It's set in a world with superheroes, where they are partly media celebrities, originally manufactured by Vought corporation and used to support a merchandising empire, and partly a controversial bid to replace conventional military forces. And are invariably, at least the well-known ones, horribly corrupted by power.
The Boys are a small mostly-independent CIA-funded with the remit of policing superhero activity, in theory policing actions when a superhero does something wrong, in aspiration more like the opening shots of a war against the highest-profile superhero group.
It's unsurprisingly really violent, and shocking in other ways. Like, it's unsurprising real-world superheros would be corrupted by power (although, I mean, they need servants and cleaners and construction firms and media relations and so on, if they were unpopular, one superman wouldn't get far unless he executed a coup directly). But they are overwhelmingly loaded down with gratuitous murder and unusual sexual fetishes they act out in unsavoury ways.
And I'm conflicted about that. It's partly parodying the notion of squeaky-clean superheroes. And I do *enjoy* the "artistic violence" motif. But it also feels gratuitously unpleasant even by that standard, like it just piles up a whole bunch of unpleasant stuff. And is mixed at distinguishing "unethical" from "socially disapproved", like there's a lot of transphobic language, and sometimes that's making a point about how societal acceptance can be mixed, and the contrast between Butcher, who offends people all the time, but is generally non-judgemental of anything not unethical, and Wee Hughie, who knows the language he thinks should be acceptable, but has led quite a non-cosmopolitan life. But often it's just... lots of offensive language for no particular reason. And the same for violence and sex etc.
But what I *liked*. I liked the worldbuilding, the different superhero teams and their relationships. I liked the relationships between the characters. Butcher, the hard man from East End London stepping into a leadership position. Wee Hughie, the civilian recruited into the middle of all this. Mother's Milk, the gruff but responsible second in command. The two most violent members of the team, but who gradually grow relationships to Hughie and the rest. The bantering one-upman-ship between the diverse team and the American institutions they're mostly involved with.
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