The Boys Season 2 Review: Amazon's Sophomore Outing Soars by Going Deeper, Not Bigger

The Boys is known for its insanity at times, but it's the small moments of clarity, pain, and hope that really allows this show to soar. All the craziness you'd expect from The Boys is back in spades in Season Two, but, lo and behold, the moments that stick with you are the intimate moments between this oddball, dysfunctional family. That dedication to those grounded moments is why the over the top action is so rewarding, because the investment in the foundation is sound. Season Two packs in enough shocks to get people talking and lands enough twists to keep you guessing until the final scene, ending a delightful season with one hell of an exclamation point.

Several themes are apparent throughout Season Two, with one of the major ones being how much an environment and particular school of thought can affect a child and their upbringing. The push and pull between Homelander's skewed view of the world and the grounded life Rebecca wants for her son is one that runs throughout the entire season, and it often finds unique ways to convey the young boy's struggle with accepting who he and who his father are.

This story wouldn't be nearly as effective without Stormfront and Billy, who allow showrunner Eric Kripke to explore more nuanced elements of this relationship, thanks to their own familial baggage, and the payoff and the pain that comes with this story wouldn't hit nearly as hard without these other facets to the story.

Speaking of Stormfront, I was not prepared for just how much Aya Cash's character would not only impact but entirely shake up the series. Her presence on the team affects nearly everyone on the Seven and the Boys in some way, and more often than not these exchanges push the other characters into unexpected places. She's the livewire that creates chaos wherever she goes, and that chaos is a big reason why the season works so well as a whole. Trust me, you'll hate her plenty by season's end, and I couldn't envision the season working so well without her.

Hughie and Starlight benefit from that chaos as well, though a huge part of why these two are so delightful throughout the season is how others react to them, with the most important being Mother's Milk and Billy. There are some key scenes throughout the season where these two characters can't help but let the facade drop, and it's there that some of the best work is done in Season Two.

Mother's Milk (Laz Alonso) does some amazing work in Season Two, showing that while Hughie is the hope, Mother's Milk is the glue and heart at the center of everything, and no one sells a heart-tugging line as he does.

On the opposite side of the spectrum is Homelander, who seems to be turned up to 11 in spots, as you might expect, but his relationship with Rebecca and his son is what truly leaves an impression. The same can be said for characters like Maeve, A-Train, and more, and while you will be stunned at the scenes of impaled Whales and more, you'll come away knowing these characters in a far more personal and real way under all the blood and guts.

Kripke once said that The Boys Season Two didn't want to go bigger, but deeper, and, in that regard, Season Two is a magnificent success. Sure, the action and shock value is there in spades, but it's the very real people underneath that will leave you feeling every emotion under the sun, and we cannot wait to return once more to this crazy world in Season Three.


Rating: 5 out of 5

The Boys Season Two hits Amazon Prime on September 4th.