The Boys Doesn’t Deserve Its Harshest Criticisms

When checking out The Boys comic after watching the show, fans will often be surprised at how much more unapologetically violent, gruesome, offensive, and overall disgusting the source material is.

One early, memorable, and oft-cited example involves Starlight’s introduction to The Seven. While in the show Erin Moriarty’s Starlight is forced to perform a degrading act with The Deep to join the group, in The Boys comic she’s forced to perform it with three members of the team–Homelander, A-Train, and Black Noir.

Fans often respond to scenes like this, and others, in The Boys comic by saying it’s just for shock value, and to that I have two responses.

First, in this scene in The Boys comic, Homelander and his buddies are letting Starlight know that she has exactly one purpose in the team. Consider that, and then go do a google image search on “Power Girl” or “She-Hulk.” Do another search on “Frank Cho female superhero.

Then come back here and try to tell me how The Boys comic only had that Starlight scene for shock value, and it couldn’t possibly be trying to say anything about the portrayal of women in superhero comics.

Second–remember how Season 3 of The Boys started? Please tell me about how they had a little Ant-Man dude crawl into another man and had him explode… to convey a deep and complex message. Go ahead. I’ll wait.

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