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regular-article-logo Wednesday, 17 April 2024

The Boys Season 3: The 10 most twisted moments starring Antony Starr’s Homelander

The superhero and antagonist is the driving force in the edgiest season of the series

Vedant Karia Calcutta Published 09.07.22, 03:41 PM
Antony Starr as Homelander in The Boys

Antony Starr as Homelander in The Boys Amazon Prime Video

From an incapacitated Soldier Boy to Victoria Neuman for Vice President, The Boys just had an engaging finale to its edgiest season yet. We couldn’t resist looking back at our favourite moments from the season. PS: This is mostly a list gushing over Homelander. You know, the superhero is supposed to be an evil version of Superman with a deep need to be loved and a severe lack of empathy.

Homelander won’t apologise

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After suppressing his god-complex in front of people for two seasons and having his ego crushed for two episodes, Homelander finally snapped. While he was supposed to appear for his birthday with his tail between his legs, he quickly dissented into Donald Trump, pushing the blame onto a faceless ‘they’. Despite his flawed perspectives, there was a twisted dopamine rush in seeing an entitled man-child justify his narcissism. The subsequent jump in his ratings with straight white males made it seem like the show was holding a mirror to everything American.

Deep eats Timothy

Right after giving us a scene where Deep imagined making love to an octopus while having sex with his wife (a brilliant jibe at the century-old Aquaman joke), The Boys decided to take it to another extreme. Drunk on his power, Homelander asked Deep to eat his octopus friend, Timothy. We were sure that he would finally take a stand against Homelander after being bullied by him in the first two seasons. And yet, we watched in horror as Deep gobbled Timothy, with his tentacles still wiggling.

Homelander forced Deep to eat his octopus friend Timothy

Homelander forced Deep to eat his octopus friend Timothy Amazon Prime Video

#Homelight

The Boys never pulls punches while establishing just how much of a man’s world it is. As if Starlight’s trauma bucket wasn’t already filled to the brim, she had to forgive Deep for sexually harassing her on TV, and smile through gritted teeth when Homelander revealed their fake-relationship. Her anxiety is noticeable through those shocked eyes, which betray the PR-induced smile. The scene gets more uncomfortable to watch when, during a retake, Starlight actually kisses Homelander. Sorry, we need to puke.

Supe Hughie

When the gang breaks into a Russian prison to break Soldier Boy out, they find their defences waning, even with Butcher’s laser eyes and super strength. Behold Hughie, who saves the day with teleportation, but without his clothes on. In a single sequence, the show establishes how low Hughie is willing to sink in order to beat Vought, his increasingly toxic relationship with Butcher, the addictive nature of Temp V, and his absolute disregard for flashing. Despite being a huge deviation from Hughie’s character, the scene is still disgustingly funny.

Messy break-up

Every time we think The Boys have a shot at redemption, they sink even lower. The ending of Episode 5 is an instance where it is particularly hard to root for them, or even think of them as the ‘good guys’. The scene has one twist after another: Crimson Countess now runs an OnlyFans-esq account and she is presently entertaining Seth Rogen; she is ambushed by Butcher and MM and tied up as bait against Soldier Boy; Butcher drugs MM while Hughie teleports Starlight away; Butcher serves the Countess to Soldier Boy as a peace offering. Yup, one messed-up thing after another that violates every single law of morality and friendship.

Homelander talks to Homelander

We only get to understand Homelander’s insecurities through his facial muscles, courtesy Antony Starr’s brilliance. This scene was a rare instance where Homelander spoke to his unconscious about craving love, and was called out by the strong, emotionally blunt narcissist living within him. The scene was also an exploration of how he was becoming a racial dictator like Stormfront, wanting to leave behind his muddy human form, for a ‘clean’ and ‘pure’ god. Props to Starr for channelling his inner Willem Dafoe (please give him an Emmy).

Butcher + Soldier Boy + Hughie vs Homelander

Herogasm deserves a list in itself, but the highlight was definitely the big showdown. Right after Soldier Boy fried most of the orgy, Homelander arrived and had his massive ego hurt. While the clash between the two heavyweights was clearly not decisive with two episodes left in the season, we got our money’s worth when Butcher and Homelander exchanged blows (and lasers), finally, on a level playing field. With Hughie joining the mix, it was the first time we actually saw Homelander struggling.

Homelander finds his daddy

For all its outlandishness, no one expected The Boys to pull off a Star Wars. After a slow burn episode without any major revelations, they finally dropped the big bomb: Homelander is Soldier Boy’s son. While he was technically created from a genetic experiment and not intentionally conceived, Antony Starr’s brilliant portrayal of Homelander’s vulnerability showed that it didn’t matter — the guy finally found the first trace of family. The scene also gave Homelander much more depth, dragging him down to a humane world that he so desperately denounced.

Not Homelander’s family

Given the premise, the stakes in The Boys are always huge. However, most of the heavy lifting is actually done by the dialogues. The scene where Homelander confronts what is left of The Seven takes tensions to an all time high, without laser eye-induced threats or blood-strewn bodies. We see every character’s insecurities pique through their interaction with him, and Ashley’s wig reveal is particularly harrowing. While the ‘You’re not my family’ line is casually thrown around, we know from Homelander’s perspective how disposable it makes the rest of the characters. Maybe A-Train, Ashley and Deep will finally have the motivation to take Homelander down from the inside.

Homelander finally breaks

Not even the final fight struck the punch that this scene did (it felt like a post-credits scene placed before the credits). Homelander introduced Ryan to his supporters, only to have someone throw a can at the child. In response, a furious Homelander blasted his brains with his laser eyes, finally losing control in public. The most appalling part, though, was how the scene captured mob mentality, with one person cheering the brutality followed by the entire crowd. The horrific shot of an unsure Ryan breaking into a smile in response to the applauding crowd makes us dread if he might just turn out like his biological father. If this is where things start from, Season 4 promises to be the most desolate one yet.

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