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The Ending Of The Boys Season 2 Explained

After eight episodes that included everything from a strange cult-like church to a whale carcass to a family reunion to an actual Nazi, The Boys season 2 is finally wrapped up. It was another year of unhinged adventures for Hughie, Butcher, Frenchie, Mother's Milk, and Kimiko, and things got crazy even by season 1 standards, which of course means we're left with a lot to unpack as we look ahead to what season 3 might bring.

The Boys season 2 was bigger, stranger, and somehow even darker than the first, as the title team of Supe hunters went to ground while Vought sought to solidify its position in the wake of public revelations about Compound V. It was in the midst of that struggle that Stormfront, a powerful up-and-coming Supe, emerged to become the hip new voice of the Seven, rallying loyal fans to her cause as she also did her best to win Homelander's loyalties. Meanwhile, Homelander himself was trying to groom his son Ryan for greatness, as the Boys' leader Billy Butcher just hoped and prayed to get his wife Rebecca out from under Vought's nose.

So how did that all shake out? What questions are left unanswered? We're here to talk about it all. This is the ending of The Boys season 2 explained.

Homelander over the edge

It's been clear since the beginning of The Boys that Homelander is a dangerous sociopath with little regard for human life outside of his inner circle (which is always tiny), a tendency to be highly manipulative, and a horrible temper that can get people killed in seconds. The question is always to what degree those tendencies can be kept in check, and as we see the character at the end of Season 2, it looks like almost nothing about Homelander is stable anymore.

In season 1 his twisted relationship with Madelyn was the main check on his behavior, but he ended up killing her after a perceived betrayal. Then in season 2, he seems to draw strength and comfort from both Stormfront and his son Ryan, even though the boy isn't always what he hoped for. By the end of the season finale, Stormfront is at death's door and Ryan has finally, definitively, chosen a different path for himself, rejecting his father's path of violence and manipulation. That leaves Homelander absolutely untethered in the final moments of the season, and whatever happens with him next will definitely be an extremely volatile situation.

Neuman's secret

In the penultimate episode of season 2 of The Boys, the United States government is rocked by a strange and violent attack in the halls of Congress. Just as a congressional committee is about to launch a hearing investigating Vought and the creation of superheroes, heads begin literally exploding all around the committee room.

The season finale opens with Stormfront in particular feeling rather optimistic about the attack, even if she doesn't know who did it. By the end of the season, more heads have exploded, but none of the major characters know the culprit even as we the audience learn that it was Congresswoman Neuman, who is apparently a Supe with extremely potent mental powers who's been hiding in plain sight this entire time.

What is Neuman's endgame? Is she out to unmake and unseat Vought as the world's premier home base of superheroes? Is she just a pure supervillain trying to sow chaos? We don't know, but we do know she's dangerous in more ways than one heading into season 3.

Hughie's future

At the end of season 2, as the Boys go their separate ways in the wake of Stormfront's defeat, we see Hughie Campbell moving in a new direction with his life. Though he's happy to stay with Annie and try to make their relationship work in a more stable environment, he's less happy to stay with the Boys, and eager to let go of the chapter in his life when he seemed to live between two worlds, one out in the open and one in the shadows.

Little does Hughie know, though, that he seems to be on the verge of living some kind of double life yet again. The last thing we see him do in season 2 is sign up for a job in Congresswoman Neuman's office, and while that might not necessarily put him right in the thick of Supe battles yet again, it does put him right next to arguably the most dangerous non-Homelander Supe on the planet. How long until he realizes he's been wrapped up in another superhero scheme? Will Neuman rope him into her plans, or try to? Will Butcher and the Boys come calling if they realize what Neuman really is? It might be a long time coming, but it's clear that Hughie is already on the verge of getting pulled right back into a world he was eager to leave.

Two Supes incapacitated

One of the defining characteristics of The Boys in terms of major arcs has been the gradual breakup of the original, stable lineup of the Seven as we saw it when Starlight joined at the beginning of season 1. Her addition was supposed to be the only major replacement upon the retirement of Lamplighter, but since then, Homelander has struggled to hold his little super-team together. By the middle of season 2, both the Deep and A-Train are gone, Starlight is full-on rebelling, and Maeve is beginning to have second thoughts about everything. At that point, it looked like the only loyalists left in the group were the newcomer Stormfront and the silent enforcer Black Noir.

By the end of season 2, both of those loyal Homelander allies are seriously incapacitated. Maeve takes Noir out by feeding him an Almond Joy, activating a tree nut allergy that may not have killed him, but has at least left him nearly braindead with no real prognosis. As for Stormfront, she's still alive, but she's got no limbs and she's been outed as a literal Nazi, so we're probably not seeing her for a while. Suffice it to say the Seven will look very different yet again in season 3.

Redeemed heroes?

Season 2 of The Boys featured a lot of minor arcs on top of the major ones, and one that paid off in a hilariously twisted way by the season finale was the dual redemption journey of the Deep and A-Train. Both were expelled from the Seven for different reasons over the course of the first two seasons, and both hoped to leverage the influence of the Church of the Collective to get back in Vought's good graces. Of course, it didn't go quite the way we may have thought.

The Deep spent all season making sacrifices, changing his behavior and doing what he was told by the Church in the hope that the Seven would see the light. Then, at the eleventh hour, A-Train stole Church files on Stormfront and leaked them to the Boys, getting her ousted and, by extension, impressing Church leadership and Vought with his initiative. So while A-Train is now back in the Seven, the Deep is left once again without a home base, continuing to fail no matter what he tries.

Ryan's future

Much of the most personal conflict in The Boys season 2 centered on Ryan, the child of Homelander and Rebecca Butcher, who'd been raised by Rebecca in secret on a Vought-owned property away from the rest of the world. Throughout the season we saw Homelander working to assert more control over Ryan's life with Stormfront's help, and it all culminated in Billy and the Boys conducting a rescue operation on behalf of Rebecca to get Ryan back.

The rescue operation went off almost without a hitch, but Stormfront intervened at the last minute and the resulting clash led to Rebecca's death. Billy Butcher, who'd already double-crossed Stan Edgar when he realized he couldn't turn Ryan over to Vought, was left with little choice but to turn Ryan over to Grace Mallory and her friends at the CIA. Butcher's hope is that Ryan will be safest in secret government care, but of course Vought knows very well that Butcher betrayed their agreement, so it's hard to see Ryan ever being entirely safe, even if Butcher doesn't know where he is anymore.

Free Boys

When the dust settles at the end of The Boys season 2, a lot of things are different, setting the stage for a season 3 that will be even more unpredictable than the first two have been. Among the big changes, courtesy of Grace Mallory, is that after a very long time in hiding, the Boys are free men. Because they helped take Stormfront down, all charges against them have been dropped, and they've even got the opportunity to take on some government work in the a newly established office to keep an eye on Supes if they want it.

For now, none of the Boys, with the possible exception of Hughie, seem to want that job. Butcher is grieving, Mother's Milk has returned to his family, and Frenchie and Kimiko are off to try and build some version of a life together. Hughie's attempt to land a job with Congresswoman Neuman might get him a position in the government office eventually, but for the moment we've seen the end of the Boys as a cohesive unit — at least until another Supe threat brings them back together.

An unstable Seven

By the end of season 2 of The Boys, the superhero team known as the Seven is basically something that has to be rebuilt from the ground up. Black Noir and Stormfront are down for the count, new member Shockwave is dead, A-Train is on his way back but will walk into a fractured home base, and Homelander is out of his mind. The only truly stable members of the team might be Starlight and Queen Maeve, who are welcomed back into the fold at Vought after the Stormfront crisis.

Of course, the problem there is that both Starlight and Maeve are returning after basically launching a rebellion against Homelander and everything he and Starlight were fighting for. They've managed to return to the fold through sheer force of will and a healthy dose of bribery, but how long will that uneasy truce hold? How long can Maeve keep that damning footage in her back pocket before Homelander finds a way to get it from her? However long it lasts, the Seven as we now know it is going to be on some very shaky ground in season 3.

The future of Vought

In his secret meeting with Butcher in the season finale, Vought CEO Stan Edgar noted that he was happy to have someone like Stormfront selling her message to the world, because every time she pushed for more Compound V, Vought's stock prices went up. Stan is clearly fine with stoking fear so long as he also gets to stoke the value of his empire, but now that Stormfront has been outed as a Nazi and Homelander is clearly off his rocker, where does Vought go from here?

Obviously the front-facing rehabilitation campaign has already begun. Though he can't hide the fact that he let a Nazi in right under his nose, Stan can at least spin it as the story of Starlight and Maeve heroically saving the world from a traitor, and the story of Homelander forgiving Starlight for ever doubting her. And of course, welcoming A-Train back to the Seven also helps with the "coming together" narrative. But there are still a lot of unknown factors at Vought. At the end of season 2, Stan is facing a fresh Congressional push for oversight, a key Supe who's clearly lost his mind, and of course a mysterious assassin who just murdered the head of the Church of the Collective. Vought's weathered storms before, but none quite like this.