Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Storylines Fans Can't Stand In The Boys

Writer and producer Eric Kripke — creator of the popular fantasy drama series "Supernatural" — redefined the superhero genre when he adapted the comic book series "The Boys" for Amazon Prime Video. With the success of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, superhero entertainment has been in no short supply in recent years. "The Boys" takes everything audiences have come to love about the highly-curated Hollywood superhero and flips it on its head with anti-superhero social commentary and graphic black comedy. Set in a universe where the "Supes" are as famous as celebrities, as influential as politicians, and as revered as gods, their corrupt behavior goes unchecked.

Those familiar with the comic books had high expectations for the one-of-a-kind gritty satire, while others were in for a shocking surprise when Season 1 premiered in the summer of 2019. Despite (or perhaps because of) the very adult content, the show was a big success, becoming the first non-Netflix series to break the Top 10 on the Nielsen streaming rankings. But even the most beloved shows feature storylines that don't land with everyone. Luckily for us, it doesn't take superhuman abilities to identify which storylines fans can't stand in "The Boys."

The following article includes spoilers, as well as discussions of addiction and sexual assault.

A-Train's redemption arc

When done right, a redemption arc can be the best type of character development for a villain, taking them from the enemy to a fan favorite. Some favorable examples include Villanelle from "Killing Eve" attempting to put her life as an assassin behind her, or Spike from "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," who goes from killing two vampire slayers in the past to falling in love with one. A-Train, on the other hand, is not the kind of villain audiences want to sympathize with. Maybe it's his first appearance in the pilot that makes it hard to forgive this careless murderer: The super-fast superhero runs straight through Hughie's girlfriend Robin, killing her. But, of course, this would only be the beginning of A-Train's continued lack of empathy, self-centeredness, insecurity, and criminal activity.

After hitting rock bottom with his Compound V addiction, A-Train's worst fears come to life when he's kicked out of The Seven in Season 2. Lost and desperate for his spot back, A-Train does the right thing for the wrong reasons. With Stormfront the only obstacle in his way to getting back into The Seven, A-Train breaks into Vought's archives and steals the Private Data Reserve for Stormfront, giving it to Hughie and Starlight to expose the villain. His plan works, and his troubling Season 3 redemption arc begins. "His redemption arc is like Sisyphus rolling a boulder up that hill," Redditor u/The_real_sanderflop said. His selfish actions in Season 3 cause Supersonic's death and the paralysis of his brother. It feels impossible to feel bad for the Supe at this point.

The Deep and his octopus

The only Supe more pathetic than A-Train is the underwater breather and sea creature communicator The Deep. Although he's often used for comic relief, the question is, at what cost? The most significant part of The Deep's storyline is his depraved sexual abuse against women and sea life. Watching these acts unfold on screen is traumatic, to say the least.

When The Deep is fired from The Seven after his sexual assault against Starlight comes out, he joins the cultish Church of the Collective and meets his new wife, Cassandra. In a way, Cassandra is a cover for The Deep's hidden sexual attraction to sea life. However, it gets to a point in Season 3 when The Deep can no longer repress his true feelings for Ambrosia the octopus, and asks Cassandra to engage in a threesome.

As you can imagine, it doesn't go over well. Redditor u/littleghool tries to make sense of the storyline, asking, "Does he see them as animals? Or more so people? The way he talks is as if it's another person, like Timothy and his children. Or the other one that wanted to...do things to Cassandra. I just wonder if he still considers it beastiality." All valid questions. One thing's for sure, this Reddit user is one of many who don't like this particular storyline. "I've seen enough of it for 67 lifetimes," they added.

Little Nina

A Russian mob boss and ex-employer of Frenchie, Little Nina can be chilling at best, but she's mostly forgettable. Many believe the sole purpose of her character is to deliver exposition about Frenchie's past without moving the plot forward in any meaningful way. Before joining The Boys, Frenchie would pull off elaborate crime heists for Nina with his friends Cherie and Jay.

In Season 3, fans felt as though Frenchie's storyline fell flat after his conflict with Nina. On the hunt for Cherie for stealing her drug shipment, Nina offers Frenchie a deal to keep working with her and to turn in Cherie. Frenchie refuses, and instead, Butcher covers Cherie's debt to Nina. He gives her a hundred grand for her troubles, in hopes of getting her help on a mission to find a supposed superweapon in Russia. She agrees to help in exchange for the money and completing a separate mission. When things go wrong, Nina blames Frenchie and kidnaps him, Kimiko, and Cherie. The three overpower Nina, but she's able to escape.

The whole storyline just seems out of place according to some fans. "It's so weird that the political satire superhero show has this subplot that isn't about political satire OR superheroes," Redditor u/JohnAitorAlt said. Others don't mind Little Nina, but admit that she could (and should) have been used differently. "I actually don't mind her at all and their storyline as its own thing but I would have liked to see it connected to the main plot a little more," u/Annoying-Ass_Insect. "Like the character beats make sense to me, but it feels weird to have them drop off the map from the Boys for this long."

Todd idolizing Homelander

If you thought Stormfront was the most hated character in "The Boys," wait until you meet Todd in Season 3. Introduced as Mother's Milk's ex-wife Monique's new boyfriend, Todd looks like any other ordinary guy. But since he's acting as a stepfather to M.M.'s daughter Janine, M.M. feels especially skeptical of him. Nothing is more important to M.M. than his daughter, which may be because of his traumatic childhood (Soldier Boy killed his grandfather and his dad died trying to take down Vought). Watching his family die at the hands of Supes and Vought left M.M. with PTSD, OCD, and an obsessive vendetta that would cause a rift between him, Monique, and Janine.

Throughout Todd's storyline, he becomes obsessed with Homelander and his radical influence, falling down the rabbit hole of anti-media and conspiracy theories. He exposes Janine to Homelander's views and even takes Janine to a Homelander rally without Monique's permission. When M.M. confronts him about Homelander's unstable and dangerous behavior, Todd insults M.M. for being an absent father, prompting M.M. to knock him out with a punch that Monique and Janine witness. When you think he couldn't get any worse, Todd joins another rally of Homelander and Stormfront groups and cheers Homelander on when he kills an innocent civilian.

Many fans have been left fearing for Janine's safety. When a Redditor asked people to name their worst "The Boys" character, one user said: "Todd. Context: man's gonna get the child aliven't." If this was to happen, it would be "a pivotal moment in the show," another user replied. "Everyone's talking about Homelander and Butcher's potential deaths but killing off the young daughter of one of the main cast members is going to be very big and probably very f***** up."


The subject of another mediocre character arc that fans felt fell flat in Season 3 concerns Mindstorm. In Season 3's "Here Comes a Candle to Light You to Bed," Butcher, Hughie, and Soldier Boy are on the hunt for Mindstorm, a former member of Soldier Boy's Supe group. But, whatever happens, they can't look into Mindstorm's eyes, or they'll be trapped in an eternal nightmare. Amid the chaos, Butcher becomes one of Mindstorm's victims, unable to wake up. His personal nightmare takes up the span of the rest of the episode.

Many fans were happy to see more of Butcher's backstory. The scene set Butcher on "a path toward a better direction as he reflects on his father who made him and reconsiders whether he wants to keep being as harsh as he tends to be in his actions and tactics," said Redditor u/JiraiyaCop. What fans didn't enjoy was what happened to Mindstorm when he freed Butcher. The mind-reading former Supe is brutally beaten to death by Soldier Boy in a scene that upset and confused many fans. "I am wondering why the show / Soldier Boy never explained that Mindstorm is also able to control people with his mind," Redditor u/finnjakefionnacake said. "All he says is that he can trap people in an endless nightmare, but then we find out he can brainwash people too and get them to do his bidding? If that's the case, Soldier Boy didn't think that was pertinent information?!"

Supersonic the sacrificial lamb

In Season 3, a new superhero called Supersonic is introduced as a contestant on the Vought reality show "American Hero." The winner gets the chance to become a part of The Seven. The handsome ex-boy band member and Starlight share a history as friends and former lovers, which is essentially his whole storyline. It seems as though his only purpose in the show before he gets killed off is to make Hughie jealous.

After Starlight warns Supersonic against joining The Seven out of fear for his safety, Supersonic decides to accept the offer, intending to help protect Starlight against Homelander. But the nice guy superhero isn't equipped to handle the corruption of The Seven. When he leaks to A-Train his and Starlight's plans to go against Homelander, A-Train lets Homelander know, causing Supersonic's death. Homelander uses this to then threaten Starlight.

Supersonic getting killed off so soon without proper development felt like a cop-out to some fans. Instead of killing any of the main characters, the show's creators went down the route of bumping off the new guy, which never has the same impact. "He is just there as a plot device," Redditor u/FrozeninIce248 said of Supersonic, while u/Struggle-Agile called the character a "sacrificial lamb."

Butcher and Hughie abusing Compound V

In "The Boys," Compound V is a serum created by Vought founder Frederick Vought, formulated to turn ordinary humans into superhumans. The initial intention was to use the serum on Nazi soldiers during World War II. Today, the serum is still manufactured in secret and is used in dangerous experiments on children and infants, since the survival rate is higher than in adult test subjects. When a superhero takes Compound V, it can temporarily enhance their powers, acting as a type of steroid. Other than that, little is known about the serum, since its production is kept confidential.

During Season 3, Butcher knows he'll need an edge if he's to go up against Homelander. When Maeve tips off Butcher about a superweapon that could supposedly kill Homelander, she supplies him with some vials of V24 — a new variant of Compound V still being tested — to help him in his mission. The other members of The Boys notice something is wrong with Butcher and are surprised to find out Butcher is taking the serum, given how much he hates Supes. Hughie decides to take some, too, despite Butcher's warnings. However, the V24 hangovers aren't the worst of it.

Starlight warns Butcher that too many doses are fatal and instructs him to tell Hughie before it's too late. Fans weren't happy when Butcher ignored Starlight's warnings and didn't tell Hughie about the fatal dangers of V24. Eventually, he decides to save Hughie, but Butcher continues to selfishly take the serum, leaving him with only a year to live. The whole storyline has left fans scratching their heads. "Wouldn't Hughie already have some permanent damage from the V24?" Redditor u/AcanthocephalaOne702 asked. In response, u/JungyBrungun said: "Compound V works however the writers require it to work at a given time."

Queen Maeve's happily ever after

Queen Maeve is everyone's favorite morally gray bisexual superhero. In Season 1, we see her struggle with her compliance with Vought's corruption. With the new addition of Starlight, Maeve is reminded of herself when she was younger, hopeful and wanting to do good. Slowly, we see Maeve turn for the better and stand up against Homelander after all his abuse. A significant aspect of Maeve's storyline is her relationship with Elena, a woman she dated before joining The Seven. The two rekindle their relationship but struggle with being forced to go public.

In Season 3, Maeve takes a bolder stand against Homelander and works with The Boys to take him down for good. In a final battle against Homelander, Maeve sacrifices herself when she sees Soldier Boy about to blow up the building. In an unexpected turn of events, Maeve survives but loses her powers. She takes this opportunity to fake her death to the public, runs off with Elena, and starts anew.

Although fans were happy Maeve didn't fall into the "bury your gays" trope, some were disappointed by her overall arc in Season 3. "They subverted her whole theme she had this season," said Redditor u/hellman1721. "It's okay if she gets a happy end, but her direction ought to be consistent." Some fans felt it would have been a better tribute to the character to have her die fighting for what's right, considering the journey she's been on. "Concluding her arc with a meaningful sacrifice and dying a true hero would've been natural," Redditor u/ShamwowSwag said.

Love Sausage

Like Termite, who uses his powers to shrink down and enter small spaces on the human body you'd never want anyone to enter, Love Sausage is a crazy character with an outrageous power. As a Russian ex-cop, ex-superhero, and communist bar owner, his character is well-developed in the comics. Sadly, the same can't be said for his character in the show. Fans were disappointed with this less significant Love Sausage, who was introduced as a Sage Grove patient being experimented on by Vought.

In the comics, this Supe is well endowed, hence the name. The show maximizes this during a scene when he and the rest of the patients escape, with Love Sausage using his famed appendage to attack M.M. "Love Sausage came around reasonably late in the development of the script," Eric Kripke told Entertainment Weekly. "We had a couple of the drafts written, but then we sometimes reach a point, as we did in this one, where we said, 'You know what? It's just not crazy enough. We're missing that moment that makes people say holy s***.'"

The scene is indeed shocking, though fans can't help but miss the comic book version of their beloved character. "Unless they manage to tie him in next season it's a real waste of a character," u/Dknight560 said on Reddit. "Especially since this show has got in a habit of inventing supes rather than use ones from the comics."

Butcher and Ryan

M.M. isn't the only member of The Boys struggling with complicated family dynamics. Before his life became all about hunting down and destroying Supes, Butcher had a humble existence with his wife, Becca, the Senior Director of Digital Marketing at Vought. Everything would change for the worst after Becca was raped by Homelander and fell pregnant with his child. Becca was forced to fake her death and go into hiding without telling Butcher about what had happened. When they finally reunite in Season 1, Butcher isn't fond of keeping Ryan around, thinking of him as a "Supe-freak." But when Becca stands by Ryan, Butcher understands how much the child means to her.

After Ryan's uncontrollable powers kill Becca, Butcher abides by Becca's wishes and swears to protect Ryan. Their relationship is complex, to say the least. However, the most frustrating part of their storyline for fans is Butcher's constant missteps with Ryan. No one expects Butcher to be the perfect father figure, but when he snaps at Ryan in Season 3, blaming him for killing Becca, fans couldn't believe how badly he fumbled the ball.

This betrayal leaves Ryan confused about who to trust, and Homelander seeks to take advantage of that. Redditor u/Sick-Nurse expressed annoyance with Ryan, saying, "Like really, he's gonna flip from good to evil in half a second, throwing away everything his dead mother taught him for 10 years just because homelander showed up once? The man threw him off a building." But if we're going to direct our anger at anyone, it should definitely be Butcher, the adult, and not Ryan, the child.

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

Anything to do with Hughie

In Season 1, Hughie is introduced as the main protagonist of the show, but in later seasons, the focus shifts to the rest of the ensemble cast. A lot of fans feel this was a smart move, given Hughie's unsavory reputation among some viewers. Although there's nothing inherently bad about the timid video store employee turned member of The Boys, viewers constantly peg him as the weakest character of the bunch. "Hughie Campbell is shameless, atrocious fan service that spoils an otherwise solid cast," said Redditor u/cuttingcup. "Against a backdrop of so many distinct and well-defined characters, the useless blob called Hughie is so glaringly faded and unsatisfying. He's literally only there to stroke the egos and fantasy life of what the show unflatteringly assumes to be its own fanbase."

It's not just the fan service element of Hughie that people don't like, either. Many viewers have expressed distaste for Hughie's story in the show, pointing out that he's on the verge of being delusional. Explaining why Hughie is their most-hated character, u/SlowSykes said: "He basically convinced himself he's doing all of this for his ex but he's not he just wants to prove to the world he's not a loser & that he can be useful." He got on people's nerves from the beginning, and Hughie's reputation among the fans hasn't improved since. "He's worse than ever in Season 3," u/rykius said in 2022. Whether you're willing to cut Hughie some slack or not, it's hard not to agree that the average guy next door doesn't shine as brightly as his complex colleagues.