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The Boys TV Show Rejected One Huge Homelander Twist That Changed Everything

"The Boys" is making a major change from its comic source material, rewriting a significant twist involving the true identity of Black Noir (Nathan Mitchell) and his connection to Homelander (Antony Starr). In an interview with Variety, Eric Kripke, showrunner of "The Boys," said he's actively avoiding the twist in the original comics that Black Noir is a clone of Homelander and is responsible for his darkest actions.

In the comics, Homelander is still a power-hungry, violent megalomaniac, but he truly loses control after he is accused of committing horrific crimes, including cannibalism of a baby. It turns out Black Noir, a clone of Homelander designed as an insurance policy if the Supe ever turns against Vought, is actually the one who did it. Kripke calls the reveal a "hell of a twist," but said that "the mileage varies, and I'm sure fans are mad I'm not going that way, but that felt not as satisfying to me."

Krikpe explains that the idea involving Black Noir and Homelander never felt grounded enough for "The Boys" television series. "If I'm going to follow this villain, I want this guy to be the villain. So I was never really into the clone idea," he said. "Plus, cloning feels like too — I'm going to sound silly — but cloning feels too magical for the show. We try to say that superheroes are the only slippery banana, and that everything else we try to make as grounded as possible."

Is someone else being set up to defeat Homelander?

"The Boys" television series is no stranger to making significant changes to its comic book source material. In the show, The Deep (Chace Crawford) ditches his giant diving helmet, Stormfront (Aya Cash) is a woman opposed to a man (and isn't Homelander's father), and Soldier Boy (Jensen Ackles) is transformed from a scared wimp on the page to Homelander's capable, super-violent, and depraved father in the show.

So it makes sense for the show to opt to do its own thing with Black Noir and Homelander's relationship. If "The Boys" followed the same comic twist, viewers could see it coming from a mile away. Instead, the series gave Black Noir a different origin, killed him off, and replaced him with a stand-in who appears to be an actor without any apparent powers. With Black Noir out of the running, Homelander's son Ryan (Cameron Crovetti) may be the one Supe capable of stopping his father. Between the pair's fractured relationship, Homelander's desperation to make the world believe Ryan will join The Seven, and the young teenager's complicated feelings about his dad and Billy Butcher (Karl Urban), we seem to be on the road to a father-son face-off that is unlikely to have a happy ending. 

Ultimately, "The Boys" series is successful because of the way it's taken several comic storylines and done something different with them. The Black Noir twist works in the original series, but going a different route appears to have been the right move for the show.