The Biggest Differences Between The Comic Book And TV Versions Of ‘The Boys’
There are plenty of subtle differences between The Boys comic book series, written by Garth Ennis and published by Dynamite Entertainment, and the Amazon Studios television adaptation. From the shift in overall tone to the slightly tweaked brand of superhero mayhem, there are a lot of variations to debate when comparing The Boys comics vs. show. With the success of the second season, there's plenty of time for the show to incorporate even more of the comics into the show.
Hughie is no longer Scottish. The Seven don't have a flying base. Translucent was invented from scratch for the show! And that is just the tip of the iceberg. Scroll down to see the differences between The Boys television show and The Boys comic book, but be warned... there are spoilers for both lurking down there.
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The Show Gets Way More Into The PR And Talent Relations Aspect Of Vought
The television series takes the corporate trappings and "outwardly-good, inwardly-evil" antics of both The Seven and Vought and dials them up to 11, making them one of the show's true evils. Viewers see the inner workings of Vought International's many different departments, from Talent Relations to Marketing to even their lawyers.
At one point, we even get to see a little bit of their Annual Shareholders Meeting, which gives off some serious Fortune 500 vibes. Vought's influence has touched everything from sports to nonprofits to social media. We get to see A-Train stream a publicity stunt with Make-A-Wish on Facebook Live, for crying out loud!
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The Seven Fly Around In A Sky Base In The ComicsPhoto: Dynamite Entertainment
The home base of The Seven on the television series is Vought Tower, a clear reference to Avengers Tower from both Marvel Comics and the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It fits the more real-world tone of the show and serves as a dig at big business in America as the official home of The Seven is on the 99th floor of the massive skyscraper.
In the comics, The Seven work out of a flying base that is less akin to the Helicarrier from 2012's The Avengers and more in line with something like the Justice League Satellite from DC's comics, albeit inside the atmosphere. It probably would've been too expensive for the CGI work needed to adapt that to a television show and the building just fits better with the show's corporate-skewering themes.
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The Television Show Is More Of A Takedown Of Disney And The MCU While The Comics Weren't
The Boys comic book series, which began in 2006, is more of a darkly comedic take on superhero comic books. The signature, over-the-top explicitness of Garth Ennis' work is definitely there - probably even more so than in his signature series Preacher. There is no subtlety to the comics' takedown of the genre with direct and obvious takedowns of characters like Captain America, the X-Men, and Iron Man in different arcs.
Seeing as the television adaptation has come well after the absolutely massive success of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it makes sense that the show targets Disney and Marvel Studios as opposed to superhero comics books. Vought even has their own movie studio that creates billion-dollar-grossing superhero films, which isn't exactly a veiled jab at Marvel Studios' dominance over the box office in the past decade.
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Stormfront Was A Man And Created By Nazi Germany In The ComicsPhoto: Amazon Prime / Dynamite Entertainment
The Stormfront of the comics series was made into a superpowered being as a child by the Third Reich in Germany during the heights of their power in the early parts of the 20th century. Much like the television character, the comics' Stormfront seems to barely age and continues to spout racist garbage up to the moment of his demise in the comic series.
The creative team behind Amazon Studios' The Boys tweaked the character a bit for the television show. She became the first superhero ever after her husband, Frederick Vought, injected her with Compound V decades before the show takes place. She is less outwardly racist than her comics inspiration, but she clearly is a bigot with no compunction for taking the lives of innocent Black bystanders as she does in the third episode of Season 2. It is a more honest take on current-day racism than having a Nazi superhero being outwardly racist for all to hear.
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Starlight's Origin Story Is Changed For The Television Show
The Starlight of the comic book series is a member of the Young Americans superhero team before joining the ranks of The Seven. She was a member of Capes for Christ and was from Des Moines, IA.
The Starlight of the television show, while keeping much of the same aura of the comic book version, has an origin with clearer ties to the real world. She has a helicopter mom who put her in superhero pageants as a child and made sure she trained to one day become a superhero. After a nationwide audition process, she is recruited into The Seven, not knowing just unlucky she was to catch her big break.
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Translucent Isn't In The Comics At All
Translucent is the member of The Seven who is integral to the first few episodes in the first season of The Boys as he plays a central role in bringing the vigilante team together. He's ultimately Hughie's bloody induction to the manic world of both The Seven and The Boys. But he isn't even in the comic books series at all.
Neither are Shockwave or Doppelganger. The existence of these three superpowered characters shows that while the production team is surely remaining faithful to the basic ideas introduced in The Boys comic series, they aren't afraid to create their own spin on things. Adapting the stories straight from the comic books would make no sense - those tales already exist. Changing it up makes things fresh for people who love the source material as well as those newcomers who know nothing about the comics at all.