The Boys is another one in a long host of superhero-drama shows that have been adapted from the comic-book world. From quirky characters to an engrossing storyline, the Amazon Original has all that it takes to become a household name in the coming years.
The satirical superhero tv series was developed by Eric Kripke and is based on the comic book of the same name by Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson. It follows the eponymous team of vigilantes as they combat superpowered individuals who abuse their abilities.
The New Zealand actor Antony Starr does an excellent job of portraying the personality of Homelander. Starr shows the true vulnerability and multiple faces of Homelander. He does an excellent job of acting with his face, as it shows the level of torment Homelander goes through internally on a daily basis.
Homelander is a sociopath, self-consciously, a corporate product furthering Vought’s, an in-universe multibillion-dollar conglomerate company, a corporate shill, while also maintaining his own reputation. The Seven superhero team is paid for and owned by giant mega-corporation Vought International. Homelander does fight (and murder) criminals on occasion. But the bulk of his time is spent appearing in movies, doing promotional appearances, and endorsing products.
Raised in a lab by cold, unloving scientists, Homelander has very little connection to humanity while, at the same time, he has an obsessive need to be loved by humanity. He wants to maintain his reputation and keep the Vought machine running, anything that doesn’t support these two ideals is meaningless to him. He doesn’t care about saving the day or uplifting people, he just wants to keep up appearances.
As all murderous sociopaths must, Homelander feels an affinity toward using his power to let off steam and keep people in line. At the same time, due to his upbringing and his inability to be truly vulnerable with people, he seeks constant attention and admiration. When he cannot get the admiration he so desires, or when he can’t directly get what he wants due to the hierarchical standards of Vought, he lashes out.
He searches for control in any way he can, which includes casually not only intimidation but also murder. Madelyn Stillwell’s death came as a huge shock to the fans. She was being groomed to become a hateful antagonist before she was murdered by Homelander in a very symbolic way. It was to do with the way Madelyn manipulated Homelander by making good use of his “lack of parents” problem.
Homelander is a vile person who cares for no one else but himself. But he is a great example of how you do a character who’s a terrible person yet still with depth and nuance and not just a one-note villain. He seems to genuinely want to help his son, Ryan, with Becca Butcher. Although he lacks the paternal skills to do so. But he tries, nevertheless, and shows viewers the one redeemable quality about him.
As the most powerful man in the world, Homelander recklessly abuses his power on a consistent basis. He does this because he knows Vought will cover up whatever sadism he gets into. Even if it doesn’t get covered up, no one can truly hold him accountable. Fans of the show know this to be true as do readers of the comics, the difference between the show and the comic is the level of nuance.
Evil villains based more or less directly on Superman have been a staple of the superhero genre for decades. Homelander in The Boys is pretty much how you do the concept of an evil/corrupt version of Superman done the right way. Clark Kent and Homelander are not cut from the same cloth but despite the differences in their respective personalities and DNAs, their superpowers are largely identical. From X-Ray Vision to Heat Vision, Homelander resembles the threat posed by the Man of Steel.
The Boys certainly treats superhero skeptics as a resource. Beat, expose, and belittle Superman, and he comes back as the anti-Superman. Good Superman gets boring after a while. The Boys builds a wrong Superman instead, then make stories out of his wrongness and the result is simply great.
The Amazon series stars an ensemble cast that includes Karl Urban, Jack Quaid, Laz Alonso, Tomer Capon, and Karen Fukuhara as the titular vigilantes, and Antony Starr, Erin Moriarty, Dominique McElligott, Chace Crawford, Jessie T. Usher, and Nathan Mitchell as members of the “Seven”, an official superhero group run by the conglomerate Vought International.
Homelander in The Boys (2019-)
- That Homelander is a realistic hero motivated by narcissistic pleasure, only.
- On top of having plenty of allegorical weight, The Boys is also tremendously entertaining, roaring along from one complicated caper to the next on the force of terrific lead performances.