TV Review: The Boys Season 2

Last Updated on July 30, 2021

The Boys, TV Review, amazon Prime, Superheroes, Comic Book, Karl Urban, Jack Quaid, Erin Moriarty

Plot: The even more intense, more insane Season 2 finds The Boys on the run from the law, hunted by the Supes, and desperately trying to regroup and fight back against Vought. On top of that, the supervillain threat takes center stage and makes waves as Vought seeks to capitalize on the nation’s paranoia.

Review: When the first season of The Boys premiered, my review was not very enthusiastic. I compared the Seth Rogen-produced series to a blend of WATCHMEN, MYSTERY MEN, and The Tick. While I have softened a bit on subsequent viewings thanks to the well-cast ensemble at the core of the series, I still find the first season of the Amazon Prime series to be lacking something. Maybe it was too much humor and not enough drama or a poor balance of the two. By the finale, The Boys was beginning to find a momentum that was setting the series up for improvement in season two. I am happy to report that The Boys are back and their sophomore run improves on the show in every way thanks to better stories for the supporting cast and exploration of certain threads underdeveloped during the freshman batch of episodes.

To be blunt: The Boys gets much darker this season. The first year was a blend of satirical humor with extreme violence, but this time around everything is much more serious. Yes, there is still an undercurrent of black comedy that pervades every episode, but The Boys dives into much more serious storytelling which helps the tone immensely. Where the first season used Hughie (Jack Quaid) and Starlight (Erin Moriarty) as a way for the viewer to enter this fictional universe, season two is a much more balanced look at every character in the cast. New additions like Stormfront (Aya Cash) are given significant screentime, but there is ample story for all of the characters we came to love in season one. 

The biggest changes this time around are centered on the relationship between Starlight and Hughie, Billy Butcher and his wife, and Homelander with…himself. Antony Starr played Homelander with a surprisingly evil twist last season but there are no doubts he is psychologically damaged this time around and the danger he represents begins to come to the surface. Halfway through the season, there are a handful of shocking moments featuring Homelander that may end up making you turn off your screen but I implore you to keep watching. His relationship with Elisabeth Shue‘s Madeleine Stillwell last season was the anchor keeping him sane and with her gone, all hell breaks loose. From reveals related to Queen Maeve (Dominique McElligot) and suspicion around Starlight, Homelander serves as a domino dropping at Vought Tower that leads to sweeping changes that impact every character on the series.

While the interconnected storylines bring all of the ensemble cast together, they also spend a surprising amount of time apart. Subplots involving Maeve, The Deep (Chace Crawford) and his road to redemption, Frenchie (Tomer Capon) and Kimiko (Karen Fukuhara) and her connection to a super-terrorist, as well as Mother’s Milk (Laz Alonso) pursuing details on an old superhero all deserve ample screen-time and yet have to be fit in between scenes focused on Billy Butcher’s quest to find his wife as well as Billy’s tenuous mentor relationship with a slowly unraveling Hughie.

What works best about this season of The Boys is that the story is less of a team of ragtag mercenaries going against a squad of the most powerful beings on the planet. Instead, this season lays out the repercussions of what the existence of these superheroes means and the ramifications it can have on the rest of the world when they begin to learn the truth. By opening up the story, The Boys becomes a hell of a lot more interesting. It also helps that not only is this season about The Boys versus The Seven but it is also about The Seven against themselves, Homelander versus an adversary who can go toe to toe with him and even Billy Butcher versus Hughie.

With Amazon Prime already greenlighting the third season, fans of The Boys can rest assured that the misadventures of their favorite heroes and villains will continue beyond these new chapters. Like any enjoyable series, the episodes go by quickly and are easily binge-able even with the running times ranging from 45 minutes to over an hour. The scale of this year’s episodes is superior to last and the cohesiveness of the story is much improved. I still think there is way too much story to fill in such a short run of episodes, but my concerns with season one have been addressed making this season a massive improvement. I hope all of this show’s fans are ready because The Boys are back and better than ever.

The Boys second season premieres on September 4th on Amazon Prime.

Superheroes

GREAT

8
Source: JoBlo.com

About the Author

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Alex Maidy has been a JoBlo.com editor, columnist, and critic since 2012. A Rotten Tomatoes-approved critic and a member of Chicago Indie Critics, Alex has been JoBlo.com's primary TV critic and ran columns including Top Ten and The UnPopular Opinion. When not riling up fans with his hot takes, Alex is an avid reader and aspiring novelist.