invisible, liked to hangout in the restroom. Even though the superhero was a pervert, according to Starlight, he spent much of his off-duty time with his son. No one else really mattered to Translucent.
There is suggestion made that A-Train (Jessie T. Usher) had criminal tendencies. What was the real reason A-Train was running from the bank? Was he trying to catch up with the people that robbed it or was he the person that took the money from the financial institution? Either way, A-Train was in so much of a hurry to get away from the bank that he ran through Robin (Jess Salgueiro). The only tangible thing remaining of her body was her hands. He is not so much an A-Train as he is an A-H*le.
Then there is Queen Maeve (Dominique McElligott). What do we make of this superhero? Maeve has somewhat of a Jekyll and Hyde personality. While she can seem kind one minute, Maeve can turn on the meanness without giving it a second thought. Consequently, most of The Seven are really supervillains.
What of Black Noir?
The only one of The Seven we do not see much of is Black Noir (Nathan Mitchell). What do we know of this character? Outside the source material, we know very little about the character. Black Noir, because the only words the character has ever uttered is ‘good soldier,’ it is suggested the character is the Batman of The Seven. Batman uses the term ‘good soldier’ in reference to Robin.
The real superheroes of this story have no super strength, super speed and cannot leap tall buildings with a single bound. The real heroes of the piece are the title characters: Billy Butcher (Karl Urban), Hughie Campbell (Jack Quaid), Frenchie (Tomer Capon), Mother’s Milk (Laz Alonso) and Kimiko / The Female (Karen Fukuhara).
Anyone that has a familiarity with the source material for this series will know Butcher has a strong disdain for so-called superheroes that use their influence to remain above the law. Unlike ordinary human beings, superheroes are not held accountable for their misdeeds. This is not something Butcher is willing to tolerate or overlook.
Butcher recruits Hughie to ‘The Boys shortly after Robin’s death. Robin, Hughie’s girlfriend, is accidentally killed by A-Train. Because of her death, even though Hughie feels remorse for his actions, he is capable of episodic periods of extreme violence. This suits Butcher’s needs because The Boys’ leader is willing to do anything to take out The Seven and Vought International.
Then there is Frenchie, Mother’s Milk and Kimiko / The Female. These are characters which seem to take a backseat to Butcher and Hughie, because their roles are not as prominent.
What do you think of the series? Which group do you think deserve the title heroes? Please comment, like and share.