The Boys S4 looks like it’s trying too hard to compete with itself but in a good way!

Smrithi Mohan
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The Boys S4 review

Another diabolical season of blood, gore, and satirical reflections on the real world, The Boys S4 manages to entertain with fewer moments while keeping the shock value alive.

If there’s a reason people love Eric Kripke’s series, it's because the show can put a satirical twist on some very real-world issues that need to be addressed. From making fun of the celebrities singing during the pandemic to calling out politicians' bigotry, the show has done it all. Not to forget the head-popping, literally, visuals that bring the ‘black, white and red all over’ to life.  The last season was a massive hit, with characters like Solider Boy giving us some of the most epic scenes that left us asking, ‘How can they top this?’ Honestly, it seems like the showrunners were wondering the same when they decided to release the new season. With the first three episodes out, the show seems like an attempt to keep up with its success.

When Butcher said, “With great powers, comes the absolute certainty that you’ll turn into the right c*unt” in season 3, agreeing with him didn’t take us a minute. If there’s anything that The Boys universe has taught us, it is that powers don’t always end with the right person. And the new season is a testament to how true it is. Homelander is under trial for lasering a guy in broad daylight while his supporters cheered.  William Butcher is a mess with only a few months left to live because of Temp V and has lost Ryan and his team because of his lies. Starlight has joined the Boys and is doing her bit to fight against Vought and Homelander. Meanwhile, Neuman is in the running to be the next VP while trying to keep her true identity hidden.

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One thing that we can all vouch for The Boys to nail is its ability to take creepy and gory details a notch higher, and despite the show having tons of it throughout its previous season, it seems like they have more to offer. Fans of the show will get to witness heads being smashed, blood smearing all over and supes using their ability in the worst way possible. And staying true to its pattern, the show also strategically references real-life political debacles and pop culture moments. It’s hard not to be impressed by the show’s ability to highlight the failing system of the world we live in, governed by corporations and corrupt leaders. Sister Sage who describes why any democracy fails to Homelander, helping him become the ‘American Hero’ that he wants to be reflects the real world. 

Apart from the gory nature of the show, it was always about its characters that are as grey as it gets. Staying true to his own name Anthony is still the ‘Star’ of the show with his psychopathic archvillain character and giving us the iconic Homelander moments. He is ruthless, cunning, power-hungry, and insecure enough to not want his son to have all the limelight. Karl Kurban’s Butcher who has lost his position as the leader is struggling to do one good thing before he succumbs to the after-effects of Temp V. While we still get glimpses of his neurotic self trying to do things his way and creating chaos, we also get a softer version. Butcher seems to genuinely care for Ryan and works on keeping his promise to Becka which has him taking the help of another mysterious character (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) who just reminds us of Butcher from the previous seasons. Frenchie is back on drugs and has taken a lover who is also a walking reminder of his past transgressions. Even though he's often high, he's still a supportive friend to Kimiko. She mostly follows her therapist's advice and decides to confront her past in her own way.

While the main characters and actors did a fantastic job, it’s the new additions who help drive the story forward. Jessica Bradley looks formidable as Sister Sage who considers herself constantly unimpressed by others and whose intelligence threatens Homelander’s ego. Valorie Curry’s Firecracker is the perfect addition that adds fuel to people’s need to defy the truth and feed their conspiracy theories. But the one character who definitely impresses is Black Noir, who is back from death. Nathan Mitchell brings a unique character and a contagious enthusiasm, along with his own opinions and ideas that, unfortunately, no one seems to want to listen to. Not to ignore Deep who adds the bizarre into the show with his weird relationship with an octopus, who is voiced by the talented Tilda Swinton.

However, one cannot ignore the show’s need, or rather desperation to have shock value in its episodes considering how it has set its own bar too high. Although there have been a few notable reveals, the first few episodes seem to lack the shock value that we would expect from the show. This might be because the show successfully left us stunned by Stormfront and Soldier Boy. But it is also too soon to speak as we are yet to see the Guardians of Godolkin and the crazy they bring with them.

The Boys Season 4 is now streaming on Amazon Prime Videos

Let us know what you are excited to see this season in the comments section! And for more entertainment, follow us on @socialketchupbinge.

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