Martin Carr reviews the penultimate episode of The Boys season 2…
By capitalising on the idea of Vought creating a race of super soldiers with compound V, these writers are trying to give episode seven some traction. Disillusioned super fans, online media campaigns and biased propaganda are beginning to influence the general public, while the FBI grasp at straws. Porn obsessed star witnesses under government lock down are more interested in superhero deviance than getting justice, while divisions within The Seven continue to cause problems.
Family reunions, familial strangulation and unicorn frappe fixation form the backbone of an episode which is entertaining yet heavily embargoed. Queen Maeve lasagne tops the product placement agenda this week, after the home run which was the gay pride power bar from episode six. There are less Joss Whedon digs, more exploding heads and some hard core action involving The Deep which is truly troubling.
As much as Stormfront and her ties to the Aryan Nazi regime made for some serious meat and potatoes topical chat, this time round the barrel is bare. Some sign language between Frenchie and Kimiko go toe to toe in terms of interest with Butcher threatening an entire family lineage. In a mirror image of an early X-Men film we do witness a Congressional hearing but beyond that my lips are sealed.
This being the penultimate episode of season two multiple pay offs are being set up, allowing a greenlit season three to have a barnstorming opener. Four letter words pour like fine wine from a foul mouthed Butcher, while Hughie, Annie and Queen Maeve explore differing dynamics in a handful of scenes. Homelander and Stormfront on the other hand retain our sympathies yet reveal nothing new.
As opportunities to jump ship for Mother’s Milk clash with protest rallies, divided loyalties and corporate self-interest The Boys is left wanting. For some reason this fraught cat and mouse game is losing its edge, which is concerning considering the show’s track record. Mixed messages involving government oversight, militarised Avenger clones and topical discussions around individual identity used to drive this show. Boundaries were breached in audacious acts of censorship baiting misdirection, but for some reason episode seven feels oddly sanitised. Muted, neutered and literally lacking the balls for which The Boys is well known. Hopefully the finale will rectify things and come out swinging with a flaming dildo, sharpened sartorial wit and enough f bombs to make Mary Whitehouse blanch.