BAYLEE ALGER | ENTERTAINMENT COLUMNIST
This weekend was spent in my room. And in my room, I was watching a popular new Amazon Prime show called “The Boys.” And BOY was it a rollercoaster.
“The Boys” is neither a Marvel nor DC comic. It was published by Dynamite Entertainment and written by Garth Ennis. And let me tell you, the comic is very, very R rated. And so was the show.
To put it simply: The show was awesome. It didn’t suffer from what solo superhero shows usually suffer from: stagnation. Not once in this eight episode series was I bored, because so many supes, the name for powered individuals in this universe, had their own little arc to go through.
Overall, this show was a character study and a commentary on corporate greed and corruption, a concept I find rather bland these days, because it seems to be the edgy rebellious thing to do. “The system sucks bruh, let’s make a show about it. Cuz you can’t trust the system maaaaaaaaan.”
The other thing I think this show suffers from is its sheer gratuity of things that it wants to use to justify the R rating. I can’t fault the show for this, as from what I’ve heard it’s a pretty faithful adaptation of the comics, but it felt as though sex scenes and gore were there because they could be. All in all, it got a bit annoying and tacky at some points.
My favorite arc in this story, though, had to go to The Deep. Without spoiling anything, he goes from a thoroughly unlikeable jerk to someone who’s struggling. It was odd, but somehow made sense.
However, I felt that there was definitely a layer of dark comedy to the show. The music choices picked for some of the action scenes spoke more like a funny action movie than gritty slug-fests. And that was a breath of fresh air. And that’s another point for the show itself.
The show sometimes felt like an all-out slasher film. You could tell when some kills were coming, and some of the slow-motion shots of people dying in gruesome ways felt more reminiscent of a modern slasher than a TV show. It wasn’t an entirely bad thing, but not something every person who watches the show will be a fan of. It did, however, make some of the fights more visceral and therefore more entertaining.
But a show can’t work without good characters, and this show has them. From Billy Butcher, the gruff anti-hero type that leads The Boys, to the elegant and brutal Frenchy, to the soft-hearted but angry Mother’s Milk, to the idealistic Hughie, each character had their own arc that contributed well to the story.
On the other side, we had The Seven, from pervy and cocky Translucent, sleezy Deep, douchey Homelander, tortured Queen Maeve, mysterious Black Noir, cruel A-Train and a naïve, hopeful Starlight, each character brought something to the table that contributed to the overall plot in its own way.
Overall, the show was a success, ending in a cliffhanger that sets up a wonderful arc for Butcher in season two, which I really look forward to.
Should you watch it? Well, if you’re a fan of superhero fights, blood, guts and sex, then yes. You should. If you’re squeamish, though, it’s probably a show to stay away from. It pulls out all stops right from the get-go.
All in all, I can’t wait until “The Boys” come back to town.