The Boys Season 2: 15 Reminders You Need Before You Watch
Here's everything you need to remember about Season 1 before you dive back into Amazon's superhero shocker.
Amazon's The Boys, adapted from Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson's mid aughts comic books, might be the most shocking show around. Whether it's an invisible man getting blown up from the rectum outward, god-like superheroes cutting innocent people in half with their eye-lasers, or simply the sheer number of "c***s" Karl Urban can fit into a single hour of television, The Boys is not for faint-hearted viewers.
But for those of us who can handle the, um, mature subject matter--and especially for those who lap it up like kittens with bowls full of catnip tea--The Boys is one of the most fun and addictive shows on TV. With new additions to the cast and the urgent scenarios in which we left our characters after Season 1, Season 2 looks like it's going to be the must-watch show of the fall.
But it's probably been a while since you binged all of The Boys Season 1 over the course of a single sleepless night long, long ago in 2019. Or maybe you watched it last week, and the current fever nightmare we're all living through has you struggling to remember which way is up, much less the complex relationships and surprising twists of a fictional world filled in which big corporations that have all the power use that power to gain more and more power, until there are supes in the armed forces and nobody's left to hold them accountable for anything.
Read on for your The Boys refresher course, and remember, you'll be able to escape your real-life dystopia when this fictional one returns with Season 2 on September 4.
Obviously, The Boys Season 1 spoilers are ahead.
1. Superheroes are made, not born
This plot point provided much of the momentum in Season 1. Contrary to popular belief--and Vought's official story for decades--superheroes are made when babies are given a drug called Compound V. Vought disseminated the substance throughout the country, and cherry-picked its premiere superhero team, the Seven, from the results over the years.
2. Hughie's girlfriend was killed by a supe
This was another crucial plot point, but it happened at the very beginning of the very first episode, so you might not remember so clearly. Hughie's girlfriend, Robin, was killed by A-Train, a member of the Seven, as he careened down the street at superhuman speed. Hughie spent Season 1 teaming up with Butcher and the titular Boys to get revenge.
3. Hughie killed Translucent
The Boys quickly captured Translucent, a member of the Seven, toward the start of Season 1. Hughie almost let the invisible man walk, but at the last second decided he deserved to die, detonating a bomb that blew Translucent apart from the inside out. When Starlight found out, it ended her and Hughie's relationship.
4. Vought doesn't control all supes
Vought's secret drug Compound V is responsible for the existence of supes, but the company doesn't control them all. There are freelancers like A-Train's girlfriend Popclaw (who he killed in Season 1), or Starlight before she joined the Seven. In Season 2, the team gets a new member--Stormfront, played by Aya Cash.
5. Butcher's wife is alive
Butcher revealed partway through Season 1 that he hates supes because Homelander, the leader of the Seven, raped and likely murdered his wife Becca, who has been missing for eight years. That is, she was missing--until the end of Season 1, when Homelander located her and took Butcher to her front door.
6. And she has a kid--but it's not Butcher's
Becca may have been living in some sort of witness protection-like program for the past eight years, but she hasn't been alone--she has a kid, and it's definitely Homelander's. This is absolutely going to be a huge plot point in Season 2--we don't yet know how Butcher will get away, but we do know that he's going to spend the new season trying to find Becca again.
7. Starlight's allegiance is unclear
At the start of Season 1, Starlight was thrilled to be selected as the Seven's new member. She quickly grew more disillusioned when her new teammate, the Deep, sexually assaulted her. As she met and formed a bond with Hughie, she remained optimistic, but the discovery that Hughie was using her to get closer to the Seven and exact revenge may have been the last straw. At the end of Season 1, Starlight rescued Hughie and the Boys from Vought, but we know that she's still in the Seven at the start of Season 2.
8. The Boys are fugitives
The Boys spent much of Season 1 trying to get a sample of Compound V to the CIA so the government could throw the book at Vought. The appearance of "supe terrorists"--created by Homelander himself, not that it matters at this point--caused the government to cut a deal with Vought instead. You need "good" supes to fight supe terrorists, after all. Anyway, Vought's condition for this was simple: Butcher, Hughie, and the rest of the Boys are now wanted individuals.
9. The Boys are not happy with Butcher
Near the end of Season 1, Butcher chose to continue pursuing his revenge against Stillwell and Homelander instead of trying to rescue the captured members of the team (Mother's Milk, Frenchie, and Kimiko). Hughie ditched Butcher to stage the rescue on his own, cementing him as part of the team, and leaving them all soured on Butcher's leadership.
10. Kimiko was a captive
Kimiko, also known as "The Female" (particularly in the original comics), was a captive who the Boys freed during Season 1. Frenchie saw something in her that the others didn't, and has made it his mission to bring out the humanity in her. She has myriad superpowers, from incredible strength to healing capabilities. Unlike in the comics, she's the only member of the Boys who can go toe-to-toe with supes.
11. The Deep has been banished
During Season 1, Starlight went public with the Deep's assault on her. Although she didn't accuse him by name, Vought preemptively sent him on a "sabbatical" to Sandusky, Ohio, where he remains in exile from the Seven at Season 1's conclusion.
12. Homelander killed Stillwell
Vought executive Madelyn Stillwell was in charge of the Seven, acting as their boss and, in Homelander's case, his maternal figure (and his love interest--maybe they should have called him Oedipal-man). However, Stillwell lied to Homelander's face one too many times, and at the end of Season 1, he used his laser vision to melt Madelyn's brain through her eye sockets--with Butcher sitting nearby watching in horror.
13. Giancarlo Esposito is totally in this show
Giancarlo Esposito, who viewers may recognize from Breaking Bad and a million other things, was in one episode of The Boys Season 1. He played Madelyn's boss, Vought CEO Stan Edgar. In his single appearance, he made it clear that he was grooming Stillwell to replace him. With her murder, he'll no doubt have to postpone his retirement, and will be a major player in Season 2.
14. Queen Maeve is gay
With the focus on the Deep, Starlight, Homelander, and A-Train, there are a few members of the Seven who didn't get fleshed out as completely during Season 1. One is Black Noir, who we still know virtually nothing about. Translucent is dead, and all we really learned about him was that he was a pervert, and he had a son. That leaves Queen Maeve. Here's what we know about her: She's the most jaded person on the team, she used to date Homelander, and she's secretly a lesbian. Hopefully Queen Maeve spends more time in the spotlight during Season 2.
15. Lamplighter is still alive, as far as we know
Starlight joined the Seven to replace the former member Lamplighter. Throughout Season 1, various characters made references to Lamplighter's "retirement," which some viewers may have taken as euphemism for Lamplighter's death. The Seven hate to admit when one of them has died, after all, and we know Lamplighter had a run-in with the CIA, when he killed Mallory's grandchildren (leading her to retire and the Boys to disband). However, Amazon recently revealed that Shawn Ashmore will portray Lamplighter in Season 2, so the character appears to actually be alive still.
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