A TV adaptation of Dynamite Entertainment's "The Boys" is currently in development at Cinemax, and -- according to Garth Ennis, who co-created the series with Darick Robertson -- it wouldn't have gotten this far without Marvel Studios' recent success.
"Ten years ago, if you introduced 'The Boys' to a mainstream audience, they would've been mystified," Ennis explained to The Hollywood Reporter. "They would be able to identify roughly who was standing in for Batman, Superman, the Hulk, probably Spider-Man and Captain America. Not beyond that. Now, 10 years on, with the success of the various franchises, mainstream audiences have been educated in the world of superheroes. So when an Iron Man-esque guy pops up, they'll know who that is. That's going to be simpler."
However, that doesn't mean it'll be a simple process overall. Ennis believes the struggle with adapting the comic will lie in "making 'The Boys' look as good as a superhero movie. It's less grounded than 'Preacher' in that regard."
"We're in a similar place with it now where we were with 'Preacher,'" added executive producer Seth Rogen. "Now that we've convinced everyone to let us adapt this into a show, what are we actually going to do?"
Ennis also succinctly summed up the premise of the show with an unofficial tagline: "Sick of superheroes? Because we are."
Dynamite Entertainment's "The Boys," which ran for 72 issues from 2008 to 2012, depicted a world wherein superheroes had become amoral celebrities that often engaged in destructive and selfish behavior. The Boys are a CIA squad that keeps those heroes in check, taking them out permanently if need be.
Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg and Neal Moritz are involved in the new series, and Rogen and Goldberg helped develop the adaptation along with "Supernatural's" Eric Kripke. Kripke will also write for the series and serve as executive producer. Rogen and Goldberg, who recently directed the pilot for AMC's "Preacher," will direct the pilot for the Cinemax series. Ennis and Robertson will serve as co-executive producers. Additionally, Original Film's Moritz, Pavun Shetty and Ori Marmur; Point Grey's Rogen, Goldberg and James Weaver; as well as Ken Levin and Kickstarter's Jason Netter are on board as EPs.