"The Boys" is getting the plane to start its descent and accelerate towards the final destination. It's not spinning its wheels anymore, it's pushing things together. The current arc, 'Proper Preparation and Planning,' is setting up a change within both opposing groups, the Boys and the Seven. It seems that bureaucratic red tape and governmental garbage can bog anyone down. It might just be the person who can handle the game best that will reign supreme.
The Homelander is an analogous character and so easy to keep very thin on the page, which Ennis has done to various lengths over the run so far. Here, we see a deep fissure within the Homelander that is going to make for great drama, and probably laughs, later on. It's a creepy scene as this pillar of strength shows his greatest weakness and it's all done with some effective dialogue, no action.
In a scene that uses many words to tell us exactly what is going and who is where, Butcher sits down with the previous member of The Boys who lead the team before Wee Hughie ever joined. Ennis has written many scenes in this comic that are simply talking heads and, while he usually keeps it fresh, I have noticed a tendency for him to not use character names all that often, which can lead to some mild confusion when discussing members of Vought American. I wish he would act as if any issue might be someone's first but I guess that's so rarely true with a series like this.
The flashback of an old meeting between the Boys and the Seven at the end of the issue works well and is interesting. These are the scenes that "The Boys" does best, showing great moments where the team has to step in and clean up the mess created by these arrogant heroes. Any good spy plot needs set up but Ennis needs to remember to give us the pay off and this flashback just starts it - the next issue should show us exactly what happened to the Lamplighter.
It's been a few months now and Darick Robertson has finally been replaced in my heart. I still miss him, sure, but I'm learning how to get by without him. It helps that Braun is still doing a great job in all the variety of scenes required of him. This became especially obvious this week as he drew the Seven and showed he can bring the dynamic flair to his superheroes that Robertson also did. The main players might look slightly different but they still emote as we need so the title's visual quality remains.
Next month is the milestone #50 issue, so you can see this issue setting up plenty of blocks to knock over in 30 days. We're getting inside the head of the Homelander, and you just know it's only going to get worse, and Butcher is reminiscing about an old mission. It's a good issue though it lacks any sort of hook that makes it completely memorable. The arc title probably says it all, this is about getting some ducks in a row. It just remains to be seen how those ducks will be killed and violated but it surely seems to be worth the wait. This is solid quality, and that's something to be appreciated from a comic that ships so regularly.