Originally published on 7 September 2020:
(Updated on 14 October 2020):
Woah, that’s all eight episodes of The Boys Season 2 in just about a month. While I initially reviewed the first three episodes last month, it’s time for me to review the entire second season as a whole (while still being spoiler-free, of course).
In the five remaining episodes, we’ve seen the introduction of new characters and the death of several as well. This season ups the ante in terms of stakes and danger, and it feels just like Game Of Thrones back when it was at its best; no one is truly safe.
What I love most about The Boys Season 2 is that the other supporting characters also received their time in the spotlight. We learnt more about Karen Fukuhara’s Kimiko and Tomer Capon’s Frenchie, both of whom are given their own respective story arcs and well-earned development.
It can’t always be about Jack Quaid’s Hughie, Karl Urban’s Butcher and the Supes, am I right? However, you don’t have to worry about that, as we still got plenty from them throughout the second season (they are still the main characters, after all).
At the end of it all, Butcher and Homelander are the ones most affected by everything that’s happened, so fans of both characters are sure to be happy on that front. There’s also sort of an ending stinger during the season finale that answers a lingering a question from earlier in the season.
This character-driven approach to The Boys Season 2 is what makes the series an even more compelling watch compared to the first season. Sure, we’re here for the deconstruction and satire of comic book superheroes, but that doesn’t mean that the characters can’t be complex and have depth. Fortunately, showrunner Eric Kripke has successfully accomplished that.
The Boys has already been greenlit for a third season, so we’ll only have to wait for now. In the meantime, the comics by Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson are amazing, so you can bide your time with that until Season 3 eventually arrives.
At the beginning of Season 2, I gave The Boys a 90/100. It deserved it then, and it deserves it even more so now after a brilliant eight episodes. The Boys is Amazon Prime Video’s equivalent of HBO’s Game Of Thrones, Netflix’s Stranger Things or Disney Plus’ The Mandalorian. This latest season pretty much cements that.
It’s nothing short of incredible how popular Amazon Prime’s The Boys has become since debuting its explosive first season in 2019.
It’s currently the best time for a show like this to exist; just as the superhero genre is at its zenith. As a deconstruction and satire of the genre, The Boys keeps getting better and better, as evident from the first three episodes of its second season so far.
The Boys Reassembled
The Boys Season 2 picks up where the first season left us; with Butcher (Karl Urban) still missing and The Seven now essentially The Five (with the death of Translucent last season and the banishment of Chace Crawford’s The Deep). Vought, the company who owns The Seven, is now trying to add new members to the superhero group.
With Vought vice president Madelyn Stillwell (Elisabeth Shue) dead and gone, it’s ripe for the company’s CEO to take a more active role; Stan Edgar (as portrayed by the charismatic and terrifyingly-awesome Giancarlo Esposito of Breaking Bad‘s Gustavo Fring fame).
Meanwhile, The Boys is trying to figure out what their next step is considering that Butcher is gone. However, he returns at the end of the very first episode, which meant the Butcher-less team dynamic barely lasted an episode. That’s alright though, since what is The Boys without Butcher at the helm (much to the frustration of Jack Quaid’s Hughie).
However, the biggest shakeup for this season of The Boys is the introduction of Stormfront, as portrayed by Aya Cash. She is one of the new members of The Seven, and even after just three episodes, she is clearly the new MVP of the show.
She steals almost every scene that she appears in, adding much-needed spice and feistiness to the team.
Oh, and she annoys Homelander (Antony Starr) as well, which is great. Just like last season, Homelander is still an asshole and a violent psychopath. His effectiveness as a villain lies in the fact that he’s basically a Superman who doesn’t pull his punches, and you never know exactly what he’s going to do next, which makes for compelling viewing.
Back to Stormfront, she changes the team dynamic of The Seven by providing a fodder against Homelander. No one else in the team would dare disagree or throw sass at freaking Homeland, but not this person. Still, there’s a lot more to her than meets the eye, and a shocking revelation at the end of the third episode will likely surprise anyone who’s not familiar with the source material.
As someone who has read the comics, I was initially sceptical of showrunner Eric Kripke’s decision to change Stormfront’s gender (he’s a dude in the comics) without any justification. The first three episodes have pleasantly proven me wrong and I’m looking forward to seeing more of her character in the rest of Season 2.
Besides Homelander and Stormfront, another character that’s finally been given due attention and more screen time is Kimiko AKA The Female of The Boys, played by Karen Fukuhara of 2016’s Suicide Squad fame.
She didn’t get to do much in Season 1, but we learn a more about her in the second season, as one of the main arcs focuses on her and her mysterious past.
Prepare For Mayhem
After seeing the first three episodes, there’s a good reason why Amazon Prime and Kripke have released the first three episodes at once, and will only be shifting back to a weekly schedule starting from the fourth episode. The first two episodes primarily focused on re-introducing the existing characters and all the new ones, which means that nothing much happens to move the main narrative along.
However, this all changed in the third episode, which is now one of my favourite episodes in the entire series to date. The aforementioned revelation and “electrifying” stinger at the end of this episode will likely be the one most discussed by viewers, due to its controversial nature (and bizarrely timely nature as well, in the face of the current Black Lives Matter worldwide movement).
If that episode is an indication of what to expect from future episodes -five episodes left in Season 2- then I’m fairly sure that we’re in for a very explosive and extremely offensive ride. The series won’t be holding back now that the it’s full speed ahead.
FINAL SCORE: 90/100
The first three episodes of The Boys Season 2 is now available on the Amazon Prime Video streaming service, with subsequent episodes to premiere every Friday.
In the meantime, check out the trailer below.