Angry are the mobs on forums like Reddit that their favorite TV show has joined the ‘progress’ fads. The fans are upset that in a superhero show we are now talking about topics like ‘Black Lives Matter’. Some, with that tact that characterizes any civilized discussion, shout that The Boys joined the woke fashion and that it is now a political show.
Perhaps the most urgent super power is that of reading comprehension. Because The Boys was always a political show.
Wait… is Homelander the bad guy?
Your TV screen has to be made of lead, so you wouldn’t see from three meters away that from the beginning The Boys was something more than a super bloody series of super heroes. It is and always will be, but the blood, guts, and sex with octopuses are just a style choice. A very clever one, we must add, because it makes the series that much more entertaining to watch.
For example, I couldn’t find reasonable justification for the surprise to many this season when Homelander is ‘revealed’ to be a cruel sociopath, obsessed with gaining public support while loathing those who do. Wasn’t this clear to you when he decides to drop a plane after (in an act of ineptitude) killing the terrorists and leaving the vehicle without a pilot? Didn’t they suspect that they were dealing with someone cruel when he decided to support the plan of a Nazi, convinced of his superiority?
Let’s make something clear. Homelander is not the bad Superman. Homelander is a Superman if he had been raised by a corporation. Over the seasons he has been noted as, contrary to public opinion, Homelander can easily be the most incompetent of all the supers, while also being the scariest.
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Nothing more false (and easy to sell) than heroism
And here’s the thing…of all the cruel villains, of all the enemies out there, of all the threats in this world, perhaps the most terrible is the idea that a corporation has the power to get away with it.
Already in the first season we were warned. When Stralight received her, she changed her image, turning her into a sex symbol, because that sells more. In the comics, the costume she is initially offered is much worse and the motivation more disgusting: a representation of her act of rebellion after being raped.agives.
Again, obvious clarifications. The Boys wasn’t about a group of mercenaries looking to kill ‘bad superheroes’. It was about normal people facing a corporation capable of hushing up any scandal to keep its stars free of any blame.
Any similarity with reality
The thing is that in the last season The Boys got tired of the subtlety. And to make his point clear, he started using referents that are hard to ignore. But this, at least in our opinion, has only enhanced its humor and importance.
The Boys launches a Fox-style show and demonstrates how the strategy of delegitimizing the press works. The Boys literally puts a super cop, with the ability to kill someone through the authority he has, and shows us how ridiculous it is for someone in that position to feel threatened, it shows us Nazis walking in the streets and people finding justifications for this.
This is not The Boys being Woke. At least no more Woke than Green Arrow many years ago when he found Speedy injecting heroin into his arm. It is no more Woke than the X-Men being a metaphor for the problems of racism in the 60’s and continuing this idea to the present.
The thing, dear reader, is that The Boys didn’t wake up. It’s just that every good superhero story always has been.