The challenge of making a television series based on a comic book property lies within its capability to hold every piece, whether small or large, together tightly.
There is always the tendency to stretch a story fit for a two-hour movie-like running time into eight-hour-long episodes just for the sake of prolonging arcs—sacrificing the possibility of a coherent and well-paced narrative. (The Walking Dead, anyone?)
Amazon Prime’s The Boys, a series based on Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson, never resorts to this storytelling trap. There’s thought and enough meat in each episode to ensure every second is well-realized. Here’s our High Five review on this great series:
Satire on the superhero lore
The Boys unapologetically takes a satirical look on the concept of superheroes in the comic book and movie lore. The main plot of the show is literally about an underdog team in a mission to kill a Justice League-like team known as the Seven, comprised of powerful superheroes that looks like caricatures of Superman, Wonder Woman, Batman, Martian Manhunter, Aquaman, and more.
But beyond these caricatures are people who have excessively used their supreme powers for their respective egos and capitalistic goals—all of them owned by a media conglomerate that controls their branding and publicity projects.
Irreverent Justice League
The elevator pitch on The Boys is that it is essentially Justice League marrying the concept of irreverence. The show, with all its brutal violence, profanity, and a lot of sexual content, is already a big leap from the superhero genre that has always embraced the audience of every age.
And through its irreverence, The Boys found its biggest strength: a free-flowing take on a slew of things. It is through unrestricted programming like Amazon Prime has The Boys criticize the juicy details of many elements, from corruption to sexual harassment, from dangerous power to monopoly, and a lot more.
This is all bravely and greatly weaved across eight episodes.
The ensemble of The Boys is unreal. Led by an always great Karl Urban, some of the breakouts of the show include Jack Quaid, Erin Moriarty, Jesse Usher, and Chace Crawford. However, Antony Starr was a great discovery, whose character, the Superman-like Homelander, brings a terrifying light to the titular underdog squad’s mission.
The series is Amazon Prime’s biggest show yet and it is poised to have more seasons in the future. A second season will be rolling out very soon, just a shy year away from the first season’s release.
For those who haven’t caught up on The Boys, let this review be an endorsement for you to finally watch all of its glory.
The Boys is now available for streaming on Amazon Prime Video.