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Why The Boys' Butcher Needs To Be Single For A While

This article contains spoilers for season 2 of The Boys

The romantic in all of us needs to believe that there is a special person out there for each of us. Even Attila the Hun probably had a lovely moment where he sighed peacefully in the hut of some conquered village, while a nameless concubine stroked his chest and talked about settling down with a white picket fence and some puppies. The desire for a happy ending is part of what keeps us trudging along through all the whale guts and bullet wounds that plague our favorite characters on The Boys. The more we learn of the romantic past of good ol' William Butcher (Karl Urban), the more we hope that he gets a handle on all that repressed rage and learns to love like a normal human being.

At the end of season 1, we were stunned to discover that Butcher's wife, Becca (Shantel VanSanten), whose death is the primary source of all his animosity toward Supes, is actually alive! Not only that, but she is raising Homelander's (Antony Starr) child in a nice cozy house on a Vought compound surrounded by an unscalable medieval-style wall. Becca need not fear, though. Billy Boy is a man of action — a man of endless snark and testosterone-loaded rage. Also, he is a stubborn bastard who displays an inability to empathize with anything Supe-related — even an innocent child. 

A highly anticipated meet-up between the two star-crossed lovers in season 2 found the ferocious headhunter woefully unprepared for Becca's series of devastating truth bombs. Despite Butcher's efforts to break his wife out of Supe-burbia, she makes it pretty apparent that he will be leaving the Vought compound the same way he entered it: alone. We're sure Butcher doesn't see it this way, but it's likely for the best at the moment. As The Boys' twisted anti-morality play continues to unfold, it is becoming obvious that Butcher needs to be single for a while.

Butcher and Becca can't be together until he changes

It has been stated several times by both Butcher and his mentor, Grace Mallory (Laila Robins), that he was trained and aimed directly at Homelander. The entire ordeal has consumed him for the past 8 years. The desire for retribution has become a facet of his identity. The irony is: The xenophobia that The Boys satirizes in its representation of the cultural climate is also present in our favorite anti-villain. Butcher doesn't just attach his animosity to Homelander himself — he hates every Supe alive. We're just not sure that's a road Becca can follow him down.

The sexual assault ordeal at the gloved hands of Homelander was a horrific one for Becca — of that, there is no doubt. She became a mother without her consent under the most horrific possible circumstances, but she stepped up to the plate anyway. While Butcher has been on the warpath, Becca has been living in a quaint house behind protective walls, raising her child. Her entire life has consisted of nothing but raising a goodhearted child that is nothing like his father. In some sense, she's resisting Homelander just as much as her husband is — but in her own, peaceful way. She also lives with the knowledge that abandoning the boy might create another Homelander — a poor outcome for everyone involved. It's hard to imagine Becca setting those grave responsibilities aside, and following her husband down the road to violence. Conversely, we can't imagine Butcher putting down the artillery and helping Becca build a happy home for Homelander's spawn. The two are at an impasse.

We remain skeptical that anyone on The Boys is going to get a nice, pat happy ending, but if Butcher and Becca are ever going to be reunited, they're going to have to reconcile some serious philosophical differences. That stuff runs deep.