In “The Boys” recap, Mallory prepares her team for a Congressional appearance, Hughie goes on a rescue mission and Homelander starts a family…
By Damon Martin — Editor/Lead Writer
Following the not-so-surprising revelation last week that Stormfront is secretly a Nazi born in the early 1900’s, her agenda to wipe out anyone involved in what she calls a “war for the culture” has ratcheted up in the penultimate episode for “The Boys” season 2.
Rather than operating from the shadows, Stormfront is now front and center alongside her new boyfriend Homelander, who she has promised will lead her idea for a master race, as they drum up support as well as a whole lot of rage and anger amongst their base.
If that sounds familiar, it probably should.
To demonstrate the kind of vitriol and paranoia that Stormfront and Homelander are stirring up, the episode opens with a fan living in his mom’s basement, who goes through the normal doldrums of his everyday life in eerily repetitive fashion. But lately this random guy hasn’t just been waking up to his coffee or saying goodbye to his mother on the way to work — he’s also been inundated with a constant barrage of interviews, news stories and rallies where Stormfront and Homelander are speaking about the super villains invading our borders and the evil that must be stamped out to Keep America Safe Again.
In the end, the man ends up snapping and killing his local convenience store clerk because he happened to have brown skin and spoke with an accent, which this guy somehow came to believe automatically made him a super villain. Wonder where he got that idea?
That sets the stage for an explosive (pun intended) episode of “The Boys” as Homelander and Stormfront continue to build on their new agenda while Butcher and the Boys do everything in their power to stop them.
With that said, let’s recap the penultimate episode of “The Boys” season 2 titled “Butcher, Baker, Candlestick Maker”…
You Come at the King
After pulling Lamplighter out of the Sage Grove Center a week ago, Gracy Mallory puts him in touch with Congresswoman Victoria Neuman — the stand-in for Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on this show — as she prepares for hearings where the plan is to expose Vought International for the monstrous corporation they really are.
Following a lengthy interview with the former member of The Seven, Neuman believes she has a solid witness to testify even if there will be strong counter arguments against him. But she doesn’t believe Lamplighter’s testimony will be enough. That declaration doesn’t sit to well with Butcher, who prefers a more direct approach where they force Lamplighter to give up the next highest person on the food chain and then kill him.
“Not enough? If torturing and burning a bunch of mentals at Vought’s say-so ain’t enough for you muppets, then what the fuck are you good for, huh? A strongly worded tweet?”
The thing is Neuman doesn’t just want to strike a blow against Vought — she wants to bring them down.
“If we’re going to take a shot at the king, we can’t fucking miss”
~ Congresswoman Victoria Neuman
That’s when Mallory suggests another avenue for a person who might be able to hand over the smoking gun against Vought that will work in tandem with Lamplighter’s testimony. Butcher doesn’t seem too enthusiastic about this particular idea but he’s got his own problems to deal with after receiving a phone call from his mother.
It seems she’s flown into New York and she wants to see her son because his father has just recently died.
With Butcher off to see his mum, Mallory and Mother’s Milk prepare to go see the mystery person who will hopefully be handed over to Congress while Hughie is left nursing his wound with the all-important job of babysitting Lamplighter, who is falling down a pit of depression after making the decision to turn against his former employers.
Finally, Frenchie — who we find out this week his real name is Surge — is assigned to keep an eye on Congresswoman Neuman just in case any Supes come after her. After he told the tear-jerking story last week about how he left his post following Lamplighter to save his friend’s life, which then allowed the fire-breathing member of The Seven to ultimately kill Mallory’s grandchildren, he promises never to abandon his post again.
While staking out Congresswoman Neuman’s apartment, Frenchie finally reconnects with Kimiko, who begins to teach him her sign language so they can begin to communicate with each other.
As for Starlight, she’s still off the grid when she goes to a coffee shop for a sit down with her mother, who refuses to leave New York until she makes amends with her daughter. The once bright-eyed superhero has learned that the good guys don’t win and the bad guys never really get punished so she’s got a much more cynical outlook on the world than when her mother was raising her as a child of Christ, born with powers granted by God to do great things.
Still, Donna isn’t giving up and she even suggests a nice two week vacation for them — in fact she even cleared the trip with Ashley from Vought. Starlight barely has a moment to chastise her mother for alerting Vought to her location before a gas bomb comes tearing through the window.
A second later, Black Noir has knocked Annie unconscious and taken her back to Vought Tower where she’s being held in a Supe proof room where her powers don’t work.
Across town, Homelander and Stormfront are engaging in a loud protest against super villains crossing our borders and putting us all at risk. Stormfront rails on Congresswoman Neuman as a social justice warrior, who refuses to understand the real threat to this country. She suggests more Supes are the answers, which means more Compound-V in order to stop these evildoers from doing evil on American soil.
The crowd is almost foaming at the mouth by the time Homelander reveals that Starlight has been exposed as the mole in The Seven. He blames her for Translucent’s death and paints her as the root cause of all the bad things happening lately.
Once the rally comes to an end, Homelander is seething with anger because he wanted to kill Starlight and he really wants to rip Hughie’s spine through his neck. Stormfront calms him down by pointing out how much better they’re polling thanks to Starlight being left alive because she’s now an enemy the people can complain about rather than a superhero who’s been martyred.
That’s when Homelander catches Stormfront glancing over at a baby being held in its mother’s arms nearby. She can’t help but lament for the loss of her own daughter so Homelander has an idea to help her deal with the sudden burst of motherhood.
A few moments later, Homelander and Stormfront arrive at Becca Butcher’s hidden home inside a Vought compound where she’s playing with Ryan. Homelander apologizes to his son for their previous encounter and then introduced him to Stormfront for the first time.
When Butcher arrives at the hotel to see his mother, he’s surprised to find out that his father is still very much alive. Sam Butcher — played by the great John Noble — isn’t far from death, however, as cancer continues to eat away at his insides.
It seems he’s traveled to New York to make peace with his son but Butcher wants no part of it and judging by his father’s demeanor, Sam didn’t really want that either. Instead, Sam badgers his son about how he toughened him up by beating the shit out of him when he was a kid and that’s why he grew up so strong while his little brother Lenny was weak.
Butcher is ready to toss his father over the balcony at the mention of Lenny’s name but Sam keeps pushing when he reveals that his youngest son took his own life by sticking a gun in his mouth and pulling the trigger. He then accuses Butcher of abandoning his brother when he went to join the British SAS (Special Air Service).
That’s enough for Butcher to attack his father but before he can do any permanent damage, his mother pulls him off. Butcher leaves and it certainly seems he hopes that’s the last time he ever has to see his father alive.
Meanwhile, Mother’s Milk and Grace Mallory arrive at the home of Dr. Jonah Vogelbaum — the former scientist and executive at Vought, who has a personal hand in Homelander’s creation. Remember last season, Homelander paid him a visit to find out information about his son and now when we see Vogelbaum, he’s been paralyzed, which explains what the vicious leader of The Seven did to him to gain that information.
Mallory is there to ask Vogelbaum to testify before Congress as the last nail in Vought’s coffin but even with the threat of past charges coming back to haunt him, he won’t blink. It seems after his violent encounter with Homelander a season ago, Vogelbaum knows that crossing Vought is too dangerous, especially as he seeks to protect his three children including the daughter who lives with him now.
Ultimately, Mallory decides not to push any harder and she leaves with Mother’s Milk while telling him that he should do the same as Vogelbaum. She promises if Mother’s Milk wants to leave, reunite with his family and get away from all of this, she will set it up. He refuses, however, because no matter how far he runs, if Vought is still this powerful, his family will never be safe again.
While knocking back some drinks at a bar to wash off the stink of that meeting with his father, Butcher gets the call that Mallory and Mother’s Milk were unable to convince Dr. Vogelbaum that he should do his civic duty and testify.
Butcher then takes it upon himself to pay Vogelbaum a visit, who graciously declines the same offer to testify while also issuing an apology for all the way Vought fucked up his life. Rather than seek revenge, Butcher tells Vogelbaum that he’s going to put aside his fears and testify before Congress because if not, he won’t have to worry about Homelander coming for his children.
Instead, Butcher promises that he’ll kill each and every one of Vogelbaum’s children himself that very day unless the former Vought scientist agrees to give testimony at this hearing.
After Butcher deals with his own daddy issues while threatening a former Vought executive, Homelander is working through his own problems with fatherhood after arriving at Becca’s home where he reunites with his son Ryan and then introduces him to Stormfront.
Neither of them are happy at how sheltered Ryan has been his entire life nor that he’s not allowed to use his powers despite being the first ever natural born Supe. While Homelander and Stormfront are ready to introduce Ryan to a whole new world including movies starring his father — our personal favorites are “Homelander: Darkest Day” and “Homelander: Brightest Night” — Becca isn’t interested in her son seeing those movies just yet.
Becca pleads with Homelander to allow Ryan to be raised in a loving home with his mother rather than being forced to use his powers with no real childhood, which is exactly what Vought did to him. It seems they’ve reached an understanding as Becca goes to fix all of them some dinner — an oven cooked Brave Maeve Vegetable Lasagna to be exact —but when she goes to serve everybody, Ryan is looking at her with cold, angry eyes.
It seems Homelander flew up into the sky with his son to show him the Vought compound where they’ve been living, which shatters the only truth Ryan has ever known. He lashes out at his mother and says that he hates her for lying to him.
Becca pleads that he needs his mother but Stormfront is quick to counter by pointing out he’ll still have mother — it just won’t be Becca Butcher. A second later, Homelander and Stormfront fly away with Ryan in tow.
Becca is heartbroken and now searching for help in order to rescue her son.
Maeve suffers through a break up in the latest episode after her girlfriend Elena decides she can no longer be with her after seeing that video where a plane full of people perished when the heroes refused to save them. Elena knows it wasn’t Maeve’s fault but she’s horrified to the point where this relationship can no longer work.
Maeve lashes out by throwing a dinner table, which only solidifies Elena’s decision to put an end to things.
Later that day, Ashley shows up to go over some PR material with Maeve, who she finds in bed with two random men while smoking from a vape pen. Ashley is angry to see her popular lesbian bedding down with two dudes but Maeve tells her that Elena is gone for good. She then implores Ashley to act like a human for once in her life and rather than berating Maeve for doing wrong, she wishes her well before leaving.
Back at Mallory’s house, Hughie is stuck babysitting Lamplighter, who is currently absorbing copious amounts of pornography. He’s really enjoying the parody series, which includes titles such as “Queen Maeve Pleasure Slave,” “Big Black Noir” and “Starlight Pulls an A-Train.”
Hughie is despondent because he’s been left to keep an eye on Lamplighter while the rest of the team is actually out doing work to go after Vought. Lamplighter is feeling just as down after agreeing to betray Vought and ultimately feeling like the guy stuck in the corner of the porn movie watching ‘Homebanger’ screw his wife.
As much as Hughie wants to lament that he’s really the “snowflake cuck” in this scenario, Lamplighter knocks him down yet another peg by telling him he’s actually the “cuck fluffer.”
Hughie’s day goes from bad to worse when he turns on the Homelander and Stormfront rally coverage on TV to find out that Starlight has been captured and branded a traitor. He decides then and there it’s time to do something — and Lamplighter can finally be a hero again by helping him get into Vought tower to rescue her.
Lamplighter begrudgingly agrees and they make it into Vought tower through a secret entrance where he used to sneak college girls when he was a member of The Seven. After happily discovering that his handprint still works to get through security, Lamplighter leads Hughie to the 42nd floor where he believes a rescue will be taking place.
Instead, Lamplighter leads them into the faux Hall of Justice where he’s depressed to find out that his statue has been replaced and now Starlight stands in his place. He mumbles about how he wanted to do this in front of his statue but before Hughie can figure out what’s happening, Lamplighter sets himself ablaze.
As the sprinkler system kicks on along with the fire alarm, Hughie is once again shocked to see a man burned alive. Unfortunately there’s no time to mourn Lamplighter because security is coming and he needs to find Annie and get the hell out of there.
But how can they escape without bypassing security? Well, Hughie decides the best course of action is to cut off once of Lamplighter’s charred hands, which he will then use to navigate his way through Vought tower.
Meanwhile, as the alarms go off a light begins blinking in Starlight’s holding cell, which gives her just enough power to charge up and blast through the door.
Before she can escape, Annie gets blasted into the boardroom courtesy of Black Noir, who has shown up to stop her from making her way out of the building.
Black Noir begins to savagely beat Annie while throwing her from one corner of the room to another. He eventually gets on top of her where Black Noir begins choking her to death as Starlight blinks in and out of consciousness.
A second later, Starlight wakes up to find Maeve pulling Black Noir off her, pulling up his mask to expose a bit of his face before feeding him an Almond Joy. Black Noir immediately crumbles to the ground as he reaches for his EpiPen because it turns out he’s allergic to tree nuts.
Maeve kicks the emergency medicine just out of reach while telling Starlight to go now before he can recover. Annie tells Maeve to come along with her but she refuses.
As she makes her way through Vought tower, Annie eventually runs into Hughie, who has managed to rescue her mother from captivity. It doesn’t take long for Annie to realize Hughie is reason she was able to break free because he risked his life to come save her.
All three of them escape Vought tower before security can intervene.
Away from all the rest of the action this week, the Deep and A-Train are celebrating Alastair Adana’s birthday when he gives them some very good news. The leader of the Church of the Collective has a meeting next week with Stan Edgar from Vought and he’s quite confident that this will help put both of them back into The Seven.
Before going to limbo his heart away from the night, Alastair informs Deep that his friend Eagle the Archer — the one who introduced him to the church in the first place — has been excommunicated and he’s no longer allowed to associate with anyone from the Church of the Collective. Obviously this is scientology without calling it scientology but as much as Deep wanted to call Eagle the Archer his friend, he wants the power of the church behind him in order to return to The Seven.
As for Butcher, before he heads back to his team’s secret hideout, he meets with his mother one last time before she leaves New York.
It seems her plan was not to reunite Billy with his father in hopes that they’d put the past behind them but rather she wanted him to let go of the shackles he’s been wearing from that damaged relationship for so many years. Billy hugs his mother and returns home where he plans to watch the Congressional hearing with the rest of the Boys.
At the hearing, Congresswoman Neuman is introducing her key witness and that’s when Dr. Jonah Vogelbaum wheels into the courtroom, locking eyes with Homelander who sits just a few feet away. Just as Vogelbaum is about to be sworn into give his testimony, the chairman’s head explodes and blood splatters across Congresswoman Neuman.
A second later, Dr. Vogelbaum’s head explodes as well.
As the crowd disperses in horror, Mallory rushes to drag Congresswoman Neuman out of the room before she suffers the same fate after watching her assistant’s head explode. Even Shockwave — the expected replacement for A-Train — dies horrifically as well.
Through all this, Homelander and Stormfront don’t seem all that shocked or scared as the Congressional hearing transforms into a bloodbath.
Hundreds of miles away in New York, Butcher looks on along with the rest of his team as well as Annie and her mother. Butcher is shocked at first but then the anger begins to boil up inside him as he realizes the best possible shot they had to bring down Vought has just been burst into a million pieces much like the CIA liaison who was trying to help them as well.
We still don’t know the Supe with the power to explode heads just yet but there are a lot of theories floating around. One guess is that it’s actually Stan Edgar, the head of Vought, who seemingly never flinches in the face of Homelander’s power. Is that because Stan is a Supe himself and he doesn’t fear Homelander because he has plenty of power on his own?
Another possibility seems to be Alastair Adana — he said he had a meeting scheduled with Stan Edgar and perhaps his agreement to help was stopping these Congressional hearings while also killing Shockwave, which would then allow Deep and A-Train to rejoin The Seven while giving the Church of the Collective a foothold in the most powerful superhero team in the world.
Next week will be “The Boys” season 2 finale and hopefully we’ll find out more behind this mysterious Supe with one of the most terrifying powers of all.