The Boys is basically Watchmen meets Deadpool and it is an absolute blast
The dark, violent, hilarious new show arrives this week.
The thing about superhero movies and TV shows isn't that we're drowning in them, it is that the bad ones forget that there needs to be more to them than just being superhero tales.
That is why the best and most popular ones manage to successfully mix up the formula, from teen rom-com (Spider-Man: Homecoming), to intergalactic war movie (Avengers: Infinity War), to body horror (Venom), to body-swap comedy (Shazam!) to ????? (Aquaman).
So when it comes to The Boys, the new project from producers Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg (Preacher, This Is The End), what can you expect?
How about a meta dark comedy filled with deep cuts on the power of celebrity, the consumerist nature of modern society, sexism and sexual harassment in the workplace, and the waging war between the economic classes?
But if you're just looking for a good time, there is plenty of that here, too.
The Six are basically this universe's answer to the Avengers or Justice League, headed up by the squeaky clean Homelander (Anthony Starr), and they have just recruited a new member - Starlight - (Erin Moriarty), into their do-gooding group.
However, Starlight soon discovers that they are not as perfect as the world would have them believe, causing a huge amount of collateral damage, partaking in drugs, orgies, and casual violence, and only kept in check by the amounts of money they earn from corporate sponsorship, which is organised by their talent management Madeyln Stillwell (Elisabeth Shue).
Meanwhile, Hughie Campbell (Jack Quaid) is a regular guy who finds his life torn apart when he is caught up as part of that collateral damage, and decides The Six need to be taken down a peg or two.
This leads him to cross paths with the secretive Billy Butcher (Karl Urban), and together they set about a plan to destroy the superheroes before they get too powerful to ever be held accountable for their actions.
JOE has seen the first two episodes, and director Dan Trachtenberg (10 Cloverfield Lane) sets up the tone perfectly, with the OTT violence and edgy humour of Deadpool mixed in perfectly with the self-aware nature of Watchmen.
It does go to some intensely dark places, perhaps darker than viewers might be expecting, especially with Starlight's first interaction with The Deep (Chace Crawford).
That will be the litmus test for viewers, as anyone expecting something purely fun will be left shocked and likely upset.
That being said, Urban is having the time of his life as a brash, ultra-violent renegade who is assisting in this epic revenge for reasons that he isn't too pushed at revealing straight away, and he is fantastically paired with Quaid, who really nails the Regular Joe who has wandered into the deep end of a world he didn't realise got quite this murky.
Even in those first two episodes, the rug pulls come thick and fast, and if the rest of the season can maintain that same level of smart-but-nasty comedy with some eyebrow-raising plot developments, then we really could be on to something special here.
Just don't be surprised if you're offended along the way.
The full first season of The Boys arrives on Prime Video from Friday 26 July.
Clip via Amazon Prime Video