The Boys has returned with more vulgarity, blood, gore, and more commentary on real-world issues for its third season. From its series premiere, the Amazon Prime Video original series has tackled corruption and fame in the world of superheroes and it has caught the eyes of many viewers. After that huge cliffhanger in the second season, the latest installment picks up almost a year where our anti-hero team is working with the authorities to take down Vought Industries and their gallery of superheroes who are cracking through the holes of the law to get away with their antics. Just like the previous two seasons, expect this one to be just as crazy and convoluted as The Boys and The Seven.
In the season’s first three episodes, both Vought International and its PR team are cleaning up the mess that Homelander (Antony Starr) has made with Stormfront (Aya Cash) after causing havoc on the public, revealing her true Nazi intentions. Under the leadership of Stan Edgar (Giancarlo Esposito), the current CEO of Vought puts Homelander in his place as he makes sure that his road to gain the public’s trust becomes nearly impossible for him. It also includes putting Starlight (Erin Moriarty) in a leadership position alongside Homelander in The Seven as they find new replacements on the superhero team. We find both Edgar and Homelander at odds against each other as they both attempt to do what’s best for the image of the company and make the public put their trust in The Seven again.
Meanwhile, we find Hughie (Jack Quaid) taking the high road towards regulation on superheroics with congresswoman Victoria Neuman (Claudia Doumit), who was earlier revealed to be a Supe last season. Butcher (Karl Urban) and his team are also working with Hughie to stop any Supes from getting into trouble without causing any destruction for once. Butcher tries to stay on the narrow path as he also keeps an eye on Becca’s super-powered son from Homelander. However, we soon find Hughie discovering Neuman’s big secret, causing him to run back to Butcher and declare that he is right in that they must do whatever is necessary to stop these Supes from getting away with their crimes.
Just like in previous seasons, the characters are given their time to shine, but only briefly as they are all moving pieces in the overall plot of this installment. We see Hughie going back to Butcher after his path going straight didn’t work for him. The same can be said about Starlight as she faces a similar situation where she must try to expose The Seven from the inside. Even The Deep (Chase Crawford) becomes an intriguing character after leaving the religious cult behind after the second season and attempts to get back into the superhero team. Frenchie’s (Tomer Kapon) past catches up with him as we learn more about his background as an illegal arms dealer. We also explore Kimiko (Karen Fukuhara) as she embraces her inner child as she regrets never having a normal childhood.
Perhaps one of the biggest additions to the season is Jensen Ackles, who plays Soldier Boy. He’s basically a play on Captain America who was supposedly killed during a covert operation overseas during the 50s. Ackles puts in a devilish charm to this character and shows off how much of a pretender he is being the opposite of his Marvel counterpart. Soldier Boy in this show is actually a different version from the comics, as he becomes more like an early iteration of Homelander. After seeing what Ackles is capable of with this character, we can easily say that he is the true highlight of the third season.
Starr continues to dominate with his role as Homelander as he descends further into madness this season. It seems like he is heading down a destructive path to gain the favor of the public as he attempts to get Vought off his back by playing nice to everyone. Even Urban is displaying a similar path in his role of Butcher as he also wants to stop pretending that everything is in order so he can go back to his old ways and eliminate Homelander and any other Supes who get in his way. Both these actors have pulled some amazing performances this season as we all await this inevitable showdown between these two characters.
We get a lot of references this season from pop culture moments that have happened recently. The Boys kind of do a dig at the Snyder cut of the Justice League during the opening of the first episode with the release of Vought’s newest film Dawn of the Seven. There’s also some commentary on the use of streaming platforms as Vought uses their own service to cater to the public so they can follow up on their plans for more Supes. It pretty much draws into the depths of capitalism and how huge companies are making profits by taking over other businesses.
Overall, the third season of The Boys pulls out all the punches with its glorified violence, commentary, and vulgar language. What the show does best is push these characters over the edge and test their limits. The series continues to shock us with some storylines straight out of its source material to deliver some unforgettable moments. The cast puts out some top-notch performances and the action scenes remain the most thrilling we’ve seen. Despite the show following the same beats as the previous seasons, it still works and is effective in displaying our obsession with pop culture and the companies that allow it to fester our fixations.
The Boys is currently streaming its third season on Amazon Prime Video with a three-episode premiere with later installments releasing weekly.