Buckle up for a wild ride: ‘The Boys’ returns for a third season of mind-blowing gore, dark humor and psychotic superheroes – and it’s a wild ride.
It’s been nearly two years since “The Boys” season 2 dropped on Prime Video and ended with Nazi superhero Stormfront (Aya Cash) fried to ashes and the narcissist and murderer Homelander (Antony Starr ) – leader of The Seven – spiraling further into his unbridled madness.
There’s a quick catch-up tutorial in the Season 3 opener and once that’s removed it’s back in the fire with our “Supes” and mere mortals plotting their downfall – in starting with a clip from “Dawn of The Seven,” Vaught’s big-budget movie rewriting Homelander’s story starring Stormfront (played by Charlize Theron in a meta twist) in a bid to boost his declining public ratings.
He’s also on an apology talk show that he’s all about, but he’s additionally thrown on a loop once Starlight (Erin Moriarty) is named co-captain of The Seven. It’s a “hit” moment, not just for Starlight but for villainous Vought boss Stan Edgar (Giancarlo Esposito), who is sick of Homelander and all that stuff.
It’s now been a year later, and Hughie (Jack Quaid), who is still in a relationship with Starlight, wears a suit and runs the Federal Bureau of Superhuman Affairs alongside Congresswoman Victoria Neuman (Claudia Doumit) — who isn’t who or what she appears to be.
The butcher without prisoner (Karl Urban) remains relentless in his quest for justice and the rest of the team is scattered in the wind: Mother’s Milk (Laz Alonso) tries to adjust to life as a single father (his ex-wife, Monique, is dating the nebbishy “Dawn of The Seven director) but he can’t get rid of his visceral obsession with hunting Supes. Frenchie (Tomer Kapon) and Kimiko (Karen Fukuhara) are always together and communicate via sign language, but otherwise they wait for something to happen.
They don’t have to wait long.
I could go on, but that would spoil a lot of surprises for “The Boys” fans. Jensen Ackles joins the cast as Soldier Boy – believed to have been killed in a nuclear reactor meltdown in the 80s – but that’s just the tip of the surreal iceberg. Trust me.
The series closely follows its mission of outrageous entertainment via tongue-in-cheek pop culture references and allusions: Vaught’s Lifetime-y VTV network has the tagline “Television for Women,” there are shoutouts to Dame Judi Dench ( !) and the cast of “Riverdale” and Starlight are hosting a reality TV contest series, “American Hero”, to choose the next member of The Seven.
This is this weird and perfect, with some of the sharpest writing on TV that leaves hardly any weird stone unturned. It’s fascinating, with the series’ cartoonish violence that’s more humorous than disturbing.
Fans of “The Boys” will get it; if you’re watching for the first time, you’ll soon understand what it’s all about.