Fashionably late to the satirical bash, conservatives finally get the message behind The Boys

By Fatou Ferraro Mboup

Published Jun 21, 2024 at 01:24 PM

Reading time: 2 minutes

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Amazon Prime Video’s hit superhero series The Boys has wrapped up three successful seasons, with season four currently airing weekly and showrunner Eric Kripke confirming that the next series will be its fifth and final season. Yet, it seems some conservatives are only just now catching on to the show’s satire, especially when it comes to mocking the right-wing’s outlandish political views.

Based on the comic series by Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson, The Boys is set in a world where superheroes are far from the infallible icons of other franchises. Instead, they are deeply corrupt, with a group known as ‘The Boys’ working to expose this corruption and dismantle Vought, the awful company managing the ‘Supes’, and Homelander, a psychopathic Superman-esque figure, played by Antony Starr.

While Donald Trump supporters have struggled to see Homelander as a parody of the disgraced former US president, conservatives are now up in arms over the political commentary in the fourth season.

Last week, the first three episodes of the latest series dropped on Prime Video, introducing fans to Firecracker, a far-right political commentator and Supe who rants at a conspiracy theorist convention about the “Hollywood paedophile cabal.”

In the second episode, Firecracker claims that good superhero Starlight is involved in running a “satanic home delivery service.” The character states: “An order of a hot dog gets you a boy; a taco, a girl; a combo gets you a child they forced to have trans surgery, and a soda gets you a shot of adrenochrome.” For clarity, adrenochrome, a compound created from adrenaline, is a baseless conspiracy theory that proposes a chemical harvested from kidnapped children by elites in Hollywood and the Democratic Party.

Nonetheless, this overt satire of reactionary conservatism has understandably ruffled some feathers online:

Kripke, the outspoken showrunner of The Boys, has never hesitated to articulate what the series stands for. Known for his candidness and unapologetic approach, Kripke often addresses the show’s critics and trolls head-on; Remember in 2022, he tweeted: “Hi trolls! One, this is literally the opposite of the show’s f*cking message. Two, you’re causing pain to real people with real feelings. Be kind. If you can’t be kind, then eat a bag of dicks, fuck off to the sun & don’t watch #TheBoys, we don’t want you. #TheBoysTV.”

Kripke also addressed the most recent backlash, telling the Hollywood Reporter: “Anyone who wants to call the show ‘woke’ or whatever, that’s OK. Go watch something else.” As for Firecracker, Kripke told Variety that Valorie Curry’s character draws inspiration from a certain Georgia Republican.

“Firecracker came from like, ‘Hey, isn’t Marjorie Taylor Greene scary?’ And just that type of personality. Like, you had Trump, but now you have these Trump spawn trying to outdo each other with how outrageous, sexualised, gun-toting, and slavishly obedient they can be. And just that idea—it wouldn’t just start and end with Homelander; he would create spores that grow into these other characters, and she’s a version of that,” the executive explained.

In essence, The Boys is playing a satirical game called “Guess Who’s the Real Villain?” and, spoiler alert, it’s not the superheroes. The real villains are the corrupt ideologies and unchecked powers they represent. So, if you’re watching and cheering for Homelander, maybe it’s time to reassess who the true antagonist of the story is—and it might just be staring back at you from the screen.

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