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The Boys are back in town – and what an explosive entrance they make. This bloody, brutal and outright bonkers superhero series returns for a third season and with it, a good injection of urgency. After what happened to Stormfront last year, Homelander is unhinged and threatens to snap at any moment.
This allows for some real tension to seep into the story this time around, as our heroes find themselves struggling to contain Homelander’s wrath which feels like a ticking time bomb just waiting to explode. Or, well, obliterate everyone in a fit of laser-eyed rage.
After a very welcome recap of the events from season 2, The Boys begins with big changes afoot for both Butcher and Hughie. Now, I’m being careful not to spoil anything here as Amazon have provided a long list of plot points and twists that we can’t mention in this review. To be fair though, I’d rather not mention them anyway because some of the set pieces this year are delightfully dastardly.
I mentioned before about Homelander’s unhinged persona, and that’s ultimately the crux for which most of this story gravitates around. It also causes huge problems for all those in The Seven (except for Black Noir, who’s still as silent and cool as he was before). Maeve is determined to take the maniacal “hero” down a peg by any means necessary – even if that means working with unexpected source.
As for Butcher and the Boys, they find themselves in possession of an experimental drug that Vought are working on; a temporary form of Compound V that gives its users powers for 24 hours. This adds a lovely moral dilemma for our group. After all, if they use these to stop Supes, is this not going against their core beliefs?
It’s a fascinating conflict, one that’s explored in a lot more detail across the season. These cracks in The Seven and with Butcher and the boys take up most of the run-time for the first 2 or 3 episodes, which is made all the more spicy by the including of Congresswoman Neuman.
As we found out at the end of season 2, she happens to be the head-popping Supe and Hughie is unwittingly working with her. They’ve been taking down Supes together off the street, while his relationship with Starlight (which is big news in the public eye) only further riles up Homelander, who finds his popularity dwindling.
After a few episodes, the show changes tact slightly, with Butcher and the boys heading off to Russia (and back again) on a mission to try and stop Homelander. While I can’t reveal exactly what they’re up to, suffice to say there are some pretty shocking moments along the way. In fact, shock is the key word this season, as The Boys doesn’t hold anything back at all. From a particularly squeamish scene involving The Deep to a little Supe called Termite who gets up to no good, there are some outrageous moments that fans are likely to be talking about for weeks to come.
The big stand-out revelation this year though is Homelander. Oh my gosh. There are some incredibly tense scenes here and Antony Starr has really stepped his game up again. There’s one scene involving Homelander in the hallway of Vought, confronting A-Train, that is absolutely golden and it’s dripping with tension from start to finish.
Another time, Starlight and Hughie happen to be discussing Homelander’s potential weakness… only to find out he’s been listening in and happens to be on the other side of the room. These moments stand out across the 8 episodes, although everything early on builds slowly, crescendoing into a dramatic final act that sees Homelander meeting his match for the first time in this series.
Along the way, the usual dose of satire is thrown is and while last year tackled inclusivity, this year looks at everything from PR personas to talent shows (which gets a whole separate sub-plot and a pretty surprising ending) all the way across to PTSD, as the past is explored in more detail.
Much like the first two seasons, The Boys continues to step up its game, delivering an enthralling, pulsating and high octane series of twists and turns. Antony Starr’s acting is the real highlight here, although everyone brings their A-game for this third season, which continues to showcase just why The Boys is one of the best superhero series on TV right now. This one’s a must-watch!
The Boys Season 3 drops on Amazon Prime worldwide from 3rd June 2022!
Verdict - 9/10