When the Amazon Prime Video series The Boys premiered last year in August, it took superhero film enthusiasts by storm. For, it offered something rarely seen in the genre: Superheroes, popular as celebrities, influential as politicians, and revered as gods, abusing their powers instead of using them for good. The Boys follows the eponymous team of vigilantes as they try to expose the Seven, Vought International’s premier superhero team led by the egotistical and megalomaniacal Homelander (menacingly portrayed by Antony Starr; the character is considered to be analogous to DC’s Superman). The Seven, among others, also features Queen Maeve (essayed by Dominique McElligott with equal parts brain and brawn; the character is considered to be analogous to DC’s Wonder Woman).
The Boys, on the other hand, are led by Billy Butcher (brilliantly played by the uber-cool Karl Urban), a former CIA operative who despises all individuals with superpowers. The Boys is based on the comic book series of the same name by Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson. The first season of the series had ended on a perfect cliffhanger and after a year-long wait the much-awaited second season is finally upon us. But before we examine the second season of The Boys, let’s first try and examine the giant leap taken by the superhero genre over the last decade.
Now, the 2010s are widely regarded as the Marvel decade. But, a more accurate way to describe them is as the superhero decade. Interestingly, nobody was so sure about the future of the superhero films about 10 years ago. Remember, the first leg of the Spider-Man and the X-Men series had ended in 2007 and 2009, respectively. And the future looked uncertain for both the franchises. Also, the second leg of the Superman series never really got going after the mixedbad response to the 2006 film Superman Returns. Also, what Christopher Nolan achieved with The Dark Knight (2008) was seen more as a personal triumph of a director’s vision than a superhero genre breakthrough.
But it all changed with Iron Man 2 (2010) which catapulted the Nick Fury-led S.H.I.E.L.D to instant fame — two years after it was first introduced as part of Iron Man (2008) during a post-credits scene. Following the release of Iron Man 2, the Walt Disney Studios agreed to pay Paramount a whopping amount for the worldwide distribution rights to Iron Man 3 and The Avengers. And the rest, as they say, is history.
Soon, Hollywood was raining superheroes. As Marv e l w a s putting together The Avengers, DC Comics started planning their Justice League lineup. And, before we knew it, Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy (2014) also came alive. The X-Men franchise too got a new lease of life with X-Men: First Class (2011). Next year, The Amazing Spider-Man was released with a fresh cast and storyline. Subsequently, Zack Snyder delivered Man of Steel (2013) — the first film of DC’s Superman reboot that was followed by the 2016 offering Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. In 2015, Marvel came out with Ant-Man which was followed by Ant-Man and the Wasp in 2018. Also, in 2016 Deadpool went on to become the highest grossing R-rated film at the time. It was followed by Deadpool 2 (2018). Soon the battle for the female superhero supremacy started as DC came out with the hugely successful Wonder Woman in 2017 and Marvel responded with an even bigger success in Captain Marvel (2019). 2018 also witnessed another superhero film Venom based on a character appeared in Spider-Man 3 (2007). All this proves why the 2010s are regarded as the superhero decade
Coming back to The Boys, the second season is bigger and grander at so many levels. First, the stakes are much higher this time. Also, we have a few new characters with some incredible superpowers. On one hand we have the enigmatic Stormfront (portrayed with great poise by Aya Cash). She has the unique ability to manipulate electricity and use it in combat. She is also endowed with many other powers. Although, she joins the Seven as its newest member, her real intentions as well as her actual origins are unknown. Then there is a mysterious new character gifted with the power to get anyone’s head to explode at will. The second season of The Boys also presents Black Noir in a new light. A-Train and The Deep again have solid character arcs this season. The character of Vought CEO Stan Edgar (chillingly essayed by Giancarlo Esposito) also comes to the fore this season. The various arcs involving Homelander, Billy Butcher, Queen Maeve, Starlight, Hughie, Frenchie, Mother’s Milk, and Kimiko also get explored really well in the second season.
The Boys is an irreverent, unapologetically sharp-witted, and no-holds-barred flip on superhero genre. And the second season takes us to ever darker places. While the extreme violence and sexuality that the first season offered are more or less retained, Season 2 offers a more scathing commentary on superhero culture, social media, global corporations, and religious sects. As far as the superhero space is concerned, The Boys comes a near second to the HBO series Watchmen when it comes to depicting the dark side of things.
Murtaza Ali Khan is a noted film critics and writer. The views expressed are personal.
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AS ‘TADAP’ TEASER UNVEILED, SUNIEL ROOTS FOR HIS SON AHAN’S DEBUT
MUMBAI: Suniel Shetty’s son Ahan Shetty is all set to make his acting debut opposite Tara Sutaria in the film ‘Tadap’.
On Tuesday, the makers unveiled the teaser of the film. The teaser gives us a sneak peek into the world of Ishana and Ramisa, portrayed by Ahan and Tara respectively and establishes their characters well. While Ramisa is seen at the picturesque location of snow-clad mountains, Ishana, on the contrary, is spotted in a rugged macho avatar with his bike.
Sharing the teaser of his son, Suniel took to Instagram and wrote, “A glimpse of my heart for the world. A teaser of what I’ve loved. A humble tease of what is to come #Tadap – a little at a time. So excited for my son @ahan.shetty & his teaser of #Tadap. Give him as much love as you gave me.”
Produced by Sajid Nadiadwala and directed by Milan Luthria, ‘Tadap’ will be out in cinemas on 3 December.
EMRAAN OPENS UP ABOUT PARALLEL LOVE STORY WITH HORROR GENRE
MUMBAI: Ahead of the release of his horror film ‘Dybbuk’, Emraan Hashmi opened up about his connection with the particular genre. “I feel I have a parallel love story with this genre. I personally like horror films and hence starring in ‘Raaz 2’ and ‘Ek thi Dayaan’ was like a dream come true for me. A wave of horror films will always be there in the industry and Horror should be consumed like this (‘Dybbuk’),” he said. Emraan also urged filmmakers and actors to come forward to create more horror films in the industry.
“I feel yet in our country and industry, this genre hasn’t been completely explored yet. Not many films are made. I really wish more and more stars come forward to do horror films. Also because I know the success ratio of this genre is a lot more,” he added.
Talking about ‘Dybbuk’, the film also stars Nikita Dutta and Manav Kaul in prominent roles and is all set to release on 29 October on Amazon Prime Video.
‘JONAS BROTHERS FAMILY ROAST’ TO STREAM ON NETFLIX
WASHINGTON: Streaming giant Netflix is all set to come up with a comedy special ‘Jonas Brothers Family Roast’, which features none other than musicians brothers Nick Jonas, Kevin Jonas, and Joe Jonas.
Touted as a celebration of “the universal truth that no one can get under your skin quite like your own family”, ‘Jonas Brothers Family Roast’ will include sketches, songs, games and special guests all meant to tease the brothers about their lives and careers, reported Variety. Pete Davidson, Niall Horan, Gabriel “Fluffy” Iglesias, John Legend, Lilly Singh, and Jack Whitehall will make special appearances in the special. Also, Saturday Night Live’s Kenan Thompson will host the show.
On Tuesday, Nick took to Instagram and shared a teaser video to announce the launch of the show. “Someone teach @joejonas how this works… The Jonas Brothers Family Roast will be available on @netflix,” he captioned the clip.
‘Jonas Brothers Family Roast’ is scheduled to release on 23 November 23.
WITNESS COP SALMAN AGAINST GANGSTER AAYUSH IN ‘ANTIM’ TRAILER
MUMBAI : The makers of the Salman Khan, Aayush Sharma-starrer film ‘Antim: The Final Truth’ unveiled the action-packed trailer of the film on Monday.
The film also marks the debut of Mahima Makwana. The trailer comes loaded with pumping action, highoctane background music, and much more. The nearly three-minute-long trailer opens with Salman Khan, who plays the role of a cop, in his first-ever Sardar persona.
The trailer also gives the audience a good peek into the transformation of Aayush’s character, the nemesis of Salman in the movie. Aayush plays the role of an aggressive, dreaded and territorial gangster. Both Salman and Aayush had to undergo significant physical transformation to play their characters in the film, and the trailer shows precisely that. Laden with thrilling action, in the trailer, Salman Khan comes out as a ruthless, no-bars-held cop who will stop at nothing to rout out crime.
‘Antim: The Final Truth’ is directed by Mahesh Manjrekar, produced by Salma Khan and is presented by Salman Khan Films. The film will be globally released in theatres by Zee Studios on 26 November.
SHARVARI’S PRIYANKA CHOPRA MOMENT
Gorgeous debutant Sharvari, who will be seen in the family entertainer ‘Bunty Aur Babli 2’ playing the role of the new Babli, is over the moon about her Priyanka Chopra moment on the sets of the film. When Sharvari donned a metallic gold bikini and dazzled the crew with her sass and curves on the Abu Dhabi beach, she reminded us of Priyanka’s stunning onepiece bikini sequence in ‘Dostana’ that had stopped the heartbeat of the audience. Sharvari says, “I was the happiest person on set the day I shot this scene. Growing up, the image of Priyanka Chopra walking out of the sea in her golden bikini in ‘Dostana’ was etched in my mind. She is the queen of sass and cool, she looked drop-dead gorgeous.”
She adds, “Ever since I decided to become an actor, I have secretly wished for a sequence like that to be in. And it’s a really sweet coincidence that ‘Bunty Aur Babli 2’ script had a sequence of me coming out of the sea in a stunning bikini. I just couldn’t believe it!”
Sharvari exclaims, “So, on the day of the shoot, I was thrilled and confident to pull this off. I was in good shape and had the best crew to shoot this. I was seeing my wish come true. I hope I have pulled off the scene well because someone like Priyanka Chopra had absolutely nailed it and set benchmarks of how to do a great bikini sequence with so much oomph.”
ARSHAD TO BE SEEN IN TURBANED LOOK IN NEW FILM ‘BANDA SINGH’
MUMBAI: Arshad Warsi will be seen donning a turban in his new film ‘Banda Singh’.
On Monday, Arshad took to Twitter and shared the first official poster of the movie. In the image, he can be seen sporting a turbaned look as he poses with actor Meher Vij. “Really excited to become #BandaSingh for you all. All we need is your blessings,” Arshad captioned the poster.
As per a statement, ‘Banda Singh’ is a survival story of a man and his family, set in North India and based on true events. It is helmed by Abhishek Saxena.
Abhishek said, “I have been looking for a script like this to direct since a long time as my earlier two films Phullu and Saroj Ka Rishta were on social issues but Banda Singh is about survival. I am quite thrilled to go on floors and roll the film with Arshad, Meher and rest of the cast.” ‘Banda Singh’ will go on floors in mid-November.
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