The wait for The Boys season 2 is over: the first three episodes are out now. Adapted from the popular Garth Ennis comic, the second season sees a group of nobodies on the run from The Seven, a corporate-owned and corrupt group of superheroes.
There's been a flurry of information about the show's second season in the months leading up to launch: we've had the addition of Jensen Ackles to the cast as Soldier Boy, Shawn Ashmore as Lamplighter for season 3, and the all-important specific release date of September 4 (but only the first three episodes are going live on launch day, with the remaining five going live on Amazon Prime weekly thereafter).
The Boys season 2 was announced by Amazon Prime before it even debuted on the streaming service. It proved a well-calculated move, too: it's one of the best Amazon Prime shows around. Here's what we know about The Boys season 2, including its release date, the early third season renewal, and more.
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The Boys season 2 release date has been announced
We've heard your fuckin' whining and moaning about "when is Season 2" so here you go. See you on September 4th, mates. #TheBoysAreBack pic.twitter.com/Q6aS2NvKKkJune 26, 2020
The Boys season 2 release date is September 4, 2020. The first three episodes are out now. The remaining five will go live each week on Amazon Prime Video to give "the audience the chance to just absorb and recover after every episode".
That means the finale will go out on October 9, so you've got a month of The Boys season 2 ahead.
At a virtual panel at Comic-Con@Home in July 2020 - which you can watch in full above - it was revealed that Amazon has renewed The Boys for a third season early. Naturally production on season 2 has been difficult amid the coronavirus outbreak, let alone for season 3, so it's uncertain when that can start. "Hopefully sometime this decade" executive producer Seth Rogen joked at the event.
Rogen also explained to GamesRadar that Kripke already has an idea of how The Boys will end: "Erik does have an ending in mind that he likes and is working towards," he explained, while also qualifying that by noting that "I do also know how fluid these things are."
The Boys season 2 trailer: see the newest teaser here
You can watch the newest trailer for The Boys season 2 below, with rest of the trailers linked below. But, also, here's the full virtual cast reunion, which signed off beautifully with the first moments of The Boys season 2 (47:37). You can also get a peek at Aya Cash as Stormfront a little earlier in the VOD (38:37).
In it - as if we expected anything different - we see the gore hasn't gone anywhere. By our count, in three minutes Black Noir slits two throats, beheads one, and rips another's face in half. We also see more from the mysterious Vought CEO, Giancarlo Esposito, who only made a cameo appearance in season 1.
Dark revelations come to light in this Season 2 trailer for Amazon's The Boys. pic.twitter.com/tBO2z1RQObAugust 4, 2020
The first The Boys season 2 trailer released in December 2019 didn't reveal much about the plot, but it - predictably - has plenty of violence, and snapshots of the show's characters. Then, as of the virtual SDCC 2020 panel in July, we were treated to a strange new clip that again featured a touch more gore than it did plot details. Let's just say that, if you love whales, maybe skip this one. We also got a new trailer earlier in July, which you can see below.
Either way, it appears that The Boys season 2 will pick up right where the first left off, with the evil Superman stand-in Homelander (the magnificent Antony Starr) revealing a super-powered son, and Hughie (Jack Quaid) saving the life of speedster A-Train (Jessie T. Usher), despite running through his girlfriend at the start of the show. Ouch.
We also caught a shot of Terror, Billy Butcher's dog from the comics which, given his special, err, talent, is one of the most exciting additions to the cast going in to season 2.
The Boys season 2 cast hints at the new story to come
With the first trailer and various other clips shown off since, we have a good idea of the official cast list now. Here are The Boys season 2 cast members we know will return:
- Billy Butcher: Karl Urban
- Hughie Campbell: Jack Quaid
- Homelander: Antony Starr
- Annie January: Erin Moriarty
- Jessie T. Usher: A-Train
- Laz Alonso: Mother's Milk
- Chace Crawford: The Deep
- Karen Fukuhara: The Female
- Nathan Mitchell: Black Noir
- Colby Minifie: Ashley Barrett
- Tomer Kapon: Frenchie
- Giancarlo Esposito: Mr Edgar
- Dominique McElligott: Queen Maeve
- Aya Cash: Stormfront
- Shawn Ashmore: The Lamplighter
- Jensen Ackles: Soldier Boy
- Patton Oswalt: ???
The most recent addition to the cast is Shawn Ashmore's The Lamplighter, a member of The Seven who 'retired' before the show's first episode allowing Starlight to join. We say 'retired', but, in the comics, he was really forced out for killing Mallory's grandchildren, and then given up to prevent a war between the Seven and the CIA. However, he then returns, which is at the root of why The Boys broke up eight years ago.
Giancarlo Esposito (best known as Breaking Bad's Gus Fring and Moff Gideon in The Mandalorian) appeared in the first season's finale, guest starring as enigmatic Vought CEO, Mr Edgar. Expect him to play a larger role in season 2, especially with Madelyn Stillwell (Shue) killed in the finale.
In terms of brand new faces, Patton Oswalt will join Aya Cash's Stormfront, along with two other The Boys debutantes: Goran Visnjic and Claudia Doumit are also in for the grisly season 2 party, although this is yet to be officially confirmed. According to Deadline, Visnjic will play Alistair Adana, the cultish leader of a shadowy church, and Doumit an up-and-coming congresswoman. Hugh Campbell Snr. will not return, however, as Simon Pegg told Collider.
And then there's Stormfront, who will be like a "hand grenade" thrown into the Seven, according to Cash - here's her first clip. "I think she’s here to blow up Vought," Cash told EW. "She’s here to try to get Vought back to the original idea behind creating superheroes... And she can be quite the feminist. There’s a lot of, I wouldn’t say misdirect, but she also is a very empowered woman." This new supe even has enough power to fight The Seven.
Look at their faces, those smug pieces of--wait, who the fuck is that green guy? pic.twitter.com/QSPSFH5qsXApril 16, 2020
Will we see a return of the so-called "invisible c**t"? In Eric Kripke's tweet above, we can see a "green guy" who looks an awful lot like Alex Hassell's Translucent. The trouble is, Translucent was killed by Frenchie and his "ass bomb", by, err, shoving explosive where the sun don't shine. So we're not sure how Hassell is returning, but we're interested to see how it's going to happen.
However, someone who'll definitely be appearing is Jensen Ackles (Supernatural), as announced on his Instagram page. Ackles confirmed - with a neat bit of Elvis Presley - that he'll be playing Soldier Boy, known in the comics as the original superhero. Something of a precursor to Homelander, Soldier Boy fought in World War 2 and became the first supe celebrity. "He’ll bring so much humor, pathos, and danger to the role," Kripke extolled in an associated press release.
But when it comes to existing cast members, Kripke has admitted to Digital Spy that he regrets the portrayal of Karen Fukuhara's Kimiko (aka, The Female). "One of the things that I wished I could have done better in season one was to give Kimiko more of a voice," Kripke conceded. "There's the stereotype of a quiet Asian woman, and I was very conscious of not wanting to do that." So, while Kimiko is mute, Kripke will ensure that she "has a very strong voice and a very strong point of view," in season 2.
While nothing is confirmed, it looks like Jeffrey Dean Morgan (best known as the fiendish Negan in The Walking Dead) could have a place in The Boys season 2 cast. Following Eric Kripke's tweet saying "I'll make you a deal. Season 3. I'll write it, and if you're avail, come shoot it!", Morgan replied, "in a heartbeat!"
What is confirmed is that the "terrifying" Black Noir is set to play a major role in the second season - you can see him in action in the first three minutes of season 2 above. Announced at C2E2 Expo, the mystery of the dark-suited masked vigilante will hang over season 2, and he'll have no lines of dialogue or action scenes. We'll never even see his face. "You're going to love what's coming up for Black Noir. It's so good," Karl Urban enthused at a panel.
The Boys season 2 episode titles hint at what's to come
Episode titles for The Boys season 2 were revealed on the WGA website. They don't reveal much, but hint just a little at what to expect from the coming year.
- Butcher, Baker, Candlestick Maker - written by Craig Rosenberg
- Nothing Like It In The World - written by Michael Saltzman
- Over The Hill With The Swords Of A Thousand Men - written by Craig Rosenberg
- Proper Preparation and Planning - written by Rebecca Sonnenshine
- The Big Ride - written by Eric Kripke
- The Bloody Doors Off - written by Anslem Richardson
- We Gotta Go Now - written by Ellie Monahan
- What I Know - written by Rebecca Sonnenshine
A few elements hang in the air from the season one finale. First, expect Compound V, the mysterious drug that gives superpowers to humans, to remain a recurring mystery. We see Mr Edgar discussing it in the first three minutes of season 2 shown off in June 2020.
"If it’s a secret, if it’s nothing the world knows about yet, then it [Compound V] becomes a secret that everyone will kill for, and it gives you an object that everybody wants, and it does all the great things a McGuffin does," Kripke told Entertainment Weekly. Now Billy and Hughie know that secret, what happens next?
At the end of season one, Homelander dropped Billy Butcher on the lawn of his wife, Becca, who he presumed dead. Instead, she has a family with Homelander, including their superpowered son. It's quite a predicament for poor Billy: how will he escape? And does this mean Billy and the rest of The Boys will struggle to function as an underground group, now Homelander has Billy in his laser sights?
The best superhero show on TV?
The Boys was one of the surprise hits of the year, with a strong ensemble cast and an original angle on the superheroes in a time almost saturated with them. Executive producer Seth Rogen's words about the next set of episodes to Collider justify our optimism for the show's future. "We just watched, actually, the first episode of the second season this week. It was a wonderful thing as producers. This is way better than I ever could’ve hoped it would be."