Martin Carr reviews the seventh episode of The Boys season 1…
In the words of Winston Wolf ‘if self-preservation is an instinct you possess, you better do what I say and do it fast’. Motivations, suspicions and blame should be metered out with care as recognising the enemy is getting more difficult. Hughie has gone from hapless bystander to a certified member of The Boys as this haphazard collection of damaged goods gets closer to crossing paths with Homelander.
A more conflicted, ill at ease and unstable person to possess super powers you are unlikely to meet. Through a combination of flashbacks and personal snooping this home grown Superman begins slotting together the puzzle pieces. Good sense finally trumps bad blood with Butcher while The Deep gets a taste of his own medicine when that relocation to San Duskey brings about some female retribution. Back story and harsh revelations give way to betrayals and navel gazing, while those faster on their feet start going into withdrawal.
What The Boys never scrimps on is moral ambiguity. Whether we are talking about the vigilante methods employed by Vought’s sacred Seven, or Butcher’s excuses for offing any enhanced person irrespective of involvement. It seems at this juncture that the collateral damage with the most vivid impact seems to be emotional. True to form we do see some truly unpleasant fights involving heads, toilet bowls and eviscerated womb remnants but emotions take longer to heal than open wounds.
There is a big difference between an accident and a premeditated act of organised pay back which is essentially what The Boys are doing. Crushing, burying or otherwise injuring another person by accident is appalling, but to treat that action as an act of war turns it into something else. Governments and corporations might argue, act up and intimidate amongst themselves for international domination but it is the people who suffer. Even if those people are cossetted, spoilt and believe themselves superior.
With the unpleasant revelations which shine a light into the darker corners in those final minutes, it becomes clear how Kripke and company intend to ramp up that finale. A face off is coming which involves lots of large weaponry, unresolved emotional angst and an epiphany of corporation sinking magnitude. Then there is of course the issue of that human pipe bomb with legs; trust Rogen and company to throw in a little religion just to stir the pot.