Garth Ennis' work isn't just NSFW, NSFL - not safe for life! This Irish born writer is best known for creating provocative and gruesome works such as Preacher, Crossed, and The Pro. Ennis' stories aren't odes to the comic book medium or superheroes as a whole - they're diatribes against the very concept of costumed vigilantes.
The Boys is perhaps Ennis' most poignant contribution to the worlds of art and literature. However, this series features tons of graphic violence and touches on some very sensitive subject matter. In our minds, there's no way that Amazon will adapt the entirety of Ennis' bloodsoaked thinkpiece. Especially not the following ten scenes from the original comic book series.
10 Tek Knight 'Saves The Day'
The Boys is a deep, dark rabbit hole of debauchery and depravity. To help ease into the ensuing madness, we're going to start this article off on a light note. Well, as light as we can get when talking about this series. Tek Knight was an ingenious inventor who fought crime using technology in his heyday.
By the events of the series, Tek Knight's lost his luster and his mind. For seemingly no reason, Tek Knight finds himself compelled to copulate with anything that has a hole in it. Near the end of the 'Get Some' story arc, Tek Kight seems to save the world by making love with an asteroid. In the end, we learn that Tek Knight's exploits and strange actions are the results of a brain tumor. This scene is funnier than it is grotesque. However, it detracts from the story at large and will severely muddle The Boys' pacing per episode.
Yeah, you probably have an idea of what you're in for based on the heading alone. In the world of The Boys, 'Herogasm' is the name of a miniseries that ran for six issues. During this story arc, the team sneaks into a secret superhero party to try and learn more about The Seven.
What we get are six issues of explicit drug use and gratuitous sex that'd make any rave look like a child's tea party. The artists that have worked on The Boys aim to disarm and unsettle readers with every panel. If you think that Herogasm sounds like a good time, you're in for a rude awakening. To a degree, Herogasm parodies the Marvel Swimsuit Specials of old.
8 Shout Out Gets Bashed For Being Bi
Despite the impression that the vulgarity and violence inherent in his stories might give, Ennis has high hopes for the human race. Ennis believes that things like racism and homophobia have no place in contemporary society. He just has a very, well, visceral way of getting his messages across.
Early on in The Boys, a corrupt superhero group called the Teenage Kix debuts. The team works to bring them down from the inside, blackmailing the Kix into submission. At Billy and co's mercy, the Kix expel one of their members to appease the team. Shout Out, the team's Black and bisexual teammate gets the boot due to his sexuality - the rationale being that an LGBTQ hero wouldn't gel with the general public. This story's from 2006, and society at large has progressed quite a bit since then. The Amazon series will have to find a more nuanced way to tackle this subject if they choose to at all.
7 Little Nina's Explosive End
Alright, dear readers - now's about time to ready your barf bags if you haven't previously done so. We're officially leaving Kansas with this entry, and delving into the perverse and profane. During the 'Glorious Five Year Plan' story arc, The Boys head over to Russia - specifically Moscow. There, they encounter a crimelord named Little Nina.
She's everything you'd expect from a kingpin living in one of Garth Ennis' stories; Nina's cold-hearted, brash, and ambitious in all the wrong ways. The Boys eventually take on Nina and her organization, coming out on top after a brutal battle. Because he's sick in the head, Billy kills Nina by planting an explosive in her vibrator.
6 Terror Follows Billy's Orders
Most of the members of The Boys are chemically enhanced human mercenaries. Terror is the sole exception to this trend; he's a chemically enhanced canine killing machine trained by Billy Butcher. If your mental alarm bells didn't go off after reading that last bit, maybe they will when you learn about Terror's special tricks.
Once he hears a vulgar vocal command from Billy, Terror will run over and sexually assault the Butcher's targets. Kessler the Monkey is proof of this; after Billy beats Kessler for assaulting a paraplegic, Butcher then commands Terror to brutalize the Monkey as a twisted form of revenge. Terror is a parody of just about any canine comic book character you can think of.
5 Starlight Joins The Seven
The pure, naive, and innocent Annie January always wanted to join the Seven ever since she was a young girl. Around that same time, her powers manifested and blinded her parents. Since then, she's experienced her fair share of heart arches and traumatic moments. However, none of that shook her religious zeal or her idealism.
Around the start of The Boys, Annie gets a shot at joining the Seven at long last! However, she has to pass an 'audition' sponsored by The Homelander, A-Train, and Black Noir. In reality, Annie is pressured into performing sexual favors for these psychopaths. This scene is meant to depict the Seven as corrupt and evil. The thing is, it comes at Annie's expense. There are also plenty of scenes later in the series that get that point across without bordering on 'Girlfriend in Fridge' territory.
4 John Godolkin's Child Abuse
Later in the series, The Boys encounter a group of superhero 'outcasts' known as the G-Men. These thinly veiled X-Men parodies are meant to satirize Charles Xavier and his mutant security force. However, Ennis' critique of the X-Men comes off as more than a little mean spirited. Especially when you analyze John Godolkin - Ennis' parody of Professor X.
Whereas Charles Xavier is a mutant civil rights leader who's made his share of mistakes and missteps, Godolkin is a monster. He kidnaps children, brainwashes them and then sexually assaults them. Worse, the older members of the G-Men join in on John's activities. If the Amazon series deals with this story arc, we hope that they find a more subtle and accurate way to critique Professor X. He's occasionally been a jerk over the years, but he isn't a villain.
3 The Death Of Billy Butcher's Wife
Billy Butcher has a lot in common with Frank Castle, aka the Punisher; both men served in their respective nations militaries and cherished their immediate families like precious pieces of gold. Losing their loved ones is what sent Billy and Frank over the edge. Whereas the Punisher resents criminals, Billy hates superheroes all across the board.
Considering what happened to Billy's wife, it's hard not to at least sympathize with the man. On the night of their honeymoon, a mysterious man with superpowers abducted, sexually assaulted, and then disemboweled Billy's wife. In the comics, we see the grim details of the aftermath when Billy wakes up next to his wife Becky's corpse. Whether the Amazon series follows this storyline to the letter, we hope they can give Becky some justice.
2 Enfant Terrible
In the aftermath of Becky's death, Billy didn't wake up alone. Floating inches away from him was a superpowered fetus drenched in blood and viscera. Dumbfounded, Billy boiled over with rage when the fetus attacked him. Impossibly strong and fast, Butcher realized that the fetus was the illegitimate child of Becky and her assailant.
Billy's options were limited and his mind frayed. In the midst of the chaos, Billy lashed out and struck the fetus down. Butcher pressed on, bludgeoning the fetus until all that remained was gore and carnage. There are dark moments in comic books, and then there's depicting infanticide. We sincerely hope that Amazon works around this gruesome scene.
1 A Superhero Eats A Baby
The heading says it all, doesn't it? The context and justifications for this scene almost don't matter. The fact is that if you read The Boys, you're eventually going to come across this scene in far too fine detail.
This scene is also hard to talk about due to its significance to the narrative. All we can say is that it comes late into the story, so we likely won't see it any time soon on the Amazon show. This moment definitely should be left unfilmed and unscripted. If Amazon ever decides to touch this one, we hope they take a page from The Silence of The Lambs and just have a character filibuster about the depravity. The potential backlash probably isn't worth the shock value.