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Small Details You Missed In The Boys Season 3

It seems like Amazon Prime's "The Boys" just gets better and better. Every season raises the stakes, pumps up the humor, and doubles down on the show's gross-out factor. Season 3 is yet another new high point. It introduces new characters like Soldier Boy, new concepts like Temp V, and new scenes that are equal parts horrifying and hilarious. The team behind "The Boys" have really outdone themselves this time around.

Part of what makes "The Boys" so special is that every episode is packed with small details that most viewers will only catch after their second or third viewing. "The Boys" has an intricate internal history that is referenced all over the place, but the show also goes out of its way to call out things in the real world as well. From unique character details to meaningful pop culture references to gag-inducing cameos, here are the small details that you missed in the latest season of "The Boys."

Soldier Boy's real backstory

In Season 3, The Boys find themselves going up against an all-new supe: Soldier Boy. Technically, Soldier Boy isn't a new supe at all. He's the first powered-up living weapon Vought created, and he's been a part of the company for a long time. According to the Vought-approved version of his biography, his service in World War II included storming the beaches on D-Day, and he continued working with Vought into the Vietnam War. Like Homelander, Soldier Boy has incredible strength and impenetrable skin. He also doesn't seem to age and has more than a handful of personality quirks — compulsive marijuana smoking and casually homicidal tendencies, to cite two examples — that make him a profoundly unreliable hero.

Soldier Boy reportedly died back in the 1980s. At the beginning of the season, Butcher is investigating how the seemingly unbeatable Soldier Boy was finally defeated. Maeve helps Butcher's investigation as her own form of rebellion against Vought, and the intel that she gives him in the first episode of the season also includes a hint at Soldier Boy's real personality. Maeve gives Butcher a file on Soldier Boy which prominently features the name Raymond L. S. Patriarca. It's not clear whether Soldier Boy is this universe's version of the real-world Rhode Island mobster, or if Soldier Boy worked for him as a member of the La Cosa Nostra gang. But the file definitely shows us that Soldier Boy was in jail when Vought discovered him. Despite his unsavory past, Vought still decided to give him powers. It turns out Vought's penchant for creating ill-behaved superguys goes back to the very beginning of its history.

Hughie's love for Billy Joel continues

To outsiders, Billy Joel's music probably seems like a bizarre pairing with the extra raunchy, hyper-violent content of "The Boys." But the Piano Man is intimately connected with the show. In the very first episode of "The Boys," Hughie and his girlfriend Robin are having an intense debate about the merits of Billy Joel's music when A-Train kills her. That incident might have changed Hughie's relationship to his favorite recording artist, but it also marks the beginning of some great needle drops in the Amazon Prime series.

Season 2 features multiple Billy Joel songs, and the artist himself was excited enough to tweet his support for the show. The Joel-"Boys" connection continues into Season 3, but this time the music is even more thematically appropriate. "Uptown Girl" plays in the first episode of the season over a montage of Hughie's near-perfect life with Annie and working for the Federal Bureau of Superhuman Affairs. The song marks a new high point for Hughie, but it also comes back over the episode's credits just after Hughie discovers that his boss is the head-popping supe who first begins terrorizing people back in Season 2. Hughie might love some Billy Joel, but the music isn't always a good omen for his immediate future.

Butcher's very attached to his dog

Most of the time, Billy Butcher comes across as cold, calculating, and heartless. But every so often, there's a small hint indicating that Butcher has a softer side. In "The Boys" comics, Butcher's dog Terror is a regular member of the team. Butcher's affection for the bulldog shows that he does, in fact, have the capacity to care for something other than himself; he simply chooses to do so in an extremely selective, Terror-specific capacity.

Butcher's fur baby has a small role in Season 2, but for the most part, TV audiences have missed out on that part of Butcher's life. That's probably because, as showrunner Eric Kripke told EW, "It's so f****** hard to work with animals." Ultimately, having Terror join The Boys on their misadventures on a regular basis turned out to be too much of a hassle.

While Terror might not be helping in the effort to bring down Homelander in Season 3, he isn't absent from the show entirely. This season sees The Boys move into their office in the Flatiron Building, and Butcher spruces his desk up with a cookie jar that looks identical to Terror. Fans get to have another peak when Butcher is working on his laptop and Terror appears as the picture of Butcher's desktop background. Beneath that tough exterior, Butcher is a softy dog lover.

Sweet product placement

TV shows cost millions of dollars to put together and raising that kind of money can be a real challenge. Most shows, and even movies, tend to include some product placement to pay the bills. Even though Amazon certainly isn't hurting for money, "The Boys" has done the same. Seeing real world products in a fictional universe can sometimes feel jarring, but "The Boys" has been able to include products in a way that fits into the story in a more-or-less natural way.

In Season 3, Hughie and Annie's relationship is going better than ever, but it's not completely smooth sailing. Shortly after Homelander reveals that he killed Supersonic, Hughie has his own bombshell to drop on Annie, so he decides to soften the blow with some candy and White Claw. We suppose whether or not the brand name boozey seltzer seems out of place or not is up for debate, but the candy — Almond Joy, Charleston Chew, and Bit-O-Honey — actually has real significance to the in-show history of "The Boys." Many episodes previously when Hughie and Annie first start to hit it off, he finds out that those are her favorite kinds of candy. At the time, Hughie calls out Annie's taste for the "three worst candy bars in the history of candy," but clearly, he filed away the information for later use.

Brave Maeve's Inclusive Kingdom

There have always been clear parallels between Vought in the world of "The Boys" and Disney in our world. Both companies have histories that go back to the early 20th century, and both function as massive entertainment companies that also pursue numerous side projects in the form of corporate subsidiaries. In Season 3, the Vought-Disney associations become even more heavy-handed, and not just because we see much more of Payback — this series' in-universe answer to the Avengers — than usual.

VoughtLand is exactly what you would expect from an alternate reality Disneyland. Kimiko and Frenchie have to make their way through a section of the park called Brave Maeve's Inclusive Kingdom, and their walk is packed with hilarious details. Clearly, Vought is capitalizing on Maeve's identity in the way only a soulless mega-conglomerate can, as well as scrambling to make the public forget about the literal Nazi who occupied a prominent and influential position in The Seven until very recently. On top of ridiculous caricatures of Vought's heroes and an unbelievable amount of rainbow flags, the Inclusive Kingdom also has some searing jabs at corporate appropriation of social justice issues. Kimiko and Frenchie walk past food vendors like "BLM BLTs," "Woke Wok," and a Mexican food stand with a menu that includes "Systemically Oppressed Tacos." Vought isn't going to lose out on marketing opportunities, no matter how shameless they are.

Madelyn's son is doing well

The relationship between Homelander and Vought executive Madelyn Stillwell was a major focus of the first season of "The Boys," which premiered in 2019. Homelander's jealousy of Madelyn's son became a huge point of conflict for the two of them, right up until Homelander burned a hole in Madelyn's head in the season finale. In the years since that dramatic moment, the ultimate fate of Madelyn's son Teddy has been a mystery, but Season 3 quietly reveals that Teddy is alive and well, if a little strange.

Hughie's investigation of his boss Victoria Neuman leads him to the Red River Institute. The Institute operates as a home for young supes whose parents either abandoned them or died in a powers-related accident. When Hughie arrives at Red River, he pretends that he and Annie are interested in adopting a child so he can get a closer look at what's happening behind the scenes. In one of the Institute's classrooms, Hughie has a brief interaction with a young teleporting boy who turns out to be little Teddy. The season doesn't reveal how Teddy became a supe, but the reveal has some believing that Teddy is actually Homelander's son. We'll have to wait until Season 4 for more details.

The Seven inspired sex toys

"The Boys" gets plenty of mileage out of its particular brand of raunchy humor. Season 3 found frequent opportunities to blend gross and funny elements to spectacular effect. In the episode "Glorious Five Year Plan," Kimiko carries out a hit for Little Nina, and she finds herself walking into what appears to be a kind of brothel. Kimiko tends to use her environment to her advantage in combat situations. In this instance, that means punching sex toys through Russian mobsters. These aren't just any sex toys, however — they are all based on individual members of The Seven.

The sex toys unsurprisingly make their way back into the show for the bombastic "Herogasm" episode. It turns out that even supes like to use their products to spice up things in the bedroom, or living room, or kitchen. You could spend plenty of time going frame by frame through "Herogasm" to spot all the different Vought brand toys. But "The Boys" clearly knows its audience, and the minds behind the show have decided to save everyone the time. There's an "official" storefront for all The Seven-based sex toys online. Unfortunately, the site doesn't allow you to order any of them for yourself, making this a very unusual case of an Amazon-affiliated organization passing up an obvious money-making opportunity. 

Soldier Boy's history with Stormfront

Soldier Boy's history with Vought goes all the way back to the company's earliest days. He's been out of the picture since the '80s, but he has intimate knowledge of the first several decades of Vought's roster of supes, and also made an outsized impact on supe culture. In fact, as Soldier Boy himself reveals, he's the founder of the annual Herogasm event. When he discovers that Herogasm is still running almost four decades after his apparent death, he clearly takes a little bit of pride in its longevity.

Soldier Boy brags about his history with Herogasm to Hughie and Butcher, and in doing so, he also reveals a shocking detail about his history with Stormfront. He tells the others that he created the first Herogasm alongside another supe known as Liberty. Season 2 of "The Boys" revealed that Stormfront was once called Liberty before Vought forced her to undergo a rebranding. Neither Hughie nor Butcher tell Soldier Boy what became of his old friend, and as far as we know, he doesn't discover Liberty's fate for himself before the end of Season 3. Considering Homelander's own intimate history with Stormfront, maybe it's better for everyone if this truth remains buried.

Eric Kripke's cameo

There's a long history of creators giving themselves small roles in their work. Despite many disappointing cameos in movies and television, some cameos are hugely important to what's happening in the story while others are hardly noticeable. In one respect, showrunner Eric Kripke's Season 3 cameo falls into the third category, because we never see his face. In another respect, Kripke's cameo is very noticeable, in the respect that it's kind of gross and would make plenty of other people cringe.

Kripke's single-line role comes in the season's most over-the-top episode. Because Kripke's face isn't actually seen in "Herogasm," it's easy to minute his shining moment, especially because there's so much else to take in. One of the episode's grossest moments — for both viewers and the characters involved — arrives when Starlight and M.M. are exploring the grounds of Herogasm. When M.M. opens the door to a new room in the house, Kripke's voice shouts, "I'm throwin' ropes," and M.M. finds himself covered head to toe in a sticky situation. Not every showrunner would jump at the chance to say that particular line, but it takes a special someone to lead "The Boys."

Supernatural family reunion

Before working on the "The Boys," showrunner Eric Kripke was the mastermind behind another wildly successful TV series. "Supernatural" ran for well over 300 episodes on The CW, launched the career of Jensen Ackles, made sure Jared Padalecki still had a job after "Gilmore Girls," and inspired a prequel series called "The Winchesters." Obviously, Season 3 of "The Boys" sees Ackles join the show as Soldier Boy, but he isn't the only "Supernatural" alumnus who's part of the Amazon Prime series. "Supernatural" team members have worked in front of and behind the camera from the very beginning of "The Boys," but Season 3 has really operated as a reunion for the old CW crew.

In addition to Ackles, this season of "The Boys" also includes appearances from other "Supernatural" actors. Jesse Turner plays Gunpowder in flashback sequences in this season, and he previously appeared in the "Supernatural" episode "I Believe the Children Are Our Future." This season also introduces Jim Beaver as presidential candidate Robert Singer. Beaver previously played the character Bobby Singer on "Supernatural," and both characters grew up in South Dakota. Dakota Bob, as he's called by some in "The Boys," could become even more important in Season 4.

M.M.'s political history

"The Boys" is loaded with social and political satire, but the show's main characters are so caught up in their battle against Vought and the supes that they hardly ever have time to stop and directly address issues that also exist in our world. A-Train and Blue Hawk provide an exception to this rule in Season 3 by offering their perspectives on police brutality and systemic racism; however, dipping into the discourse of current events doesn't pan out so hot for either of them.  

Despite the prominence of supes in this universe, there's plenty of overlap between the political history of "The Boys" and our own. Some background details in Season 3 can help fans better understand how one character in particular relates to some of the most important issues in recent history. M.M.'s apartment becomes a regular hangout for the characters this season, and in addition to meticulously cleaning the place, M.M. has also decorated it with political memorabilia. Hanging above his TV is a "Move on over, or we'll move on over you" sign that was adopted by the Black Panthers in the 1960s. In shots of M.M.'s entryway, fans can spot a framed picture of President Barack Obama hung above a "Vote Huey Newton" poster. M.M. himself is much too young to have been a member of the Black Panthers, but it's not a stretch to imagine that his father had time to participate in the movement in between his legal battles with Vought and Soldier Boy.

Ticker details

When it comes to attention to detail, "The Boys" goes above and beyond most other shows. It's not just that "The Boys" is filled with references to other series or small details about the history of its own world. The team behind Amazon's series also takes care to accurately recreate the feel of ridiculous commercials and cable news segments. They also never miss an opportunity to sneak in a joke, which means that any time a news segment is on screen, the ticker at the bottom of the screen is running with some hilarious detail.

In Season 3, the trend of ticker jokes begins in the very first episode. The news is covering a group of Stormfront sympathizers who call themselves Stormchasers. The ticker at the bottom explains that some Stormchasers have gathered to await the return of JFK Jr. — something some conspiracy theorists actually believed would happen back in 2021. In fact, the news ticker jokes in "The Boys" are almost always poking fun at some real-life figure or group. In the Season 3 finale, a news ticker takes a jab at Texas Senator Ted Cruz. The ticker says that Cruz was caught trying to leave a hotel without paying for the pornography that he ordered in his room. It's those kinds of small details that make "The Boys" spectacular to watch again and again.