By Sneha Jaiswal (Twitter | Instagram)
Amazon Prime released its superhero show ‘The Boys 3’ close on the heels of Netflix’s ‘Stranger Things 4′, and ironically, it turned out to have more horror than the Duffer Brothers’ offering. Or should we say – more horrifying. Seriously though… like the makers promised, ‘The Boys 3’ is definitely ‘diabolical’, with scenes that might scar some viewers for life. And like some kind netizens warned after watching just episode one – you wouldn’t want to eat anything while streaming the show.
Creator Eric Kripke and team have ensure they throw off comic-book fans off their seats by changing quite a few things on the show. Depending on the kind of fan you are, you may or may not be happy about the tweaks. But it sure helps keep things unpredictable. So, season two is definitely bigger, bloodier, crazier and more entertaining than season two.
Anthony Starr is the absolute star this season as Homelander, he is one of the most neurotic, psychotic television villains to have surfaced in the recent past, one can see insanity trembling in his very skin. Starr outplays all the other actors with his delivery as the damaged dude who is Godlike in his strength, yet too human in his need for attention. Everybody around Homelander shits bricks, from his team-members, to Butcher’s boys who want to kill him and are desperately trying to figure out how. Their quest to destroy Homelander leads them all the way to Russia, where Kimiko (Karen Fukuhara) gets a badass mission to murder someone and does it in the most brutal/bizarre way possible.
Jensen Ackles is a new addition to the show as ‘Soldier Boy’, the supe who led Vought’s first superhero team, before Homelander was even born. He is supposedly just as powerful and psychotic. Butcher and Hughie (Jack Quaid) think he is their only way to get rid of Homelander, but Mother’s Milk (Laz Alonso) has a complicated history with Soldier Boy and isn’t happy with the plan. So we see a lot of division and disagreements within the group over their superhero problems.
I honestly didn’t like Starlight AKA Annie (Erin Moriarty) at all, but the character sees a lot of growth in season three and finally grows a spine. Up until now, Starlight seemed like a whiny privileged superhero with her head in the clouds, but she is promoted by Vought and begins to use her new-found powers and clout to cause some significant damage. There’s a lot more politics going, Victoria Neuman (Claudia Doumit) is up to no good as usual, and some interesting deals are constantly made through the runtime.
Eric Kriple gives viewers a break from all the gory violence with a dance break in episode 5, Frenchie (Tomer Capone) and Kimiko get a whole Hollywood style dance sequence to themselves. While I felt like it did nothing for the show except disrupt the really gritty streak it was on, but a lot of viewers loved the sequence, so guess there are plenty of things for fans to be divided over. A-Train (Jessie T Usher) and The Deep (Chace Crawford) continue to have their sub-plots as the screw-ups of the team. A-Train’s character is used to highlight the white-black divide in America and how racism works just the same, even in an alternate world with superheroes, despite some of them being African-American themselves.
“With great power comes great corruption” is the dominant theme of the show and is done quite brilliantly. Episode seven throws up one of the best and unexpected twists of the show till date, keeping the ‘WTF’ element up. However, the climactic episode eight paled out a versus the other episodes. It’s the unfortunate case of setting the bar too high for yourself and then not being able to top it. There’s obviously the inevitable face-off between ‘The Boys’ and Homelander, but it just wasn’t the kind of epic violent battle some of us were hoping for. Some characters do get their moments to shine, but the ‘wow’/’oh fuck’ factor is missing. Overall, ‘The Boys’ season 3 was very entertaining, but it seems like they are beginning to drag things a little now, because a season 4 is definitely coming.
It’s a 7.5/10 from me.